Starting this month, tech training nonprofit Byte Back will have a new CEO. The organization announced Wednesday that Joe Paul will take over the leadership role starting September 13.
Byte Back said its board selected Paul from over 200 candidates due to his experience and passion for its mission and goals. He comes to the position from a role as executive director and COO of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity. He also previously founded Campus 2 Careers Solutions and worked in senior roles with the Stafford Foundation, DC government and Management Leadership for Tomorrow.
For over two decades, Byte Back has offered digital training programs for low-income residents in DC, and it expanded into Baltimore in 2019. Desy Osunsade, the chair of Byte Back’s board of directors, said in a statement that the hiring news comes at a crucial time, as the org is seeing more and more demand following the loss of service jobs over the pandemic. The nonprofit needs strong leadership to keep up, she added.
“The Board is beyond thrilled to welcome Joe as our next CEO,” Osunsade said in a statement. “His passion for our work, his energy, his experience in the nonprofit sector, his fluency with the corporate world, his marketing skills — I could go on and on. Joe is exactly who Byte Back needs to execute on our mission and help shape our vision in the years to come.”
The news comes after the departure of previous CEO Elizabeth Lindsey, who left the org back in March for a new role at Urban Alliance. After five-and-a-half years, Lindsey told Technical.ly at the time that she only left after Urban Alliance approached her about the new position and offered the chance to run a larger organization. In her time at Byte Back, she said at least 250 people have graduated from its programs, making an average of $20,000 more than before their training. The org also expanded to Baltimore in 2019, and opened a new space in NoMA in 2017. Wanda Pearce has led the organization as interim CEO amid the search for a successor.
Paul said he’s excited to take on the role for Byte Back, which he described as a “leading voice in advancing digital and racial equity and has been for nearly a quarter of a century.”
“I believe Byte Back’s best days are ahead of us, and I am excited about the opportunity to lead a dynamic team to address the very real tech inequities and digital exclusion that impact many around the country,” Paul said in a statement. “There is much work to do; and together, we will get it done.”
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