FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
WASHINGTON D.C. (June 20, 2017) —
KaBOOM! — the national non-profit dedicated to giving all kids the childhood they deserve through great, safe places to play — today announced several new board members and board leadership succession plans.
In July, three talented leaders will join the KaBOOM! board, adding to the already diverse set of skills and expertise. Michael Araten, President and CEO of K'NEX Brands, brings play insights from the corporate toy sector, with valuable understanding of the connection between play and STEM learning opportunities. Colin O'Donnell, Chief Innovation Officer of Intersection (a Google/Alphabet company), and Eric Rothman, President of HR&A Advisors, are leaders and innovators on the role of cities in enhancing quality of life in an equitable way and will be instrumental in guiding KaBOOM! as it continues to advance public-private partnerships with cities across the US.
"We are incredibly fortunate to have the broad range of knowledge and insights represented on the KaBOOM! board. Michael, Colin and Eric will help us deepen and extend our impact. They also share our current board members' unwavering commitment to putting the needs of kids and families first, including the need for great, safe places to play," said James Siegal, CEO of KaBOOM!.
In addition to the new board appointments, two KaBOOM! board members will move into leadership positions in November. Stephanie Galliard White, VP of Human Resources for Westrock, will serve as Board Chair. Stephanie's commitment to and deep understanding of how KaBOOM! mobilizes communities and engages volunteers from all walks of life are invaluable. Sharon Price John, CEO of Build-A-Bear Workshop, will serve as Vice Chair. Sharon brings extraordinary corporate leadership experience with premier kid-focused brands.
KaBOOM! Board Chair Ron Lumbra, Regional Leader, Americas for Heidrick & Struggles, whose final term as chair expires in November, will remain on the Board. Lumbra said, "I couldn't be more pleased with the way the KaBOOM! Board is growing and evolving. And as demonstrated by our successful CEO transition two years ago, we place a high value on thoughtful succession planning. I'm thrilled Stephanie and Sharon will lead the KaBOOM! board and staff into our next phase of impact."
"Serving on the KaBOOM! board is one of the best volunteer leadership experiences I've ever had. I'm honored to continue to provide the strategic guidance and thoughtful counsel James and the staff rely on from the board. I'm excited for the future of KaBOOM!, and I'm ready to help lead the team to even greater heights," said White.
Since its founding in 1996, KaBOOM! has pioneered innovative public-private partnerships that have engaged over one million corporate and community volunteers in building, improving, and opening safe, engaging, and innovative playspaces across the country, providing kids in need with the opportunity to play, no matter their zip codes.
KaBOOM! is the national non-profit dedicated to giving all kids – particularly those growing up in poverty in America – the childhood they deserve filled with balanced and active play, so they can thrive. Since 1996, KaBOOM! has collaborated with partners to build, open or improve nearly 16,700 playgrounds, engaged more than one million volunteers and served 8.5 million kids. KaBOOM! creates great places to play, inspires communities to promote and support play, and works to drive the national discussion about the importance of play in fostering healthy and productive lives. To learn why #playmatters, visit kaboom.org or join the conversation at twitter.com/kaboom or facebook.com/kaboom.