Hunt starts for new CEO

United Way of Central Alberta is on the hunt for a new CEO to replace Heather Gardiner, who is moving to Victoria with her family. “It was a very, very difficult decision to make. This is something my family has been talking about for a while,” said Gardiner on Monday when her departure was announced.

United Way of Central Alberta is on the hunt for a new CEO to replace Heather Gardiner, who is moving to Victoria with her family.

“It was a very, very difficult decision to make. This is something my family has been talking about for a while,” said Gardiner on Monday when her departure was announced.

Gardiner moved from Calgary to take the helm of the local United Way in 2004.

The United Way funds community agencies that help children, seniors and families, people managing mental health disorders, victims of violence and sexual assault, people with addictions, brain injury, and those who are homeless or in need of affordable housing food and clothing.

The 2010 United Way campaign raised $1.9 million from individuals, businesses and corporations.

Gardiner will remain with United Way until June 30. She expects a new chief executive officer will be in place in September, for the start of the annual United Way fundraising campaign. A regional and national recruitment campaign will be launched to fill the position.

“We have an interim management team that’s been set up. I have a lot of confidence in them,” Gardiner said.

“I think the organization is at its strongest.”

While it is still a strong fundraising organization, United Way has also become an active participant in the community by focusing on strategies to address community priorities and has worked to increase the knowledge and capacity of the non-profit sector, she said.

“There’s a new vision of how the United Way works in the community.”

szielinski@bprda.wpengine.com