Social Enterprise Greenhouse CEO Ramirez to step down

KELLY RAMIREZ will step down as CEO of Social Enterprise Greenhouse later this year. / PBN FILE PHOTO/RUPERT WHITELEY
KELLY RAMIREZ will step down as CEO of Social Enterprise Greenhouse later this year. / PBN FILE PHOTO/RUPERT WHITELEY

PROVIDENCE – There will be a leadership change at Social Enterprise Greenhouse come the end of this year.

Kelly Ramirez, who has led the business-support nonprofit since it launched in 2009, announced Thursday that she will be stepping down as CEO later this year. In a posted letter on SEG’s website, Ramirez said that now is the “right time” for her to step aside, both for herself personally and for the organization.

Stepping away from the organization that she helped build is “certainly bittersweet,” she said, but she’s excited to be “a supporter, volunteer, donor and cheerleader” of the organization.

“I am so thankful for the passion and generosity of the many business and community leaders who raised their hands and volunteered to share their knowledge, networks and resources to get SEG off the ground,” Ramirez added. “That generosity helped make possible a vision for an economy that could benefit everyone.”

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SEG said that under Ramirez’s leadership, the organization broadened its program and services portfolio. It also launched a mentor and sponsorship program supported by more than 200 volunteers who provided thousands of hours of pro-bono advising, facilitation and coaching annually.

The organization was also instrumental in launching the Rhode Island Business Empowerment Network earlier this year. It also partnered with the United Way of Rhode Island to establish the Nonprofit Innovation Lab that supports innovation amongst a growing sector of Rhode Island’s economy. SEG currently serves more than 1,800 small businesses and entrepreneurs.

In 2011, Ramirez was selected by Providence Business News among its “Women to Watch” for the publication’s Business Women Awards program.

In a statement, SEG board co-chairs MJ Kaplan and Kathy Bendheim said Ramirez’s leadership built the organization’s foundation and vision to thrive the last 13 years.

SEG said its board of directors will launch a national search for a new CEO, with a goal to fill Ramirez’s position by the end of this year.

James Bessette is the PBN special projects editor, and also covers the nonprofit and education sectors. You may reach him at You may also follow him on Twitter at @James_Bessette.

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