The Community Foundation Serving West Central Illinois & Northeast Missouri recently expanded its staff to help fulfill its mission of connecting people who care with causes that matter. This includes hiring Heath Richmond as Program & Evaluation Coordinator and evolving the role of current staff member Catherine Bocke Meckes to include development efforts as Development & Outreach Director.
“As the Community Foundation continues to grow, our Board of Directors recognized a need to grow our staff’s capacity and expertise in order to advance our mission and strive for greater impact,” said Jill Arnold Blickhan, Community Foundation President & CEO. “By elevating our professional team, we will be able to better serve our donors, grantees and communities.”
As Program & Evaluation Coordinator, Richmond manages the Community Foundation’s grantmaking programs, coordinates various strategic initiatives, works with grantee organizations, and defines, tracks and analyzes results and outcomes.
“This year, we are celebrating our 20th anniversary and with this milestone we see an opportunity to increase the impact we can make throughout our 12-county region through our grants. Heath’s background and experience with nonprofits and evaluation will be an integral part of reaching that goal,” said Blickhan.
Richmond comes with more than 20 years of experience with the Boy Scouts of America, Knapheide Manufacturing and most recently, Hy-Vee. He was raised in Clark County, MO, graduated from Culver-Stockton College, and attended the United States Air Force Officer Training at Lackland Air Force Base in Texas.
He has worked with communities across West Central Illinois as well as Lewis and Clark Counties in Northeast Missouri. He is versed in logic models and outcomes measurements and was trained by the United Way as an instructor to support other agencies. As a scouting professional, his chief responsibility was to recruit, train, and support teams of volunteer boards and committees to meet short, intermediate, and long-term goals that moved the organization’s mission and strategic plan forward. His experience working with volunteers and organizing program activities independently as well as in cooperation with a large number of other agencies is a plus.
Meckes was hired in April 2015 as Program & Outreach Coordinator, managing the Community Foundation’s grant programming and outreach efforts. As Development & Outreach Director, Meckes continues to manage marketing, public relations and outreach duties while assisting with the Community Foundation’s development efforts. This includes working with the county endowment program to assist with the establishment of new and growth of current county endowments.
“We see our county endowments as key in helping retain local assets,” said Blickhan. “Catherine has worked with our county endowments throughout her time with the Community Foundation. Her knowledge of these funds and the opportunities they provide will help us advance this program and its results.”
Meckes earned a Master of Arts in communication studies and a Bachelor of Arts in communication studies with concentrations in public relations and corporate communication at Eastern Illinois University. Prior to coming to the Community Foundation, she was a media manager at Golin, an integrated communications agency, at its global headquarters in Chicago. There, she supported and counseled pharmaceutical clients in traditional and digital media relations, social media management, event planning and coordination, and crisis communications.
Both staff members will work closely with the Community Foundation Board and President & CEO to fulfill the vision, mission and objectives of the organization.
The Community Foundation Serving West Central Illinois & Northeast Missouri builds permanent charitable funds to assist area nonprofits and communities.
Its mission, “connecting people who care with causes that matter,” is achieved by gathering funds, growing them through investments, then granting to nonprofit organizations, causes or communities that mean the most to its donors.
Since 1997, the Community Foundation has made more than $5 million in grants. It serves 12-counties: Adams, Brown, Hancock and Pike in Illinois and Clark, Lewis, Marion, Ralls, Pike, Knox, Shelby and Monroe in Missouri.
The Community Foundation has IRS 501(c)(3) status, and contributions made to the Community Foundation generally qualify for the maximum allowable deductions for income and estate tax purposes.