Urban Alliance appoints executive director

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Gadson “Chris” Pompey. Courtesy Urban Alliance

A Kalamazoo nonprofit that seeks to build bridges out of poverty promoted its interim leader to executive director.

After serving as interim executive director of Urban Alliance for the past five months, Gadson “Chris” Pompey was named executive director, effective immediately, the organization said on Friday, Nov. 12.

Pompey formerly served as the nonprofit’s director of prevention prior to replacing former executive director Luke Kujacznski in an interim capacity in May.

“Urban Alliance is thrilled to announce Chris’ appointment as our new executive director,” said Terra Bautista, Urban Alliance board president. “Chris has a well-established history of addressing community needs and an uncanny ability to empower and build into others, making him the clear choice to take Urban Alliance into the future.

“He has demonstrated his capacity for leadership, his heart for our mission and his strength in building relationships. He has our full support, and we are excited to begin this next chapter at Urban Alliance.”

Pompey brings a great deal of diverse experiences to Urban Alliance. Formerly a small business owner in Kalamazoo, he possesses an entrepreneurial mindset, the board said.

“We have to get creative in looking for ways to help people build bridges out of their struggles,” Pompey said. “What has worked in the past isn’t working today.”

Pompey also is a “student of the people he serves” who holds degrees in psychology and substance abuse counseling. His commitment to addressing root causes will be critical as Urban Alliance continues its work around gun violence, addiction and recovery, supporting unhoused populations and workforce development, the nonprofit said.

“We will continue to work toward helping Kalamazoo be a flourishing city where no one, regardless of their circumstances, gets left behind,” Pompey said.

Originally from Baltimore, Pompey joined the organization in 2018. Together, he and his spouse have four adult children and four grandchildren.

Urban Alliance was founded in 1999 with the mission of helping to break the cycle of generational poverty within Kalamazoo. Operating out of its 1009 E. Stockbridge Ave. location, Urban Alliance’s motto and purpose it to “communicate through our actions that we value every individual.”

More information about Urban Alliance is at urbanalliancekalamazoo.org.

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