Youth First Texas removes entire Board of Directors, appoints interim board

Posted on 18 Jan 2013 at 12:25pm

Former Youth First Texas board Chairman Chris-James Cognetta, seated left, reads a resolution to dissolve the entire board at a meeting Jan. 17. (Anna Waugh/Dallas Voice)

The Youth First Texas Board of Directors voted to remove its members at a special board meeting Thursday night.

Former YTF board members, Chris Hendrix, Cathy Gonzalez and Richard Gordon will step in as the interim board until more members can be added.

Board chair Chris-James Cognetta read the resolution to dissolve the board to a room of about 30 people before it was approved and the brief meeting was adjourned.

The resolution called for the complete removal of the board because of dysfunction among members, concerns of stakeholders and in light of statements made by community leaders at the last board meeting Jan. 8 that could be seen as damaging.

In addition to the board, anyone holding office or a position with the organization was also removed effective Thursday night.

Hendrix said community concerns were brought to him and Gonzalez, who agreed to step in after the board was removed.

“There was some concern by donors about dysfunction on the board,” Hendrix said.  “The best way forward was to have the board resign and have former board members of the organization come in and take over.”

The dysfunction included infighting among board members, a lack of management, and concerns about the number of programs being offered and youth being served, he said.

Gonzalez said she’s excited to have the support of volunteers and donors to help keep the organization going without interruptions in youth services during the transition. She and Hendrix will schedule a meeting before the end of January to elect officers.

While Hendrix estimated that the interim board would serve for about six months before selecting a new board, Gonzalez said the timeline is uncertain, as they want to take time to make the transition smoothly.

“I think we can get back to where we were,” she said. “It might take a while because we want to do it right and be transparent.”

The interim board released a joint statement Thursday night. Read it below.

Youth First Texas Letter

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