402 Rindge Avenue News

Just-A-Start names Carl Nagy-Koechlin as next Executive Director

Just-A-Start announced this week that Carl Nagy-Koechlin has been named the organization’s next Executive Director.

Carl, who currently serves as Executive Director for Housing Solutions for Southeastern Massachusetts, will succeed Deborah Ruhe, who has led Just-A-Start for the past 5 years. Deborah will step down in July, when Carl transitions to become the full-time Executive Director.

“We are thrilled that Carl will be joining Just-A-Start as the next Executive Director, building on the transformative work by Deborah Ruhe over these past 5 years. Deborah has built a solid infrastructure foundation on which Carl can continue to build, strengthening and expanding the organization’s impact on, and resources for, the community,” said Peter Munkenbeck, Chair of the Board of Directors for Just-A-Start. “As an experienced community development leader, Carl brings expertise, experience, and connections to Just-A-Start that will serve him and us well as he leads the organization forward in the coming years.”

Carl has been a community development professional for 35 years, since 1984 when he was the Lead Community Organizer for the Massachusetts Senior Action Council to his experience with 4 community development corporations (CDCs) including Nuestra Comunidad, Somerville Community Corporation, Fenway CDC, and Housing Solutions for Southeastern Massachusetts. Under his leadership, these organizations have created 400 apartments and homes in 15 affordable housing development projects; implemented and strengthened housing stabilization and homelessness prevention programs; and developed job training and placement programs that ensured strong career ladders and sustaining jobs for community residents.

Carl holds a Bachelor of Arts in Economics from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, and a Master of City Planning from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Carl is excited about this new opportunity. “It has been evident to me throughout my career and life in Greater Boston, including 15 years as a Cambridge resident, that Just-A-Start is an effective organization that has played a critical role in providing opportunities for low-income people, people of color and others to live and thrive in Cambridge despite its escalating cost of housing. Just-A-Start’s aspirations can be summarized as assuring that all people, especially those of limited means, contribute to, and benefit from, Cambridge’s thriving economic, civic and community life. I am proud to be the next Executive Director of Just-A-Start, and to help these aspirations succeed.”

There will be opportunities for everyone to meet Carl when he joins Just-A-Start full-time in July, and more details will follow about a get-together to celebrate Deborah before she leaves. Stayed tuned for more information about both!

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