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CEO Turnover Continue At Some Komen Chapters

By Mark Hrywna - March 15, 2013

Two fundraising veterans have been tapped to lead a pair of the largest Susan G. Komen for the Cure affiliates in the nation. The Greater New York City affiliate and Chicagoland affiliates announced the appointments of new chief executives. Four smaller affiliates also hired new executives during the past two months.

The Greater New York City affiliate announced on Feb. 6 that Linda McNeil Tantawi became its new CEO on Jan. 28. Since 2009, she had been executive director of the CJ Foundation for SIDS in New York City, a national nonprofit devoted to eliminating sudden unexpected infant and early childhood deaths.

The Chicagoland affiliate announced on Feb. 18 that it appointed as its new leader Rita Forden, vice president of development for the Illinois Division of the American Cancer Society.

Tantawi was vice president and chief development and communications officer for more than 15 years at Volunteers of America Greater New York, also serving as its interim president and CEO. She also was director of development for the Black Leadership Commission on AIDS and a senior account executive with J.C. Geever, Inc., a consulting firm that advises charities regarding fundraising strategies.

Tantawi replaced Dara Richardson-Heron, who was among a number of Komen executives at the affiliate and headquarters level to resign last spring during a spat regarding funding to Planned Parenthood of America. Richardson-Heron was appointed this past August as CEO of the national YWCA in Washington, D.C. She earned an annual salary of $243,000, according to the most recent Form 990 available, but the organization did not respond to questions regarding Tantawi’s compensation.

Forden had been at ACS-Illinois since 2004 and helped restructure its CEOs Against Cancer employee education and fundraising program. During her tenure, the organization also created its first endowment funded by living donors.

Chicagoland was established in 1997 and was awarded the Affiliate of the Year in 2011. The previous executive director, Michael Ziener, left in December. He started in February as Midwest vice president of development at BuildOn, a Chicago, Ill.-based nonprofit that builds schools in developing countries and operates afterschool service programs in America’s inner cities. Jan McGee Sullivan, director of development and corporate partnerships, had been serving as interim executive director. (An earlier version of this story indicated Michael Ziener left Chicagoland to pursue nonprofit consulting.)

The Greater NYC affiliate had total net revenue of $12.9 million in the fiscal year ending March 2012, tops among affiliates, while Chicagoland was eighth among Komen’s 120 affiliates, with $4.97 million in net revenue.

Overall, Susan G. Komen for the Cure reported consolidated net revenue of $389 million, with $230 million from affiliates. Three-quarters of net proceeds by affiliates stay in the region, with 25 percent going to Susan G. Komen for the Cure headquarters to support grants programs for global research.

The largest affiliates aren’t the only ones with new chief executives. Komen Northeast Ohio last month appointed Sean Shacklett as executive director. The first male leader in the affiliate’s history, Shacklett was executive director of the Nonprofit Academic Centers Council in Cleveland. The Northeast Ohio affiliate, based in Cleveland, last year had net revenues of $3 million last year, including $2 million in Race for the Cure revenue.

The Southwest Florida affiliate in Bonita Springs Fla., which totaled net revenue of $1.85 million last year, announced last month that it had appointed Charlie Myrick as executive director. Previously, Myrick was executive director of the American Heart Association in Palm Desert, Calif.

The Twin Tiers Region affiliate announced in January that Patricia Nozell was hired as executive director. The Elmira, N.Y.-based affiliate raised more than $200,000 of its $260,000 in net revenue last year from Race for the Cure.

Carli Good was appointed executive director, effective Jan. 8, of Komen Greater Kansas City. She joined the affiliate in January 2011 as director of development and marketing and served as interim director since September 2012.

Good holds a master’s in social work and has previous fundraising experience with Boys & Girls Clubs, American Heart Association and March of Dimes.

Greater Kansas City ranked within the top 40 of Komen’s 120 affiliates in terms of race revenue last year, with $1.65 million and overall net revenue of $2.1 million.

Lori Maris served as executive director for the past 10 years. In October, she was elevated to a new role within Komen as one of seven regional vice presidents nationally. She will lead the North Central Region, which includes the Dakotas, Nebraska, Kansas, Missouri, Iowa, Minnesota, Wisconsin and Illinois.

The regional vice president post for the Northeast and East Central region was filled in January. Former chief operating officer of the Dave Thomas Foundation for Adoption, Miguel Perez served as president of the board of Komen Columbus from 2006 to 2009.

Regional vice presidents overseeing seven regions nationally will work with Komen’s national headquarters in Irving, Texas, on organizational and policy issues. The reorganization is part of the process of the Komen United project, according to spokeswoman Andrea Rader, examining where the charity can be organized more efficiently and fill spaces that it currently doesn’t serve. “Generally, working together more cohesively to have greater impact than we have today,” said Rader.  NPT

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