Letters To The Editor: YMCA needs diversity

Letters To The Editor: YMCA needs diversity
April 27
00:00 2013

YMCA needs diversity

To the Editor:

I have been going over the events that happened in the meeting that took place April 9 at the (Winston Lake Family YMCA)  about what kind of new leader we need at Winston Lake. I said new because we have had more new leadership turnover at Winston Lake than any other Y in this system.

The reason (former executive directors gave for leaving) was the opportunity to better themselves and their families through more money and more opportunities to rise. Now, the question becomes why do their white counterparts remain in the same YMCA of Northwest North Carolina system?

Let’s start at the top. The CEO of this organization has no Blacks reporting to him; the CFO has no Blacks reporting to him, so the only opportunity for Blacks in this system is serving as an executive director. With that in mindset, why would anyone stay long term where there is no chance of moving up?

It is disgusting when Black men become gate keepers for this mess, standing and attempting to speak words that are supposed to sooth us so that we lose focus of the problems.

I was at a YMCA celebration on April 16 at the Embassy Suites, and a black man was recognized for his longtime dedication to the YMCA of Northwest NC. He (stated) what a deserving organization it is and when will we, as Black folks, learn we can receive awards from white people without saying things that make us look and sound so ridiculous.

Now, this community has a chance to change a wrong that has gone on for too long. We need new leadership in the YMCA of Northwest NC (so) that when we bring in new leadership at Winston Lake Y, we bring in someone who is given the chance to be successful and a chance to move up in this organization.

We were given a date of March 1 (for a new executive director at Winston Lake) and now it is past April Fool’s Day. Who is fooling who? We have a deserving group of people who (show) support through memberships, volunteering and their dollars.

Why are we discussing this in 2013?
Maybe in some businesses only the year has changed.

Al Jabbar,
Winston Lake Family Y member and volunteer

Y Response

Editor’s Note: The following letter, written in response to The Chronicle’s April 11 coverage of the delayed search for a new leader at the Winston Lake Family YMCA, has been made available to Winston Lake Y members.

Winston Lake Y Members, Volunteers, and Staff:
I want to address an article in The Chronicle last week about the Y’s search for a new Executive Director at Winston Lake. As you know, we are in the process of evaluating a wide range of options to ensure we make the best possible decision for the Winston Lake Family YMCA and the community. I understand this process can be frustrating at times, as other branches have experienced in searches that last longer than first anticipated. We have been and continue to be committed to serving the East Winston community.

This process is being led by a committee of volunteers:
• David Hinton, Committee Chair, Association Board Member & Past Winston Lake Board Member;
• Barbara Carter, Winston Lake Board Member;
• Michael Clements, Winston Lake Board Member;
• Wayne Hosch, Winston Lake Board Member;
• Michael Lischke, Association Board Member;
• Jose Nieto, Community Representative;
• Robin Richards, Winston Lake Board Chair;
• Irma Rodriguez, Community Representative;
• Michael Suggs, Community Representative and Past Winston Lake Board Member; and
• Karl Yena, Community Representative.

I deeply appreciate your continued dedicaton to the Y during this process. We value each of you as individuals, and without you, the Y would not be what it is today.

If you have any questions or comments, please reach out to Darryl Head, Vice President of Operations for YMCA of Northwest North Carolina and interim director of the Winston Lake Family YMCA. You can contact him at 336-721-2100 or

Thank you for your continued support.

Curt Hazelbaker
President & CEO
YMCA of Northwest North Carolina

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