Valley United Way announces new President

Valley United Way has announced that Sharon Gibson Ellis has been hired as the new President and C.O.O. succeeding Jack Walsh who announced his plans to retire earlier this year.

Ellis comes to Valley United Way with a wealth of experience in the United Way system including serving as the professional head of United Ways of Benton & Lincoln Counties (Oregon), United Way of Muscatine (Iowa) and most recently United Way of Greater Williamsburg (Virginia).

Valley United Way Board Chairman Jen Bull said, “We conducted a very thorough and lengthy search for Jack’s successor, and we are thrilled to have hired someone with such a successful track record within the United Way system. She is a very caring and knowledgeable person with excellent leadership skills who rose to the top of a very talented group of candidates. She will begin her tenure with Valley United Way on Nov. 7 and work closely with Jack until his retirement at the end of the month.”

Ellis said that she is excited to work with the United Way volunteers, staff and community to serve the Valley.  

“I have heard wonderful things about the Valley. This a very unique community and I am looking forward to the tremendous opportunities ahead.”

Throughout her United Way career, Ellis has earned a reputation for facilitating collaborations around housing, food security and homelessness. Of particular importance was the effort in Williamsburg to understand the root causes of homelessness among precariously housed populations. That effort resulted in the establishment of the Housing Collaborative that has effectively transformed and expanded the community system to more effectively deal with the issue.

She has managed disaster recovery efforts at two of her previous United Ways and authored and taught curriculum on organizational management as well as serving as a consultant for other nonprofit organizations.