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YNPN RVA Spotlight: Great Nonprofit Bosses 2017

This past Monday, we celebrated National Boss Appreciation Day!

In the spirit of appreciating great leadership in our local nonprofit sector, we are highlighting a few of YNPN RVA’s 2017 Great Nonprofit Bosses.  In case you missed last week’s post – here are all of the 26 Great Nonprofit Bosses chosen by young nonprofit professionals around Greater Richmond!

Read on to learn more about four nonprofit bosses who will be speaking about their professional careers, leadership and growth during the 2017 Great Nonprofit Bosses Celebration with YNPN RVA on November 1st at the Hippodrome Speakeasy!  Make sure to purchase a ticket and join us for an evening of recognition, learning and socializing with nonprofit peers and leaders!

Robert Bolling, Chief Executive Officer, ChildSavers

Robert Bolling is the CEO at ChildSavers, a 90+ year-old not-for-profit agency that provides child mental health and child development services in the greater Richmond, VA community. Prior to this position, Robert served as Executive Director of the William Byrd Community House, a community based agency that serves the needs of children and families in the tradition of the settlement house movement of the early 19th century.

Other nonprofit work includes Boaz & Ruth, an agency that helps the formerly incarcerated to achieve independence, and The Healing Place, a long-term residential recovery center for homeless men suffering from addiction.  Early in his career Robert ran a youth workforce development program that helped high school and college students find summer employment.

Robert’s professional career spans nearly three decades and includes experiences in the public and private sectors before his not-for-profit career. Robert has lived and taught school in Botswana, Africa, at a multi-racial private school founded in opposition to apartheid.

Robert is a graduate of Amherst College with a degree in political science. He also completed a post-college, two-year fellowship through Amherst.  Robert has studied leadership at the Darden School of Business at the University of Virginia and completed coursework in Virginia Commonwealth University’s Snead School of Business. He is a member of the 2005 Class of Leadership Metro Richmond.

Here’s what Robert’s colleagues had to say about him: “He is personable, has an infectious passion, is a great listener, does not withhold feedback, and knows how to highlight good work.  Robert does not lead by telling us what we are going to do, he leads by listening and responding. This makes him a very effective leader, and inspiring to work with.”


Chris Hairston-White, VP of External Affairs, Better Housing Coalition  

Chris joined the Better Housing Coalition (BHC) in 2015 as Vice President of External Affairs, overseeing BHC’s fundraising, communications and policy efforts.   The Better Housing Coalition, a non-profit community development corporation, transforms communities through high-quality, eco-friendly affordable housing.

Prior to joining BHC, she was a Vice President and Senior Business Banking Relationship Manager at Wells Fargo Bank, N.A., where she managed a portfolio of business clients with gross annual revenues from $2 million to $20 million. In addition to her position at Wells Fargo, Chris’s 12-year banking career includes retail and commercial banking experience with Premier Bank, Inc. (formerly Consolidated Bank & Trust) and Bank of America.

Ms. Hairston-White serves on the Board of Directors of Bon Secours Richmond Health System; Audit & Compliance Committee Member, the Commercial Real Estate for Women (CREW) Richmond board, ART180’s Finance Committee, Cultural Art Center’s Craft + Design Show Committee, and ChamberRVA’s Brand Committee. Previous service includes ART180 Board, Joint Hospital Board of Bon Secours Health System Richmond, Board membership for the Virginia Tourism Authority and F.I.R.S.T. Contractors, Inc; and the Associates Board for Richmond CenterStage Foundation.

Chris received her B.S. in Business from Virginia Commonwealth University and is a member of Leadership Metro Richmond’s class of 2009.

Here’s what Chris’s colleagues had to say about her: “Chris leads by example. She’s a coach, an obstacle remover. She’s creative, energetic, hardworking, and expects excellence from all team members. She innately understands our strengths and capabilities, and uses these insights to draw the best from us.”


Myra Goodman Smith, President & CEO, Leadership Metro Richmond

Myra Goodman Smith is the President and CEO of Leadership Metro Richmond (LMR), our region’s community leadership development and engagement organization, which has served our community for 37 years.

Myra has a wide range of mission driven management and leadership experience. Serving at United Way of Greater Richmond and Petersburg for 23 years, Myra was the Vice President of Community Programs, Organizational Development & Planning, Operations and Corporate & Foundation Relations.  Myra also served as VP of Campaigns, leading the region’s largest community-wide campaign, generating $22.6 million.  Prior to United Way, she was an Institutional Researcher and an Economic and Community Development Planner.

She serves on the national board of the Association of Leadership Programs, the advisory boards of VCU LEAD, the Institute of Philanthropy at UR, the Junior League, the Capital Region Collaborative, Bridging Richmond and as Treasurer of the Jenkins Foundation.  Virginia Lawyers Weekly named Myra as one of the most “Influential Women in Virginia”.

Myra holds a Bachelor’s degree in Urban Studies and Planning and a Masters of Public Administration from Virginia Commonwealth University.

Here’s what Myra’s colleagues had to say about her: “Authenticity, accountability and accessibility are what make Myra an effective leader.  Myra is always her true self.  She is an advocate for inclusion, a champion for diversity, and an exemplary servant leader.  She has a genuine love for the Richmond region and the many communities that it encompasses.”


Megan Hodges, Director of Development, NAMI Virginia

Megan Hodges Mann has over a decade of professional experience in fund development, which stems from her love of connecting volunteers and donors with the “right fit” or non-profit cause for them. She currently serves as the Director of Development for NAMI Virginia (National Alliance on Mental Illness of Virginia) where she is responsible for the organization’s fundraising, budget and marketing.

Previously, she worked at JDRF and the American Cancer Society where she was responsible for fundraising, support and educational programs, and volunteer management. Megan earned her B.A in Sociology – Criminology and Spanish, with a minor in English, from Lynchburg College.

She is a 2012 graduate of Mentor Richmod through the Greater Richmond Chamber of Commerce and a 2014 graduate of the Emerging Nonprofit Leadership Program.

Megan recently completed the Board Immersion Program through Make-A-Wish Greater Virginia and participated in the Professional Partnership Program through VAFRE (Virginia Association of Fundraising Executives). She is passionate about access to quality and affordable healthcare, and this value drives her volunteer and professional activities. Megan is a member of VAFRE and YNPN RVA (Young Nonprofit Professionals Network RVA).

Here’s what Megan’s colleagues had to say about her: “It is evident from her involvement in her employees’ and volunteers’ time at work that she wants to see people succeed and grow while looking to prepare the best talent for the Richmond area non-profit scene. She is highly invested in her people and models excellent ethical and work behavioral choices in her role that set up those who work for her to learn best practices for a bright future at our organization and beyond.”

Congratulations to all of the 2017 Great Nonprofit Bosses!  We hope you will join us at YNPN RVA’s Great Nonprofit Bosses Celebration Event on 11/1!  All are welcome!


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