Prosper Waco announces changes to top leadership position

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WACO, Texas (KWTX) Prosper Waco announced Tuesday that its executive director would soon be leaving the organization.

Matthew Polk has been with the group since it launched in 2015 and will leave his position in February.

He's helped the organization to establish at least 30 programs to improve the education, health and vitality of the community.

Their biggest step was taking over five struggling schools Waco Independent School District schools before Texas Education Agency closed them after years of chronic underperformance.

"I think there is always that sense of bitter sweetness when you leave an organization that you've committed so much of your time and energy to, but I will walk away feeling very proud of what we've done and when I say we I mean the community," Polk said.

According to Pat Atkins, who is a board member on both Prosper Waco and the district, under Polk's leadership, they've bought in more than $7 million in grants.

Atkins said, the board will soon launch a nationwide search for Polk's replacement with the hopes of finding the right candidate by this summer.

This means the Prosper Waco Summit scheduled for March has also been pushed back a few months.

"I don't think we're going to lose any momentum. We will come up with an interim plan of how to address the day-to-day operations of the office and we will continue to convene working groups. Probably won't take on any new initiatives until the new executive director gets here," Adkins said.

Polk has a PhD in History, he has worked for the charter school Rapport Academy, and has a passion for community service.

Though he won't be working for this organization, he may help other communities that have expressed interest in starting their own organization with the Prosper Waco model.