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User Spotlight: Jenay Barbee, Organizational Solutions


Get to know Jenay Barbee, Senior Manager of Organizational Solutions!

I get energized when someone that we’ve worked with returns to share the positive impact that our services have had on them or their organization.”

Tell us about yourself.

My first job after college was with a start-up nonprofit that had an incredible mission, limited staff capacity and financial resources. I quickly learned that organizations need systems and infrastructure in order to survive – passion alone is not enough! That experience planted the seed for my interest in nonprofit capacity building. I ultimately pursued graduate studies in Business Administration because I believe that nonprofit organizations should be among the most sustainable businesses in our community. The services that nonprofit organizations provide are innovative, resourceful, and vital to society.

What is the focus of your work, and how does it align with ConnectVA’s mission to empower individuals, advance organizations, and strengthen our community?

As Senior Manager for Organizational Solutions, I have the amazing opportunity to serve the many nonprofit organizations in our region by providing affordable and accessible organizational development resources.

I strive to provide nonprofit organizations with resources that promote sound management, strong governance, and operational excellence. This aligns with ConnectVA’s mission as we empower individuals with resources to lead organizations well, advance organizations through sharing best practices in governance, management, and operations. Building stronger nonprofits means building stronger communities.

I constantly refer individuals who are new to the sector or seeking more information about local nonprofits to begin with a visit to ConnectVA’s website. ConnectVA offers a tremendous resource through its Business Network to help support our mission to strengthen nonprofit operations by providing quality, affordable organizational development services. We use the Business Network to maintain a connection to nonprofit service providers and offer opportunities for networking, knowledge and information sharing.

What do you find most rewarding about your work?

I get energized when someone that we’ve worked with returns to share the positive impact that our services have had on them or their organization. Working for a capacity building organization does not often permit the opportunity to see the direct impact of services provided. Storytelling by our nonprofit partners is powerful and reassures me that the work we do everyday matters, too!

Tell us about your biggest accomplishment in this position.

One key thing that I have affirmed in this role is that I enjoy the start-up phase of the nonprofit lifecycle and programming. My biggest accomplishment in this position is building the systems and infrastructure to support the Organizational Solutions program and its offerings in organizational development, board development, and technical assistance.

What’s coming next for you and your organization that really excites you?

Organizational Solutions is a program in its nascent stage with so much opportunity for growth! We are excited about our increased capacity to offering more board development workshops, round table discussions, and providing technical assistance to nonprofit organizations. We’ve recently hired Annette Cousins, former Co-Executive Director of the Neighborhood Resource Center to manage our board offerings and I am so thrilled with the direction that our program continues to evolve.

Organizational Solutions is excited to partner with ConnectVA on its Innovation In event on April 22. You will absolutely love hearing from Carol Weisman; she’s engaging, entertaining, and also has a lot to say about nonprofit sustainability.

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