FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
WASHINGTON, D.C. (April 18, 2012) —
KaBOOM! is pleased to announce that James Siegal, most recently Chief of Staff for the Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS), will join the national non-profit as its Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer. Current COO, Bruce Bowman, will move into the new role of President.
“James brings a wealth of experience that will help us accelerate our impact, advance the movement to save play and create an environment in which all children can thrive,” says Darell Hammond, Founder and CEO of KaBOOM!.
As EVP and COO, Siegal will focus on the partnerships and capacity needed to advance the KaBOOM! three-pronged strategy of mapping, building and advocating for play spaces.
Children today spend less time playing outdoors than any previous generation, a fact that is having disastrous consequences on their health, achievement levels, and overall well-being. To fight this Play Deficit, Hammond founded non-profit KaBOOM! in 1996 in Washington, D.C. with a vision of creating a great place to play within walking distance of every child in America. Since then, KaBOOM! has used crowd sourcing to map 89,445 places to play, worked with volunteers to build 2,072 playgrounds, and successfully advocated for play policies in hundreds of cities across the country.
"KaBOOM! is an incredible organization that enriches children’s lives and has empowered thousands of communities to make positive and lasting change," says Siegal. "I am honored and excited to join its ranks, both as a professional and as a father.”
Current Chief Operating Officer, Bruce Bowman, is being named President, a new position for KaBOOM!. In this role Bowman will be responsible for leveraging new, large-scale business opportunities that support the organization’s strategic plan.
As CNCS Chief of Staff, Siegal was responsible for providing overall leadership and direction for the $1 billion federal agency that supports national service and promotes citizen engagement to address community challenges. Prior to CNCS, he was Vice President of Nonprofit Sector Programs and Practice at Independent Sector, the leading coalition of non-profits, foundations and corporate giving programs, where he designed and led initiatives that advance non-profit effectiveness, leadership and accountability. Siegal has also served as Charities Bureau Registration Section Chief and Assistant Attorney General for the New York State Attorney General and was an associate for global law firm Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison. He is a graduate of Princeton University and Harvard Law School. Siegal and his wife have three girls, age two, four and six, and he is very familiar with playgrounds and the importance of play!
Bowman served for several years on the KaBOOM! Board of Directors, before assuming the role of COO in 2006. Prior to joining KaBOOM! he was with Wild Oats Markets, Inc. which was an organic and all natural grocery retailer with $1.2 billion in annual sales. He came to Wild Oats from Ben & Jerry’s Ice Cream where he was COO and part of their senior management team for six years. He first became involved with KaBOOM! when he was with Ben & Jerry’s and was instrumental in developing KaBERRY KaBOOM!, an ice cream flavor from which a portion of the sales was donated to KaBOOM!.
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.