NeighborWorks Umpqua, which has been struggling financially for several years and lost its top two executive officers on the same day in February, has hired a new chief financial officer.

Rebecca Heinricy, former financial officer for the Fresno Economic Opportunities Commission in California, has been named chief financial officer for NeighborWorks Umpqua, effective April 5.

Fresno Economic Opportunities Commission is a nonprofit community action agency with over 1,200 employees. Heinricy served as a financial officer at the agency and has years of experience and expertise in finance and accounting practices, according to a news release.

Heinricy started working at Fresno Economic Opportunities Commission in 2002 as a senior accountant, and over the years advanced up the leadership ladder. She was named chief financial officer in 2016. Heinricy worked at BDO Seidman, LLP as an audit associate for three years before joining Fresno Economic Opportunities Commission.

“We are excited and fortunate to have gotten someone of Rebecca’s caliber to join NWU; I am really looking forward to Rebecca’s contributions,” John Fowler, the interim chief executive officer at NeighborWorks Umpqua, said in the news release.

Heinricy earned her master’s degree in accountancy and holds a bachelor’s degree in accounting, graduating with magna cum laude from the University of Denver in Colorado, the release said. She is also licensed in two states as a certified public accountant.

“I am looking forward to the opportunity to bring leadership, vision, and integrity within an organization that has a positive impact in the community,” Heinricy said.

Heinricy will be starting in her position remotely on Monday, and then relocate to Oregon with her family in June, at the end of the school year.

NeighborWorks Umpqua was established 30 years ago under the name Umpqua Community Development Corp., and provides low-cost housing and social services to residents in Douglas, Coos, Curry, Jackson and Josephine counties. On Feb. 26, the agency sent out a notice saying that CEO Merten Bangemann-Johnson and chief operating officer Trisha Ingalls had left the nonprofit. The notice did not give a reason for the departure or mention the two executives by name.

A review of the nonprofit’s tax returns showed that the agency spent more money than it received in every year but one between 2015 and 2019.

Between 2016 and 2019, NeighborWorks ran up deficits of $3.5 million, including a net loss of $1.8 million in 2019 alone.

Randall Mason, who is chairman of the board for NeighborWorks Umpqua, said that in 2015 the agency embarked on an aggressive, five-year strategic plan called for it to “rapidly increase” the number of affordable housing units in the five counties it serves.

That and other expenditures led to the net loss of revenue in the last few years, Mason said.

NeighborWorks Umpqua hired Fowler, a recently retired CEO of a nonprofit in Northern California, to be interim CEO here. It also brought back Betty Tamm, a former director of the agency, as a consultant until it finds a permanent CEO.

Scott Carroll can be reached at scarroll@nrtoday.com or 541-957-4204. Or follow him on Twitter @scottcarroll15.

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