Laura Lewis Mandeles’s entire 30+ year career has been spent helping nonprofits achieve their missions and contribute positively to their communities and constituents. She spent nine years at National Public Radio, becoming Senior Development Associate for Cultural Programming, and raising millions of dollars from private and public-sector funders. As a consultant, Laura has worked with a range of organizations on planning and resource, program, board, and proposal development.
Laura engages strategic planning clients with a highly personalized style, good listening, and straight talk. She challenges boards and staff while remaining collegial and enjoyable to work with. Her meetings are never boring, and never, ever pointless — her meeting facilitation generates a creative spirit and thoughtful, constructive dialogue.
Both strategic planning and fund raising clients have come to rely on her understanding of the funding community and fund-raising strategy, her ability to analyze and synthesize information as a meeting facilitator and as a writer, and her skill in developing written materials that articulate organizational goals and strategies and make a superb case for support.
Laura’s skills in case development and proposal writing are in demand, not just for her high level of cogent and compelling writing, but also for the fund-raising and programmatic analysis and strategy that she incorporates into all major writing assignments.
Strategic planning clients have included the Brooklyn Bridge Park Conservancy, The Bazelon Center for Mental Health Law, New York City Center, the Winthrop Rockefeller Institute, the National Association for Olmsted Parks, New England Foundation for the Arts, and the Smithsonian American Art Museum. She has conducted detailed development assessments and campaign feasibility studies for a variety of organizations, including the American Philological Association, Liz Lerman Dance Exchange, the Architectural League of New York, Children’s Defense Fund, and People For the American Way.
Other clients of interest include the Rockefeller Brothers Fund’s Pocantico Conference Center, with which she has worked to plan for future uses of the Rockefeller Pocantico Hills estate, and The Alliance for American Quilts, which she helped guide for more than a decade from a start-up organization through a founder transition.
Laura graduated cum laude from Princeton’s Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs, earned a master’s in urban studies from Occidental College, and received a Management Fellowship from the National Endowment for the Arts. When not working with nonprofits, Laura is a cantorial soloist and professional singer performing in the Washington, D.C. area.