Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Sun Coast CEO Announcement

Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Sun Coast CEO Joy Mahler Announces Retirement after 41 years of service to the children and families of the community


Joy Mahler, President and CEO of Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Sun Coast announced today her plans to retire in the summer of 2024. The Board and Mahler have agreed that she will play a leadership role through the selection and onboarding of her successor.


Joy became the President and CEO of Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Sun Coast in 1983. “Being a part of an organization that inspires the potential of youth has been a tremendous career knowing we have made a difference in the life of others, “Mahler recounted. “Being the one-to-one connector of young people to another generation of caring committed adults will change their trajectory and make a better community and world. It just doesn’t get better than that!”         


Under Joy’s leadership and together with the donors, Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Sun Coast has grown from a small Venice area nonprofit serving 30 children to a ten-county footprint to serving almost 1,800 youth from Manatee County to Collier including opening offices in the rural communities of Highlands, Hardee, Desoto and Hendry.   She was central in merging six previous Big Brothers Big Sisters agencies and the Family Resource Connection. As an inception member of the Big Brothers Big Sisters Association of Florida (BBBSAF) in 1995, she led the strategic plan and then chaired the BBBSAF from 1997 through 2000 and was then elected to the Legislative Chair from 2000 through 2007.   As the Legislative Chair and member of the State Board, she collaborated with then-Governor Jeb Bush on the Mentoring Initiative for Florida. 


Board Chair Michael A. Nachef has appointed a CEO Search Committee, chaired by Randall Woods, and they have engaged BoardWalk Consulting, a national executive search firm focused exclusively on nonprofit leadership. BoardWalk Consulting will lead the search for the next CEO in partnership with the Search Committee over the next several months and expects to be complete by later this summer.  “Our goal is to make this a seamless transition for Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Sun Coast,” Nachef emphasized. “Joy is an exemplary leader. She has assembled an excellent team of capable staff who will accelerate Big Brothers Big Sisters’ success through the search and transition processes. Joy can never be replaced, but the next great leader this process identifies will continue to build her long-standing success.”


About Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Sun Coast

For over 55 years, Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Sun Coast has been matching youth in meaningful, enduring, professionally supported mentoring relationships with adult volunteers who defend their potential and help them achieve their biggest possible futures. Big Brothers Big Sisters’ evidence-based approach is designed to create positive youth outcomes, including educational success, avoidance of risky behaviors, higher aspirations, greater confidence, and improved relationships. Learn how to get involved at

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