Few people can say they’ve enjoyed a career that has come full circle. But for Rockford native Dave (Delano) Hicks, there’s no other way to describe it. Hicks was recently named executive director of Northwest Community Center, a position that he says brings him back to where everything began for him.
“To understand and appreciate my journey, one has to understand where I have been,” said Hicks. Born and raised on the west side of Rockford, Hicks grew up on Day Avenue and attended both St. Patrick’s Elementary (now Galapagos Charter School) and Wilson Middle School, before graduating from Auburn High School. “Some of my most enjoyable memories were walking to and from school with friends. I am proud of my roots, and like so many before me, I embrace the beauty of Rockford’s west side,” he said. After completing college, Hicks returned home and spent the past 20 years working for the private sector. He said, “Though we can debate the reasons, working in this sector unfortunately pulled me out of the west side of Rockford. Verses providing for the needs of all who needed services, I spent a significant amount of my career providing for those who could afford services. Then under God’s plan, my professional career came full circle. After 20 years of working with some of the most prestiges agencies in the country, I have been blessed with a vision, knowledge and experience to bring back home. This ability and opportunity is truly what I am most excited about.”
On March 4, 2013, Hicks accepted the executive director position at Northwest Community Center. For some time after that, he shadowed the retiring director, Jim Peterson, who he says gave him priceless education on the history of Northwest. As the new Executive Director, Hicks said his first order of business is outlined in two parts:
- Observe and assess all elements of the day-to-day operations in an effort to “establish strengths and weaknesses of what we do and who are.”
- Staff development to ‘prepare our house for visitors’. Housekeeping, organizing, and providing the best welcoming (customer service) is the goal.
Hicks says these two steps will manifest into being the foundation of both short- and long-term success at Northwest Community Center.
Soul News Network wishes to congratulate Hicks on his new appointment. We wish him and the Northwest staff much success.