Family, friends, co-workers, partners, and current and former Operation UNITE staff members and interns bid farewell to its President & CEO, Nancy Hale, at a retirement celebration held Friday, September 29, 2023.

Hale began working as a volunteer with the Rockcastle County UNITE Coalition shortly after UNITE’s inception in April 2003. Following 34 years as a school teacher, career counselor, and administrator, she joined UNITE as Co-Program Director for the UNITE Service Corps (AmeriCorps) Program in September 2012 and was named UNITE’s third President & CEO in February 2015.

In addition to her husband, John, and sons Josh and Andy, those offering comments on Hale’s tenure and impact included:

  • Andrea Begley, Field Representative for U.S. Congressman Harold “Hal” Rogers (KY-5th)
  • Lynnell Fields, UNITE Administrative Assistant and long-time friend
  • Tom Handy, retired Commnwealth Attorney and a founding member of the UNITE Board of Directors
  • Van Ingram, Executive Director of the Kentucky Office of Drug Control Policy
  • Richard Sanders, Chief of the Jeffersontown (KY) Police Department, former Commissioner of the Kentucky State Police, and past member of the UNITE Board of Directors
  • Hon. Jackie L. Steele, Jr., Chair of the UNITE Board of Directors and Commonwealth Attorney for Kentucky’s 27th Judicial Circuit,
  • Tom Vicini, Deputy Director of Operation UNITE

Musical tributes were provided by Luke Madden, Jamie Cornelius, and Becky McNew.

During the celebration it was announced that Deputy Director Tom VIcini would fill the role starting in October.