James “Ray” Rhodes, BArch, MBA, MAT
EXECUTIVE LEADER, ARCHITECT, COMMUNITY ACTIVIST, EDUCATOR
James “Ray” Rhodes is an executive leader, architect, community planner/activist and educator. Through his diverse technical and professional background, Ray has dedicated his life to assisting those less fortunate with reaching their full potential. Ray currently serves as the Executive Director of Christina Cultural Arts Center. In this position, he is responsible for the day-to-day operations of the visual, performing arts and educational initiatives of this community cultural icon dedicated to providing affordable and quality music/arts education and live performances to all in a welcoming environment. Ray manages and leads the budgeting efforts, procurement of goods and services, oversees the facilities and outlines policies and procedures for Christina.
Ray has accumulated more than 24 years of architectural, construction project management, code consulting and real estate development experience. He is also a certified mathematics instructor, tutor, and motivational mentor. Prior to joining the Christina staff, Ray served as Real Estate Coordinator in the New Castle County Sheriff’s office where he was responsible for managing approximately $5.75M in ledger transactions on a monthly basis and over $1.5B in annual real estate transactions. However, where Ray has devoted a majority of his time, mostly on a volunteer basis is in his community assisting non-profit agencies that are tasked with assisting youth and those who are underserved. As the current Chairman of the Board of Directors for Kingswood Community Center and in collaboration with two other agencies, Ray is assisting with a massive 7-10 year, $150 million dollar fundraising campaign to redevelop the Riverside area, a community where Ray spent time as a youth. As the Polemarch (President) of the Wilmington Alumni Chapter of Kappa Alpha Psi, Fraternity Inc., Ray assisted with the location and the initial fundraising efforts to purchase the fraternities’ current home – The Achievement Center.
As Treasurer of the Board for Henrietta Johnson Medical Center, Ray was on the joint task force that assisted with raising $2.5 million dollars for the agency’s facility renovations and addition. Ray also served as Vice-Chairman of the Board for the organization. Ray is an educator with over (25) years of experience tutoring, mentoring and teaching youth and adults in traditional and non-traditional school settings with both non-profits and for-profit organizations. He assists students with SAT/ACT prep, GRE, GMAT, ASVAB, and Praxis prep. In addition to his architectural and teaching degrees, Ray holds an MBA with a concentration in Executive Leadership from Wesley College and is in between studies for his Doctoral degree where he is pursuing a Ph.D. in Public Policy Administration with a concentration in Local Government Management for Sustainable Communities.
Ray has served in executive-level positions with (6) different organizations: City of Wilmington as Commissioner of License and Inspections and Director of Rehabilitation; New Castle County as Real Estate Coordinator; Kingswood Community Center as Vice-Chair and Chairman of the Board; Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity, Inc. on three levels – local, regional and national as Achievement Committee Chair; as a Trustee with Cornerstone Fellowship Baptist Church and as Assistant Chaplain for Union Lodge #21 – Prince Hall Free and Accepted Masons. Ray is a (21) year military veteran, married to the former Tammy Pierce and they have (5) children and (15) grandchildren. Ray is a dynamic, charismatic leader whose passion focuses on meeting the needs of the constituents, customers, clients and stakeholders he serves. He is self-motivated and driven to succeed and has adopted a philosophy that allows him to always pursue his passion over his pension and put the needs of people over his paycheck.