My Possibilities Welcomes New Chair of the Board

It's the first transition of chairs since the organization’s inception. The new chair was announced at the 2022 State of My Possibilities, a virtual event.

Plus, Big Thought's Byron Sanders joined My Possibilities' Michael Thomas in a discussion of the importance of creativity and innovation in the charitable sector. Here's a takeaway.

North Texas-based nonprofit My Possibilities announced that Karen Wald will be its New Chair of the Board. The announcement was made at the 2022 State of My Possibilities, a virtual event. 

The founder of My Possibilities and its current chair, Charmaine Soloman, stepped down from her current position to allow Wald to take the reins. Wald officially assumed her role as chair of the board on January 1. 

Wald has held a seat on the Board of Directors for the nonprofit since the merger of My Possibilities and LaunchAbility, where she served as a long-time board member. 

In 2019, Wald retired from Alliance Data as Senior Vice President of Corporate Affairs and Chief of Staff where she oversaw initiatives that protected and enhanced Alliance Data’s enterprise reputation and stakeholder engagement across internal and external groups. 

“What an honor it’s been to serve as Founder and Board Chair for the past 12 years, and I remain committed to serving My Possibilities as a board member,” said Charmaine Solomon, Founder of My Possibilities, in a statement. “Karen Wald and I have worked very closely since 2018. I consider Karen a trusted advisor, friend, and an excellent leader. I could not think of a better person to hand the Chair role over to. I’m very excited to see what Karen’s leadership and professional skills bring to My Possibilities.”

Michael Thomas, executive director of MP says Wald is a “long-term supporter of our organization and helps provide us with the vision and strategy we’ll need to drive My Possibilities into the future.”

Thomas and Sanders: If we’re not changing, we’re not growing

Wald’s vision and strategy are key to a future of innovation and creativity at MP.

Byron Sanders, president and CEO of Big Thought, joined Michael Thomas at the virtual event for an “invigorating discussion” about the nonprofit space—and the difference between creativity and innovation.

Byron says creativity is “a basic human trait that, if it [was a] muscle [and strengthened], it could lead to innovation.” Thomas and Sanders agree on the importance of creativity and innovation in the charitable sector, saying: If we’re not changing, we’re not growing.

“I would like for us to start to think about nonprofit as research and development. We should be thought of as the R&D space for society’s most intractable issues. We should be thought of as the experts on how to fix some of these things.” Sanders said at the event.

Thomas underscores the value of collaboration and partnership: “Don’t just fund, partner,” he points out.

Sanders had a few parting words of wisdom. “The thing that I would love for you to take away is innovation,” he said. “Innovation is so much better when you have a range of voices in the room, including the voices of those most affected by the thing that we’re trying to innovate.” Thomas added, “You’re talking about equitable engagement in innovation and whether you are a corporate partner, a foundation, a donor, or within the organization, having everyone on the same page. Our best ideas, our best creativity, our best innovation will not happen without the people we serve acting as a voice in the process.”

Quincy Preston contributed to this report.

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