On behalf of the Board of Directors and staff we are writing to inform you that Gabrielle Chapman has announced her resignation as the founding Executive Director at Call to Action for Racial Equality (CARE) to pursue her passion for social justice with the Humane Society of the United States.

Since 2017, Gabrielle has served to grow our organization into an independent 501(c)3 and led West Virginia through a critical stage of transition. As a leader in the racial justice movement, Gabrielle has championed racial equity into every aspect of our work and has grown our mission of uplifting black and brown voices across West Virginia and the Appalachian region. 

“The decision for my transition did not come easily as I am extremely proud of all that we have accomplished in two years. My time at CARE has been one of best experiences in my life. I want to extend my deepest gratitude to our current Board President, Jamecia James; former interim Board President, Katonya Hart and the Board of Directors for allowing me the privilege to serve this extraordinary organization. I also want to thank our community of donors and funders for their generosity and passion to uplift marginalized voices,” says Gabrielle.

Since 2017, CARE has shed light on issues from a place of wisdom and has made tremendous accomplishments such as:

  1. Hosting the first-ever Mountain State Racial Justice Summit which explored topics ranging from mass incarceration, food insecurity and co-operatively owned business understanding the needs of immigrant communities in WV to unpacking white allyship and surviving as a person of color in the public, private, and nonprofit workspace
  2. Building a coalition of 60 community and regional partners committed to advancing racial equity across West Virginia and Central Appalachia
  3. Developing a multifaceted movement strategy which includes policy and advocacy, civic engagement, leadership development and empowerment through grassroots organizing, and strengthening our regional network while holding white-allied organizations accountable through a popular education model
  4. Co-sponsoring West Virginia’s first-ever Black Lives Matter rally drawing a crowd of over 400 attendees to the West Virginia capitol annex to take a stand against police brutality
  5. Gaining support from regional and national funders and growing our budget by three-fold to maximize the political power of black and brown voices in West Virginia
  6. Strategically positioning ourselves to be a leader on racial justice issues in West Virginia and across Appalachia.

The Board has named a committee to lead the search for the next leader. During this time of transition, we are happy to announce and extend a warm welcome to Danielle Walker as our new, interim Executive Director. Danielle says, “I’m excited and eager to serve as the interim director of CARE because they are breaking barriers and boundaries for communities of color. I am thankful for Gabrielle Chapman’s leadership throughout our state, and I’m humbled to walk in her footsteps. Let’s continue to stand with unity and solidarity!” 

We look forward to a very productive and positive next chapter of racial justice work in the state of West Virginia. We count on your continued support and look forward to working with you!

On behalf of CARE Board of Directors,

Jamecia James

President, Board of Director