February 07, 2017 - Executive Director Message

Impact Austin Leadership Transition

Impact Austin Leadership Transition
By Sharon Francia, President, Board of Directors

Impact Austin begins 2017 on a high note, as our members prepare to review and vote on proposals to vie for more than $400,000 in grants this year. While we look forward to this year’s annual meeting in June and the opportunity to effect change with high-impact giving, we also want to take a moment to share important news.

On March 10, we will say farewell to Executive Director Donna Benson-Chan, who is leaving her position to pursue new opportunities after a successful tenure with Impact Austin. Donna became full-time executive director two years ago, after a year in the interim position. Under her leadership, she helped to refresh Impact Austin’s brand identity and launch a new website; support strategic planning initiatives; launch our first-ever Catalyst Grant, and so much more. On behalf of the board and our members past and present, the women of Impact Austin are grateful to Donna for her leadership, vision, and commitment.

During this transition, long-time Impact Austin member and seasoned nonprofit professional Lisa Apfelberg will step in as Acting Executive Director to oversee our day-to-day operations.

Lisa is well prepared for this role, bringing years of experience with associations, foundations and nonprofit organizations, most recently as Director of Development at Goodwill Central Texas. She has served on our Board of Directors, the Board Personnel Committee, a Grants Review Committee, and as a g3 Advisor and liaison.

Impact Austin is poised for another successful year. This month the Association of Fundraising Professionals is honoring Impact Austin as the Outstanding Philanthropy Organization of the Year. We gratefully accept this prestigious recognition from our peers and friends in the nonprofit community.

As we all continue the rewarding work of selecting grant recipients at our annual meeting in June, we are thankful for our members’ personal commitments to philanthropy. Together we are making a meaningful impact on our community and the quality of life for all Central Texans.

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