With great sadness, BronxWorks shares that our beloved and fiercely loyal board member, Emily Menlo Marks, passed away last week at the age of 85. For so many years and in so many ways, Emily made countless contributions to BronxWorks, the communities we serve, and the New York City settlement house community. A New York City native, Emily earned a Bachelor’s degree from Smith College in 1959, a Master’s degree from Columbia University Graduate School of Business, and a certificate from Columbia School of Social Work. Her life of service, leadership, and commitment to community is marked by a long and successful career spent at various organizations, boards, and agencies. Most notably, Emily Menlo Marks was the Executive Director of United Neighborhood Houses (UNH) from 1988-2002. During that time, she revitalized UNH and the settlement house movement. Under her leadership, BronxWorks, then Citizens Advice Bureau (CAB), joined the UNH network.
Upon her retirement, Emily became a dedicated member of the BronxWorks Board of Directors and served as the Development Committee Chair, and more recently as the Governance and Nominating Committee Chair. She was passionate about our work and extremely proud of the BronxWorks staff for all of their collective accomplishments and commitment to the BronxWorks mission. Emily was as strong an advocate for the underserved and vulnerable as anyone, and she relished her role as a very active board member. Emily’s impact on the Bronx is immeasurable and we will truly miss her steadfast, invigorated presence.
We send our deepest condolences to all those who she held dear; her family and her countless network of friends and associates. As an organization, BronxWorks will strive to honor her legacy.
In June 2023, we sat down with Emily to discuss her history working in the nonprofit sector and to reflect on 50 years of BronxWorks. Here is a brief excerpt from that interview.