CHARLESTON, SC – Darkness to Light, a leader in child sexual abuse prevention for over two decades, is celebrating a new chapter with the appointment of Rhonda Newton as its Chief Executive Officer, bringing over a decade of experience as an educator, curriculum specialist, and instructional designer at K-12 and university levels to our work.
Earlier this year, in her interim role, Newton guided Darkness to Light through a period of growth and revitalized vision. Having played a pivotal part in shaping the organization’s history, she now assumes the official roles of Darkness to Light’s CEO and Senior Director of Curriculum.
“Rhonda is an exceptional leader who continues to play an instrumental role in revitalizing Darkness to Light, propelling it toward success, and reinforcing its mission to equip and empower adults to build safe environments that protect children from sexual abuse,” said Board Chair Andrea Harner. “The Board of Directors’ appointment of Rhonda as CEO is a catalyst for renewed energy and focus on taking our training and programming to the next generation.”
Recognizing the persistent and crucial need for its prevention programming, Darkness to Light, under Newton’s leadership, is committed to nurturing partnerships with the thousands of advocates, supporters, and champions for child safety who share the vision of a world where adults proactively keep all children safe from sexual abuse.
“I am resolute in continuing this work and serving as CEO with a people-first approach, with authenticity, accountability, and transparency,” said Newton. “With these goals fully embodied in the organizational DNA, Darkness to Light is poised to light the path forward in preventing child sexual abuse.”
Newton joined Darkness to Light in September 2020, and spearheaded the development of a new version of its flagship training, Stewards of Children®, one of the few evidence-informed, adult-focused, child sexual abuse prevention trainings in the United States proven to enhance knowledge and change behavior. She holds a B.A. in French and Spanish, an M.Ed. in Learning and Technology, and is a Ph.D. candidate completing her research on game-based learning and prosocial skill development this fall.
In this next chapter, Darkness to Light seeks to train the next million adults on how to prevent, recognize, and react responsibly to child sexual abuse.