Former Chief Development Officer at Hospital of Central Connecticut Tapped to Lead Community Foundation of Greater New Britain
Veteran Fundraiser, Community Leader David Obedzinski Returns to New Britain, Will Succeed Retiring President Jim Williamson in August
New Britain, Conn., June 27, 2017 – David Obedzinski, whose impressive 30-plus year management career in philanthropy, development and donor relations includes nearly seven years as the Hospital of Central Connecticut’s chief fundraiser, has been named the new president of the Community Foundation of Greater New Britain (CFGNB).
Obedzinski will begin his new post on August 14.
“After an exhaustive search during which we received more than 60 applications from a wide variety of highly qualified individuals, we are thrilled to welcome David home to the Community Foundation family and Greater New Britain community,” said CFGNB Board Chair Laurence A. Tanner. “David’s knowledge of and reputation within our community are outstanding, and his credentials and achievements in non-profit management and fundraising are many. We are excited to welcome him aboard and expect him to hit the ground running come August.”
“David is passionate about and committed to building relationships that will serve our community and constituents well, a perfect match for our mission,” added Vice Chair/Chair Elect Lynn A. Ricci, president and chief executive officer of Hospital for Special Care and head of the Foundation’s Executive Transition Committee. “During the interview process, David articulated a vision for CFGNB that reflects his intimate familiarity with our community and its stakeholders, combined with a keen sense of philanthropy.
“We couldn’t be more fortunate to have someone with such a compelling mix of passion, knowledge and experience prepared to lead us into the future.”
Obedzinski, a Glastonbury resident who is currently vice president of philanthropy for the U.S. Coast Guard Academy Alumni Association based in New London, succeeds retiring President Jim Williamson. Williamson announced his retirement in April, and upon his departure in August will have served the Foundation one month shy of 13 years.
Tanner and Ricci both cited Obedzinski’s off-the-charts references, high degree of integrity, track record of achieving bold goals and readiness to lead as critical factors in his selection. According to Ricci, one reference called Obedzinski “mission-focused, humble and sincere with a work ethic that is contagious.”
“Coming back to the New Britain area, a region I have such affection for and where people care so deeply about their community, to lead this prestigious organization is a dream come true,” said
Obedzinski. “Jim Williamson and his staff have done a wonderful job, and I look forward to building upon the work they’ve done to help make this organization even more relevant and an invaluable partner and community resource in the years to come.”
Obedzinski, 54, grew up in the south end of Hartford, the eldest of five children. Following graduation from the former South Catholic High School in 1981, he attended Hofstra University on Long Island, earning a bachelor’s degree in sociology (1985) and master’s degree in community health administration (1992).
Obedzinski worked for 10 years at his alma mater, Hofstra, in various posts in alumni relations and development before moving on to a number of significant roles of escalating management authority with a variety of educational institutions, non-profit organizations and health care providers. Previous positions have included director of development for the Barney School of Business at the University of Hartford; vice president of development and public affairs for The Easter Seal Society of Connecticut; and director of development and director of alumni affairs for Southern Connecticut State University.
In 2002, Obedzinski assumed the role of chief development officer and executive director of institutional advancement at then-New Britain General Hospital, later to become the Hospital of Central Connecticut. He managed all major gift planning, annual giving efforts and donor relations, including a successful five-year, $7.5 million capital campaign for the hospital’s New Britain campus.
While in New Britain, Obedzinski became actively involved with numerous locally-based non-profit organizations, including the New Britain Public Library board of directors, Polish American Foundation of Connecticut, New Britain-Berlin Rotary Club, Southington Rotary Club and Southington Chamber of Commerce. He became of member of the Community Foundation’s Catalyst Fund in 2007; he and his wife Linda and daughter Kate, who just completed her freshman year at Emerson College, served as tri-chairs of the Catalyst Fund in 2013 and 2014.
Obedzinski left the Hospital of Central Connecticut in 2009 to become director of major gifts and planned giving at Baystate Health Foundation in Springfield in 2009, and in 2011 he joined the Coast Guard Alumni Association, where he has served for the past six years. He is the first non-Coast Guard alumnus to lead the 12,000-member-strong organization’s fundraising efforts. Under his leadership, an $8 million capital campaign to equip the Academy’s Coastal Sail Training Program with eight 44-foot sailing boats was successfully completed in 2013, and a subsequent $30 million campaign to fund 15 new Academy capital projects has reached the 82 percent plateau.
Still a member of the Community Foundation’s Catalyst Fund, Obedzinski is also currently a corporator of the Hospital of Central Connecticut; member of the New Britain Institute; board member of the U.S. Coast Guard Academy Sponsored Programs and Research organization; and a Connecticut Justice of the Peace. He and his family are active members of the Lutheran Church of St. Mark, Glastonbury, where David currently serves as Church Council president.
Obedzinski says his immediate priority upon assuming the reins in August will be to meet with and learn from staff, and get out in the community. “My first two months will essentially be the David Obedzinski listening tour,” he said.
Established in 1941, the Community Foundation of Greater New Britain is “Where Good Begins” in Berlin, New Britain, Plainville and Southington. The Foundation works to inspire philanthropy, manage permanent charitable assets effectively, and partner to address key community issues through strategic leadership. For more information, visit www.cfgnb.org.