South Florida Institute on Aging Names Nikki Austin-Shipp New Chief Executive Officer

Nikki Austin-Shipp

South Florida Institute on Aging (SoFIA), a non-profit dedicated to bettering the socio-economic lives of South Florida’s aging community, has announced the appointment of Nikki Austin-Shipp as chief executive officer.

Austin-Shipp will lend her extensive community relations expertise and non-profit management background to SoFIA’s continued expansion, helping to amplify the organization’s vision and strategic direction.

“Nikki is the dynamic leader that SoFIA has been searching for,” said Lynn Brewer, SoFIA’s board chair. “She will provide knowledgeable guidance, organization and fresh energy to SoFIA, while cultivating new local and national relationships that will advance our overall mission to help older adults thrive at any age.”

Prior to joining SoFIA, Austin-Shipp served as community relations director for Congresswoman Frederica Smith Wilson, where among her responsibilities, she coordinated all communications activity on behalf of the congresswoman. Previously, she was executive director for New Visions Community Development Corporation, a non-profit that empowered families to succeed, where she managed the organization’s financial strategy and strategic goals, secured grants and raised organizational funding, while overseeing staff development and performance.

Earlier in her career, Austin-Shipp was the chief operating officer for Mount Bethel Ministries, overseeing the operations, profitability and growth of multiple worship locations, a Christian Academy and New Visions Community Development Corporation. She transitioned her skills to public service and community organizations after launching her professional career in sales and marketing positions for media companies and national quick service restaurants.

“I enjoy taking on challenging leadership roles where I am able to honor, serve and speak for those who have no voice,” said Austin-Shipp. “Older adults in our community who face socio-economic challenges need a powerful voice to confront pressing issues on their behalf. I am excited to take on this new role and make a real difference for South Florida’s aging population.”

A resident of Fort Lauderdale, Austin-Shipp earned an MBA in Global Management from University of Phoenix and a Bachelor of Science in Finance from Florida State University where she also served on the national board of directors for the Black Alumni Association. She has held numerous chapter and regional positions and appointments in Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc.  In 2016, she graduated from the Jim Moran Executive Leadership Institute.

Other notable accomplishments include an appointment to serve on the Northwest-Progresso- Flagler Heights Community Redevelopment Area (NPF-C.R.A.) Advisory Board for the City of Fort Lauderdale and an appointment to the Economic Development Advisory Board of Fort Lauderdale. Austin-Shipp was also recently appointed to a national mentoring committee for The Links, Incorporated.

SoFIA recently rebranded the 55-year-old nonprofit with a new name, mission and innovative programing, which brought fresh energy, vitality and purpose to senior-facing services in South Florida. Since, SoFIA has launched many new initiatives to close the gap in socio-economic well-being for older adults and worked to engage leading South Florida businesses through exciting, new partnerships. SoFIA has also been the recipient of several distinguished local and national grants, which continue to help expand its work on behalf of older adults across South Florida.

SoFIA continues to provide innovative services tailored to meet seniors’ caregiving and respite, civic engagement and economic security needs. Visit for more information.