Project Transformation North Texas Names New ED

Project Transformation North Texas announced Friday that it had picked its fifth executive director, and she’s a name that is likely familiar to many in the area nonprofit world.

The North Texas chapter of the nonprofit announced that Kirsten Brandt James was named to the post, and will be the fifth person to helm the local organization since it’s inception in 1998. She replaces Lauren Richard, who was recently named CEO of Camp Fire First Texas.

Project Transformation North Texas board chair Rev. Susan Robb said the selection process was rigorous, but that the board was “thrilled” to welcome James.

“Beyond her extensive leadership and development experience, she brings a passion for our mission and for making a difference in our communities,” Robb said.

James is a longtime member of Northaven United Methodist Church, and will report to work at the Project Transformation North Texas offices at University Park United Methodist Church.

James has most recently served as the chief development officer of 29 Acres, raising start-up funds and building organizational infrastructure for the new supportive living community for adults with autism in Denton County.

She previously served as executive director of Alley’s House, and for 22 years was the executive director of Junior Players.

She has also served as president of the Austin College Alumni Board and has been recognized with the Altrusa Richardson Outstanding Woman of Today Award and the Dallas Women’s Council Individual Member Award.

“As a passionate advocate of youth and leadership development, Project Transformation combines so many aspects of my professional career in nonprofit management as well as my personal faith journey as a longtime member of Northaven UMC in Dallas,” James said. “Despite the challenges of COVID and 2020, I believe that we will continue to change communities and lives, engaging in new relationships and developing leaders.”

Bethany Erickson

Bethany Erickson, Digital Editor at People Newspapers, cut her teeth on community journalism, starting in Arkansas. Recently, she's taken home a few awards for her writing, including first place for her tornado coverage from the National Newspapers Association's 2020 Better Newspaper Contest, a Gold award for Best Series at the 2018 National Association of Real Estate Editors journalism awards, a 2018 Hugh Aynesworth Award for Editorial Opinion from the Dallas Press Club, and a 2019 award from NAREE for a piece linking Medicaid expansion with housing insecurity. She is a member of the Education Writers Association, the Society of Professional Journalists, the National Association of Real Estate Editors, the News Leaders Association, the News Product Alliance, and the Online News Association. She doesn't like lima beans, black licorice or the word synergy. You can reach her at [email protected].

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