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Linda Warden to retire at the end of 2021 after 17 years with the organization and 8 years as Executive Director


Celeste Gamble, Development Director, appointed Executive Director effective January 1, 2022

COLUMBUS, Ohio, December 16, 2021 New Directions Career Center (New Directions) announced yesterday that Linda Warden, Executive Director, plans to retire at the end of 2021. The Board of Directors has appointed Celeste Gamble to succeed Warden as Executive Director on January 1, 2022

“On behalf of the Board of Directors, the New Directions team, our partner organizations and thousands of central Ohio women served, we want to thank Linda for her leadership and impact over her 17 years with the organization,” said Pat Doody, Board President. “A dedicated strategic leader, Linda has led New Directions since 2006. During her tenure, she played a significant role in guiding the organization through the 2008 economic recession and the recent Covid-19 pandemic, while driving significant growth in transforming the organization. The Board is sincerely grateful to Linda for her dedication to New Directions and wishes her nothing but the best in her next chapter.”

“It was an honor and privilege for me to serve as New Directions Development Director and Executive Director over the past 17 years. I am proud of the organization we are today, and the impact we have had working with thousands of individuals, groups and networks to advance our mission of empowering women to achieve self-sufficiency. I am so very grateful for the many donors, volunteers, staff, and corporate and foundation stakeholders that ensured the continuation of our exemplary programming and services,” said Linda. “I have worked with Celeste for many years both as a colleague at New Directions and as our partner at United Way of Central Ohio and am confident that she will be an excellent leader to guide New Directions into the future.”

Celeste’s selection is the culmination of a robust, multi-year leadership development and succession planning process led by the Board. She will transition to Executive Director from her current role as Development Director where she has led marketing, communications, events, donor relations and grant management since joining the organization in February of 2020. Prior to New Directions, Celeste was Director – Women’s Leadership Council at the United Way of Central Ohio, where she spent 12 years in relationship development, corporate fundraising and program management.


Speaking of Celeste’s fitness for the role, Pat Doody said “Celeste’s leadership capabilities as well as her experience working with the Center through the Women’s Leadership Council E3 Program make her the ideal candidate for the Executive Director role. During her two years, we have seen dedication and leadership that will continue the legacy of New Directions while positioning us for the future.”

“I want to thank Linda Warden for her support and leadership and also the Board for its confidence in me as I step into this new role,” said Celeste, “I am honored to have the opportunity to continue working with our talented team, volunteers, donors and partners to build on our strong foundation and execute a vision for the future of the organization.”

On January 1 when Celeste assumes the role of Executive Director, Linda will take on the new role of Director Emeritus until July 1, 2022. This structure will facilitate an orderly leadership transition as well as opportunities for key stakeholders to meet with Celeste and Linda. If you would like to schedule time please contact Margaret Monroe at mmonroe@newdirectionscc.orgor 614.849.0028. 

At a spring 2022 date to be announced, we will be celebrating Linda with a reception in her honor. Please watch for the announcement as we wish her well in her next role entertaining and spoiling her grandchildren, enjoying more time with family and friends, perfecting her photography, volunteering and reading. She will never “retire” her passion for New Directions Career Center or for empowering women.