Darlene Newsom has worked in the non-profit sector in Arizona for over 44 years. She served as the Chief Executive Officer at UMOM New Day Centers starting in 2002 and recently retired December 31, 2020. Under her leadership, UMOM expanded its capacity and improved the services offered to families, single women, and youth experiencing homelessness.
Darlene oversaw the entire $25 million agency budget and 280 employees. During her 18 years at UMOM, she completed a $24 million capital campaign to relocate the existing family shelter and expanded capacity, led the acquisition of Tumbleweed Center for Youth Development so that services for homeless youth and youth aging out of foster had no disruption in services, led UMOM to become its own affordable housing developer which has resulted in 520 affordable units and 120 currently in construction, and developed the first full-service shelter for homeless women in Maricopa County.
Before coming to UMOM Darlene was the Director of a shelter for homeless youth in Tucson and founded a homeless shelter for abused and neglected children in Yuma. In 2011 Darlene was honored with the Public Sector Athena Award by the Greater Phoenix Chamber of Commerce. She is widely recognized as an expert on issues affecting homeless families and served as chair on the former Mayor Stanton’s homeless committee. In 2012 she participated in the Virginia G. Piper Fellow program to focus on honing her leadership skills and learning new strategies for UMOM which led to opening Helpings Café, a social enterprise that offers food and barista training for shelter residents and is open to the public.
In 2018, Darlene received the Leader of Distinction Award from ONE (Organization for Nonprofit Executives). She earned her bachelor’s degree at the University of Arizona and her master’s degree at the University of Phoenix. Currently, she is a Consultant with Vitalyst Health Foundation on housing and homelessness issues.