The Downtown Association of Santa Cruz (DTA) board of directors has appointed Jorian Wilkins the new Executive Director of the Downtown Association.
Jorian is currently Chief Operating Officer for Opportunity Collaboration, annually convening 400+ global leaders building sustainable solutions to poverty.
After beginning her career as a strategy consultant with Bain & Company and earning her MBA from Stanford University, Jorian launched her first social venture, a civic club in Boulder, Colorado self-sustained by members, hosting hundreds of cultural and educational community events. While becoming a mother to three sons, Jorian lived in Mexico, managed the #1 All-Inclusive Luxury Resort in the U.S., and eventually settled in Santa Cruz, California.
“In these unprecedented times, our one-of-a-kind downtown is showing its incredible courage and creativity. I’m grateful for the opportunity to engage with and advocate for the Downtown Businesses bringing their passions and talents to Santa Cruz, defining the neighborhood I proudly call home,” Jorian shared “There are so many reasons to love Santa Cruz, and so many reasons to be building our local resilience so we can continue to meet today’s challenges as a strong, vibrant community. I look forward to being part of that work.”
Jorian will assume the Executive Director role in late September. She will succeed Chip, who served as the DTA’s Director for over a decade and resigned in July of 2019 to become CEO of the Downtown Boulder Partnership in Boulder, Colorado. As well, Abra Allan who has been acting in an Interim capacity for the last year. “I do not doubt that she will be a great fit for Downtown Santa Cruz,” said Allan, Interim Director, of Wilkins.
With a love for Downtown Santa Cruz, a heart for service, and over two decades of experience as a community builder and business leader for good, Wilkins is inspired to apply what she’s learned from global service to serving the community right outside her door.
“The board is absolutely thrilled to have attracted the interest of Jorian as a candidate for the Executive Director position. Her vast experience as a leader and global change maker is exactly what the organization needs right now. It is crucial, especially now, that the Downtown Association has strong leadership and a clear focus. We are fortunate to have benefited from Interim Director Abra Allan’s commitment and expertise this last year. We will be sad to see her go. But we couldn’t be passing the torch to a more qualified and energized candidate. One who, as a resident of downtown Santa Cruz, understands first-hand the complexity of challenges we are up against,” said Valerie Moselle, Association Board Chair.
Jorian will be out and about Downtown in the coming weeks to introduce herself. If you see her, do not hesitate to say “hi”.
The Downtown Association will hold a more formal meet and greet, when current health and safety protocol allows.