Meet the Team: Iris – Community Engagement Manager

Why are you passionate about Live & Learn?

I am passionate about the program because it works. I can attest to that from personal experience. It not only helped me become financially independent and be the first one in my family to earn a high school and college degree. It also helped me find my true passion, strengthening our communities so that every one receives the services they need to reach their full potential.

When and how did you get involved with Live & Learn?

I joined Live & Learn in 2012 as a client. I was fortunate enough to benefit from the CDA credentialing program. Little did I know then that my life trajectory was about to change!

What is your role? What are your primary responsibilities?

I am the Community Engagement Manager, and I also work in Development. On the Development side, I help with events, fundraising, some grant writing, campaigns, communications, and social media.

The other part of my role is community engagement, which I am so excited about because it’s something new for Live & Learn! In this role I work on our in-kind program and strengthening our community resources, partners, and referrals. I will also be implementing an Alumni group and supporting our Advisory Council. I lead our corporate volunteer program and work with our Volunteer Coordinator on our mentoring, volunteering, and internship systems.

It brightens my day to hear why someone has chosen to support Live & Learn. As a program alumna and a past Client Coordinator, I know the impact donors and volunteers can have on someone’s life.

What is a typical work day like for you?

Every day begins with checking emails and ends with updating to do lists, one thing that is always certain is my 2 cups of coffee! After that, every day of the week looks different. Tuesdays are team check in’s, development and planning, Wednesdays and Mondays are client meetings and documentation, Thursdays are team meetings, video calls, and client follow ups, Fridays are catching up, make up client meetings and scheduling. Also meet with clients every other Saturday. It looks so easy on paper, I’m sure I’m forgetting so many things. These are the things that are constant, but we typically have other tasks to work on for events, campaigns or other seasonal things that come our way.

What are you working to accomplish in 2021?

My goal for this year is to have systems in place that will allow us to be more efficient and reach more supporters. An active and engaged alumni and advisory council. To reach our fundraising goals and start an in-kind program. All of our efforts will allow us to continue to meet the needs of Live & Learn women so that they can accomplish their goals with as little barriers as possible.

What is the biggest challenge you have in your job?

Social distancing! We have had to get really creative with our fundraising efforts and events. I had to learn to be more flexible but also more disciplined as I work from home while my children are distance learning.