Goodwill of the Finger Lakes Welcomes Two Additional Leaders
New Chief People and Programs Officer and Founding School Director of Goodwill’s Excel Center Joined
Not-for-Profit Organization this Summer on Leadership Team
ROCHESTER, N.Y. — Goodwill of the Finger Lakes has welcomed two new leaders to its team this month. Kimberly Evans-Dame has been appointed Chief People and Programs Officer, and Robin James Mitchell has been named Goodwill’s Founding School Director of The Excel Center. Both leaders joined Goodwill of the Finger Lakes – on its leadership team – this summer.
As Chief People and Programs Officer at Goodwill of the Finger Lakes, Evans-Dame will lead the organization’s People Resources (Human Resources) team and will provide strategic direction to support Goodwill’s Workforce Development and Vision Services programs. Prior to joining Goodwill, she provided human resources consulting services for the ARC of Ontario and United Way. She has also worked with University of Rochester Medical Center’s Pathology and Laboratory Medicine and Psychiatry office as a Human Resource Business Partner, as well as Mohawk Valley Community College and Rochester Housing Authority.
During her time as Human Resources Business Partner with URMC, she supported its Pathology and Laboratory Medicine during the height of COVID, which was key to COVID testing in the Greater Rochester community and supported the organization during COVID-related employee accommodations, remote work and the creation and delivery of compensation and incentive programs. She directed a “pop up” childcare center for the children of URMC’s employees. Also, while serving as Director of Human Resources with Mohawk Valley Community College, Evans-Dame redesigned the organization’s benefit plan for both active and retired employees resulting in significant savings for the College, employees and retirees.
Evans-Dame lives in Henrietta with her husband, Gary.
As Founding School Director of The Excel Center at Goodwill of the Finger Lakes, Mitchell will lead all management of The Excel Center, which is expected to open in September of 2023. The Excel Center an adult high school and job training program and is operated by Goodwill chapters across the country. This will be Greater Rochester’s first Excel Center. A capital campaign kicked off in 2018 to raise $3.5 million for the project. The school provides support services such as on-site childcare, transportation assistance and college credit and industry-recognized certification courses at no cost and remove barriers for adults hoping to graduate from high school. Mitchell’s immediate goal is to have rotating enrollment of 300 students, and to develop a culture of academic excellence that becomes a benchmark for the development of Excel Centers in the wider New York State region.
Most recently, he served as the Executive Director of Horizons at The Harley School, a program that makes a nine-year commitment to students from the Rochester City School District, Kindergarten through eighth grade and provides year-round support. More than 95 percent of its eighth-grade graduates have gone on to complete high school and more than 70 percent have gone on to higher education. Notably during this role, he developed Horizon, once a Summer-only program, to a year-round organization with Saturday School, Social Emotional programs, and executed a successful fundraising strategy, building a $1.1 million endowment in 5-years of leadership. Before that, he served as the Senior Director of Program for the Special Olympics of New York over nearly 10 years. At Special Olympics, he developed inclusive sports programs in Western New York for these athletes and peer-aged partners and developed school-aged programs in collaboration with Rochester City School District, Monroe County and St. Bonaventure that served over 1,000 students with and without intellectual disabilities.
He earned a Certificate in Nonprofit Leadership from St. John Fisher University, a Master’s degree in Inclusive Education from Nazareth College and a Bachelor’s in Communication and Media from Loughborough University in the United Kingdom. He’s a Co-Founder and Board Member of Melchester Rovers Soccer Club and lives in Irondequoit.
Both of these new leaders at Goodwill of the Finger Lakes joined the organization this summer.
ABOUT GOODWILL OF THE FINGER LAKES
A 501(c)(3) charitable organization, Goodwill of the Finger Lakes prepares and empowers people with barriers to independence to be self-sufficient and contribute to their families and communities. Headquartered in Rochester, New York, Goodwill of the Finger Lakes’ mission programs ABVI (The Association for the Blind and Visually Impaired) and 211/LIFE LINE have a very long and successful history of providing services to our region. The organization’s more than 700 individuals use their passion and expertise to find innovative solutions to address pressing social needs. Each year, Goodwill of the Finger Lakes positively impacts the lives of more than 150,000 people.