Catholic Medical Mission Board (CMMB) is pleased to announce that Mary Beth Powers will serve as CMMB’s new President and Chief Executive Officer, effective September 1, 2020.
In October of 2019, CMMB announced the planned retirement of current president and CEO, Bruce Wilkinson, effective September 2020. Mr. Wilkinson, who during his nearly decade long tenure as CEO & President, led CMMB through significant growth and change with a specific focus on sharpening its strategic focus on women and children’s health.
The planned transition period provided ample time for a thorough and strategic search and selection process for the organization. A detailed recruitment process included input from the Board, senior CMMB staff, an external search firm and CMMB key stakeholders.
“Mary Beth’s background in maternal and child health and extensive experience in international development work will enable her to build on a strong foundation and advance our mission to improve the healthcare services for the women, children and communities that we serve,” said CMMB Board Chair, Sister Rosemary Moynihan. “Mary Beth joins CMMB at an opportune time as we begin the planning phase of our 5 Year Strategic Plan.
“The spread of the COVID virus has brought desperately needed attention to the needs of low-resource countries and communities. We will build off this moment of global awakening to the injustice and indignity for those living without access to basic healthcare, safe water, sanitation, and hygiene.”
Ms. Powers comes to CMMB with over 30 years of experience, increasing her leadership roles with global health organizations. She began her career with Catholic Relief Services in Pakistan after receiving a Bachelor’s Degree in Foreign Service at Georgetown University. This work, supporting the basic health needs of Afghan refugees, convinced her to study public health. She received her Master’s Degree in Public Health at the University of Michigan and joined Save the Children to work with health teams on program design and evaluation in more than 25 countries, eventually leading to the establishment of a global campaign for newborn and child survival. Her experience as CEO at SeriousFun Children’s Network broadened her skills in strategic planning, programmatic and technical support in the field, managing corporate and foundation partnerships, donor engagement and network building.
“I am thrilled to join the CMMB family and return to supporting field teams who are delivering critical services on the frontlines of health care,” said Ms. Powers. “I have followed the organization’s impressive work over time and I hope to work with the experienced team to meet the needs of even more vulnerable women and children – a cause I have dedicated my professional life to addressing.
“Building health care that is accessible to all is critical for reducing the morbidity and mortality due to COVID-19 which is a tremendous risk right now, but these services are needed in the long-term for addressing the basic and more complex health challenges that the communities we serve face.”