Rich Muller, Herald Staff Writer
Foundation hires new leader
Suzanne Allen will be the next executive director of the Barberton Community Foundation (BCF).
The BCF board of directors voted Dec. 13 to hire Allen, effective Monday, March 4. Allen is the president and CEO of Philanthropy Ohio which has offices in Columbus and Cleveland. Her last day there will be Friday, March 1.
Allen’s annual salary will be $128,000, the same previous director Jim Stonkus. She lives in Fairlawn with her husband Mitch. Allen does not plan to move to Barberton and the BCF board is not requiring her to do so.
“I live 11 miles away and can get here in 15 minutes,” Allen said.
Allen said she is excited and thrilled to be joining the BCF as the organization transitions to a philosophy of collective impact instead of reacting to individual grant requests.
She said the easiest way to define collective impact is to think of a bunch of boats going in different directions with different goals and objectives. More is accomplished if people and organizations are all in one boat, rowing in the same direction with energy and resources concentrated on specific goals or processes.
“It’s an exciting challenge for me to learn more about the community, learn more about that sort of hidden culture, the stories and the things that make Barberton special,” Allen said, adding, “When people say they are from Barberton, they say it with pride.”
“I’m thrilled with the collective impact model,” stated Chairman of the Board Michael Chisnell, “because it challenges our organization and challenges the community to have focused volunteerism and focused partnerships to develop and blossom.”
Chisnell said the BCF board, city and community have a lot to learn about collective impact. “You don’t just press a button and everything is in place.” He anticipates six to 12 months of formulating, identifying and doing the homework before fully deploying collective impact in 2019.
In the search for an executive director, 64 applicants were received by search organization Finding Leaders From those five finalist selected for interviews with board members.
In other board action, Dennis Liddle was approved for a three-year board of directors term. Liddle was also selected to be chairman of the board, both effective at the end of the annual meeting, Jan 17.
Debra Shreiner was named to a three-year term on the board, subject to the approval of Barberton City Council.