Retirement next step for YMCA long-time director
David Woodrow Caudle, simply Woody to anyone remotely close to knowing him, is ready for a new step: retirement.
The long-time executive director and CEO of the Henderson Family YMCA announced his retirement effective next June 30.
Members of the board of directors commented on Caudle’s tenure and plans for the future.
“First of all, Woody is a good man and at the Y he has been a good businessman,” said Marion Lark, chief volunteer officer of the board. “He’s competent. He can read a spreadsheet. He leads in a strong way but not a dictatorial way. He has a good staff and he lets them do their work.
“But he can also be firm. At times he has to call some hard shots. I’ve seen that happen. Under his leadership, we’ve made some really big steps. With Kathy, his very good and able companion, together they have given much to our community.”
Wayne Adcock, former chief volunteer officer for the YMCA, is chairing a search committee to find a new director. At present, they are surveying the membership and the community “to determine what we want in a new director,” Adcock said. “We’ll use that information to find a director to deal with all those things we identify, and the information will be available to that person.”
Caudle came to Henderson in 1982 as a sales and marketing representative with what was then Carolina Power & Light Company. He became executive director and CEO of the YMCA in 1999.
He and his wife, Kathy, have two adult sons. Trey is married to Brooke. They have one son and are expecting another child.
Son David is wellness coordinator for the Wilson YMCA.
The YMCA in Henderson began in 1980 as a program-only organization, Caudle said. In 1990 it opened in a new facility. After two expansions, the building now includes a pool, wellness center and gym in its 40,000 square feet.
The outdoor track is unique in one way, Caudle said. It was donated by Harriet & Henderson Yarns with the stipulation that it would always be open to the public. It is available to members of the public even if they are not members of the YMCA, he said.
Caudle said he is proudest of “how it seems to serve everyone in our community, all ages, all races. Everyone seems to get along. Our staff is proud of that.”
As he reflected on Caudle’s tenure as executive director, Adcock said, “He’s been a mark of stability. One of the best places in Henderson is the Y, and Woody has contributed to that atmosphere.”
Jeff Perry, secretary of the board of directors, said, “Woody is just good to work with. These are tough shoes to fill. I hope we find someone as good as Woody. It’ll be hard to find anyone better.”
Adcock knows first-hand the value of the YMCA to the community. He said he has used the YMCA since he retired as superintendent of Vance County Schools.
“We go there for fellowship with other folks and to do something good for our bodies,” Adcock said.
A strict timeline hasn’t been set for finding a new director, Adcock said. The search committee is waiting to accumulate the survey data before advertising the position.
However, Adcock said, “We hope to have someone on board by March 1 so Woody would be available to work with that person.
“The board decided we want to hire locally if we can. We’ll see what people in our community might be interested.”
Another choice, he said, is to go through the YMCA organization to see if someone employed elsewhere in the organization is interested in coming to Henderson.
“We see this as a crucial position in our community,” Adcock said.
Lark listed a number of assets found in Henderson and Vance County.
“The Y is one of the jewels in the crown,” he said.
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