Grantee/Partner News

Letter to a New Executive Director

July 7, 2021

From the Frontlines Special Edition July 1, 2021

Grantee News from People’s Action:

Somehow, on your way to becoming a great organizer, you became an executive director.

Suddenly you are reviewing bylaws, trying to make sense of a balance sheet, and wondering how your ability to organize people prepared you for this? Let me be the first to say: it didn’t. And that’s okay. You’ll figure out the bylaws and the books, or find other people who can, all so you can get to what you do best: organizing.

Look, none of us grows up dreaming of being an executive director, but now that you’ve become one, the organization is a canvas on which you and others can create. That is the gift of this job. As long as the canvas is worth the struggle, you keep painting.

I’ll soon be passing the baton for the organization I’ve directed for 14 years. In this year of transitions, many new directors are taking the reins. It has me thinking about the beauty and burden of this job, and gathering lessons to share with your generation.

Read more of George’s Letter to a New Executive Director on Substack

With love and respect,


From the Front Lines is a regular email newsletter that highlights stories from People’s Action and its member organizations. 
 Copyright People’s Action, 2021

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