Alison Cunningham, CEO, Announces Departure




Dear Friend,


It is with mixed emotions that I’m writing today to inform you that our friend and long term CEO, Alison Cunningham, is leaving Columbus House at the end of the summer. Alison has dedicated the last 21 years of her career focused on the single mission of ending homelessness. In her next chapter, she will continue working for justice in a new role working with students at Yale Divinity School.


The Columbus House Board of Directors would like to thank Alison for her tireless commitment over many years and for her dogged pursuit to end homelessness. Under Alison’s stewardship, Columbus House has grown tremendously, developing over 40 programs, creating hundreds of supportive housing units, and significantly expanding its geographic footprint. Thousands of people who have experienced homelessness have benefited from her commitment to this work.


In her role as CEO, Alison has built a dynamic and highly professional organization capable of adapting to the increasing complexities of our work. She has ensured that our six senior executives and over 170 dedicated employees are exceptionally skilled at delivering the highest quality shelter, housing and services. As validated by our recent CARF accreditation, Columbus House employs best practices across the organization, allowing us to serve almost 3,000 clients each year. 


Fortunately, a detailed succession plan was developed by our Board of Directors, many of whom have direct experience with management transitions. We have the utmost confidence in our senior executives, management team, staff and hundreds of volunteers, affording us continuity and stability while we search for our next CEO. We will certainly use this opportunity as a catalyst to position Columbus House for its next phase of growth and innovation.




Jim Barra

Columbus House Board Chair



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