Kirsten D. Sikkelee


Kirsten Sikkelee serves as chief executive officer of YWCA Central Carolinas, where she has enjoyed working since 1994.

As Program Director, she created Women In Transition (WIT), a transitional housing program with supportive services for unaccompanied homeless women. As Chief Program Officer, Kirsten created a similar program for families recovering from homelessness: Families Together. She co-led fundraising for an $8M campaign, managed the construction of 10 townhomes for Families Together, and renovated a 40-year old, 66-unit facility, home to WIT.

As CEO since 2009, she leads a YWCA association that also offers 8 Youth Learning Centers, serving over 250 children daily with free, literacy-based out-of-school programming. YWCA Central Carolinas also offers an award-winning co-ed fitness center and racial justice programs for the community.

Kirsten holds a B.A. in Religion from Davidson College, a certificate in Nonprofit Management from Duke University, served as founding board member of the Charlotte Lesbian & Gay Fund, past chair of the United Way Council of Agency Executives and past president of the Homeless Services Network. Kirsten currently serves on the Board of Visitors for Davidson College.

Kirsten is known as a creative and collaborative leader. She and her team are committed to fostering lasting, positive changes with people living on the margins. She lives in Charlotte’s historic Plaza-Midwood neighborhood with her husband, jazz musician Paul Walker, and her cat, Mabel.