Julie-14Global nomad is a word that truly describes my formative years.  As a proud Navy daughter, we had the privilege of living throughout the US, Japan and the Philippines as I grew up to support my father’s career.  When I arrived as a freshman at George Mason University in 1992 I didn’t know a soul.  My primary focus was to understand and engage with the local community.  Upon graduation, I found a robust job market which embraced my skills.  I continued to leverage the idea of community throughout my career.  When Greg and I married, we slowly deepened our roots in Northern Virginia.  Over the course of the past 20+ years it has been incredibly rewarding to nurture the wonderful relationships this area has to offer. 

I was pregnant with our twins when I read the Community Foundation’s Portrait of Children report in 2010.  It resonated with our growing family and from that moment, we developed a relationship with the Community Foundation that has helped us to better understand the local needs in our region.  I’m grateful to board members Steve Gladis and Cathy Lange for introducing me to Eileen Ellsworth and the Community Foundation for Northern Virginia family.

Greg and I are founding members of the Community Foundation’s Future Fund, a giving circle for young professionals.  This group has been a perfect fit for our philanthropy – not only through giving donations, but also through giving our time and talents to support our local community.  Participating in Future Fund grant cycles has been eye opening.  As we have met the recipients of our grants, Greg and I have come to realize how significant every donor dollar is in the lives of others.  We are hooked!

Giving back in the Northern Virginia community provides us with the unique opportunity to truly understand and see the impact of our time, money and relationships. Knowing we are changing lives and making an impact with our neighbors is truly inspiring.   When our neighbors benefit, the community is better off and the rich fabric of our area is strengthened.

It is a privilege to be a member of the ever-growing Community Foundation family.  We are proud to support this amazing organization and have an impact in the area we live.   We think it is an ideal example of the African proverb, “If you want to go fast go alone.  If you want to go far, go together.”

Please join us on this amazing journey!