A new CEO for the World Urban Network

Following an extended and rigorous process, we are pleased to announce the appointment of the next CEO of the YMCA World Urban Network.

Bill Stewart, our incumbent CEO has announced his intention to step down at the end of the year. Bill has done an amazing job at the helm of our global network and will be sorely missed.

bob gilbertson

Our new CEO will be Bob Gilbertson.

Bob currently heads the Seattle YMCA, a YMCA at the cutting-edge of social inclusion global mindset. He demonstrates a magnificent love of the YMCA Movement. His humanist, “out of the box” approach to bringing cultures together and building community echoed by his strong credentials in the international arena.

2017 – that’s a wrap

It has been a fabulous week at the WUN, full of learning, sharing and strengthening relationships around the globe.  Thanks so much YMCA of Greater Vancouver.  HUGE thanks to our host , Steve Butz; Chair Dave Ball; CEO Bill Stewart; and our amazing administrators Jennifer Manning and Sarah Miller.


YGV & WUN response to Mexican earthquake

This week the YMCA of Greater Vancouver (YGV) have been hosting a number of YMCA CEOs from around the globe for the YMCA World Urban Network conference.

When the devastating earthquake hit Mexico City on Tuesday 19 September, some of their YGV staff from Mexico quickly got together with the Mexican delegates to help. Together they were able to arrange space on a flight to Mexico City to transport much needed supplies. YMCA associations from around the world pledged over $60,000 towards these supplies and relief efforts in a matter of hours.  The flight reached Mexico Thursday morning,  The supplies were immediately distributed to those in need by the Mexican YMCA.

YGV thanked  their YMCA colleagues and friends for their generosity and to the YGV staff who sprang into action to help.

We all stand with the people of Mexico and the Mexican YMCA as they respond to this disaster.

2017 Conference – Welcome

dave ball

Dave Ball
Chair, World Urban Network Chief Executive, YMCA Thames Gateway


Dear YMCA Colleague,

It is my great pleasure, alongside our host Stephen Butz, CEO of the YMCA of Greater Vancouver and Bill Stewart, CEO of the YMCA World Urban Network, to welcome you to our CEO Conference in Vancouver.

The WUN exists to offer outstanding leadership development opportunities and peer support to CEOs and senior leaders of local YMCA associations from all parts of the world. The theme of this year’s conference is What Really Matters to you and to your global colleagues. We hope that you have an outstanding time with your colleagues in Vancouver, and that you also to take home knowledge that impacts your work, and the work of your YMCA for years to come.

For many of us the YMCA WUN has been a place where we have been able to develop deep connections and relationships with colleagues from around the world, enabling us to grow and develop as leaders as well as being able to offer real and tangible support to each other in times of challenge and difficulty.

We look forward to having you join us for what I know will be an outstanding shared experience

I know I speak for the whole network when I say we look forward to meeting with you, sharing with you, learning with you and growing with you this September in Vancouver.

You can check out the conference proceedings here.