C-Suite Awards: Cari DeSantis

Cari DeSantis came to Melwood in March 2013, after about five years working as a consultant in health and human services. She’s since helped take the Upper Marlboro organization to new heights, creating one of the largest regionally focused nonprofits with more than $100 million in revenue.

That’s because she teamed up with Lisa Chandler, CEO of the much smaller, nearly 60-year-old Linden Resources, an Arlington group doing similar work in providing job opportunities for people with disabilities. When Chandler decided to retire, they decided to join forces. Melwood and Linden signed a tentative agreement in early 2017 and closed the deal a few months later.

“But we literally took another year before we actually flipped the switch,” DeSantis said. “It went very smoothly. We did not want to have to lay off anybody, especially individuals with differing abilities, so we’ve been able to keep that promise.”

As of June 30, the two groups became a combined entity, and it’s continuing…

Read the full story from the Washington Business Journal.