Oct. 10, 2017 12:55 pm

Power Moves: CultureWorks Greater Philadelphia has a new head

And founder Thaddeus Squire is now the chief commons officer of the new CultureWorks Commons Management. Plus, Jamie Gauthier's ED role at Fairmount Park Conservancy is permanent, and Mazzoni Center picked a new medical director from within.

Liz Sytsma is CultureWorks' new chief commons director.

(Courtesy photo)

Power Moves is a semi-regular column chronicling leadership movements within Philly’s social impact community. Send announcements to

1. Liz Sytsma is CultureWorks’ new chief commons officer …

Sytsma joined the arts and culture coworking org at its founding seven years ago and has most recently worked as its associate director under its founder and managing director, Thaddeus Squire. Now, she’s taking over for Squire in a role that’s analogous to executive director.

“​I’ve been helping shape and grow CultureWorks since the beginning,” Sytsma wrote us. “My role has always been that of caretaker — nurturing the wellbeing of our organization and staff so that we can in turn help our members flourish. I’m humbled by the opportunity to work alongside a team of the most thoughtful, bold, and kind leaders that are the CultureWorks staff, board, and members.”

CultureWorks is hosting a meet and greet with Sytsma on Thursday morning. Register here.

Thaddeus Squire.

Thaddeus Squire. (Photo via

2. … And Thaddeus Squire is leading CultureWorks Commons Management.

Squire’s title is changing to is chief commons officer of the new, national service nonprofit, which will support two CultureWorks: the original in Philly, and a new one in Houston. In this role, Squire will build out the CCM team, develop shared program resources and support any subsequent expansions via a franchise-like model. More details will be announced in early 2018.

“I’m thrilled to hand over leadership of the Philadelphia office of CultureWorks to Liz, who has been an invaluable partner in the development of CultureWorks from its beginning,” he wrote. “I have tremendous faith in her leadership and that of the terrific team in Philadelphia to keep our community growing and flourishing.”

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3. Devereux Advanced Behavioral Services is throwing a retirement party for longtime head Robert Kreider next month.

The president and CEO announced his impending departure from the national, Villanova-based org in February. His official departure isn’t until January 2018, but his retirement will be celebrated at the annual Hope Gala on Nov. 11. Kreider has worked as the healthcare provider’s head since 2004.

According to a release, Kreider “designed and implemented a complete restructuring of the organization’s business model and finances” during his tenure and led Devereux’s expansion into Colorado, Rhode Island and Delaware. The organization also describes itself as “one of the oldest and largest providers of behavioral healthcare in the country.”

Robert Kreider. (Courtesy photo)

4. Jamie Gauthier will stay on as Fairmount Park Conservancy’s permanent executive director …

The former Sustainable Business Network ED came on as acting executive director of the Philly parks nonprofit in July following the short tenure of Rick Magder. At the time, it was understood that her assignment was temporary with the intention to make it permanent.

Gauthier originally joined FPC as its senior director of public partnerships in January and took on the permanent executive director role on Sept. 13.

When we talked with her before taking on the head role in June, she said, “I couldn’t imagine anything more exciting than leading an organization like the conservancy at a time when there’s such a spotlight on public spaces,” including through the FPC-led Civic Commons initiative.

Cynthia E. Roberts. (Courtesy photo)

5. … And just hired Cynthia E. Roberts as its first CFO.

Roberts became FPC’s first chief financial officer on Sept. 1 from Children’s Literacy Initiative, where she worked for five years as the nonprofit’s director of finance.

Previously, she worked as a controller for The Philadelphia Foundation.

6. Mazzoni Center’s new medical director is Dr. Nancy Brisbon.

Following months of controversy — including the resignation of its CEO and board president and a vote to unionize — the embattled LGBTQ health nonprofit has hired a new medical director. Philly native Brisbon has been on Mazzoni’s medical staff for 10 years.

In April, prior to the resignation of Mazzoni’s top executive and board leader, about 30 current staff members walked off the job following news that the organization’s medical director was being investigated for alleged sexual misconduct.

According to a statement from Mazzoni, Brisbon’s hire was made with input from every department in the agency, including non-management staffers, as well as members of the LGBTQ community. The hiring committee voted unanimously that she be hired for the role.

“I am humbled, excited and awed, mostly for all of us to participate in the conversation and talk about where we are going and how we are moving forward, that is what I’m most looking forward to, to be able to facilitate those conversations and hear everyone’s ideas,” Brisbon wrote.

Patrick Burke. (Courtesy photo)

7. Children’s Scholarship Fund Philadelphia has a new board chair.

Patrick Burke, an investment officer at Mill Creek Capital Advisors LLC, has been appointed board chair for the nonprofit, which provides tuition assistance for low-income students to attend private and parochial schools in Philadelphia.

He succeeds Evie McNiff, the organization’s founder and board chair for 16 years who will remain on the board. Burke has served as a board member for two years previous to this appointment.

8. Repair the World Philadelphia’s ED is leaving for Canada.

Rabbi Seth Goren is leaving the Jewish service nonprofit in mid-December to become Hillel Ontario’s VP of education and engagement. Goren has worked for RTW Philadelphia for four years and was previously Lehigh University’s first director of Jewish student life and associate chaplain.

The executive director job is still up for grabs; check it out here.


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