Study the principles of effective leadership and management techniques essential to the lasting success of a solid volunteer program.
Professional volunteer administrators from some of Houston’s largest nonprofits discuss the principles of effective leadership and management essential to the lasting success of a solid volunteer program.
Job Title: Program Director for the Department of Volunteer Services
Organization: The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center
Degree(s): Bachelor's degree in speech communications
Mary Donnelly Jackson has been professionally managing volunteers for twenty-two years. Mary is currently the program director for the Department of Volunteer Services, Division of Institutional Advancement, at the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center. She has been with MD Anderson since 1999. Previously, she recruited and managed volunteers for Junior Achievement of Southeast Texas and the Beaumont Main Street program, a program of the Texas Historical Commission. Mary completed her B.A. degree in speech communications with a minor in journalism from Texas A&M University in 1992. Mary has been an active volunteer in the community with the Museum of Fine Arts Houston, Trinity Family Alliance, Ronald McDonald House, Texas Children’s Hospital, Children’s Museum of Houston, Museum of Natural Science, St. Michael’s Catholic Church and the Junior League of Houston. She also serves as an Anderson Ambassador at MD Anderson. She is a member of Leadership Beaumont and Leadership Houston. Mary was selected to receive the MD Anderson Public Affairs Achievement Award in 2007 and the MD Anderson Volunteer Services Quarterly Performance Award in December 2003 and December 2009.
Heather Patrick is the chief executive officer of HSP Services, LLC, a consulting firm that focuses on helping organizations increase revenue, build sustainability, maximize talent and capitalize on strategic partnerships. Ms. Patrick has spent more than fifteen years in the nonprofit community both as a volunteer and nonprofit executive, serving at the local, regional and national levels of healthcare nonprofits focused on impact. In previous roles, Ms. Patrick has been responsible for the design and implementation of an entire community engagement plan for a $10 million organization, development and execution of best practices for 120 Affiliates, with revenues of more than $100 million, ranging from fundraising to structure to governance, leading the development and management of community grants program portfolio that spans 2000 organizations and makes investments of $95M annually, and developing the strategy for restructuring a field network to leverage resources and improve efficiencies. In August of 2009, she was selected to participate in the Leadership Institute for Nonprofit Executives at Rice University. She is also a part of the Nonprofit Leadership Alliance Host Committee for the 2016 Alliance Management Institute, serves as the chair of the Delta Gamma Foundation Richard D. Shirk Family Lectureship in Healthcare Values and Ethics at the University of Houston, was a member of the 2012 Community-Campus Partnerships for Health Conference planning committee, participates on the Advisory Council for the Houston Delta Gamma Foundation, and served on the Advisory Council for the St. Luke’s Episcopal Health Charities Center for Collaborative Leadership. Ms. Patrick earned her B.B.A. from the University of Houston.
Organization: Boys and Girls Country of Houston, Inc.
Degree(s): Bachelor's degree in criminal justice and master's degree in social work
Melissa Simon, MSW, CFRE is the director of development at Boys and Girls Country of Houston, Inc. Ms. Simon has 27 years of experience in the social service sector,16 of which she has spent in resource development for nonprofits. She holds a master of social work degree from the University of Houston and a bachelor of science degree from Sam Houston State University. Before receiving her MSW and transitioning into nonprofit management and development, Melissa was a Licensed Chemical Dependency Counselor, working with at risk youth in alternative schools, probation departments, and locked facilities. Since that time, she has focused on fundraising and capacity building for nonprofit organizations, always in the social service sector. Melissa began her fundraising career as a contract proposal writer, and was the grant coordinator for a large nonprofit with 14 programs. She has participated in many federal review panels scoring proposals for government funding. Melissa considers herself to be a generalist, but continues to be involved in the proposal writing process in addition to her other responsibilities as a DOD. In addition to teaching the Proposal Writing I and Volunteer Management classes at the Glasscock School of Continuing Education at Rice University, Melissa is the President Elect of the Association of Fundraising Professionals, Greater Houston Chapter.
Gina Murphy is a positive and enthusiastic nonprofit professional with thirteen years of increasing responsibility and experience in the design, implementation, support, and evaluation of volunteer management systems. She is currently the Volunteer Experience Director at the Girl Scouts of San Jacinto Council. In this capacity, she supervises and provides professional development opportunities for volunteers and staff; curriculum and program development for adults and youth; budget development, volunteer management and development; risk management, and strategic planning. She also holds a Certificate with Distinction in Nonprofit Management from Rice University’s Center for Philanthropy & Nonprofit Leadership.