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Habitat chooses Hope House head as new CEO

January 11, 2019

Habitat for Humanity of Greater Fort Wayne has found its new leader in a lifelong city resident with experience running a nonprofit.

Andrew Gritzmaker will start as chief executive officer effective Feb. 4, Habitat announced Thursday.

While it’s bittersweet to leave Mad Anthonys Children’s Hope House, he said, he looks forward to the growth opportunities that await him at Habitat as well as the chance to “impact our region in a large way.”

The Habitat for Humanity Board of Directors said it is excited to welcome Gritzmaker, a North Side High School graduate who earned bachelor’s and master’s degrees at IPFW.

“His enthusiasm is infectious,” Chairman David Faust said in a statement. “We believe his skills and experience will be a huge asset for the affiliate.”

Habitat’s previous leader, Justin Berger, announced his resignation in August. He was with the agency for eight years.

Gritzmaker said it was an honor and privilege to serve as executive director of Hope House since 2013. A nonprofit hospitality house on the Lutheran Hospital campus, it provides shelter, meals, laundry facilities and refuge for families with children who are critically ill or injured.

There, Gritzmaker said, he saw the effects of safe, secure short-term housing during a medical crisis.

“I look forward to working with Habitat in an effort to provide permanent housing solutions that will impact families as well as our community for generations to come,” Gritzmaker said.

On behalf of the Hope House board, President Chris Dubes thanked Gritzmaker for his work and dedication.

Hope House expects to announce Gritzmaker’s successor soon.

“The board looks forward to the opportunity to find a new executive director to continue and grow the foundation that has been built at the Hope House,” Dubes said in a statement.

Now is a good time to pass the baton to someone else, who will bring new ideas and perspectives to Hope House, Gritzmaker said. He is confident the nonprofit will find a worthy leader.

“I know emphatically that MACHH’s future is bright and that its best years are still ahead,” Gritzmaker said.

asloboda@jg.net

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