News and analysis
January 05, 2016

Trish Tchume: Community Builder Looks for New Ways to Serve

Trav Williams, Broken Banjo Photography

Trish Tchume, 38
Inaugural National Director, Young Nonprofit Professionals Network
New York

After moving to Philadelphia in the mid-2000s for a job as a campus organizer at, Trish Tchume was looking for a professional community.

During the ensuing decade, she built one — not just for herself, but for tens of thousands of her peers.

First, Ms. Tchume helped establish the Philadelphia chapter of the Young Nonprofit Professionals Network, a professional association for people seeking career development and leadership opportunities. Then came a stint on the organization's national board.

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In 2011, she was hired as the network’s inaugural national director. Since then, the group has grown from 27 to 42 chapters and now has about 50,000 members. And Ms. Tchume set in motion a major investment in technology that will enable the organization to better collect data on members, share strategies, and establish uniform policies.

Ms. Tchume stepped down from the network in December and is now taking time off to reflect, write, and travel to her parents’ native Ghana.

She’s still determining her next career steps and exploring interests, including racial justice, neighborhood organizing, and storytelling as a form of activism.

"I humbly remind both senior and younger leaders that the work of building stronger, more just communities is deep, wide, and complex," Ms. Tchume says. "So it requires all hands on deck."

Correction: An earlier version of this story stated incorrectly that YNPN has 46 chapters. It has 42. 


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