PAWTUCKET – The YMCA of Pawtucket has selected Mark Casson to be its new chief operating officer.

Casson previously served as the COO for the Greater Valley YMCA in Allentown, Pa., from 2017 to 2020. While there, he led operations for an $11 million budget and six branches.

Casson started his new position in Pawtucket on Sept. 13.

“I’m excited to be here and work with this great staff. The Y is a huge passion for me and I welcome the opportunity to help new communities and a new organization move forward, especially as it responds to the needs that have arisen during COVID-19,” Casson said.

“Mark is a fantastic addition to the team here at the YMCA. He brings a wealth of knowledge and experience that will help us better serve our communities at a critical time. His financial management skills and team-centered approach to leadership is a great fit for the YMCA of Pawtucket,” said Charles Clifford, CEO of the YMCA of Pawtucket.

Casson began his career as a health and physical education teacher at a K-12 school. He then moved to the YMCA and worked his way up from program director to branch director. From there he became the CEO of a stand-alone branch in Lock Haven, Pa., where he helped erase a $250,000 budget deficit by instituting new financial practices, outsourcing payroll, and sharing services with a neighboring Y.

In his most recent position, Casson invested over $700,000 in the YMCA’s facilities. He also worked with staff and leadership to meet revenue target and control expenses, resulting in a $1.5 million turnaround. During his time he also oversaw the implementation of a number of new programs including diabetes prevention programs, summer meals, and several special needs programs.

As COO at the YMCA of Pawtucket, Casson will be involved in all aspects of the organization, from staff and volunteer development to facilities and finances management. He is specifically charged with overseeing the three branches in Pawtucket, Lincoln, and Woonsocket and will also be tasked with building relationships with other organizations in the community.

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