His organization affects ‘almost every family in Hamilton.’ Now he’s retiring after 40 years there.

Community First Solutions Chief Executive Officer Jeff Thurman will be retiring this fall after 40 years with the organization.
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Community First Solutions Chief Executive Officer Jeff Thurman will be retiring this fall after 40 years with the organization.

Community First Solutions Chief Executive Officer Jeff Thurman will be retiring in September after 40 years with the organization. His leadership has helped the organization grow into one of the stalwart nonprofits that provides an array of services to help those in need in the area, officials said.

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The agency offers a breadth of community-based services including mental health, alcohol and drug addiction, child and adolescent and employment services to clients in Butler and Warren counties.

Its Meals on Wheels program provided nearly 149,000 meals to more than 800 Butler County seniors and other home-bound people in 2016. Volunteers drove nearly 2,000 miles each delivering the food.

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When Thurman became part of the organization in 1978, he was the administrator for the Westover Retirement Community, which at the time had just 59 employees caring for 72 residents.

He was named President and CEO of the Fort Hamilton Healthcare Corporation in 2006, which evolved to Community First Solutions, an organization that today employs nearly 700 staff serving more than 20,000 clients.

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Community First’s Behavioral Health Services recently opened a free and flexible family support group called SAFE in Hamilton and Middletown. The group is dedicated to providing information, resources and help for individuals with loved ones suffering from drug addiction.

The non-profit also just opened a West Chester Twp. office to offer treatment for adults struggling with drug and alcohol abuse.

Hamilton City Manager Joshua Smith said that Thurman has been able to achieve a wealth of accomplishments while at Community First and has been a valuable asset to the city.

“Jeff has been a tremendous leader in Hamilton for many years,” Smith said. “His ability to get great results will be difficult to replace. On a personal level, I will continue to lean on him in retirement for his business advice and friendship.”

Mayor Pat Moeller noted that Thurman’s leadership helped make Community First one of the biggest employers in the county.

“Jeff Thurman built up Community First Solutions to its current status as one of the largest employers in Butler County,” Moeller said. “Almost every family in Hamilton has been positively touched by Community First Solutions. That is a testament to Jeff Thurman’s leadership, vision, and desire to deliver high quality health care in our region.”

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Board Chairman Neil Cohen has announced the appointment of a board search committee to select Thurman’s replacement.

“I want to thank the board members who volunteered to be part of the search committee dedicated to identifying the best person to lead the organization into its next century,” Cohen said. “I am confident that the search committee will find a leader with his passion for serving others and commitment to developing services in response to community need.”

He was also saluted Thurman.

“I would also like to thank Jeff for his many years of leadership and commitment to the community,” Cohen said. “His visionary drive has led the organization through tremendous growth, and his impact has been felt throughout many organizations that he has volunteered with throughout his career.”

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The committee has retained Deffet Group, Inc., an executive search firm with a long history of serving not-for-profit health and human services providers across the country, to assist in finding Thurman’s replacement.