Occupation: Director of Development – YMCA of the Cedar Rapids Metropolitan Area
What are your greatest professional achievements: Helping the YMCA raise the necessary dollars to recover from the flood of 2008, becoming a certified fund-raising executive (CFRE), and helping the YMCA begin new programs with the support of large gifts.
Who are your mentors: Cheryle Mitvalsky (former vice president, Kirkwood Community College) and Jen Neumann (partner, de Novo Alternative Marketing).
What is the best advice you ever received: Get out of the office as much as you can, build relationships and network.
What do you know now that you wish you had known earlier in your career: That a career in the nonprofit sector is very fulfilling. Your work makes a positive difference in the lives of so many people every day, but it is also stressful because there are so many more people in need, dollars are stretched really thin and it is a challenge.
If you had $1 million to give, what causes would you support: There are many causes that I am very passionate about: YMCA, Junior League, education, my church. However, if I had $1 million right now, I would give it to help the YMCA build a new facility in Marion.
What’s something people should know about your generation in the workplace: We are masters of technology and social media. If you give us coaching, respect, responsibility and the freedom to do things differently, we will most definitely surprise you in a good way. We love to complete work on our own schedule; we don’t want to be tied to the 9-to-5. There is nothing we hate more than the words, “because we’ve always done it that way.” We seek innovative ways to make a difference in our world.