Arkansas Advocates for Children and Families of Little Rock and Springdale announced Tuesday the resignation of long-time Executive Director Rich Huddleston, effective Dec. 31.
The organization said it will soon begin a national search process and that it expects to have a new executive director in place before the Arkansas General Assembly convenes in January.
Huddleston has been with the child advocacy nonprofit for 27 years. He joined AACF as director of research and policy before taking on his current role in 2004.
During his tenure, the organization through its advocacy helped:
- Expand quality pre-k programs
- Increase in the state minimum wage three times
- Make the tax system fairer for low-income families
- Expand health care coverage for adults with low incomes
- Improve access to children’s health care coverage for Marshallese and other immigrant children
- Reform juvenile justice
- Reform school discipline
Also under Huddleston's leadership, AACF opened its regional office in Springdale more than a decade ago.
In a news release, he called his time at AACF the highlight of his professional career and said it had allowed him to fulfill his passions as well as work with many smart and dedicated people.