Impressive VIP Manager Corps Make Their Mark

When the volunteers are this talented they can make a real impact. As part of our VIP program to help nonprofits make better use of volunteers, our grantee, 501 Commons, has done a great job recruiting people to give 10 hours a week for 6-8 months to help with volunteer management. They’re helping develop the essential tools and systems needed to effectively engage volunteers.

We’re so excited and proud of our VIP Manager Corps and we wanted to share with you who they are and the agencies they’ve been supporting since last April. It’s an impressive group of 20. Half are people of color. 12 are under 35. 3 are men. They include undergrads & graduate students. Retirees, a Starbucks manager, and a start-up co-founder. They’ve worked at places like Safeco, Electronic Arts and Madigan Army Hospital. This group will be finishing up their work soon. Does your organization want to get in on the action for the next round of VIP Manager Corps? We’re accepting applications until Feb. 13. Learn more here.


Asiya Bari – Ethiopian Community of Seattle
Asiya is a former manager at Accenture, a technology consulting company, where she specialized in the retail industry and volunteered her time as a tutor and job interview coach.

Lorri Engbaum – Sno-Valley Senior Center
Lorri has 29 years of experience working for Honeywell Inc., most recently as manufacturing supervisor.

Heather Fox – Friends of the Children
Heather is a manager for Starbucks Coffee Company.

Alex Gramps – Rainier Scholars
Alex is a graduate student at the University of Washington’s Evans School of Public Affairs.

Zach Grossnickle – Horn of Africa Services
Zach is earning his master’s degree in Public Administration.

Leah Gustitus – Path with Art
Leah is an advocate for homeless youth and former volunteer manager for ROOTS Young Adult Shelter.

Lily Hong – El Centro de la Raza
Lily works at Seattle Housing Authority and is a long-time United Way volunteer.

Nidhi Jain – Sound Childcare Solutions
Nidhi’s a civil engineer by trade and recently moved back from India where she was helping a friend open and manage a cafe.

Michele Kahrs – Athletes for Kids
Michele leverages her previous role as a senior product marketing manager at Electronic Arts, a leader in the global interactive entertainment software industry, to maximize her volunteer time at American Red Cross and Forterra.

Lena Lee – United Negro College Fund
Lena has experience in event planning, volunteer management, donor relations and marketing strategy. She currently is an event manager at West Coast Entertainment.

Tabitha Manalu – YouthCare
Tabitha is a senior at the University of Washington, majoring in Community, Environment and Planning.

Matt Mohamed-Ali – Peace for the Streets by Kids from the Streets
Matt was recently a Technology and Economic Opportunity AmeriCorps at Neighborhood House and brings class instruction and volunteer management experience.

Kathleen Mongrain – South Park Senior Center
Kathleen was formerly in IT at Safeco Insurance and currently works for the YMCA of Greater Seattle at the Concord Learning Center at Concord Elementary.

Budi Mulyo – Filipino Community in Seattle
Budi is co-founder and COO of RaaSIO, Inc., a startup A.I. and Robotics company. They proudly support A STEAM Lab student/youth mentoring program for underserved youth.

Debarati Nag – 4C Coalition
Debarati is a human resource professional. Prior to coming to the U.S., she worked with an Australian multinational company based in India as an HR Generalist.

Ruth Pappas – Jubilee Reach
Ruth’s first career was as a pediatric physical therapist. For eight years she worked as a team member of the Neuromuscular Developmental Clinic at Madigan Army Medical Center.

Skye Stiles – Luther’s Table
Skye is a writer who is constantly chasing her Irish muse.

Catherine Warner – Chinese Information & Service Center
Catherine is an assistant teacher in Gender, Women, and Sexuality Studies at University of Washington, where she is completing her doctoral degree in History.

Deborah Williams – Birthday Dreams
Deborah is a Life Transitions/Retirement Coach and sole-proprietor of Retirement Style.

Adrian Wieland – Elizabeth Gregory Home
Adrian has deep nonprofit board experience and helped launch the Trans*Love Fund, a transgendered youth program in Charleston, SC.

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