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Kathryn Epps Roberson will become the new President & CEO of the Fund for the School District of Philadelphia. Courtesy Photo.
Kathryn Epps Roberson will become the new President & CEO of the Fund for the School District of Philadelphia. Courtesy Photo.

Kathryn Epps Roberson named new President and CEO of the Fund for the School District of Philadelphia

With a wealth of experience in public-private partnerships, her new role will be effective as of July 5.

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The Fund for the School District of Philadelphia has announced that Kathryn Epps Roberson will become its next President and CEO, effective July 5.

Roberson is an esteemed, multiskilled non-profit and entrepreneurial leader with more than a decade of experience working in the Philadelphia region. 

“I am thrilled to join the Fund for the School District of Philadelphia and to have the opportunity to help make the District’s goals a reality,” said Roberson in a statement. 

The Fund for the School District of Philadelphia is a nonprofit that serves as the bridge between the private sector and the Philadelphia education system. It is responsible for identifying, coordinating, and connecting philanthropic resources toward leveraging investment in Philadelphia public schools. 

“The Fund is the only philanthropic organization that works directly with school leadership to align the investments of partners with the strategies that will impact the success of our students… As we embark on a new five-year strategic plan, I can’t think of a better time for Kathryn to strengthen our public-private partnerships as we work toward our collective goals,” said Superintendent Dr. Tony Watlington.

Most recently, Roberson Epps has served as the first executive director of Hire!Philly. Founded in 2018, it’s the region’s only employer-led workforce intermediary forged to address regional workforce development issues and connect Philadelphians to employment opportunities.

In the role, she played a critical role in engaging stakeholders across the public and private sector around Philadelphia’s workforce talent priorities. She was also instrumental in implementing the coalition’s vision and strategy to align the advocacy, assets and interests of local employers to support regional workforce development efforts and provide economic opportunities for all Philadelphians. 

Roberson also spearheaded PropelPHL, a digital platform that connects job seekers, employers, workforce agencies, and social service organizations together in a single central location. 

Her role with Hire!Philly will serve as a smooth transition into her upcoming role with The Fund, shifting from workforce efforts to public education efforts. 

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Sylvie Gallier Howard, a member of the Fund’s Board of Directors and Co-Chair for the Fund’s CEO search process, has much praise for its next president and CEO.

“Kathryn Epps Roberson brings unmatched experience in coalition-building and stakeholder engagement, an entrepreneurial background, and has dedicated her career to maximizing resources for the betterment of Philadelphia and Philadelphians,” she said. 

Epps Roberson is an entrepreneur in her own right, as the founder of AEC Partners, a Philadelphia-based marketing consulting firm that specializes in experiential marketing, branding, and venue management. 

When it comes to her approach as she eyes her next career venture with The Fund, Epps Roberson is very adamant.

“I believe in every student’s right and potential to live the best life they can — in the classroom, at home, and well into the future,” she said. 

The School District of Philadelphia recently introduced its new plan, Accelerate Philly, an initiative that prepares students to imagine and realize any future they desire. The initiative focuses on improving safety and well-being, partnering with families and community, accelerating academic achievement, recruiting and retaining diverse and highly effective educators, and delivering efficient, high-quality, cost-effective operations.

“It’s never been more important to prepare our youth for the jobs and careers of the future,” said Epps Roberson. “I am energized by Dr. Watlington’s vision and cohesive plan to change along with the times and secure the bright future that all students deserve.”

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