Farewell Announcement From Wendy Petko

Dear Friends & Colleagues,

It is with wonderful memories and a hopeful heart that I formally announce my retirement as Executive Director of Center for Community Health & Well-Being, Inc. (CCHWB), effective January 6, 2017.

Many of you may be aware of my recent breast cancer diagnosis, and as I continue to fight the greatest battle of my life, I must step away from the agency I have been dedicated to for the past eight years, to fully focus on my health.

When I first started with CCHWB in 2008, I had the opportunity to re-establish the long-time legacy of The Birthing Project Clinic. From there I worked diligently with an incredible team to continue to expand the reach of our agency through the development of the Leadership & Empowerment Institute for Girls and Young Women (which houses Academy of Dreams and Girls on the Rise) in 2010. In 2014 we successfully developed and implemented the Black Mothers United program and Safe Sleep Baby education campaign-both aimed at decreasing the disproportionate number of African American child deaths in Sacramento County. These programs have all led to enhanced service delivery to our community.

As I reflect on the past eight years, I recognize that many of the challenges that the agency and I have faced have helped us to grow so that we could continue to meet the needs of our community; these same challenges have also prepared us for the challenges that lie ahead-it has been a long, tough road, but I have enjoyed every minute of it.

I recognize, however, that there is a time and a season when good leaders recognize its time to pass the baton on to the next generation of leadership. I have fought the good fight and am proud of all I have accomplished and it is with great pleasure to announce that Shannon Read has been appointed as CCHWB’s Interim Executive Director.

Shannon has been leading strategic planning efforts, working very closely with our board and a team of advisors. Shannon’s leadership and dedication to service will continue to have a profound impact on not only the agency, but the entire community. I am confident in the future of CCHWB, knowing that Shannon is equipped with the knowledge, skills, and passion to take the agency to the next level.

We are so blessed to have a community of stakeholders who have expressed their commitment to CCHWB’s success and I am sincerely thankful for the amazing individuals and partnerships that were an integral part of my career and success.  CCHWB has been my home and passion over these many years, and while I am sad to leave this organization, I am excited to see the continued success of our programs throughout Sacramento.

I thank every one of you for your encouragement and support. I will cherish the experiences, memories, and most importantly the incredible people I have met along this journey.

Very Sincerely,

Wendy J. Petko