Mark is most sought after as an expert proposal writer and project strategist. He is the creator of the Open Communication Fundraising Model, a system that enables all nonprofit agency stakeholders to effectively work together toward organizational and fundraising goals. Mark has consistently served nonprofits as a staff member, board member or consultant since 1991. He has raised more than $38 million for his clients and employers by obtaining grants for organizations of all types, sizes and locales, particularly for health, human service, community development and technology needs. Mark is a board member of Carolina Public Press, a past Association of Fundraising Professionals of Western NC board member, and a member of the Grant Professionals Association. He regularly provides training sessions through a number of venues, including the Duke University Continuing Studies Nonprofit Management program, 4Good, WNC Nonprofit Pathways, and Alliance for Better Nonprofits.
Senior Proposal Writer
Susan brings over twenty years of experience to her role at Communication Mark. With a Master’s in biology, Susan planned initially for a career in research, but a mass media fellowship with the American Academy for the Advancement of Science stoked her interest in communications. Seven years on the staff of Southern Appalachian Forest Coalition provided additional experience in program development, communications and fundraising. During ten years as an independent consultant, Susan engaged investigative and fundraising projects for clients including Carolina Public Press, UNC-Asheville, The Wilderness Society, and the US Forest Service. Most recently, Susan served as grant writer and community partnership liaison for Buncombe County Schools, delivering gifts and grants totaling some $3.8 million.
Lisa brings a wealth of education-related grant writing and management experience to Communication Mark. She has more than 12 years of experience working with state and local educational agencies and nonprofits, helping them secure and manage grant funds that impact the populations they serve. She was raised in Florida, and started her career at the Florida Department of Education in 2004. Since that time, she has secured and managed grants and budgets ranging from $10M to more than $700M, developed and increased performance and efficiencies of teams at local, district, and state levels, and wrote and amended statewide policies, practices, statutes and rules. She moved to Asheville in 2015 and has been with Communication Mark since that time. She is an active volunteer in the community, and serves on the POP Project (Pages Opening People, a literacy organization) Board of Directors and the Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Asheville’s Earth and Social Justice Steering Committee.
Liz has successfully directed the development departments at a veteran’s organization, a Massachusetts community health center and a Connecticut public health department. These roles have honed her skills of writing and reviewing proposals with a team, working with major funders and providing fiscal management. She has also managed various public health programs in Connecticut for at-risk populations, such as pregnant women, HIV/AIDS clients, substance users and others, overseeing a diverse staff. She graduated from Clark University, Worcester, MA, with her B.A. in Psychology, and from New York Medical College with a Master of Public Health in Health Policy and Management. Liz is certified as a Grant Professional by the Grant Professionals Certification Institute, earned her certificate in Nonprofit Management from the University of Hartford and completed the Certification Program in Community Health Center Management at Suffolk University. In the past few years she has served as a board member on the Friends of Hamilton Lake Association in MA, and participated in various public health groups such as the Disparities Task Force, the Maternal/Child Health Committee and the Public Health and Medical Work Group. Liz moved south in 2015 and is looking forward to laying deeper roots in Western North Carolina.
Valerie brings a variety of experiences to her primary role of writing proposals and researching potential grant opportunities for Communication Mark’s diverse clientele. She grew up in Hawaii, received her Bachelor of Arts from the University of Chicago in Germanic Languages and Literature, and began her career in publishing with positions at Encyclopaedia Britannica and the Joint Commission. Valerie then moved into marketing communications and to the Carolinas, working for both forprofit and nonprofit organizations. Her nonprofit experience includes volunteer service as the Lake Wylie Lakekeeper, and as a board member of the Catawba Riverkeeper Foundation and the Association of Fundraising Professionals Western North Carolina Chapter. Valerie currently volunteers with Mountain True/French Broad Riverkeeper.
Alice grew up in suburban New Jersey, where she developed a bad case of wanderlust. After attending college in New Jersey and Massachusetts, she finished her Bachelors in Fine Arts at the University of New Mexico. Since that time, she has worked in a variety of jobs, from managing a quick print store to freelancing as a scenic artist. During her travels she has honed her administrative skills, and has now alighted in Asheville. She still pursues painting and writing in her spare time.
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