Meets pressing community needs by mobilizing caring New Yorkers in volunteer service.

A Message from Gary: It's Been the Honor of a Lifetime

Executive Director, Gary Bagley painting outside a school on Cares Day for Schools

To the New York Cares Community:

I wanted to take a moment to share with you some personal news: After seventeen incredible years with this wonderful organization, the last twelve as executive director, the time is right for me to move on to new challenges and opportunities. After much reflection, I have decided to step down as executive director of New York Cares at the end of this year.

As I’ve said to our amazing New York Cares staff members, this was a difficult decision for me. Working with them, and all of you, has been the honor of my life, and I am so grateful for the privilege. When I consider all that we have achieved together, I know it has only been possible because of your hard work and commitment. 

I’ve taken the liberty of including here my full message to New York Cares team members about my decision. Later today, you will be hearing from Paul Taubman, our Board President, who will share some additional details on the search committee and the transition process as it moves ahead. In the meantime, my – and our – focus is very much on the work we must do together as our beloved New York City emerges from the pandemic. Again, thank you for all you do for New York Cares.


Dear Team New York Cares,

As I shared in our staff meeting, after seventeen incredible years with New York Cares, the last twelve as executive director, the time is right for me to move on to new challenges and opportunities. After much reflection, I have decided to step down as executive director at the end of the year.

I cannot overstate how proud I am to be associated with one of New York’s most essential organizations, one that makes a tangible, positive, difference in the lives of thousands of New Yorkers each day.  Our city has confronted the historic crisis of the pandemic and a long overdue racial reckoning, with millions of our neighbors facing unprecedented challenges. New York Cares stepped up and I continue to be inspired by your unwavering response. 

As the fog of the pandemic begins to slowly lift, we have never been more clearly focused on what we need to do to help lift up our city and its people. New York Cares is committed to helping communities that have suffered for too long, meeting individual needs so that the most vulnerable among us can pursue and meet their potential. We are doing that by listening to communities and collaborating with them to build smart solutions. New York Cares is poised to have unprecedented impact as we work together to rebuild our city and to do so more equitably and justly.

I am profoundly thankful to all of you. Your devotion to our work, to our mission, and to your colleagues is unbounded. It inspires me, and it gives me every confidence that New York Cares will become even stronger and more impactful in the years to come.

I am indebted to the thousands of caring, committed, and talented New Yorkers whose volunteerism is the backbone of this great organization and the extraordinarily dedicated Team Leaders who lead our work.  My thanks go, as well, to our incredible community partners, our donors, and so many other collaborators and supporters who make it possible to fulfill our mission.

I also would like to express my deep appreciation to the members of our board, under the remarkable leadership of Paul Taubman, for their wisdom and the unshakeable support they have always shown me and our entire team. They continually challenge themselves and all of us to think about how we can be better and do better, as they champion our work with unlimited enthusiasm. We could not ask for more inspired leadership.  I have informed the board that I am available to provide any support that it may need as the search process moves ahead, and I look forward to a seamless transition.  

I know what everyone who encounters New York Cares knows, I am happiest when I live my life in service to others. For me, that means continuing to invest in teaching and coaching opportunities that develop the next generation of civic leaders and public servants. 

I am excited and energized about what the coming months will bring here at New York Cares.  To ensure continuity in our work, we will be maintaining our commitment to DE&I, focusing on expanding Communities First, reimagining our Stand with Students program, and preparing for the coming year. There is much more for us to accomplish together, so enough about me -- let’s focus on the lifechanging work we do!


Gary Bagley's picture