As the Executive Director of the DC Promise Neighborhood Initiative (DCPNI), Mary Brown is leading a transformation that is dramatically reducing generational poverty in the Kenilworth-Parkside community and beyond. Her team is succeeding as evidenced by data.
Under Ms. Brown’s leadership, DCPNI has identified a strategic framework that is applied each day across 13 partner nonprofits, 10 programs, and 6 educational institutions. The framework is validated by actionable data and provides the basis for further expansion within Washington D.C. and beyond.
For over 25 years, Ms. Brown has built a remarkable track record as a tireless advocate and leader for youth and communities. She is keenly aware of the uphill battle that black and brown children and their families are fighting in marginalized communities. She knows that the answers can be found in locally driven solutions and by supporting indigenous leadership within communities.
As a co-founder in 1996 and the Executive Director of Life Pieces To Masterpieces for nearly 18 years, she built a sustainable model for change and secured the funding that created a positive college-bound or career-ready trajectory for over 1,000 young black boys and men. Her work and that of her organization received national recognition by prestigious foundations, non-governmental organizations, local government leaders, and President Obama.
Ms. Brown is a natural visionary who excels at building teams that accomplish their mission. In addition to her remarkable organizational leadership, she was a national faculty member for NeighborWorks America for nearly 20 years. In this role she specialized in designing, facilitating and evaluating trainings for youth development workers, community developers and organizers.
Ms. Brown currently serves on the board for the following organizations: The Northstar Academy of Boys, Washington Parks and Peoples, Fair Chance DC, Center for Nonprofit Advancement, DC Alliance for Youth Advocacy and, The Catalogue for Philanthropy.
Known as a mentor and strong leader during challenging times, Ms. Brown has a unique ability to bring together disparate stakeholders, resolve conflicts, build consensus, and keep the necessary focus on shared humanity. She receives frequent requests to speak at events, participate in panels and to discuss issues within the media. Her areas of expertise include: effective community development, arts education in community engagement, grassroots social change, youth leadership, intergenerational engagement in community building, conflict resolution, and diversity training for communities with emerging populations.
The Meyer Foundation, Washingtonian Magazine, The College Board, Georgetown University, and Leadership Greater Washington are just a few of the notable organizations that have acknowledged Ms. Brown’s distinguished work, commitment and impact over the past 30 years.
Ms. Brown is a graduate of Xavier University and holds a certificate in nonprofit management from Harvard Business School.