Twenty-five year non-profit veteran named new HBF executive director
April 27, 2012 (Portland) – The Home Builders Foundation (HBF) is pleased to announce the appointment of Ken Cowdery to the position of executive director. Ken will take over for Mel Tashima Duncan who led the foundation for five years. “We are extremely excited to have Ken come on Board as our HBF executive director. His passion for working with youth and the homeless, along with his proven ability to lead and grow smaller non-profit organizations, make him a great fit for the HBF,” said Dave Nielsen, HBA’s chief executive officer.
Ken Cowdery is an accomplished executive director having served in leadership positions for numerous nonprofit organizations over the past 25 years. Prior to moving to the HBF, Ken led New Avenues for Youth for over a decade, garnering numerous awards for his accomplishments, including the “Community All Star” honor by the Rotary Club of Portland in 2008. Ken also created and managed one of New York State’s largest and most innovative youth workforce development programs that earned recognition as a national model at a White House awards ceremony. Other awards include the “Citizen of the Year” award from the Buffalo News and the “Executive of the Year” award from the Public Relations Society of America, Western New York Chapter.
Ken’s interest in the HBN is a natural extension of his work with children and youth. Ken says, “I have learned over my professional career that providing a safe, stable and respectful place to live is critically important for those experiencing homelessness, especially children. The Home Builders Foundation and its community partners have helped hundreds of homeless individuals achieve productive, self-sufficient lives. This is a mission I am truly excited to follow and the reason I am so pleased to join the foundation as its new Executive Director.”
Ken received his bachelor’s degree from the University of California at Berkeley, and is a graduate of executive leadership programs at the JFK School of Government at Harvard University and Stanford University’s School of Business. He currently serves on the Oregon Council for Interstate Juvenile Supervision under appointment of the Governor and the Public Safety Action Committee under the appointment of the Mayor.