United Way's interim CEO to keep the job

The United Way of Stanislaus County's interim chief executive officer now has the job on a permanent basis.

The United Way's board of directors named Francine DiCiano as CEO at its March 18 meeting, said board Chairman Leonard Jalli, adding that the vote was unanimous among the directors who attended the meeting.

"She truly has a passion not only for this organization but in helping all of United Way's partner agencies ... and in making this county a better place for all of us," Jalli said.

DiCiano had been the interim CEO for about 11 months, since Tom Ciccarelli resigned after about two years of leading the nonprofit.

Before becoming interim CEO, DiCiano had been the United Way's chief operations officer since October 2007.

She came to the United Way from the Modesto-based Parent Resource Center, a child abuse prevention agency. She worked for the center for 8½ years, the last seven as its executive director.

"I'm really excited and up for the challenge," she said. "I love nonprofit work, and I love working at the United Way."

DiCiano said one of her goals will be to have the United Way work more closely with county government, other nonprofits and foundations to leverage money and resources to meet the growing demand for services because of the recession.

Jalli declined to release DiCiano's salary, but he said it's significantly less than what Ciccarelli earned and in line with what starting chief executives of other area nonprofits earn. Records show Ciccarelli earned $95,600 in salary plus about $13,000 in other compensation.

Bee staff writer Kevin Valine can be reached at or 578-2316.