United Way of Tarrant County today announced the retirement of TD Smyers, who has served as President and CEO of the organization since July 1, 2017. His last day is December 31, 2019.
The Board of Directors of United Way of Tarrant County is initiating a comprehensive search process for Smyers’ replacement and expects to announce a new president and CEO by the end of the summer.
“On behalf of the Board, I would like to thank TD for his service and significant contributions to United Way of Tarrant County,” said James Powell, Chairman of United Way of Tarrant County’s Board of Directors. “His leadership has ensured the organization is positioned to impact Tarrant County’s greatest social challenges today and in the future. We know he will continue to provide great leadership through the end of his tenure.”
Under Smyers’ direction, the organization launched a new strategic plan that introduced a new model to allocate funds to community partners and agencies – Systems Change – which shifts a portion of funding to focus on the root causes of social issues and finding universal solutions for problems that impact entire populations and continue to occur. One of Smyer’s first initiatives was KERNEL, a program that recognizes and fosters social innovation in Tarrant County. The program ushered in a new way of thinking about how to solve social challenges and strengthen the community.
“I genuinely feel that my entire professional career, including more than three decades in the US Navy, prepared me for the challenges the United Way team and I faced together. This organization is strong and well-led by an engaged Board of Directors,” Smyers said. “The organization has an exceptionally cohesive team of executives, and the dedicated United Way team has never been stronger.
“With a bold new strategy, revitalized community relevance and strong support from key leaders from all economic sectors, your United Way is poised to make enduring positive change for our diverse communities,” he said. “I’m really proud of what we’ve done here, but I’m especially excited about what the future holds.”
Also, under Smyers leadership, United Way of Tarrant County and the University of North Texas Health Science Center conducted a community assessment, the culmination of a two-year effort to reexamine the organization’s role in Tarrant County and to redefine its responsibility as the steward of investments by donors – individuals, foundations, organizations, and businesses. The community assessment, which identified housing and homelessness; health, mental health and wellness; transportation; early education, early childhood and youth; and basic needs, emergency assistance and financial stability as the top social issues in Tarrant County, provides a clear directive of where funding is truly needed and how our community expects us to allocate resources.
Prior to his role as president and CEO, Smyers served as Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer for the organization from December 2015 to June 2017. Before his role at United Way of Tarrant County, Smyers served four years as Regional CEO for American Red Cross North Texas Region. He retired July 2011 from a career in the U.S. Navy after serving as Commanding Officer of Naval Air Station Fort Worth Joint Reserve Base.