Programs & Services

The Center offers programming based on your needs—always keeping in mind to help build the leadership capacity of our neighborhood nonprofits. Our core program is a monthly series called BreakFACTS. These two and a half hour sessions focus on key management issues such as Board Governance, Outcomes Measurement, Finances, Technology and Fundraising.

Calendar of Events:

May 22, 2015

"Adjunct Boards: Leveraging Your Communities of Support"

Register Here

Upcoming EVENTS:

May 22, 2015

Adjunct Boards: Leveraging Your Communities of Support

Friday, May 22, 2015
9am-12pm (registration begins at 8:30am)

Martin Institute Auditorium at Stonehill College
320 Washington Street
Easton MA 02357
Directions and map

An increasing number of organizations today are building adjunct boards to raise their profile more broadly, and to more closely engage communities of supporters. During this workshop, we will review the variety of forms an adjunct board may take including Friends Groups, Advisory Boards, Young Professional Groups, and more. We will also discuss strategies and share tools for recruiting, retaining, and making the most of an adjunct board.

Attendees will leave the workshop understanding these key points:

  • Establishing a clear charter, purpose, and goals for an adjunct board
  • Providing meaningful opportunities for adjunct board members to contribute
  • Engaging adjunct board members to raise visibility and attract new clients/donors
  • Structuring roles, processes, and responsibilities effectively

About the Facilitators:

Bonnie Clendenning

Ms. Clendenning has over 25 years of experience in nonprofit management, fundraising, and external relations.  She was President and Trustee of the School for Field Studies, which provides accredited environmental studies programs around the world.  Bonnie previously served as Executive Director and Trustee of the Archaeological Institute of America and as Vice President of The Education Alliance, a higher education consulting practice.  Bonnie also held senior development and external relations positions at Radcliffe College (now The Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Studies), The University Hospital (now Boston Medical Center), Boston University, and Tufts University.  She is a board member of the Massachusetts State Committee of the National Museum of Women in the Arts and the Newton Community Chorus.  She previously served on the boards of The Boston Club for Executive and Professional Women, Career Collaborative, Fuller Craft Museum, New Repertory Theatre and Massachusetts Bay Community College. 

Marion Nierintz

Ms. Nierintz has a wealth of experience in fundraising, including campaign strategy and management; board governance; strategic planning; marketing/visibility; and general non-profit management.  Most recently, she was the Director of Development, Marketing and PR at Bay Cove Human Services. There, Marion was responsible for all activities related to fundraising, marketing, and public relations. During her tenure, she assisted the president and CEO in developing and implementing a long-range plan and secured and managed a $1 million capacity building grant from The Kresge Foundation. She also created, recruited members and provided ongoing support to two adjunct/advisory boards totaling approximately 120 members.  Prior to that, Marion spent many years in various executive positions at John Hancock Financial Services. Marion has been a part-time management school faculty member at both Boston University and Northeastern University and teaches workshops and consults on the above-mentioned topics.  Marion’s governance, board and adjunct board experience includes: Member of the Board and the Governance, Fundraising, and Event Committees of the Beacon Hill Village; Past Chair and current member of the Advisory Board of Women of Means; Past Chair of the Volunteer Council of Pine Street Inn; Past Member of the Board, the Fundraising Committee and Chair of the Governance Committee of the Boston Center for Adult Education

Past Events:

October BreakFACTS

Implementation Strategies - Reaching Your Goals With Limited Resources

Friday, October 17, 2014
9am-12pm (registration begins at 8:30am)

Brocktonian Room
16 Belmont Street
Easton, MA 02357

Led by Roots and Wings co-founders, Tabitha May-Tolub and Karin Firoza, this workshop will support small nonprofits in their continued efforts to break down their strategic plan into bite-size pieces that can be easily executed.

Participants will explore:

  • How to prioritize their goals and break them into manageable action steps
  • How to utilize and maximize the strengths and resources they already have
  • How to raise funds and support through articulating your vision using traditional community organizing tools

About the Facilitators:

Tabitha May-Tolub, Co-Founder and CEO

Tabitha holds degrees in Psychology and Education from Clark University and has been in the field of Youth Leadership Development for nearly 20 years. She has received extensive training in the areas of communication, mentorship, diversity engagement, peer mediation, leadership development, facilitation, dialoging, anti-bias and primary prevention education. She has worked in public schools, community-based programs and non-profit organizations with youth of all ages, parents, teachers and mentors from all over the country. Over the last 15 years she has specialized in youth leadership development at the middle and high school levels, empowering all types of youth leaders to strengthen their character and identity, connect with others through deeper communication and effect change in their community. When she is not supporting others in their work, she is at home raising two young leaders of her own and working on her own communication skills.


Karin Firoza, Co-Founder, Training and Consultation

Karin was born and raised in Queens, New York and is a graduate of Wellesley College, with a double major in religion and economics. At Wellesley, she was a fellow with the Interfaith Youth Core and a campus activist, striving to bring faith- inspired students together to promote social justice causes on campus.  Following graduation, Karin became a resident organizer with the Bend the Arc's Community Organizing Residency (COR) and spent a year as a union organizer in Baltimore, MD.  Currently, Karin oversees and coordinates Youth Leadership Programs in the Greater Boston area and coordinates Youth LEAD's annual TIDE Conference. As a proud active member of the Boston Muslim community, Karin plays a key role in the identity and leadership development of Muslim teens in the community. In her spare time away from the kids, Karin loves to dive into adventures with her friends and family. 


November BreakFACTS

"Let's Work Together" - The Sweet Sounds of a Board-CEO Partnership

Friday, November 21, 2014
9am-12pm (registration begins at 8:30am)

Martin Institute Auditorium at Stonehill College
320 Washington Street
Easton MA 02357
Directions and map

As the non-profit sector has become increasingly professionalized, so too have the expectations for the CEO of a non-profit organization become increasingly broad and sophisticated. If the CEO/Board relationship is to succeed, the Board must be sensitive to the responsibilities that the CEO has to his/her other duties. A strong partnership between the Chair of the Board and the CEO is a crucial element in successful relationship and positive outcomes for the nonprofit. It is important that the CEO and the Board are seen as a partnership, as allies, who play roles which are essential to achieving the common organizational purpose.

  • Learn how best to build a relationship between the CEO and Board Chair of your nonprofit
  • Understand each other's role as a board member and as the CEO
  • How NOT to micro-manage your CEO!

About the Facilitator:

Abbie J. von Schlegell, CFRE

Abbie has been in the development field for over 40 years. She has held key major gifts positions at Stanford University, The University of Chicago, and was Chief Development Officer for both the Shakespeare Theatre Company and for Enterprise Community Partners.

She edited the first book about women’s philanthropy, Women as Donors, Women as Philanthropists, published by Jossey Bass and continues to do research and speak about women’s giving.

Her extensive nonprofit experience includes capital campaigns, major gifts programs and volunteer and staff training. She now heads her own firm, based in western MA, and is a Certified Governance Trainer with BoardSource.

Spring 2014 BreakFACTS: Progression of Giving

Spring 2014 BreakFACTS explored the building blocks of successful fundraising.

Members of Stonehill College’s Advancement Team each month led workshops, sharing their expertise in the areas of Major Gifts, Planned Giving, Annual Giving, Special Events & Stewardship and Corporate & Foundation Relations.

Most importantly, attendees learned how all of these areas are connected and how they are each important to building an effective fundraising strategy.

If you would like the materials from these workshops, please contact us at

January 30, 2015

The People Factor: Volunteers and Donors

Friday, January 30, 2015
9am-12pm (registration begins at 8:30am)

Martin Institute Auditorium at Stonehill College
320 Washington Street
Easton MA 02357
Directions and map

This workshop will focus on how to increase your organization’s support from individuals—as both volunteers and donors. During this interactive session, participants will share their own experiences with building a community of individual supporters. We will also discuss the connection between volunteers and donors. You will learn to work collaboratively with individual supporters to create meaningful and engaging opportunities for contribution.

Attendees will leave the workshop understanding these key points:

  • Elements of an effective volunteer management plan
  • Recruiting tips
  • Volunteer and donor motivations

About the Facilitator: Theresa Hamacher

Theresa Hamacher is an ESC consultant and President of NICSA, a nonprofit trade association serving the global investment management community.  Theresa has extensive expertise in nonprofit governance, having served on boards for numerous organizations, including On the Rise and The Guidance Center, where she also served as President. She is author of 8 Habits of Great Nonprofit Boards: A Handbook for Smaller Nonprofits, forthcoming in 2014. 

 February 27, 2015 

The 80/20 Rule of Grants: Is Your Nonprofit Grant-Ready?

Friday, February 27, 2015
9am-12pm (registration begins at 8:30am)

Martin Institute Auditorium at Stonehill College
320 Washington Street
Easton MA 02357
Directions and map

Want to learn how to prepare your first grant AND be successful? Come to our February BreakFACTS where you will leave knowing that 80 of grant writing is about planning and preparation ... and 20 about the actual writing. We will discuss how crucial it is to have a packet of documents ready before you begin writing, including your 501 (c) 3, and you will leave with a list of those necessary documents!

In this session you will learn:

  • The place of grants plan in your development plan
  • The return on the time commitment of writing a grant
  • How and where to search for the right grants

About the Facilitator: Marie Kelly

As Stonehill College’s Director of Corporate and Foundation Relations, Marie is responsible for building relationships  with corporations and foundations to secure the necessary financial resources for Stonehill's institutional goals and priorities. She works directly with faculty, administration and staff to research, identify, cultivate, solicit, and steward corporate and foundation partners—matching Stonehill's strengths and needs with the grantmakers’ funding priorities. Prior to her arrival at Stonehill, Marie worked at Boston Children’s Hospital Trust for six years. She served as a member of the Corporate and Foundation Relations team and as a Stewardship Officer—preparing grant proposals and grant reports for major donors to Boston     Children’s Hospital Boston.

March 27, 2015

Making the Case to Get That Grant!

Friday, March 27, 2015
9am-12pm (registration begins at 8:30am)

Martin Institute Auditorium at Stonehill College
320 Washington Street
Easton MA 02357
Directions and map

Join us for our March BreakFACTS! Practice the elements of successful proposal writing in this interactive workshop, suitable for any staff member who wants to become a more-skilled proposal writer.

You will learn how to:

  • Write good problem statements, project descriptions, case statements, goals and objective, & evaluation sections
  • Express your activities succinctly
  • Tailor your proposal to various funders

About the Facilitator: Carla C. Cataldo

Carla C. Cataldo, M.P.P. brings more than twenty years of experience to her development consulting business. As a former municipal official and Executive Director of a non-profit, she has written successful proposals in the areas of: social services, housing, education, economic development, health, transportation enhancements, historical preservation, and the arts. Since 2002, her clients have received, on average, a return of 1552% on their investment of services. She has served as a member of the MetroWest Community Health Care Foundation’s Distribution Committee for six years, and is trained in the Peter F. Drucker Foundation’s Self-Assessment Tool.