By Brandon HENSLEY
The Glendale Healthy Kids’ board of directors announced on Tuesday that Sharon Thompson Roth will take over as the organization’s new executive director. Roth replaces outgoing director Camille Levee, who will take over for a domestic violence shelter in Arizona.
“I’m so excited,” Roth said on Wednesday. “I told their board [Camille has] enormous footsteps to follow in, but I also know it’s important to make your own footsteps. I just consider it such a privilege and an honor. But I also know she’s beloved. People will be watching me.”
Roth has been CEO of Glendale Association for the Retarded since 2007. That organization provides services for adults with mental disabilities. She said she and Levee have close ties.
“We’ve always walked in the same circles at events and fundraisers. I’ve always been a person I only want to work where I believe in that company or that mission,” she said.
Roth said it had been in the back of her mind that if Levee ever left GHK, she might like to replace her.
“When she knew she would be leaving she contacted me and asked if I would consider applying,” Roth said. “She thought I would be a good fit.”
Levee announced her resignation in April, and her last day is today. Roth will be introduced at a reception June 19 at Carousel Restaurant in Glendale from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.
Roth is from Burbank, and went to Glendale High School. Last week she graduated from Cal State Northridge’s master’s program in Public Administration. She said her strong suit is fundraising, as well as her connections to Glendale, which might have played into her getting the job because, “It really is a community-based organization.”
Since Roth is an admirer of Levee’s, she admitted that there is some pressure to do well. She likened it to when Scott Ochoa replaced Jim Starbird as Glendale City manager last year.
“You know when you follow an icon it’s difficult. You have to be yourself at the same time,” she said. But in any job, she added, “I always want to be excellent in what I do.”