STAMFORD, Conn. (November 11, 2021) – After nearly five years of service as Keep America Beautiful® President and CEO, Dr. Helen Lowman has decided to step down from her role at the organization at the end of 2021.

Under her leadership, Keep America Beautiful has continued to grow, and Helen has made many significant accomplishments, including:

  • Launching a comprehensive and ambitious new strategic plan
  • Strong and sustained growth in the affiliate network
  • Published the largest study of litter in America – the 2020 National Litter Study – and positioned Keep America Beautiful as the national expert on strategies to effectively end litter in our communities
  • Significantly increased the diversity of the staff and board, and embedded principles of equity and inclusion throughout the organization
  • Clarified the core identity of Keep America Beautiful as a community improvement organization, prioritizing the growth and strength of the affiliate network
  • Added “Community Restoration and Resiliency” into the fabric of Keep America Beautiful and merged RETREET into Keep America Beautiful to support this objective

“From my early days on the Boards of Directors at Keep El Paso Beautiful and Keep Austin Beautiful, this organization has had a place in my heart, and it will remain so for the rest of my life,” said Lowman. “I think the world of this organization and the people that it is made of. I am deeply grateful our amazing Affiliates who continue to be the backbone of our organization, my incredible staff at KAB HQ, and to our fantastic Board for their leadership and constant support.”

Helen joined Keep America Beautiful in May 2017 with more than 20 years of leadership experience in the areas of international diplomacy and development, youth engagement, environmental education, disaster resilience, global leadership, volunteerism, social justice, and human rights. From 2010 to 2017, Helen served as an appointee of the President of the United States in the senior foreign service and the senior executive service. She was Director-Individual and Community Preparedness for FEMA and previously served in a variety of roles with the Peace Corps.

“Helen’s tireless and enthusiast leadership has strengthened and inspired Keep America Beautiful’s nationwide affiliate and volunteer network, and her commitment to justice and equity are now embedded in our values and programs,” said Steve Russell, Chair of the KAB Board of Directors. “The Board is deeply grateful for her work, and we wish her the very best in her future endeavors.”

Upon her departure December 31, Chief Operating Officer Becky Lyons will serve as Interim CEO while the search for Lowman’s replacement takes place.

Helen’s leadership has reached every corner of the organization and she will be greatly missed.


Contact: Abby Turpin, Director of Communications
Keep America Beautiful®