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United Way of Northeast Florida announces new President and CEO

Michelle Braun 2012_CThe United Way of Northeast Florida board of trustees today announced the selection of Michelle Braun as president and CEO, effective July 1, 2014. Braun succeeds longtime president and CEO, Connie Hodges, who in January announced her plans to retire in December 2014.

“Michelle has been actively involved in philanthropy and community development across northeast Florida and the state, and she is passionate about further advancing education, income and health initiatives,” said R. Travis Storey, managing partner of KPMG and chair of United Way of Northeast Florida’s board of trustees. “Her remarkable ability to bring people together, exceptional management skills and extensive leadership experience – in both the nonprofit and corporate worlds – made her the clear choice.”

“We conducted a thorough, national search to find the best person to build upon United Way’s long history of creating measurable, lasting change in our community,” said George Scanlon, United Way of Northeast Florida’s board of trustees member and search committee chair. “Of the more than 170 applicants from the across the country, Michelle was the most outstanding. We look forward to the innovative and efficient approaches she will bring to the organization.”

Prior to being named as United Way of Northeast Florida’s chief operating officer last summer, Braun served in senior-level positions at Wells Fargo, Wachovia and Bank of America for more than a decade. Earning her bachelor’s degree from the University of Notre Dame and master’s degree in nonprofit management from The Weatherhead School of Management at Case Western University, Braun came to Northeast Florida in 1999 and led a record-setting campaign as vice president of resource development at United Way. She remained engaged with the organization by serving as a member of the board of directors and the RealSense chair.

“I welcomed Michelle home when she returned to United Way as COO,” said Hodges. “Since June, she implemented a new customer relationship database, executed progressive human resource policies and advanced our technological systems. Michelle quickly made a powerful impact, and she is the perfect person to lead the organization into the future.”

Hodges will begin transitioning responsibilities to Braun during the next few weeks. When Braun assumes the role as president and CEO July 1, Hodges will become the executive of philanthropic outreach and will focus on accomplishing key strategic goals and serve as an adviser before officially retiring in December 2014.

“I’m honored and humbled by this opportunity, and I am delighted to work alongside Connie during the next few months as we smoothly transition responsibilities,” said Braun. “I look forward to serving our community and building on the great work of United Way of Northeast Florida.”


About United Way of Northeast Florida

United Way focuses on education, income and health – the building blocks to a good life. The organization supports measurable solutions to ensure children enter school ready to learn, students stay on track to graduation, families achieve financial stability and people have the tools to lead healthy, productive lives. More information can be found at:

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