Ossie Kendrix, who has led the Milwaukee-based African American Chamber of Commerce of Wisconsin for the past five years as president and CEO, announced Wednesday he has started a new role with a Dallas-based nonprofit organization.
Kendrix is now chief operations officer for the Bridge Homeless Recovery Center, a campus in downtown Dallas that provides basic needs services, access to health care, income alternatives and long-term housing, according to its website.
Kendrix told BizTimes Milwaukee on Wednesday that the chamber has entered a “transition period” and a search is starting for his replacement. He said he will remain with the chamber at 25% capacity in an advisor role.
“I think it’s a good transition for continuation purposes relative to the leadership at the African American Chamber,” he said. “It’s no secret that the chamber has a strong employee base that are continuing to remain in their roles, with Jona Moore as vice president of the chamber.”
Moore was promoted last year from program manager to VP.
AACCW's board members could not be immediately reached for comment Wednesday.
Kendrix and his wife, Deirdra, moved to Dallas in late 2020 for her work, with plans to maintain dual residencies as he continued to lead the chamber. At that time, the AACCW board of directors asked Kendrix to retain his role in 2021 with plans to work with him on a leadership transition and determine a possible successor.
Kendrix is credited with raising more than $3.4 million for the AACCW since 2017. In recent years, he spearheaded the organization’s development plans and fundraising efforts for its newly opened Legacy Co-Working and Innovation Space at 1920 N. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Drive in Milwaukee.
The Legacy building, which opened last yearand serves as the chamber’s headquarters, also includes workspace for chamber members and entrepreneurs, a commercial kitchen, a coffee shop, a conference room and a technology room for remote meetings.