Profile

Faith Wohl (née Avidon) ’57

Alumni, Executives and Leaders


 

Published:

March 30, 2012
Tagged: Robert B. Willumstad School of Business, Garden City
 

Faith Wohl (née Avidon) ’57

Alumni, Executives and Leaders


 

Member of Adelphi University’s Profiles in Success program.

Former President of the Child Care Action Campaign

Adelphi memories: “Working late nights to get the Delphian out by deadline, and editing the Oracle.”

Member of: Lantern and Delta Tau Alpha Honor Society.

Was named to: “Ten People of the Year” by New Woman Magazine, and “25 People Who have Changed Working Women’s Lives” by Working Woman Magazine.

A Strong Voice for Children and Working Parents

Faith Wohl ’57 vividly recalls the day she returned from a meeting to find several messages about missed phone calls on her desk, one of which sparked more than a little curiosity among her staff. It was from the First Lady’s Office.

Ms. Wohl had met Hillary Clinton three years prior on a two-week tour of child care facilities and educational programs in France. At the time, she was Director of Human Resources for DuPont, overseeing many of the company’s innovative programs for child care, elder care, family leave, and flexible work practices. She was selected to represent the corporate community on the trip.

“Over my 20 years at DuPont, I slowly saw more and more women in higher positions,” she remembers. “We were always on the forefront of tackling issues of child care and helping women keep their families and work life as equal priorities.”

That expertise led to a call from the White House and eventually a political appointment as director of the Office of Workplace Initiatives in the Clinton administration. From 1993–1996 she oversaw over 100 child care centers in federal buildings across 31 states. In 1994, she was honored with the Lewis Hine Award by the National Child Labor Committee.

Among her strongest memories of those years is the Oklahoma City bombing in 1995. “People realized that there were children involved,” she remembers, “and all of a sudden everyone wanted to talk about the government’s role in child care.” Almost overnight, Ms. Wohl became a national advocate for child care.

In 1997, after four years in Washington, D.C., Ms. Wohl was recruited to be the president of the Child Care Action Campaign, a well-known national advocacy organization in New York. Her primary focus was on accelerating state-level action toward universal pre-kindergarten and fostering stronger language and literacy programs as the foundations for long-term academic success. In 2002, she was honored by the Terry Lynne Lokoff Foundation as the “Child Care Advocate of the Year.”

Even in retirement, Ms. Wohl remains very active. She is fulfilling her longtime dream of studying history and is pursuing a Master’s degree in humanities at Arcadia University near Philadelphia.

“I’m just taking it one class at a time,” she says, “but to know how we got where we are today, you need to know where we’ve been.”

She is also chairman of the board of the Enchantment Theatre Company, a children’s theater organization. “I always felt that Adelphi served me best in teaching me to write,” she reflects. “Now I use those skills to write grant proposals and promotional materials for the theater.”

In addition to her B.A. in economics from Adelphi, Ms. Wohl earned a certificate in human resource management from Boston College, and a certificate in financial management from the Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania. She has been honored by the national Y.W.C.A. office, the United Way of Delaware, the Delaware House of Representatives, andParenting magazine. She has been profiled in Business Week and The Wall Street Journal.

She credits Adelphi’s liberal arts education and emphasis on writing as the solid foundation of her success. “At Adelphi, I learned how to learn.”

 
Tagged: Robert B. Willumstad School of Business, Garden City
 
Apply Now
Request Information