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United Way of Greater Philadelphia and Southern New Jersey Expands Leadership Team with Managing Director of Financial Empowerment

The leadership team at United Way of Greater Philadelphia and Southern New Jersey (UWGPSNJ) recently welcomed Alicia Atkinson as Managing Director, Financial Empowerment.

PHILADELPHIA, PA — At UWGPSNJ, the Managing Director is one who is consistently analyzing the effectiveness of oft-used strategies, while marrying best practices with forward-thinking approaches to solving our region’s big-gest challenge: poverty. The Managing Director comes across a problem and sets the table for pursuing solutions. With her background in research, policy development, and advocacy work centered on expanding financial security for low-income communities, Atkinson is the ideal leader to fill this role.

Atkinson will lead UWGPSNJ’s economic and financial empowerment initiatives and build strategic partnerships in the region to support individual and family income, assets, and stability. Working in the active pursuit of barriers that stand in the way of communities being able to thrive, Atkinson will be responsible for aligning strategic direction to community needs and opportunities, cultivating partnerships, and integrating philanthropic investment to support families, communities and financial security initiatives in the region. She will also bring a deep commitment and focus to centering decision-making towards racial equity and economic justice.

“Alicia’s experience strategizing and implementing partnerships, leading participatory research and evaluation, and securing investment for new initiatives will make her an invaluable member of our team,” said Bill Golderer, CEO & President of UWGPSNJ.

“I am honored to be joining United Way,” said Alicia Atkinson, Managing Director, Financial Empowerment. "Families enduring economic inequality are deeply resilient and creative at leveraging the small amount of resources they have. I look forward to partnering with our incredible network to catalyze equitable progress, center community needs, and grow transformative programs.”

Prior to joining UWGPSNJ, Atkinson served as the Managing Director at The Prosperity Agenda where she led new strategic initiatives and managed place-based projects rooted in the wisdom, experience, and expertise of families enduring economic inequality. She oversaw the research, design, and evaluation of innovations including Money Mindset Cards, which honor lived and living experience in financial conversations. Prior to that, she was a Policy Analyst with the Government Affairs team at Prosperity Now (formerly CFED), where she promoted effective policies and programs to expand savings, credit building, financial coaching, and integrated service delivery.

Atkinson holds a Master’s in Public Policy from the Heller School for Social Policy and Management at Brandeis University and a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology and Legal Studies from the University of Massachusetts Amherst. She was a Graduate Research Assistant at the Institute for Economic and Racial Equity, working exclusively on the Leveraging Mobility Project. She also co-authored the report “Employment Capital: How Work Builds and Protects Family Wealth and Security,” which highlights the importance of quality work-based policies for low- and moderate-income workers in preserving and growing assets over time.

Atkinson officially joined UWGPSNJ on August 30, 2021. For more information on UWGPSNJ’s mission to end poverty, its 100th anniversary, and COVID-19 resiliency efforts, visit



About United Way of Greater Philadelphia and Southern New Jersey

Celebrating 100 years, United Way of Greater Philadelphia and Southern New Jersey (UWGPSNJ) is on a mission to end poverty and expand opportunity for all by investing in Early Learning, Community Resiliency, Financial Empowerment, and Career Pathways. Serving Pennsylvania’s Chester, Delaware, Montgomery and Philadelphia counties, and New Jersey’s Atlantic, Burlington, Camden, Cape May and Cumberland counties, United Way creates solutions that break the cycle of poverty. As part of a network of independent local non-profit organizations, United Way provides countless ways to give, advocate and volunteer. To learn more, visit

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