Congratulations to our new President & CEO: Andrea Thomas
July 19, 2019
A LETTER OF CONGRATULATIONS FROM OUR BOARD CHAIR
Dear Friends and Colleagues,
On behalf of the board of directors and search committee chaired by board member, Kaye Savage, I am proud to announce that Andrea Thomas, Executive Vice President, has been selected to succeed Dana M. Jones as the new President & CEO of the United Planning Organization (UPO) effective October 1, 2019.
Twelve years ago, Ms. Thomas came to UPO and was tasked with creating a division to address the needs of Washington, DC youth. Encouraged to be creative and innovative, she laid the foundation for a division that continues to thrive by building upon the dynamic summer programs and postsecondary education preparation efforts that were seeded over a decade ago.
In just two years, Ms. Thomas stepped into the positions of Chief of Staff and then Executive Vice President. In these roles, Ms. Thomas helped shape strategic thinking and planning, positioned the agency as a thought leader in the anti-poverty conversation, and managed teams toward greater organizational efficiency. These opportunities ultimately helped improve the quality of life for people with low income, the motivation for which Ms. Thomas credits her long service to UPO and desire to take it to the next level.
Ms. Thomas’s breadth of experience in non-profit and specifically community action on both the programmatic and executive level, positions her to be an invaluable asset to the ongoing expansion and impact of UPO. A few of her many significant accomplishments include:
- Securing a COMPASS DC engagement to create tracking measures to support the delivery of strategic plan goals.
- Brokering a partnership with the Department of Human Services (DHS) to develop a pilot construction training program which led to multi-year grant funding of nearly a million dollars.
- Creating the Providing Opportunities With Educational Readiness (POWER) program in partnership with the School of Education, Teaching, and Health at American University, which expanded into multiple collaborative projects increasing UPO’s organizational efficacy.
- Establishing UPO as a Freedom School affiliate site.
Ms. Thomas is superbly prepared to take the helm at this moment ripe for new leadership. In no small measure, we owe Mr. Jones a debt of gratitude for the smooth transition his remarkable tenure made possible and for his pledge of continued support.
Over the years, we have been fortunate to know Ms. Thomas as a leader with vision, intellect, dedication, compassion, and integrity. It is certain that Ms. Thomas will continue to lead with grace and take UPO to new heights.
Please join us in extending our wholehearted support and congratulations to Ms. Thomas as the next UPO President & CEO.
Jacqueline Kinlow (Chair of the Board of Directors United Planning Organization)