Tyla Sherwin-Cole is leaving her position with Dress for Success Quad Cities in the next few days to become the new executive director of the Doris & Victor Day Foundation. Ms. Sherwin-Cole will begin her new post with the Rock Island-based foundation effective March 14. She fills a vacancy left after the foundation’s previous executive […]
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Tyla Sherwin-Cole is leaving her position with Dress for Success Quad Cities in the next few days to become the new executive director of the Doris & Victor Day Foundation.
Ms. Sherwin-Cole will begin her new post with the Rock Island-based foundation effective March 14.
She fills a vacancy left after the foundation’s previous executive director, Dave Geenen, was terminated in November. He allegedly embezzled about $40,000 from the non-profit group, according to news reports.
Foundation officials said they want Ms. Sherwin-Cole to lead the organization into a “new era.”
“It was immediately clear that Sherwin-Cole was the right fit,” William Stengel, board president of the foundation, said in a news release. “Her experience played a major role in our decision and we know she will lead us into a new era.”
Dress for Success officials also praised Ms. Sherwin-Cole for her work as executive director with the Davenport-based affiliate for nearly three years.
“Tyla has been the driving force behind our growth and success as an organization,” Betsy Green, president of Dress for Success Quad Cities Board of Directors, said in a separate news release announcing Ms. Sherwin-Cole’s departure.
Dress for Success helps area women by providing them career services, professional clothing and one-on-one support.
Ms. Green stated the organization now will look for a new “dynamic leader” who will help drive the organization’s mission: To empower women to achieve economic independence by providing a network of support, professional attire, and the development tools to help women thrive in work and life.
Ms. Sherwin-Cole told the QCBJ on Friday that she decided to take the new job with the foundation because of the support it gives to many groups in the region. “They have been a great advocate for Dress for Success and other groups. … They do some many great things,” she added.
Ms. Sherwin-Cole added that she has been impressed with the support the foundation has given to programs that help with housing, job training, employment and many other fields.
“We are delighted that Tyla will be leading the Doris & Victor Day Foundation and she will be tasked with heightening the mission and intensifying our ability to provide support and meaningful outcomes to the many people we serve,” said Stacie Fidlar, the foundation board’s vice president, in Doris & Victor Day Foundation’s news release.
Mr. Geenen, the foundation’s previous leader, was charged Feb. 4 with felony theft in connection with the embezzlement case, according to news reports. He also resigned his position as an alderman on the Rock Island City Council in November.
The Doris & Victor Day Foundation was organized to exist in perpetuity and to advance charitable purposes. Emergency assistance, affordable housing, child care, job training, support programs, scholarships and education have been the focus of many of the grants from the foundation.
Dress for Success leaders credit Ms. Sherwin-Cole’s leadership with improving and expanding that organization. Some of the accomplishments during her tenure include: Completing a $350,000 Capital Campaign ahead of schedule to pay off the group’s mortgage on its new building; expanding the HireHer program to include American Job Center cohorts; piloting the Fill-A-Bag Friday sales program and more.
“We cannot thank Tyla enough for the dedication, passion, enthusiasm and motivation she has given Dress for Success Quad Cities. She has left big shoes to fill – shoes that are probably leopard print heels,” the news release added.
Meanwhile, Dress for Success is gearing up for its Recycle the Runway style fashion fundraiser, which will be from 5:30-8 p.m. Thursday, April 21, at Rhythm City Casino Resort, Davenport. The event features local designers creating runway-ready ensembles from bags of recycled clothing and accessories. Tickets now are on sale for the 2022 Recycle the Runway event.
The event is presented by Royal Neighbors of America, Exelon Generation and Iowa American Water. All proceeds from Recycle the Runway support the work of Dress for Success Quad Cities.