May 1, 2019
Dear Urban Ministry Center and Men’s Shelter of Charlotte Family,
It’s official! As of yesterday, Men’s Shelter of Charlotte and Urban Ministry Center are legally one organization. Our boards began this journey with the belief that our combined resources and a unified voice will move the needle on ending homelessness. Now, it is up to our team to carry out that vision.
While the legal merger is complete, the actual integration of our two organizations will happen in stages. In coming months, you will continue to see both “Men’s Shelter of Charlotte” and “Urban Ministry Center” separately or co-branded, until our board finalizes our unified brand later this fall. In practical terms, that means we will continue to host separate websites and use our existing email addresses for now.
As of today, our combined organization’s new leadership team steps into their roles. As the new CEO, I recognize and celebrate the tremendous foundation that Dale Mullennix has built in collaboration with so many others at Urban Ministry Center. Dale will officially retire on May 17, and I am grateful for his vision and support through this merger and in our leadership transition.
On behalf of our new united organization, I want to thank our donors, government and nonprofit partners, clients and countless others for your past support over the years. We look forward to our continuing efforts as a community to ensure all our neighbors have a safe place to call home.
I also want to express my gratitude to the following Charlotte community leaders for leading us through the merger: Will Alston, Kristina Burke, Trip Caldwell, Jason Cipriani, Kathy Izard, Chuck Stauffer and John Stubbs.
Our Board of Directors is grateful for the support, advice and counsel from Cherry Bekaert, Lockton Companies and Moore & Van Allen, representing the Urban Ministry Center; and C. DeWitt Foard and Robinson, Bradshaw & Hinson, representing Men’s Shelter of Charlotte. In addition, we are grateful to LGA for their communications assistance during this transition.
If you would like to learn more, please see the FAQ provided below.
In anticipation for the journey ahead-
Why did the boards decide to merge Urban Ministry Center and Men’s Shelter of Charlotte?
Ending homelessness is a bold and complex undertaking. By combining our talent, services, and resources, we believe we have an even greater capacity to end homelessness, than we would operating independently.
What is the mission of the new organization?
Our combined organization is an interfaith agency dedicated to bringing the community together to end homelessness, one life at a time.
Is the merge complete?
Yes, Urban Ministry Center and Men’s Shelter of Charlotte are now one united organization that legally merged on April 30, 2019. The integration of the two agencies will happen in stages over the coming months.
Who is leading the new organization?
Liz Clasen-Kelly, formerly the executive director of Men’s Shelter of Charlotte, will lead the combined organization as its CEO. The boards of each agency have combined into one Board of Directors and its officers and members are listed on board web page. Additionally, staff leadership can be found on the staff web page.
How will executive director of Urban Ministry Center Dale Mullennix be involved?
Dale Mullennix, founder and 25 year leader of Urban Ministry Center, will retire from the new organization on May 17, 2019, after offering guidance and support to Liz Clasen-Kelly during the leadership transition. He has also agreed to continue in an advisory capacity when called on.
What is the name of the new organization?
The board expects to finalize its identity exploration process this fall, which will determine a name for the organization. Until then, you will continue to see “Men’s Shelter of Charlotte” or “Urban Ministry Center” separately or co-branded in our communications and outreach.
How large is the new organization?
We’ll have a budget of $11 million and 150+ full- and part-time team members.
As a donor, how will the merger affect me?
We welcome your continued support as we weave our two organizations together, and donations can be made to both Urban Ministry Center and Men’s Shelter of Charlotte. Online giving options remain on both websites. The Federal ID for the new organization is 56-1837620. This information will be included in our receipts for your donations to ensure IRS compliance.
As a volunteer, how does this impact me?
Our day-to-day services will not change and your support as volunteers remains crucial in our work to end homelessness.
As a client, what changes will I see as a result of the merger?
We will continue to provide all of the same services and opportunities the two organizations have offered previously, in fact, we believe that combining our agencies will allow us to grow these services.
Will the Men’s Shelter of Charlotte start serving women as well?
There are no immediate plans to serve women in the overnight men’s shelters. Due to the layout of showers and restrooms, it’s not feasible to serve women in the current shelters. Women are served, however, through Urban Ministry Center’s Room In The Inn, permanent supportive housing programs and at the day service center.
Does “interfaith” in the mission mean faith-based or religious?
We are open to people of all faiths or no faith, and there is no expectation of any religious participation or beliefs in order to be served or serve with us. We do value our deep partnership with Charlotte’s faith community for support for our programs to give everyone safe shelter and a home.