A Message from Our Founder
February 10, 2020

This July, I will step down as President & CEO of CUCS. I have been a part of CUCS for 39 years and am fortunate to have worked with such a dedicated staff to build CUCS into a great organization that now helps more than 50,000 individuals annually.

I was hired by the Columbia University School of Social Work in 1981 to help initiate Columbia University Community Services, a graduate student training and curriculum development project focused on the needs of single poor people. In 1993, I led a spin-off of the project and incorporated the Center for Urban Community Services.

I look back with immense pride as CUCS has become one of New York City’s premier human service and housing development organizations. We currently have more than 500 staff members and an operating budget of nearly $80 million, and I am proud of the many ways we have advanced our field: helping to originate supportive housing, creating model shelters, developing a national staff training institute, shaping accessible psychiatric and primary health care services, and working across New York City in 35 locations offering an array of specialized support services.

Joe DeGenova will be succeeding me as President and CEO effective July 2020. His multiple strengths are complemented by our superb senior management team and well-established board of directors. Joe joined CUCS in 1989 and has dedicated his professional career to improving the lives of homeless and formerly homeless people. He has served as CUCS’s Associate Executive Director since 2014, and our board and staff are confident that CUCS’s stability and future growth will be secure under his leadership. I will remain with CUCS as an adviser after July, helping to ensure a smooth transition and working on select projects.

Thank you for your partnership. I look forward to next chapters for me and CUCS.