Forty Under 40: Tyler B. Clark

by Talk Business & Politics staff ([email protected]) 1,727 views 

Class of 2019 Forty Under 40 Tyler B. Clark Executive Director Single Parent Scholarship Fund of Northwest Arkansas

Growing up in Springdale, Tyler Clark’s parents modeled philanthropy. “I thought that’s what everyone did,” he said. “Little did I know it was rare.” Reflecting on his parents’ hard work and wanting to make them proud is his greatest motivation.

Graduating with a business administration degree from the University of Arkansas in 2004, he worked for Credit Counseling of Arkansas for three years, realizing there was a career in nonprofit management. “It wasn’t just a bridge for people or a retirement plan. People dedicated to nonprofits are just as dedicated and smart as their counterparts in business.”

Clark joined The Jones Center in Springdale as youth program manager for five years and implemented a youth drug and alcohol intervention program in six area schools. In 2010, he became the Community Clinic’s project manager and then development director, moving the organization to the NWA United Way’s highest nonprofit contributing agency. In 2017, he became executive director of Single Parent Scholarship Fund.

Clark implemented a volunteer learning coach program, brought on a behavioral health counselor and started “The Empower Summit,” which includes resume writing, interview coaching and financial planning.

Mary McKinney, former director of The Jones Center, is Clark’s mentor. He said she is an example of how to “look at a complex issue and be able to make a magnanimous decision, always keeping in mind the mission of the organization.”

In the future, Clark would like to make his staff and board more reflective of the diverse local communities. He also wants to broaden the organization’s visibility so it can help more people.

A benefit of nonprofit work, Clark’s motivation isn’t the bottom line. “For me, it’s looking to see how many graduates are walking out the door, how many are employed after they leave our program.”