A veteran YMCA manager has been chosen as the new chief executive of the Henderson County Family YMCA.

The Henderson Y Board of Directors announced that it had selected Jason Beasley of Mobile, Alabama, who served as District Executive Director for the YMCA of South Alabama.

Beasley has 27 years of YMCA leadership experience, serving four Y associations in Alabama and one in Louisiana.

“Each of these unique experiences has helped him successfully develop and implement YMCA best practices to meet various types of community needs, the local YMCA board said in a news release.

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Beasley will succeed Sheldon Booze, who is retiring after 26 years as CEO of the Henderson YMCA, the longest tenure in the organization’s more than 125-year history. During his career, Booze served in YMCAs for over 40 years.

Hiring Beasley completes a five-month search process led by YMCA Henderson Board Chairman Tore Stuen and a local search committee of board members. The search committee was assisted by the YMCA of the United States.

“Our search was able to attract over 35 qualified applicants from across the country, but Jason was our unanimous choice,” Stuen said. “Jason brings a unique blend of YMCA experience combined with honesty and a sense of teamwork.

“His energy was felt by the staff and volunteers who had the opportunity to spend time with him. He will bring a passion for (fulfilling the YMCA’s mission of) “youth development, healthy living and social responsibility”.

Beasley graduated from the University of Alabama, where he studied business administration and marketing.

“My wife, Sara, and I instantly fell in love with Henderson within the first few hours of her visit,” Beasley said in a statement. “The charm and beauty of the downtown waterfront is as warm and inviting as the people we met. It quickly became very clear that this was where we could imagine living and a community we wanted to be a part of.

“The Y has a rich history of exceptional leadership and success that has positioned the Y to become an integral part of community life serving all people living in and around Henderson County,” he said.

“Many YMCAs across the country are still struggling as a result of COVID-19, but your YMCA has recovered well and continues to thrive despite ongoing challenges,” Beasley said. “As we look to the future, we will be seeking input and ideas from Y members, volunteer leaders and residents of Henderson County to help us develop a strategic plan.

Beasley will begin transitioning with staff and volunteers in the coming weeks, but will officially begin his new role in mid-June.

The Henderson County Family YMCA, located at 460 Klutey Park Plaza, has over 7,000 members, including 1,660 youth, 3,505 adults, and 1,879 seniors. It serves children in aquatics, childcare, youth sports, fitness and wellness programs.