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United Way names Smyers to dual executive role

United Way of Tarrant County

1500 N. Main St.

Suite 200

Fort Worth 76164


The nonprofit raised $32.5 million in 2013-2014, an increase of 6.6 percent over the previous year.

TD Smyers, the former chief executive officer for the American Red Cross North region, will step into a new, combined role of chief operations officer and chief development officer for United Way of Tarrant County on Nov. 30.

This is a new strategic role at United Way that is expected to increase effectiveness and efficiency across different departments, according to Tim McKinney, president and CEO. Smyers will help lead United Way’s strategic direction and fundraising efforts and also will be responsible for building partnerships and expanding the collaborations with those community partnerships. The nonprofit organization provides program support in the areas of education, health and financial stability to 42 local partner agencies.

“TD brings a fresh face and fresh ideas. We’re very fortunate to have somebody with TD’s strengths and leadership skills come on board,” said McKinney. United Way announced Smyers new role on Nov. 17.

During his four-year tenure as CEO at Red Cross, Smyers brought together 12 Red Cross chapters under one leadership structure. The organization was restructured and the board, staff and volunteer roles were redefined.

“TD understood the unique characteristics of such a change and what would be needed to ensure the Red Cross culture stayed healthy throughout the transition,” said Tiffany Cason, Fort Worth chairman for the American Red Cross serving Dallas-Fort Worth.

Smyers said he is satisfied with what the Red Cross regional chapter was able to achieve.

“I told them it would take three to four years to make the transition. I wasn’t looking to go anywhere but this opportunity came up and I thought it was an exciting opportunity,” Smyers said. “And it’s an exciting opportunity to come back home. I’m a Fort Worth boy. My wife has a photography studio in Keller. Our children go to schools in Keller. To be able to be here and contribute to Tarrant County really appealed to me.”

Smyers’ executive background in nonprofits began after a career in the Navy. He retired in 2011 after a tour as commanding officer of Naval Air Station Fort Worth Joint Reserve Base, where he aligned strategic planning for five branches of the military. Prior to taking command of the Fort Worth base, Smyers served first as director of Congressional affairs/legislative liaison, then as director of collaborative warfare for Navy aviation at the Pentagon.

A 2014 graduate of Leadership North Texas (LNT), Smyers now serves as president of the LNT Alumni Association. He also is on the boards of the North Texas Commission, North Texas Leaders and Executives Advocating Diversity and Tarrant County College Criminal Justice Training Center. He sits on the executive council of the Lockheed Martin Armed Forces Bowl and Fort Worth Executive Roundtable.

From 2012-2014, Smyers led the city of Fort Worth in the commissioning of the USS Fort Worth as chairman of the commissioning committee; he then transitioned that body into a support organization, serving as its first president.

Smyers earned a bachelor’s degree from the U.S. Naval Academy and a master’s degree from the National Defense University’s Industrial College of the Armed Forces.

“This rounds out my experiences as a nonprofit executive. It’s going to be an exciting ride,” Smyers said.

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