By Elizabeth Kirwin
Adenia Bradley came to Mission of Love Charities (MOLC) as the Chief Operations Officer (COO) in January 2022, after being a member of the MOLC board for eight years. As a board member she held the position of Vice President. Bradley is one of the highly skilled workers who make up a team of 12 at the Mission, and she works closely with staff to ensure the highest quality experience is rendered to the communities MOLC serves in Prince George’s County, Maryland.
Coming to work at the Mission facility in Capitol Heights, Maryland was a long journey for Bradley. She spent 20 years working for Southern Management Companies, where she was a Human Resources Coordinator for 12 years. In property management, she excelled at recruitment of staff – and she loved her position. She developed on-boarding protocols and assisted with developing and facilitating Customer Care Classes. She also trained all newly hired team members in On-Boarding and Customer Service. Bradley’s professional background was an excellent foundation for her work as COO at MOLC.
Bradley was once President of Prince George’s County Chamber of Commerce (PGCC). “I am still on the PGCC Board,” noted Bradley. At one time she worked closely with the State Attorney’s Office in Prince George’s County. Bradley saw plenty and reported to the Office as a liaison from the community. She relayed important information to the Attorney General’s office that would have a wide impact on many lives. “I was a community advocate on the human trafficking task force,” remembered Bradley. “I worked with the Transforming Neighborhoods Initiative. I spoke often to Prince George’s County Council about different things happening in the County and I had suggestions on how we could make it better.” For those seeking work in Prince George’s County, or under an eviction order and in need of work, “I would make sure we recruited in the communities where we served. I was there to represent the underrepresented,” she said proudly. Bradley also worked with victims of domestic violence. “I have been an advocate for Prince George’s County residents for 18 years,” she added.
After almost two decades at the same company, Bradley felt it was time for a change. “When the Chief Operating Officer (COO) position became available at MOLC, I was ready to do something different. Shortly after the President of Southern Management Companies passed away, I decided to open myself up for change,” said Bradley. She already knew MOLC’s CEO, Deborah Martinez, from her work on the MOLC board. “Deb has been the best CEO MOLC has had so far,” observed Bradley. “When Deb came, we said we were going to reorganize the Mission to make it more sustainable. The Mission was at a place where change was needed. And Deb made that happen for MOLC,” she said. Before Deborah Martinez led Mission of Love Charities it was sustainable. Martinez implemented plans that brought growth.
To improve her knowledge of how non-profits are run, Bradley began to take classes at the American Society of Association Executives (ASAE). These classes provided valuable information. Coming from the business for profit world and transitioning into non-profits, ASAE classes helped frame things. “I learned the ABC’s of running a non-profit,” observed Bradley. “The first class I took was Management Basics. The topics covered were: cutting costs and optimizing delivery. The next class was Weighing Risks and Opportunities of Implementing Sustainability Initiatives,” said Bradley. Both classes taught useful information that was applied to everyday operations at the Mission.
When asked about her day in, day out duties at MOLC, Bradley replied. “I do everything that needs to be done to ensure operations run smoothly.” Her close work with Case Managers and other staff is key to her position. “I have to support the team to make sure things run properly and troubleshoot issues,” said Bradley. She oversees the Rental Assistance Program, which can be challenging. Bradley has to evaluate, on a case-by-case basis, which individuals can be helped by the program. A person must have a job in order to afford a rental every month. It takes a sharp mind and a can do attitude to decipher who can and will receive rental assistance.
As a manager, Bradley is present for any problems with clients. She resolves them. If MOLC is short staffed, she steps in to fulfill duties that need to be done. How does she feel about her team at MOLC? “Since I have been here I have really enjoyed the work we do as a team. The team is 12 individuals and we work together well,” said Bradley.
The team has daily challenges while working with the homeless community. Bradley is there everyday to support and lead them. Leaving the world of property management to join a non-profit that serves low-income individuals was a welcome change. It has been rewarding for Bradley on a personal level. “The change for me was to be more selfless and help more of the community which I serve,” said Bradley. “ I was a single parent and raised my two daughters to be functioning adults who thrive. Working for MOLC gave me the opportunity to give back to my community,” she stated.