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United Way names Bill Golderer its new CEO

The appointment comes as United Way adopts a singular focus on fighting poverty.

Bill Golderer has been named president and chief executive of United Way of Greater Philadelphia and Southern New Jersey.
Bill Golderer has been named president and chief executive of United Way of Greater Philadelphia and Southern New Jersey.Read moreDouglas Holt

United Way of Greater Philadelphia and Southern New Jersey has named Bill Golderer, pastor of Arch Street Presbyterian Church and founder of Broad Street Ministry, its new president and chief executive, according to a statement released Wednesday.

Golderer, who has a background in helping the homeless at Broad Street Ministry, is joining the United Way as the organization adopts a new focus on ending intergenerational poverty in a bid to deepen its impact on the region.

"I took on this role because poverty looms as one of our greatest challenges — it traps our families and limits our entire region's potential," Golderer said in a news release. "It's time to stop families from passing on poverty through generations and provide opportunities for our youth and families to thrive."

Golderer succeeds Jim Cawley, who resigned in August to take a job at Temple University.

"We are excited to have Bill as our next CEO," said J. Gordon Cooney Jr., chairman of United Way's regional board and leader of the global litigation practice at Morgan, Lewis & Bockius LLP. "He brings a remarkable combination of passion for elevating the condition of our city and region, experience and innovation in the communities we serve, and credibility among existing and potential donors who want to invest in our mission."

In addition to his service to the needy, Golderer has tried his hand at politics, most recently competing in the 2016 Democratic primary for a chance to take on U.S. Rep. Pat Meehan. He lost to Mary Ellen Balchunis.

Golderer also cofounded Rooster Soup Co., a freestanding restaurant that creates jobs and donates profits to provide support and services for vulnerable Philadelphians.

Under its plan to fight poverty, United Way set three region-wide goals to be achieved by 2030. They are to increase the number of children who read at grade level by the end of the third grade from 60 percent to 90 percent; to boost the number of youth 15 to 25 by 50,000 who are engaged in school and then pursuing further education or employment; and to ensure that 300,000 additional people are living above 200 percent of the federal poverty level. For a family of four this year, the poverty level is $25,100.