BOSTON, MA –Fenway Health announces today that Cheryl Katon has been hired as its Vice President of Resource Development and Donor Engagement. With her appointment, Katon will become the first openly transgender person to join Fenway Health’s leadership team.
“We are enormously excited to welcome Cheryl to Fenway Health,” said Carl Sciortino, Fenway’s Executive Vice President of External Relations. “Cheryl is a proven leader who has employed strategic vision, creativity, and innovation throughout her career. As Fenway celebrates its 50th anniversary this year, Cheryl’s contributions to our team will be vital as we plan for the next 50.”
Vice President of Resource Development and Donor Engagement is a leadership-level position for Fenway Health. Priorities for the position include creating and implementing a development and engagement strategy that is anti-racist, responsive to the fast-moving landscape of LGBTQIA+ philanthropy, and inclusive of donors from all giving levels and ages.
For the past 27 years, Katon has worked for Boy Scouts of America (BSA), where she presented at work under her masculine identity. Since 2010 she has been the executive director of Spirit of Adventure Council, a semi-autonomous BSA affiliate serving 12,000 youth and their families from 76 cities and town in eastern Massachusetts. Last year, she led a multi-state collaboration of Scouting councils throughout New England to offer services to youth struggling with pandemic-related loneliness and isolation. During her tenure as executive director of the Spirit of Adventure Council, where she oversaw a staff of 150 full time, part time and seasonal employees, Katon retired $2 million of organizational debt, increased funding for the organization, and employed new outreach and marketing to increase participation of LGBTQIA+ and BIPOC youth and their families.
Katon is also on the board of directors of Trans Club of New England and chaired First Event, the second largest transgender conference in the United States, in 2018, 2019, and 2020. In 2019 she received the “LGBTQ+ People of Color Ally Award” from Get Konnected; that same year Trans Club of New England was awarded the “Black Trans Advocacy Award” from Black Trans Men, Inc.
“I’m incredibly excited about joining Fenway Health. As a transgender woman, I have long been familiar with the health care Fenway Health provides to LGBTQIA+ people and especially gender diverse people, as well as the science and research it contributes to the field,” Katon said. “I’m honored to join and lead the development team to ensure that Fenway Health has the resources needed to do this important work.”
Katon will begin work at Fenway Health on May 3, 2021.