Ann Barrington the Associate Director of Development at the University of Idaho with the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences. She earned her Bachelor of Arts in U.S. History from the University of Puget Sound. Ann also served two years with AmeriCorps.
Ann Barrington was first introduced to public service when she served two years as an AmeriCorps member-- first as a VISTA with Communities In Schools of Peninsula and then with the Washington Service Corps at Westside Baby. Currently, Ann is the Associate Director of Development for the College of Agricultural and Life Sciences at University of Idaho where she advocates for the education of future agriculturalists and cutting-edge research. She received her BA in US History at the University of Puget Sound and her Masters in Nonprofit Leadership in the 2017 cohort. Ann currently lives in the incredible town of Palouse, WA with her partner, Scott.
I serve to stay connected with the Seattle U and NPL community and try to make a more welcoming community for current students and alumni of the program.
When there are lots of balls in the air, it's important to know which ones are glass and which ones are rubber.
"It is not fair to ask of others what you are not willing to do yourself."- Eleanor Roosevelt
Nathan Box is the Development and Communications Manager for the Senior Center of West Seattle. He is also a 2007 graduate of the University of Central Oklahoma where he earned a Bachelor of Arts in Broadcast Communications. After graduating, he worked at UCO for four years as the Coordinator of Commuter Student Services, before moving on to become the Assistant Director of the Volunteer and Service Learning Center.
In 2011, Nathan moved to Seattle, WA to pursue work in the nonprofit field and advance his education. There, he serviced as the Fund Developer and Communications Manager for Kent Youth and Family Services. In 2013, he graduated from Seattle University with a Master’s Degree in Nonprofit Leadership. In 2017, Nathan and his partner, Brandon Reaves, moved to Los Angeles, CA where he served at the Director of Philanthropy for Skid Row Housing Trust and the Director of Fund Development & External Relations at The Center in Hollywood.
Nathan is a member of the Seattle International Film Festival, Chapter Advisor for the Beta Beta Chapter of Pi Kappa Alpha at the University of Washington, Committee Member for the Out of the Darkness Walk supporting the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention-Seattle Chapter, Co-Chair for the Seattle University Nonprofit Leadership Alumni Advisory Council, and Member of the Rotary Club of Kent.
Without a doubt in my mind, much of what I have achieved in the nonprofit sector is due to the education I received in the Nonprofit Leadership program at Seattle University. I serve on the Alumni Council, because I am attempting to return to the program the gifts it has given me.
“Put on your oxygen mask first, before attempting to help others.”
It hard to work in this field without some sense of optimism. While we have major challenges before us (climate challenge, racial reckoning/healing, wealth inequality, etc.), I remain confident in our sector’s ability to meet these challenges thoughtfully and with passion.
“A society grows great when old men plant trees whose shade they know they shall never sit in.”
Tracy has 25-plus years of combined experience in Equity Leadership, serving as a Chief Diversity Officer, Director of DEI, Executive Director, and as a state and federal equal opportunity manager and special investigations for civil and human rights state and federal government agencies.
She is considered by her peers as an expert in Diversity, Equity and Inclusion. Tracy is one of few, if not the only expert in DEI whose has equal opportunity policy and placed-based experience in the following sectors: 1) Education, 2) Fair Housing, 3) Transportation, 4) Health and Human Services, etc. She intersects the Race and Social Justice, Social Determinants of Health (SDoH), Fair Housing Policy and economic realities (cyclical boom to bust) and has a organizational and community-based solution strategy with objectives and tactics to address institutional isms that impact the quality of life for all people, but disproportionately impacts people of color and poor people. Tracy has a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Washington, a Executive Master of Not-for-Profit Leadership degree from Seattle University and a Master of Public Policy degree, in Urban and Environmental Policy and Planning from Tufts University. She has received her Certificate of Leadership from the JFK School at Harvard University. She is a graduate of Leadership Tomorrow, served on the Alumni Governing and Curriculum Committees, she is also a graduate of Leadership USA, and Leadership America. Tracy was honored with a Community Leadership Fellowship with the Kettering Foundation. She was born and raised in Seattle, Washington. Tracy enjoys cool fusion and instrumental jazz, Pinot Noir wine, cooking, traveling, and spending time with her family, church family, friends and her significant other, whom she cherishes.
I am a graduate of Seattle University. I want to ensure alumni and current students enjoy an amazing school and post graduate experience.
Live and leave a legacy of inspiration, hope, gratitude and share access and resources with current and future generations as you reach back and give back.
A continued opportunity to "Live and leave a legacy of inspiration, hope, gratitude and share access and resources with current and future generations as you reach back and give back.
“I have walked that long road to freedom. I have tried not to falter; I have made missteps along the way. But I have discovered the secret that after climbing a great hill, one only finds that there are many more hills to climb. I have taken a moment here to rest, to steal a view of the glorious vista that surrounds me, to look back on the distance I have come. But I can only rest for a moment, for with freedom come responsibilities, and I dare not linger, for my long walk is not ended.” Nelson Mandela
Bridget Dolan is the Excecutive Director at The Goodtimes Project. She has more than 20 years of nonprofit and independent school experience. Bridget served as Alumni Council Co-Chair in 2019-2020.
Bridget Dolan has more than 20 years of nonprofit and independent school experience. She has an undergraduate degree in Environmental Science from Gannon University in Erie, PA. After an amazing experience in AmeriCorps NCCC, Bridget decided to focus her professional career on outdoor science and experiential education and youth development, teaching and mentoring at YMCA and Boys and Girls Club camps across the country. Bridget landed in the Seattle area permanently in 2003, when her time transitioned into traditional school settings and her work began to focus on community engagement, events, and fundraising. Bridget earned her master’s degree in nonprofit leadership in 2014. Over the last ten years Bridget has had the privilege of working for such organizations as Epiphany School, Woodland Park Zoo, and Cedarmere Foundation. After being a longtime volunteer of The Goodtimes Project, an organization that provides program and camps for children and families affected by pediatric cancer, not only at Camp Goodtimes but also on their Gala planning committee and Board of Directors, Bridget joined the staff in 2018. Born on the east coast and raised mostly in Ohio, Bridget has made Seattle her home for the last 18 years. Bridget enjoys playing and watching soccer, knitting, live music, and spoiling her four nephews and two nieces.
The community and network that I had the opportunity to be a part of while in the NPL program and an alum has made such an impact on me, personally and professionally. I joined the Alumni Council to continue growing that community and to make sure that other alumni have the opportunity to experience it.
Understanding the difference between immediacy and urgency and how to convey that. That statement and understanding of the statement has helped me frame conversations and my reactions to situations so that the results can be more productive and positive.
Making sure my organization is set up for continued and sustainable success in the future is what is igniting my leadership. I am constantly learning new things and acquiring new experiences. I want to share all of that with my organization so that it is internalized and utilized. I want this organization to be around and successful as long as it is needed.
“You cannot get through a single day without having an impact on the world around you. What you do makes a difference and you have to decide what kind of a difference you want to make.” -Jane Goodall
Mercedes Elizalde works with Central City Concern as the Public Policy Director. She was the first in her family to attend college and earned her Bachelor of Arts with a minor in Women and Gender Studies.
Mercedes Elizalde was born and raised in Hayward California, a small city in the San Francisco Bay Area. She relocated to Seattle, WA in fall of 2010 and then to Portland, OR in the summer of 2018. She carries a passion for social justice, equal opportunity and compassion throughout her personal and professional endeavors. Mercedes started working when she was 14 as a peer educator and summer camp counselor. She brings a unique set of perspectives and knowledge to her work having experience in direct service as a social worker and program coordinator, a legislative aide to an elected official and as a community activist. Mercedes was the first in her family to attend college and now holds a BA in Psychology with a minor in Women and Gender Studies, and a MA in Non-profit Leadership. She is currently the Public Policy Director at Central City Concern, a large multi-discipline direct service organization. In this position Mercedes is able to combine her passions for direct service, community engagement and addressing root causes of social issues through public policy.
Going through the MNPL program enhanced both my personal and professional development in ways that I am still benefiting from to this day. I loved being part of a program that centered on the unique components of a career in the nonprofit sector and I want to support the next generations of leaders who want to serve and lead in their community through mission based work.
Respond, don't react. Give yourself the mental, emotional, physical and social space to understand, learn and strategize. There is always so much happening, and it is easy to get pushed around by other's narratives and agendas, and forget to stay true to your mission. Be intentional, respond, don't just react.
I consider myself to be a very optimistic person, even now with everything that has been happening the last few years, I believe in the resiliency and power of community. I try to see possibilities instead of challenges, and I continue to be inspired by people who demand even more than what I see as possible. I love questions that start with "but why can't we just ..." It reminds me that, yes we can, and we may be the only ones that can. No matter how hard things get, I hope there is always someone who asks "but why can't we just ..." It's an opportunity to step up and be a leader, or step aside and let others lead.
We are architects of a civilization we may never see built.
Brian has worked in the nonprofit/higher education sector for more than 15 years, focusing on housing and diversity departments. He graduated from Cal State Long Beach with a MS in Counseling in 2007 and Seattle University with a Masters in Nonprofit Leadership in 2016. Brian worked for 9 years at Seattle University in Housing and Residence Life. He currently relocated to Bangalore, India to spend time with family and explore opportunities of growth.
During my time in the NPL program, I experienced what it means for an academic program to truly connect with values of an institution. Not only connect but to have a critical eye to whether it was truly meeting its own expectations and take that lens to the nonprofit sector. With this experience, I want to make sure that I am continuing that critical lens to the nonprofit sector and supporting other alumni as they continue in the field.
Your perspective of a situation will determine how you will show up when you are resolving it.
Watching my child grow every day and learning from my example. It makes me reflect on the type of person I am and being honest with all of who I am.
"Use the negative energy around you to make a positive impact."
Chiew Jones is the Associate Director of Experiential Learning at the Center for Career Connections/RISE Learning Institute at Bellevue College. She leads the internship program, designs and facilitates experiential learning trainings on career exploration, and develops partnerships with employers on internships.
Chiew co-leads the Womxn of Color mentoring circle affinity group, which serves to create a sense of belonging and empower leadership among women faculty and staff of color at Bellevue College. Prior to joining higher education, she has more than 15 years of experience in venture capital, international marketing and non-profit management. She graduated from the MNPL program in 2009. She was the commencement speaker for the graduate students that year. Chiew enjoys walking, dancing and experimenting with recipes of cuisines from all over the world.
During my time with the MNPL program, I cherished the supportive community and connections made with my cohort, the faculty and other cohorts. I also appreciated the mentors who chose to give their time to share their stories on leadership. It’s time for me to pay it forward.
When you resist, persist. Sit with the discomfort.
Seeing an increased representation of women and women of color in leadership positions in different sectors
“It is easy enough to vote right and be consistently with the majority. But it is more often more important to be ahead of the majority and this means being willing to cut the first furrow in the ground and stand alone for while if necessary." Patsy Mink, first woman of color elected to the U.S. House of Representatives and the first Asian American woman to serve in Congress.
Heidi Neff's career has focused on education and educational equity. After 12 years as a high school science teacher, Heidi worked to strengthen school computer projects in Zambia, then support youth and adult education in Seattle.
Heidi earned a master’s degree in Nonprofit Leadership from Seattle University in 2012. Since 2014, Heidi has led a program providing no-cost tutoring to youth residing in several Seattle low-income housing communities. She continues to learn about and work towards anti-racist approaches to education and leadership. Heidi lives in an intentional community and her personal interests include bird watching, gardening, and collaborative decision-making.
I am excited about ways to connect alums to the current work of the NPL program, whether it's promoting practicum placements or providing opportunities for alums to support current students and faculty.
Ask your staff how you can support them.
The opportunity to learn how to adapt in these changing times.
“If you have come here to help me you are wasting your time, but if you have come because your liberation is bound up with mine, then let us work together.” Lilla Watson and other Aboriginal Rights activists in Queensland, Australia
After Wendy graduated with a bachelor’s in Organizational Communication from Northwest University, she began an internship in fundraising and marketing in Dublin, Ireland. After spending three months learning about international organizations and how they fundraise and market their programs, Wendy returned to Seattle and began working and volunteering with various nonprofits.
In June of 2020, Wendy graduated with her master’s degree in Nonprofit Leadership and graduate certificate in Fundraising Leadership from Seattle University. Spending much of her life around medically fragile individuals, Wendy is passionate about organizations that focus on children and families facing medical challenges. She loves storytelling and creating unique ways to share missions with donors and volunteers. After six years in fundraising and communications, it is Wendy’s goal to continue her work in fundraising communications and advocate for the families and siblings of medically fragile children.
I got involved with the Alumni Council shortly after graduating in 2020. My time in the Nonprofit Leadership program greatly impacted how I think about my work and how I connect with others in the nonprofit sector. I wanted to be part of the Alumni Council so I could continue building relationships and supporting my colleagues, whether that is someone with much more experience than me, or someone just starting out that I might be able to help as so many alumni have helped me.
The organization does not rest on your shoulders is the best piece of leadership advice I have ever received. Nonprofits cannot function alone, we need boards, donors, volunteers, staff, and program participants. Those who believe the entire organization is their responsibility tend to burn out before they can truly make a difference so make sure you are taking care of yourself first.
The thing igniting my leadership right now is getting to see programs in action and being able to create new ways of sharing those experiences with my organization.
The quote that inspires me most is “great things never came from comfort zones.”