Eckerd names former Maryland legislator new Chief Development Officer

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Clearwater-based nonprofit philanthropy foundation Eckerd selected a new Chief Development Officer after a nationwide search.

President and CEO David Dennis announced today that former Maryland State Sen. Christopher McCabe would become CDO of one of the county’s largest privately funded youth and family service organizations. Beginning March 10, McCabe’s role will be to create sustainable programs to help at-risk kids and their families nationwide.

“We are thrilled to have Chris McCabe, with his distinguished record of achievement in the private, public and nonprofit sectors, join Eckerd,” Dennis said in a statement issued Friday. “He will lead our efforts to link community donors and national foundations with Eckerd to augment public funding and enhance the potential of transformative public-private partnerships in child welfare and juvenile justice.”

McCabe has held a variety of leading roles at the local, state and federal levels. In 1991, he became one of the youngest state senators elected to the first of three terms in Maryland General Assembly, where he authored legislation to speed up adoptions and provide greater information to adoptive parents.

From 2003-2007, McCabe served as Secretary of the Maryland Department of Human Resources under former Gov. Robert l. Ehrlich, Jr. where he managed the state’s child welfare and public assistance programs.

As Senior Executive of Development for The Johns Hopkins Hospital and School of Medicine and Howard County General Hospital, McCabe was instrumental in raising tens of millions for medical research, scholarships, endowments and capital projects.

“I am honored to be joining the Eckerd organization. Its mission of serving at-risk children and families has been mine for over three decades,” McCabe said. “I am inspired by their strategic plan, the people I have met, the Board of Directors and the opportunity to support the legacy of the late Jack and Ruth Eckerd and their children.”

“I am impressed by its multi-state operations and its role as a national thought-leader in child welfare and juvenile justice.”

McCabe, who will be relocating to the Tampa Bay area, is married to Deidre McCabe, a writer and communications consultant and have four children.

Phil Ammann is a St. Petersburg-based journalist and blogger. With more than three decades of writing, editing and management experience, Phil produced material for both print and online, in addition to founding His broad range includes covering news, local government and culture reviews for, technical articles and profiles for BetterRVing Magazine and advice columns for a metaphysical website, among others. Phil has served as a contributor and production manager for SaintPetersBlog since 2013. He lives in St. Pete with his wife, visual artist Margaret Juul and can be reached at and on Twitter @PhilAmmann.