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Community Development Network Gets New Leader With Ramos Headed to City Council

The Community Development Network of Maryland announced Monday that Claudia Wilson Randall will become the organization’s next executive director on Sept. 1. She’ll take over from Odette Ramos, who has led the group for eight years and is headed for a seat on the Baltimore City Council.

Randall has more than two decades of experience in community development, housing and nonprofit leadership in Maryland, at both the local and state level, and has worked with CDN since 2018, first as a consultant and then as associate director.

Randall served as director of housing counseling and operations at the Southeast Community Development Corporation in Baltimore from 2013 to 2018. For four years before that, she was a program officer in the Maryland Department of Housing and Community Development. She has also held positions at the Maryland Center for Community Development and the Maryland Association of Nonprofit Organizations.

“Claudia is an outstanding choice to lead CDN, and the board is confident she will sustain our great work across the state helping to create thriving communities for all,” Glenn Irwin, president of the CDN board, said in a statement. “Claudia has played a major role in our success the past two years and we are well positioned to sustain and expand community development across Maryland.”

In a statement, Randall called CDN “a vital force supporting dozens of organizations working tirelessly around the state to strengthen communities and create new opportunities for people to build strong lives.”

Ramos, who is stepping down, won the Democratic primary in June to replace veteran Baltimore City Councilwoman Mary Pat Clarke (D) in the 14th District. She is the prohibitive favorite in November over Republican Charles A. Long — and would become the first Latina elected to political office in the city.

“Odette Ramos has done an amazing job expanding our visibility around the state,” Irwin said. “During the General Assembly each year, she has been a trusted voice on a range of issues related to community development, allowing CDN to help shape both budgets and policy to support community groups.”

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