NECCA welcomes Harris as strategic development director

BRATTLEBORO — Lissa Harris has joined the staff at the New England Center for Circus Arts (NECCA) as the Director of Strategic Development.

According to a NECCA news release, this position "was created as part of the 2022–2025 Strategic Plan to build financial longevity, increase capacity for program impact in the community, and to address the pressing need of increasing wages and benefits for staff."

As former development director for Food Connects, Harris created financial stability for that nonprofit organization through strategic fundraising and storytelling and was responsible for grants and campaigns, including a capital campaign yielding more than $1 million for a new storage facility.

Harris has extensive experience and a solid track record in fundraising and community engagement. With a career spanning over two decades, she has directed development efforts for a diverse range of organizations.

"As executive director at Strolling of the Heifers, she defied challenges, retained sponsorships and propelled events beyond setbacks," states the news release. In New York, "her passion for mission-driven work led her to positions at national organizations, such as Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) and the American Cancer Society, where she worked to secure funding and support for critical missions that touched lives on a national scale."

Her career journey encompasses fundraising, marketing, brand management, journalism, and working as a veterinarian technician. Rooted in a degree in psychology from Hofstra University and fortified by Fundraising and Development certifications from Marlboro College, NECCA says Harris "blends vision with action in all her development activities. Beyond her professional endeavors, Lissa also demonstrates community leadership having served on a school board, nonprofit boards, and community councils."

NECCA says Harris will be busy in her new role getting acquainted with current and prospective donors, organizing a fall donor event. and leading the end-of-year appeal. She can be reached at [email protected].

This The Arts item was submitted to The Commons.

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