I’m reaching out today with news: first, about a transition at Community Warehouse, and second, about our success in ensuring continuity of service despite challenges posed by the COVID-19 health crisis.

After six years in the Executive Director role at Community Warehouse, I will be stepping down at the end of December.

But I’m not going very far! I’ll be stepping up as the new Executive Director of the YWCA of Clark County, one of our partner agencies. I look forward to serving the community in this new role, focused on my passions of empowering women and ending racism.

It has been a privilege and a joy to serve Community Warehouse. This was my first job as an Executive Director and it was worth every moment. From the amazing staff, volunteers, and donors who welcomed me so quickly and whose relationships I cherish, to the amazing mission impact we have accomplished together, it has been a delight to share this good work of turning houses into homes with you. I deeply appreciate all you do to keep Community Warehouse strong. 

2020 has been a wild year for everyone. Despite the stress and uncertainty introduced by the pandemic, Community Warehouse has met these challenges head on. It’s been the most meaningful part of my tenure as Executive Director.

Here’s a snapshot of what we accomplished together in the past 8 months:

  • Our innovative team pivoted quickly during the COVID-19 pandemic to ensure families received essential furnishings when they needed it most by creating and distributing 450 Home2Go kits.

  • Our supporters showed up big and made record contributions that allowed us to continue operations while we operated without service fees or revenue from the Estate Store.

  • In recognition of the essential role we play in helping families furnish their homes, Multnomah County came through with emergency funding that helped keep our doors open during the lockdown this past spring.

  • Our dedicated staff continued delivering furniture as frontline workers, while leaning into conversations on equity. (The staff team has diversified significantly from 12% staff of color in 2015 to 44% staff of color in 2020.)

  • Our Board mobilized to diversify its membership and began its own equity journey.

  • We finally finished the Portland building remodel, using trauma-informed design principles. As soon as the pandemic is over, the staff team is eager to welcome clients to the new Family Welcome Room and bring our community together in the new office space.
CA 2020- D

I am happy that Community Warehouse is on such solid footing as I make my transition to a new leadership adventure. I am endlessly proud of what we have been able to achieve in the last six years, including growing our program impact and retaining an amazing staff team.

And, I’m confident that the organization is in good hands. The Community Warehouse Board has put together a transition plan, including naming Anna Kurnizki as the interim Executive Director while they undertake an executive search. Stay tuned!

In the meantime, thank you for your partnership. Your support is critical through this transition and through the uncertainty of COVID-19 so Community Warehouse can continue transforming the homes and lives of our neighbors in need.

I hope our paths cross again as we work together to create a stronger and more caring community.

All my best,

Dunetchka Otero-Serrano
dunetchka@communitywarehouse.org

A Message From The Board of Directors

Dear Friends of Community Warehouse,

 

On behalf of the Community Warehouse Board of Directors, I want to thank Dunetchka for her years of service to our organization and congratulate her on her new position with the YWCA of Clark County. In my time on the Board, I’ve always been impressed by Dunetchka’s deep passion for our mission and tireless commitment to our organization.  It’s always difficult to lose a leader but I know that Dunetchka will be taking that same passion and commitment to another worthy organization.

Dunetchka’s tenure with Community Warehouse has been filled with both big successes and difficult challenges.  It’s hard to capture that tenure in a short note but I would highlight the completion of our five-year strategic plan, the talent and culture of the organization that she leaves behind and the growth in our funding, and the number of clients served.  For challenges, nothing else compares to COVID but, despite a difficult past eight months, I believe that Dunetchka is leaving the organization in a position to emerge from the current crisis stronger than ever before.

The Board of Directors has started discussions on Dunetchka’s replacement and has asked Anna Kurnizki to serve as the interim Executive Director during the transition.  The Board has confidence in Anna to fill that role and will be working closely with her and the rest of the staff to ensure a smooth transition.

Please join me and the rest of the Board in thanking Dunetchka for her service and supporting Anna during the transition to this next leg of the Community Warehouse journey.

Best wishes, Dunetchka!

 

Sincerely,

Ray Anderson
Community Warehouse Board President

Watch our Live Briefing with Dunetchka

Both of our Warehouses are opening late on Wednesday 4/14. Donation Drop-off hours will be from 1 pm to 4 pm.

Thank you for understanding!

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