Sabathani names new executive director

Submitted photo Tanessa Greene

Sabathani Community Center has named Tanessa Greene as its new executive director. Sabathani, a Southside Minneapolis institution and well-known African American legacy organization, was established in 1968 by Sabathani Baptist Church. Its mission was to mobilize people to effectively address issues of systemic racism, poverty, inadequate housing, and a severe lack of programming for youth and seniors.

“We wanted to focus on bringing programming back to Sabathani, and we want to focus on the community, which is now much more multicultural,” said board member Bill English. “We think Tanessa will make this happen.”

Greene brings to the Sabathani community 20 years of turnaround leadership experience guiding mission-driven organizations through challenging periods of change and growth. She recently led the planning, design and countywide implementation of Hennepin County’s Small Business Program for goods and services and procurement.

Greene developed innovative procurement models, small business sourcing strategies, and best practices that significantly increased the funds spent by the county with small, minority-owned businesses. Prior to working for Hennepin County, Greene served as principal consultant for Signature Solutions Consulting, a company she founded and led for over 15 years.

Greene’s consulting achievements include the design of a workforce development model that led to over 600 living wage jobs for People of Color in the construction trades, including the largest infusion of women into the trades in over 20 years. Greene introduced community health worker training programs to two North Minneapolis nonprofits serving communities with the greatest health disparities in the state.

“In Sabathani, I saw an opportunity to be of greater service at a critical time to a community I love and have passionately served for two decades,” said Greene. “Since its humble beginnings, Sabathani has always been a trusted community resource and a beacon of hope during the best and worst of times.

“My plan is to build significantly on that rich legacy by strengthening program alignment with our community’s rapidly shifting needs while amplifying Sabathani’s voice as an advocate for our community’s most vulnerable populations.”

Greene serves on the board of AEON, a local nonprofit developer, and on the Upper Harbor Terminal Redevelopment Project’s City Planning Committee.