Stamford nonprofit hires Obama administration veteran as new CEO

April 11, 2017 GMT

STAMFORD — Nonprofit Keep America Beautiful announced Tuesday the hiring of a new president and CEO, Helen Lowman, who served in several positions in President Barack Obama’s administration.

Lowman will start May 1 in her new position. She will lead an organization that delivers programs with more than 620 community affiliates and partner organizations and works with more than 5 million volunteers in efforts to end littering, improve recycling and beautify American communities.

“I am passionate in my belief that every American has a right to live in a community that is clean, green and beautiful, and I feel a strong responsibility to help fulfill that vision,” Lowman said in a statement. “Keep America Beautiful’s strong grassroots affiliate network reflects the diversity of America and is engaged in meaningful volunteer work that empowers and enriches the communities we serve.”

From 2010 to 2017, Lowman served as a presidential appointee in the senior foreign service and senior executive service. Most recently, she was director of individual and community preparedness at the Federal Emergency Management Agency in Washington, D.C., overseeing programs aimed at increasing citizen and community preparedness and encouraging disaster and crisis resilience.

Lowman previously served in a number of roles with the Peace Corps, directing the organization’s largest U.S. headquarters office and working on reforms related to volunteer recruitment and admittance.

“Helen has spent her career as a change agent, a team-builder and someone who cares deeply about community,” Tom Tamoney, a member of the Keep America Beautiful Board of Directors who led the hiring committee, said in a statement. “Her experience and vision, along with her personal values and compassion, will advance our efforts to deliver lasting environmental, economic and social impact across America.”

Earlier in her career, Lowman managed environmental education events and initiatives with the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality. While in Texas, she served on the Board of Directors of Keep America Beautiful affiliates in Austin and El Paso.

Lowman, who speaks four languages, is a graduate of Austin College and received her master’s degree in International Economics and Development from the University of Denver, Joseph Korbel School of International Studies. She is pursuing a Ph.D. at Antioch University. She also worked as a Peace Corps volunteer for three years in Thailand.

Keep America Beautiful was founded in 1953. Eighteen of its 22 staff members work in Stamford, with its headquarters located in the city’s downtown at 1010 Washington Blvd.

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