San Diego CA— Episcopal Community Services (ECS) has named Elizabeth Fitzsimons as the organization’s new Chief Executive Officer. Fitzsimons is a seasoned non-profit and community leader with a passion for creating equity, opportunity, and possibility. ECS inspires children, empowers adults and transforms communities by providing vital, high-quality social services that focus on early childhood education and development, homelessness, mental health, and substance use disorder treatment.
“This is a significant moment in the history of ECS. I’m deeply grateful to Lesslie Keller for her vision, dedication, and passion which led to the creation of one of the most impactful nonprofits in San Diego,” said Roseann Meyers, ECS Board President. “Equally, I am excited for what the future holds under Elizabeth’s leadership.
“The pandemic has highlighted the inequities many of our neighbors face – access to education, childcare, healthcare, and stable employment,” Fitzsimons said. “ECS is at the forefront of addressing those inequities with programs that help break oppressive cycles and systems.
“I am honored to join in this important work in partnership with ECS’s stellar team, board of directors, and community of supporters,” she said. “We have the opportunity to tap into the Episcopal Church’s leadership on social justice, and partner with fellow community organizations and our elected leaders to make an even deeper, broader impact across our region for generations of San Diegans. I can’t wait to get started!”
As Vice President of Leadership & Engagement at the San Diego Regional Chamber of Commerce, Fitzsimons led LEAD San Diego. Fitzsimons and her team inspired, connected, and empowered leaders to make positive change in communities and organizations throughout the region.
Fitzsimons developed and led multiple programs including Advance, a professional development program to equip emerging women leaders with the skills and confidence to assume executive leadership positions; and All Our Talent: Women on Boards & Commissions, an initiative to understand, track, and address the gender gap on corporate, nonprofit, and government boards and commissions.
Fitzsimons also has been recognized for developing and hosting Leading in a New Reality, a LEAD webinar series livestreamed by ABC 10News to inform and mobilize leaders dealing with the ever-changing challenges of leading teams and families during the pandemic. The webinars attracted thousands of viewers and explored systemic racism, police reform, the education gap, mental health, and the impact of the pandemic on women in the workforce.
Fitzsimons led the Chamber’s strategic marketing communications efforts, ensuring all outreach aligned with and supported the organization’s vision to make San Diego the best place to live and work. Fitzsimons and her team engaged thousands of San Diegans through more than 60 events a year, providing connections and resources to business, nonprofit, and government sectors.
Previously, Fitzsimons was Senior Director of Marketing & Communications at Rady Children’s Hospital. There, she oversaw a repositioning initiative; media relations; web, video and social media; internal communications; and strategic communications planning for the hospital and its foundation.
Prior to Rady Children’s, Fitzsimons worked at the County of San Diego in media and public relations and internal communications. She started her career in San Diego as a journalist at The San Diego Union-Tribune.
Fitzsimons is a 2013 graduate of LEAD’s Impact program. She earned a bachelor’s degree in political science and Spanish from the University of Wisconsin and a master’s degree in journalism and public affairs from American University in Washington, D.C.
Fitzsimons serves as Library Commissioner on the City of San Diego’s Board of Library Commissioners; member of the Board of Governors for the University Club Atop Symphony Towers; member of the Governance Committee of the San Diego Public Library Foundation; and previously served on the Board of Directors for the Jacobs & Cushman San Diego Food Bank. She lives in Del Cerro with her husband, daughter, and twin sons.