I like to think of myself as a professional connector. Remember the marching band kids in high school? And the basketball players? Born and raised in Norwalk, Connecticut, an incredibly diverse and culturally rich community, I was both an athlete and a musician and always seemed to find myself bridging the gap between unlikely social circles. Somehow I’ve turned that into a career. Enter United Way. After 4 years in Blacksburg marching to the tune of the Hokie Pokie, 7 years in Boston serving the city, working on a masters degree in public administration and wondering why people don’t pronounce their “Rs”, my husband Brent and I found ourselves in his hometown of Harrisonburg, VA. Since joining the United Way family, I’ve found myself connecting businesses and nonprofits; educators and health professionals, Rotarians, and social workers, just to name a few, all in the name of a collaborative approach to change. I love my job and hope that my little ones, Lucy and Myles, will grow up and find work that they love too. We’re better together. Let’s do this.
Coordinator of Community Impact
I’m new to the team having joined in August 2017. I started getting involved in the community in my home state of Massachusetts. After interning and volunteering at a number of nonprofit agencies in the Boston area, I became excited about the opportunity to dedicate a year to service with AmeriCorps VISTA. AmeriCorps brought me to Spartanburg, South Carolina where one year of service quickly became two, the second year of which was spent at a United Way. United Way’s mission to be a leader in the community, supporting the variety of work being accomplished by nonprofit agencies aligns perfectly with my passion for uniting the community to empower all people in need.
Build United Graduate Assistant
My love for service and volunteerism began at a young age. At first, I just thought it was something everyone had to do, but as I got older, I realized it was both a choice and a privilege to serve my community. I started volunteering at local shelters and community events, in the nurse’s office at my high school, etc. Fast forward to senior year of college, when I was aimlessly trying to figure out what career I would pursue after graduation. Upon hearing about AmeriCorps VISTA (a program where you can serve for a year to build capacity for a local nonprofit), I was reminded of my love for service, and decided it was the perfect next step for me. My service year, which I completed here in Harrisonburg with On The Road Collaborative, was both challenging and impactful. I saw firsthand how many needs exist in a community and how it truly takes a village to meet those needs. I am looking forward to joining the United Way “village” this year with my new role as the 'Build United' Graduate Assistant. Along with this new position, I will also be pursuing my master’s degree in Public Administration at James Madison University (let’s go DUKES!).
Director of Business Engagement
The tag line for my personality type, ENFP, is "People are the product". As a kid, I thought I wanted to be a Marine Biologist- mostly because I thought sea animals were cute. As I got older, I spent much of my time at camps and stepping up in leadership roles at school and at church, I started to understand that developing people was really my passion. I spent four and a half years “brightening the lights” of my alma mater, JMU, in the Office of Alumni Relations, building relationships with alumni all over the world to create opportunities to connect, learn, and celebrate life as alumni. During that time I received my master’s degree in Adult Human Resource Development (securing my place as a “Double Duke”!) which provided me a framework for developing people in the professional world. At United Way, I get the opportunity to make more of those connections while also improving the lives of people in the community that I have grown to love. I couldn't be happier to be in the Valley, where my husband, Matt, daughters, Frankie and Mirah, and I spend much of our time hiking, biking, eating, and enjoying time with the best people in the world.
Program Support Coordinator
I grew up on a farm in the mid-west where I learned the importance of a strong community at an early age. I was very active in service projects throughout my own community and enjoyed engaging and working with others in these settings. I left my home community to attend Eastern Mennonite University and I quickly fell in love with the Shenandoah Valley and all it has to offer. After graduation, I moved to Beirut, Lebanon, where I served with an International Non-Governmental Organization for a year before returning to Harrisonburg and filling an AmeriCorps VISTA (Volunteers In Service To America) position here at United Way. My VISTA term allowed me to engage with the Harrisonburg-Rockingham communities in new and exciting ways. I connected with volunteers, businesses, and local nonprofits and organized book distributions and Build United projects. My VISTA term ended in August 2018 and after a long road trip throughout the United States with my husband, Malachi, I am excited to be back in Harrisonburg and back at United Way.
Not pictured is our very diligent finance associate, Marsha Fuller. Marsha processes all campaign funds and can address issues related to billing and the financial status of your workplace campaign.