(Shelterforce) Welcomes Schlonn Hawkins as New CEO/Publisher

Shelterforce Welcomes Schlonn Hawkins as New CEO/Publisher
The board of directors of Shelterforce, the original voice of community development, is pleased to announce that Schlonn Hawkins will join the Shelterforce staff as its newly appointed CEO/publisher on Oct. 12, 2020.

Hawkins is a public relations professional with more than 15 years of experience specializing in publicity, media training, community relations, and strategic planning. She earned her bachelor’s degree in mass communications from Delaware State University. Hawkins is an expert in audience development and believes that an engaged audience will undeniably affect your bottom line.

Shelterforce has been a valued resource among practitioners in the housing and community development sectors,” says Hawkins. “I am thrilled to be chosen to take this journey with the team in moving the organization forward. Together, we will be laser-focused on diversifying our content and delivery and exploring innovative ways to continue to amplify the voice of the sector, which is paramount in today's climate. We are dedicated to offering meaningful content that our readers can use as they work diligently to ensure families from all communities, especially those that have been on the short end of unfair systems, are thriving across the country.”

In addition to her impressive background, Hawkins is experienced in and committed to advancing racial equity and social justice.

Currently, Hawkins is the director of Delaware’s Campaign for Grade-Level Reading–Get Delaware Reading. Previously, Hawkins was one of the directors in the marketing and communications department at United Way of Delaware, where she used digital technology to creatively shape the story of the organization. Hawkins also led Delaware’s first one-day giving campaign, yielding more than $800,000 of unrestricted dollars for the state’s nonprofit sector.

In addition, Hawkins is adept in creating a brand experience through social media and has facilitated trainings on social media and fundraising strategies and technologies for hundreds of nonprofits.

View Hawkins’s full bio here.

“Our board unanimously voted to appoint Schlonn to this post because we recognize what an incredible resource she will be to an already strong Shelterforce staff,” says Dr. Tiffany Manuel, president and CEO of TheCaseMade and a member of the board. “We are excited about her ability to think creatively as the work of Shelterforce expands, innovates, and evolves with the dynamism of community development.”

As CEO/publisher, Hawkins will co-lead the organization with Shelterforce’s longtime editor, now CEO/editor-in-chief, Miriam Axel-Lute. Hawkins will be responsible for audience development, brand development and marketing, administration, and resource development. Axel-Lute will remain responsible for editorial content.

“This is an exciting moment for Shelterforce,” says Patrick Morrissy, board chair. “Hawkins, our dynamic new CEO/publisher, will join ­­Axel-Lute in writing the next chapter of our work serving the great community of practitioners who are rebuilding city neighborhoods, developing and advocating for affordable housing, and fighting for housing equity."

Hawkins will succeed publisher Harold Simon, who retired after 27 years with Shelterforce. The board of directors extends its thanks to Simon for his longstanding dedication to the organization and to the field of community development and it welcomes Schlonn Hawkins.
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