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Editorial


Front Page - Friday, January 15, 2021

Habitat for Humanity’s CEO announces retirement




David Butler, president and CEO of Habitat for Humanity of Greater Chattanooga, will retire in March. After leading the organization for the last seven years, Butler will be moving to the Atlanta area to be closer to family.

In a news release announcing his retirement, the local Habitat calls Butler “a hands-on administrator” who “takes pride in the closing of 50 homes during his tenure.”

Butler is also proud of Habitat’s partnership with Parkridge Medical Center and the United Way of Greater Chattanooga, which established the Orchard Knob Collaborative. The program makes repairs that keep elderly neighbors in their homes.

Butler notes that repairs have been made to more than 100 homes with more in the pipeline.

In addition, Butler says he takes pride in participating in two Jimmy Carter Builds in Memphis and Nashville, along with serving on Habitat’s state board of directors for more than five years.

Habitat has also activated more than 5,000 volunteers in Chattanooga during Butler’s tenure.

“Each volunteer brings a special skill set to Habitat while sharing our passion for the work we do. I received more than I gave in this position,” Butler says.

Butler credits part of Habitat’s success to its partnerships with the City of Chattanooga and the Chattanooga Housing Authority. The Mayor’s Affordable Housing Fund provided $196,000, which allowed Habitat to purchase additional parcels located in the Villages of Alton Park.

“Having a home provides a strong foundation for the long-term success of a family,” Mayor Andy Berke says. “Under David’s leadership, working with Habitat has provided us with a strong partner to support important work on behalf of our citizens.”

Habitat board chair Marcus Jones notes the organization has been fortunate to have Butler’s guidance during the pandemic.

“David knows the community, where the needs are and how to meet them. Whether it was ramping up our Re-Store efforts in Ooltewah after the Easter tornadoes or shifting staff to make sure needs continued to be met during the pandemic, David has provided tremendous leadership that made us stronger.”

Butler’s retirement will be far from idle, Habitat reports. When he and his wife, Jelena, relocate to Atlanta, he plans to return to his love of biking, learn to cook and pick up the piano again.

Butler also plans to stay active in the nonprofit world. “There’s a lot of work to be done, and I’m at a point in my life where I can put my skills to work in a new way. I’m excited about what the future holds.”

The search for Habitat’s next leader will begin immediately, with board member Lee Ann Adams, an attorney with Gearhiser, Peters, Elliott & Cannon, chairing the search committee.

“David has proven to have the secret sauce for understanding the needs of an organization that continues to change to meet the needs of those we serve,” Adams says. “We’re seeking a strong leader who has that type of understanding and can lead our organization well into the future.”

Interested individuals may submit resumes with a cover letter expressing interest in the CEO position to HabiChattCEOSearch@GMai.com.

Source: Habitat for Humanity of Greater Chattanooga Area