Regional Red Cross CEO Harold W. Brooks to Become Senior Vice President for International Operations

Harold Brooks
I am excited about the prospects for this community as well as the work I will be doing as an advocate for the international work of the Red Cross." - Harold Brooks

SAN FRANCISCO, CA (December 13, 2012) – Harold W. Brooks is leaving the role of Regional Chief Executive Officer for the American Red Cross Bay Area Chapter and Gateway to the Golden State Region to take a leadership position with the national organization at its headquarters in Washington, D.C.. Mr. Brooks will become Senior Vice President for International Operations, effective January 22, 2013.

Mr. Brooks has led the six-county Bay Area Chapter since 1997, and then the four-chapter 10-county region since 2010. Mr. Brooks’ Red Cross service spans over 30 years, where he has held a number of leadership positions at several chapters throughout the country, working in Washington, D.C., Los Angeles, Atlanta, and New Jersey.

During his career, Mr. Brooks has demonstrated a passion for international relief and development work and great interpersonal skills with people from different cultures. Before joining the American Red Cross, Harold served as the Country Director for Africare in Nairobi and also as the Country Director for the Peace Corps in Papua New Guinea. Currently, Mr. Brooks is a member of The World Affairs Council and on the board of the San Francisco Chamber of Commerce. He has a bachelor’s degree in political science from Loyola-Marymount University.

“All healthy organizations need a change in leadership from time to time to bring fresh ideas and generate new growth. I have spent half of my Red Cross career right here in the Bay Area and this is probably the hardest announcement I’ve ever had to make to our staff and volunteers,” Brooks said. "But I am excited about the prospects for this community as well as the work I will be doing as an advocate for the international work of the Red Cross."

The CEO Search Committee, led by American Red Cross Bay Area Board of Directors Chair Susan Atherton, has been formed and includes long standing community leaders with corporate, relationship, and volunteer skills. The Committee is empowered with extensive knowledge of our community and reflects the diversity of our community.

“This change is bittersweet,” said regional Red Cross Board Chair Susan Atherton. "Harold leaves this Chapter in the very best of circumstances. He has positioned us as the leading Chapter in the Red Cross network with a talented team of staff and volunteers who are called upon over and over again when the national organization needs them. Our region is looked upon by the entire American Red Cross as the shining example of what a Chapter should aspire to and become. What an honorable place to be. Thank you, Harold!"

The interim Regional CEO will be current Chief Operation Officer for the American Red Cross Bay Area Chapter, Jean Nickaloff. Jean Nickaloff’s career spans over 30 years of experience in emergency management. As the COO, Jean administers all the programs and services in the six-county Bay Area Chapter, serving over 4.5 million residents. In addition to numerous relief operations in the Bay Area, Jean has directed disaster relief operations around the country including floods, hurricanes, earthquakes, aviation disasters, wildfires, and winter storms.

About American Red Cross Bay Area Chapter

As a community-based, humanitarian organization, the American Red Cross Bay Area Chapter provides relief to those affected by disasters and empowers individuals in our community to prevent, prepare for and respond to emergencies. By helping people in the Bay Area learn how to take care of their families and neighbors, the Red Cross strengthens the community and makes it ready for all types of disasters, including home fires, earthquakes, wildfires and health emergencies. Call 1-888-4-HELP-BAY (1-888-443-5722) or visit www.redcrossbayarea.org to learn more. You may also find us on Facebook and Twitter.