Family Houston announces new leadership

Family Houston, one of the greater Houston area’s most established social services agencies, has announced the appointment of Helen Vollmer as Executive Chairman and Charly Weldon as Chief Executive Officer, effective immediately, according to Board Chair David Pitts.

In a new leadership model for the organization, the two will assume management responsibility for Family Houston, a United Way agency whose vision is to create a stronger community by helping individuals and families find the strength to meet the challenges they face today.

Vollmer and Weldon are charged with continuing the overall success and growth of the agency that was established in 1904 and has evolved over the years to serve almost 80,000 area individuals annually. In addition to overall responsibility for the agency’s operations and fiscal well-being, Vollmer will focus predominantly on external relations, including fundraising and marketing while Weldon will focus on managing internal operations, program development and community partnerships. Both Vollmer and Weldon report to the Family Houston board of directors.

Vollmer joins Family Houston from Edelman, the world’s largest communications marketing agency, where she most recently served as chair of the company’s South region and as its U.S. lead for its Family Companies & Foundations where she consulted with family business executives as well as boards, donors and staffs of foundations and non-profits. Prior to its 2010 acquisition by Edelman, Vollmer founded and led Vollmer Public Relations, which grew to become the largest independent firm based in the Southwest with offices in Houston, Austin, Dallas and New York.

Weldon, a native Houstonian, comes to Family Houston from The Beacon, a not-for-profit whose mission is to provide services that restore dignity, self-respect and hope to Houston’s poor and homeless. Under her leadership as executive director over the past four and a half years, Weldon more than doubled the size of the agency that today serves over 10,000 unduplicated clients yearly on a $2.2 million budget. Weldon also has held development and leadership positions at the Houston Livestock Show & Rodeo and Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation.

“We could not be more delighted with this new direction in leadership for Family Houston,” said David Wuthrich, who led the search on behalf of the Board. “The field of candidates brought to us by The Alexander Group, our executive search consultants, was outstanding. With the increased need for comprehensive and quality social services in our area, we are excited about our new leadership and the organization’s continued evolution in providing flexible programs to help those in our area become healthy, productive members of our community.”

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