Robbins-Jabine was hired as CEO in July 2014. Throughout her tenure, her leadership revolved around her ability to nurture an idea with the planning, logistical consideration, and pragmatic design required to bring it to life. To that end, she outlined strategic goals with the Board while bringing together a determined internal team, and partnering with local, state, and national organizations in order to turn the vision of YWCA WNY into a reality. Over the course of her leadership, the organization increased revenue nearly 300% (representing $2+M), creating and expanding innovative, client-centric programs that respond to the evolving needs of the community.
Under Robbins-Jabine’s leadership the team secured new funding streams, furthering its commitment to provide underrepresented and vulnerable communities with the services and supports they need to thrive. These resources allowed for the expansion of YWCA WNY’s Children’s Centers in the Courts to include a center in Buffalo City Court, as well as the expansion of numerous after school/out-of-school time youth development programs operating within three different school districts. The organization also secured a New York State Supportive Housing grant that provides comprehensive services for low-income seniors residing at YWCA WNY’s School House Commons (SHC) facility – the first of its kind for the organization.
In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, YWCA WNY expanded their services to meet the emerging needs of a hard-hit population. YWCA WNY provided child care for first responders at two locations – one in the City of Buffalo, and the other at Martin Road Elementary School, in partnership with Lackawanna City School District (LCSD), while also partnering with numerous organizations to provide hot meals to SHC residents, pop-up emergency food and PPE/COVID information distribution sites for the community, and COVID testing and vaccination sites in partnership with Native American Community Services of Erie and Niagara Counties. Notably, YWCA WNY was one of five partners chosen by Erie County to establish virtual learning support centers which served hundreds of students and their families across multiple sites within two different school districts. YWCA WNY’s work on this front maximized time-limited COVID resources, ensuring that uninterrupted services to the community were provided.
Woven through these programs, and through Robbins-Jabine’s work in developing them, is the common thread of empowerment. Following the momentum of the Black Lives Matter movement begun in mid-2020, YWCA WNY renewed its focus on advancing anti-racism efforts. The organization began holding monthly internal education sessions with local anti-racism educators in order to foster an open dialogue among the team; and have now begun the process of using the insights gleaned throughout these sessions to center anti-racism work as the guiding star for the organization. During Robbins-Jabine’s tenure, YWCA WNY built a dynamic system of support that collaborates with the community to deliver a continuum of programs and services for the entire age spectrum—empowering people to help themselves and, in turn, work for the empowerment of others.
“Jill has been an exceptional leader who has navigated YWCA WNY through both significant challenges and tremendous opportunities,” said Jessica Copeland, Chair of the Board of Directors. “Her strategic vision and commitment to our core values have been instrumental in our growth. We are grateful for her dedicated service and anticipation of future needs. Jill has worked tirelessly to ensure YWCA WNY continues to serve the community for the next 150 years.”
The Board has begun its search to welcome a new CEO to guide YWCA WNY into its next chapter and deliver on its commitment to respond to the evolving needs of our community. TalentRise, a premier executive search firm, has been selected to lead this effort. For additional information regarding the search, please contact Pete Petrella at [email protected].
About YWCA WNY – YWCA WNY is dedicated to eliminating racism, empowering women, and promoting peace, justice, freedom, and dignity for all. Our vision is a thriving community without divide. Founded in 1870, YWCA WNY supports over 3,000 women, children, and families annually – preventing 23,360 days of homelessness for our community’s most vulnerable seniors and ensuring that 244,420 production hours are pumped into the WNY economy. Our programs empower women to attain self-sufficiency, youth to unlock their potential and build a path to success, seniors to secure safe, affordable housing that keeps them connected to the community, and children to grow in healthy, nurturing and enriched environments.
SOURCE YWCA WNY