Darryl Grimes

Malik Ahmed, founder and chief executive officer of Better Family Life, Inc., is retiring and Darryl Grimes, its chief operating officer and vice president of Workforce Development, has been appointed interim CEO, effective May 30.

“I am looking forward to working with Mr. Grimes in this new capacity,” Etefia Umana, board chairmen, said in a release. “We will continue to do excellent work serving the constituents of our community.”

This comes on the heels of James Clark, BFL’s longtime vice president of Community Outreach, leaving to work for the Urban League of Metropolitan St. Louis in a similar leadership role.

“Darryl Grimes has been an invaluable asset to Better Family Life for the past 13 years. I am pleased he has been selected to serve as interim CEO. He has risen through the ranks to become vice president of Workforce to Chief Operating Officer,” Ahmed said in a release. 

“We know he will continue to serve the community with professionalism and creativity while maintaining his goal of helping indigent families and individuals. One of his chief programmatic initiatives will be to reduce intergenerational poverty through robust workforce, housing, youth leadership development programs, and increased economic opportunities for populations residing in urban core communities.”                 

The agency stated that its Housing Department, Workforce Department, Youth Family and Clinical Services Department, Cultural Arts Department and Community Outreach Department continue to distribute food, work with schools to provide lesson plans, provide clients with necessary resources to equip them with their careers during and after the COVID-19 pandemic, along with other services.                         

“Malik Ahmed is a trailblazer in St. Louis,” Umana stated. “He has been able, by sure force of will, strong intellect, cultural competence and compassion for the African-American community to create and expand this community development agency. His vision and courage have had an exceptional impact on the St. Louis metropolitan area.”        

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