A major leadership transformation is about to take place at Goodwill of Central and Coastal Virginia.
Charles D. Layman will retire in January as the local nonprofit’s president and CEO after serving in that role for 36 years. He started working for Goodwill in Ohio 50 years ago.
“I figured when I got to 50 years, it was enough for me to earn my entrance into retirement or my wings,” Layman said Friday after the organization dedicated a portrait of him that local artist Noah Scalin created using 500 donated neckties.
Replacing Layman will be Mark A. Barth, who currently serves as president and CEO of Goodwill Industries of Central Oklahoma. Barth had worked at Goodwill of Central and Coastal Virginia before taking the CEO job in Oklahoma in 2017.
Barth will join the local agency on Dec. 1, and Layman will serve as an adviser until he retires.
When Layman joined Goodwill as its chief executive in 1983, the organization had three stores, 48 employees and an operating budget of $250,000.
The nonprofit now has 36 thrift stores—from as far west as Powhatan and Goochland counties to Hampton Roads—1,430 employees, seven federal contracts providing for 171 jobs, four community employment centers and an operating budget of more than $76 million.
“We have been able to serve more people. The major impact in the community has been phenomenal,” Layman said.
The local Goodwill’s operations were near the bottom among all Goodwills across the country in 1983 in terms of size and services provided, he said.
“We were very, very small and, when you have a small budget, you can’t operate with too many services,” he said.
Last year, Goodwill of Central and Coastal Virginia ranked 15th-largest in terms of size among the 159 Goodwills across the country, Layman said.
“We have been able to turn things around to go from the bottom to the top quartile,” he said.
Layman said the 2006 merger between the local Goodwill and the one in Hampton Roads brought “a great opportunity.” The nonprofit also has been able to greatly expand its thrift stores—the organization’s most widely known aspect.
But he said the nonprofit has “a mission to help people help themselves through the power of work.” It is a workforce-development organization and also provides services for businesses and for government.
Layman, 70, started with the Goodwill organization in Youngstown, Ohio, in 1969 and eventually worked his way up to CEO of that local agency. He took a job with what was then called Goodwill Industries of America in Bethesda, Md., in 1981, before moving to Richmond in 1983.
“When I think about when I started, I knew there was great potential, but we just didn’t have any of the foundational building blocks in place,” Layman said.
Now, the organization does, and he feels good about passing the leadership baton to Barth.
“His background is very strong. His experience with Goodwill is strong,” Layman said.
For 12 years, Barth held executive roles with Goodwill of Central and Coastal Virginia and with Goodwill of Hampton Roads before the 2006 merger.
He was chief financial officer for two years with the Hampton Roads entity before he was asked to step into the CEO role after two top executives, including a longtime CEO, left. Barth realized the Hampton Roads agency needed to merge with the Central Virginia one in order to survive, Layman said.
After the merger, Barth became chief information officer for the merged entity.
“I’m honored to follow in the footsteps of Charles Layman, and will continue to build upon the values-based leadership culture he established,” Barth said in a statement. “My goal is to partner with our associates, Board of Directors and the community to take this great organization to an unprecedented level of mission delivery.”