Dr. Ericka Jones Whitaker is the Chief Executive Officer of one of the largest Community Action Agencies (CAAs) in the state of North Carolina, serving approximately 3,200 low income individuals and families in seven counties, with a goal to establish self-sufficiency and provide opportunities in rural North Carolina. Whitaker oversees an approximate annual budget of $16 million, through four federally funded programs. Whitaker has oversight and management of approximately 200 staff including a Chief Financial Officer, Deputy Director of Human Resources & Operations, 3 Program Directors, and an Executive Administrator, all who report directly to her.
Dr. Whitaker is the recipient of the Carl D. Perkins Humanitarian Award by the Southeastern Association of Community Action Agencies (SEACAA) for her overall community leadership. She has also been awarded the Roselle Copeland Stewardship Award for her work specifically in Community Action. In addition to being a CEO, Dr. Whitaker is the President/CEO of her own strategic management firm specializing in helping small organizations improve and build their internal and external infrastructures, while also improving communication strategies between employees, board members, and stakeholders. Whitaker previously held management positions with several nonprofit trade associations in Washington, D.C., and also led the capital & naming rights campaign for an institution of higher learning.
With a passion for teaching, Dr. Whitaker also serves as an Adjunct Management Lecturer at The University of North Carolina at Pembroke (UNCP), where she previously worked on a full-time basis as the Executive-in-Residence and Management Lecturer. Core courses include: Business Communications, Organizational Management & Supervision, and Organizational Leadership.
Whitaker holds a Doctor of Education (Ed.D.) in Educational Leadership and Administration from Fayetteville State University in Fayetteville, N.C., a Master of Science in Administration (MSA) with a focus in Nonprofit Management from Trinity University in Washington, DC, and a Bachelor of Arts (BA) in Business Communications from The University of Maryland, University College in College Park, MD.
Dr. Whitaker remains active in the community by serving on the Board of Directors for several organizations, as well as serving as an Advisor for community initiatives.