Saturday, April 9, 2016

Urban Child Gets New Leadership, New Direction

Posted By on Sat, Apr 9, 2016 at 1:52 PM

click to enlarge Le Bonheur CEO Meri Armour (inset) will take temporarily the reigns at The Urban Child Institute.
  • Le Bonheur CEO Meri Armour (inset) will take temporarily the reigns at The Urban Child Institute.

The Urban Child Institute (TUCI) announced late Friday that some major changes at the Memphis non-profit organization signal “a new direction.”

The biggest change is that the acting president and CEO, Henry G. “Hank” Herrod announced his retirement from TUCI. Board member and Le Bonheur Children’s Hospital president and CEO Meri Armour will serve in the position on an interim basis until a new full time director is named.

Also, TUCI board members decided to reduce other staff positions “to reflect the new direction of the organization.” Staff positions and placements are being finalized but several positions will remain.

That new direction was, perhaps, hinted at as TUCI’s late-Friday statement outlined the nonprofit organization’s purpose – stated in its bylaws – which reads, “is to promote the health of the population, particularly children, of the Mid-South region through innovative initiatives focusing primarily on prevention and wellness.” Issues surrounding early childhood will continue to be a focus of TUCI.

“The board is aware of the needs in our community,” TUCI board chairman Jill Crocker said in a statement. “The intent of these changes is to take steps to reduce overhead and administrative costs at Urban Child so more money will go toward community programs and institutions that support our mission.”

TUCI announced earlier this year a new gifting strategy that would give $8 million this year to organizations supporting children's needs.

Friday’s statement outlined just how that money will be allocated.

Here’s the list:

• Neighborhood Christian Center - $403,000
• PeopleFirst - $155,000
• Books from Birth - $50,000
• Le Bonheur Children’s Hospital - $2 million
• University of Memphis - $2 million
• University of Tennessee Health Science Center - $2 million
• Several smaller gifts will total $121,000

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