Renee Wolf Koubiadis
The Anti-Poverty Network is pleased to announce that Renee Wolf Koubiadis will be starting as APN’s new Executive Director on June 20.
“Koubiadis has worked to empower low and moderate income families in all parts of the state and has an impressive background in advocacy that supports APN’s mission to reduce and eliminate poverty in New Jersey,” said APN Board President Jim Jacob.
Outgoing Executive Director Serena Rice echoed Jacob’s enthusiasm for Koubiadis’ expertise and passion for ending poverty in New Jersey.
"Koubiadis brings commitment, deep awareness, and both personal and professional experience to this role,” said Rice, who is leaving APN to answer a call to the ministry. “I am confident that her leadership will empower the whole APN community."
Having grown up in poverty in Camden County, Koubiadis is deeply committed to identifying and breaking down barriers that prevent many residents of our state from meeting their basic necessities for themselves and their families. Koubiadis has been an advocate and community organizer helping disempowered populations use their voices towards social change throughout New Jersey for over 13 years.
"Having grown up poor in New Jersey and witnessing the struggles of many poor and homeless people in our state, I know that there are systemic issues that create poverty and barriers that prevent the residents of our state from moving to a better place economically,” said Koubiadis. “I am excited to join APN and our many partners and advocates in the fight to end poverty."
Prior to coming to APN, Koubiadis served as the Advocacy Coordinator of the National Association of Social Workers – NJ Chapter (NASW-NJ) and as Assistant State Director for the Citizens’ Campaign, a statewide non-partisan movement of hundreds of citizens dedicated to innovative government reform and promoting citizen leadership. In her various roles over the last 13 years, she has educated thousands of people on issues of poverty, leadership, and civic engagement.
Koubiadis has also been active in APN serving as a member of the Policy and Advocacy Committee, the Program and Summit Committee, and as a contributor to the Advisory Committee of APN's Structural Racism and Poverty project. In these roles, she has helped organize the Poverty Summit and other APN events, and helped formulate APN’s positions and advocacy plans on a number of issues.
Koubiadis currently serves as Secretary/Treasurer on the Board of the Affordable Homes Group, Inc. in Burlington County and on the Board of Trustees for the NJ Coalition to End Homelessness (NJCEH). With her colleagues at NJCEH, Renee helped create Garden State Leaders, a leadership and advocacy institute for people with lived experience of poverty and homelessness. This year APN is partnering on the Garden State Leaders program. For over 10 years Koubiadis also co-chaired Poor Voices United, a grassroots organization based in Atlantic City that united poor and homeless people across color lines and other artificial divides for social change.
Her degrees include an MSW from Temple University in Administration and Social Planning and a Bachelor’s degree in Social Work from Rutgers University. While studying at Temple, Koubiadis coordinated Pennsylvania House Select Committee hearings on issues of poverty while interning for State Representative Lawrence Curry. She was interning with Kensington Welfare Rights Union in Philadelphia and NASW-PA at the same time.
As a member of NASW-NJ over the years, Renee has served on their board. In addition, she has co-chaired the Legislative and Social Action Committee, the Health Care Special Interest Group, the Peace & Social Justice Task Force, the Burlington County Unit, and served on the National Delegate Assembly three times helping to shape national policy for the organization.
Although she will not be stepping into her new role as Executive Director until June, she will be attending the May 25 APN General Meeting, to be held from 10-12 pm at Abiding Presence Lutheran Church in Ewing. APN members and other interested partners are encouraged to attend to welcome Koubiadis to her new role with APN.