Washington, DC - John Odenwelder will join the Washington English Center as its new Executive Director on January 6, 2020.
Mr. Odenwelder brings to WEC a deep knowledge of literacy, ESL, adult education, and workplace readiness from his 10 years with Hogar lmmigrant Services. Four of those years were served as its Director. In addition, he has served on the Board of the Literacy Council of Northern Virginia. Most recently, he served as the COO of a global anti-poverty advocacy organization. Mr. Odenwelder, who holds an MBA from New York University, has extensive experience in team leadership, strategic planning, fundraising, financial management, and multicultural community engagement.
In accepting this leadership position, Mr. Odenwelder said “English literacy is a necessary first step on an immigrant's path to economic independence and full participation in society. This underscores WEC's impact--not just on the lives of individual immigrants, but on the DC community as a whole. I am so honored to be joining a team that has been doing such important work for more than 25 years”.
Liz Tisdale, Chair of the Washington English Center Board, lauded the good work of Kathy Taylor Gaubatz, who has served as Interim Executive Director for the past nine months. Ms. Gaubatz will remain on staff through the first week of January, to ensure a smooth transition in leadership.