This week Frank Huck, board chairman of The Community Fund of Darien, announced the hiring of Janet King as the new organization’s new executive director. The search lasted almost four months with seven candidates being interviewed.
Huck commented, “We are excited to welcome Janet in her new role. She brings a wealth of experience, talent and enthusiasm for Darien and community philanthropy to our organization.”
The Community Fund is a non-profit leadership organization offering grants for local programs and initiatives in Darien and the surrounding area. Grants from the organization are meant to serve the community in specific areas of need; encouraging youth success, promoting a spirit of volunteerism, and providing the less fortunate with basic needs and training to help them become self-sufficient.
King, who is currently the Volunteer Director at Darien’s Person-to- Person, has worked in that role for the last eight years. In that position, she has been responsible for recruiting, coordinating, training and managing more than 4,000 volunteers. She was also responsible for developing and implementing the P2P mobile food pantry to address basic needs access for local communities.
In addition, she brings experience from her background in program management, employee training, and marketing, from a variety of companies including Western Athletic Clubs, Brooks Brothers, Esprit de Corp and May Company.
King is a native of Cleveland, graduating from The Ohio State University with a degree in business administration and marketing. In the time since she has worked in New York City and Silicon Valley. King has volunteered in the local community with Tokeneke Parent Teacher Organization, Saint Luke’s Parish, Darien Junior Sailing Team, Darien Youth Soccer, Stamford Hospital and Chi Omega alumnae. Janet and her husband Donald reside in Darien where they raised two sons.
Upon accepting her offer to join The Community Fund of Darien, King said, “I am honored to carry on the tradition of The Community Fund of Darien in bringing resources and people together to help strengthen the local community which we call home.”
Ceci Maher, Executive Director of Person-to-Person said, “As sad as I am to have Janet leave P2P, I am very happy for her. Janet has been with P2P for almost 8 years and has done a wonderful job of helping P2P grow to three sites, instituting new Salesforce volunteer modules, creating corporate relationships, and ensuring that client’s needs are met.”
Carrie Bernier left the Community Fund in June 2018 after five years as executive director to join the Norwalk Community College Foundation in the same role.
The Community Fund’s search committee was chaired by Cindy Banks and also included current and past board presidents Frank Huck and Steve Ward, along with current board members Heather Raker, Jake Hennemuth, Mara Neafsey and past board member Sue Okie.
Huck said, “On behalf of The Community Fund and the community of Darien, I want to extend a huge thank you to the work of our Search Committee, in particular our committee chair Cindy Banks, for a comprehensive process. Their dedicated work has led to an outstanding choice for our new executive director.”
Frank continued, “Thanks also go to our dedicated staff of Laurie Orem, Lisa Haas, Kathy Cronin, Emily Larkin, Barb Alter and Susan Serven who kept our office and operations running smoothly during the transition to a new leader.”
The Community Fund of Darien was founded over 65 years ago and has offices at 30 Old King’s Highway South, First Floor in Darien.
During the 2017 fiscal year the Community Fund awarded more than $500,000 in grants to more than two dozen causes. A campaign against underage drinking developed by the organization’s Thriving Youth Task Force gained national attention last year with striking social media posts and posters around town.
The Community also helps organize events like the Darien Road Race and the town’s annual Volunteer Recognition Luncheon. To donate to the community fund or find more information, visit the organization’s website at www.communityfunddarien.org.