We are pleased to announce that on April 23, veteran staff member Carrie Pickett-Erway will become the Kalamazoo Community Foundation’s next President/CEO.

The selection of Carrie as our organization’s fourth chief executive is the culmination of a 10-month long nationwide search conducted by Kittleman and Associates, Chicago.

"The board insisted on a search process that would find us a leader who could continue to build on our accomplishments," says Barbara James, chairperson, Kalamazoo Community Foundation Board of Trustees. "On every front Carrie not only matched up, but stood out. We couldn’t be more pleased."

"In a strong field of candidates from every part of the country, Carrie clearly was the individual with the talent, the knowledge, the experience and the commitment we were looking for," says James.

Carrie currently serves as the Community Foundation’s Vice President of Community Investment and over the years has been instrumental in staff development and key community initiatives, says James.

"Carrie did not originally apply for the position," says Don Vander Kooy, who has served as Interim President/CEO of the Community Foundation since last summer when Dr. Juan Olivarez resigned to become President of Aquinas College. "But it became obvious to the search consultants and the board that we had a unique talent in our midst."

"I’m energized by the possibilities in our community right now," says Carrie. "I feel the Community Foundation can help the greater Kalamazoo community enter a new era of innovation and growth."

"This is a critical time in our community," she adds. "The Community Foundation is well-prepared to work collaboratively with other community partners to make an impact and create positive change."

A life-long resident of the Kalamazoo area, Carrie joined the Community Foundation’s Community Investment team as an intern in 1999 while completing her master’s degree at Western Michigan University. Since then she has served as Community Investment Officer, Senior Community Investment Officer and Vice President of Community Investment, her current role.

As Vice President of Community Investment Carrie oversees grantmaking and initiatives, and provides leadership and direction to our Performance Excellence Model work, which includes strategic planning, quality improvement and staff development. She also plays a key role in our involvement with The Learning Network, the community collaborative embracing the vision that every child in Kalamazoo County will be ready for school, college and the world.

Carrie demonstrates her commitment to community involvement by serving on committees and boards of numerous nonprofit organizations, including the Council of Michigan Foundations, Greater Kalamazoo Girls on the Run, Greater Kalamazoo United Way, Kalamazoo County Ready 4’s and Local Initiatives Support Corporation.

"Carrie will help us continue to build on our accomplishments and leverage broad-based community resources and partnerships to advance initiatives in education and address other issues affecting the quality of life in Kalamazoo County," says James. "We look forward to the opportunities that lie ahead.