Heather Cavanagh has been appointed the new executive director of the YWCA Darien/Norwalk.

She begins her new job Monday, April 21.

"I have a strong passion for helping those in need and I have spent much of my life working to make a difference and transform lives," Cavanagh said. "I look forward to helping the YWCA craft effective programs in support of its mission."

A resident of Darien, Cavanagh brings more than 20 years of nonprofit leadership to the YWCA. She is a former executive director of the Darien and Westport chambers of commerce and South Kingstown Chamber of Commerce in Rhode Island. Her professional experience has encompassed nonprofit leadership, corporate business development, public relations and relationship building.

"I am delighted to welcome Heather as our new ED,"Deborah Papaeconomou, interim president of the board of directors, said. "She brings the deep leadership experience, global vision of communities and local knowledge that will be critical to the success of our ongoing efforts to execute our vision of a YWCA Darien/Norwalk `For Every Woman.'"

The YWCA Darien/Norwalk, 49 Old King's Highway North, Darien, provides women the support and tools they need to transform their lives, be confident in their choices and raise healthy families.