As President and CEO of Orange County United Way, Susan B. Parks leads the nonprofit organization toward improving lives and strengthening the Orange County community. Parks has a long history with the organization as a former board member and one of the founding members of the Orange County United Way Women’s Philanthropy Fund. She was also an active player in the development of the nonprofit’s 10-year strategic plan to achieve substantial and sustainable social change in our county. Under Parks’ leadership, the organization launched United to End Homelessness, an initiative committed to ending homelessness in Orange County in a dignified and humane way by providing needed housing and support services.
Prior to joining United Way, she spent many years as an executive in corporate America, as well as being an entrepreneur.
Parks has received numerous accolades for both her business and civic leadership. Parks currently serves on the Commission to End Homelessness and is a member of the University of California, Irvine (UCI) Chief Executive Roundtable.
- The current state of mind: Hopeful, thoughtful, and determined.
- Where do you most want to live? I can’t think of a better place than OC.
- Favorite occupation: It is an honor to be in my role as the CEO of Orange County United Way. Every morning I have a purpose and for that, I am so thankful. The team at OCUW is fantastic and our supporters so passionate. United, we can achieve so much to help those most in need.
- Most treasured possession: I can’t think of a physical thing but I treasure my family, my friends, and my dog so much! I do have a note from my deceased father who scribbled it while he was dying from a rare brain disease. It says “I love you.” I do treasure that slip of paper.