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Our Executive Director

Wendy Simmons
Executive Director

I am both honored and thrilled to join the Gates of Prayer family as your new Executive Director. A little about me: I've enjoyed a 30-year-plus career as a marketing, communications, branding, and management consultant, helping companies of all sizes across nearly every industry identify and solve strategic business challenges. I've also built and run several companies, including the brand reinvention and worldwide expansion of one of the world's leading luxury eyewear companies. On a personal note, I wrote and had published a book on North Korea called "My Holiday in North Korea: The Funniest/Worst Place on Earth" (think: Bridget Jones goes to North Korea), co-wrote a Japanese language book, and owned a bar on Manhattan's Lower East Side. I'm a photographer and adventurer/explorer who has traveled to 100+ countries (and counting) across all seven continents (including the South Pole), and I'm presently learning Hebrew (it's so hard!).

I'm very proud of being Jewish and have a long-standing desire to be more connected to my community (Jewish and at-large) and serve it. When I moved to New Orleans three years ago, I did so with the express intention of finding work that allowed me to do both. This job is truly a blessing, and frankly, I'm still astonished I stumbled upon the posting and can now call it mine. I want to make a difference in people's lives and help our community thrive. I very much look forward to meeting each of you in the weeks and months to come. Thank you for welcoming me. 

Mon, September 27 2021 21 Tishrei 5782