Sara is a consultant to nonprofits, government, foundations, and community groups. She provides practical governance and board development assistance; designs and implements a wide range of planning and facilitation processes; evaluates programs; and assesses organizations.
Since beginning practice in 1998,
she has assisted hundreds of organizations – from small, all-volunteer start-ups to a multi-billion-dollar funder. Her portfolio has spanned the United States and included projects in Africa, Asia, and the Caribbean.
From 2000 to 2010, Sara was part of a national consulting practice at LarsonAllen LLP. During that period, she led organizational development, planning, program evaluation, and search engagements; made numerous presentations on governance, evaluation and organizational change; managed the firm’s annual nonprofit conference; and managed marketing efforts within the firm’s nonprofit and government consulting group. She left the firm in 2010 to set up her own business –
Photo Credit: Poppy Mills
guiding clients in strategy, governance, & management.
In the years since then, she has been honored to serve new and old clients in a busy solo practice.
Prior to her employment with LarsonAllen LLP, Sara developed expertise as a funder and an attorney, serving as a program officer to the James Ford Bell Foundation in Minnesota and as a litigator for the Iowa Department of Human Services, Child Support Recovery Unit. At the foundation, she managed a place-based grantee collaboration, administered grant programs, and maintained information systems for the philanthropic consulting firm in which the foundation was housed.
Sara’s education includes graduate study at the University of Minnesota Humphrey School of Public Affairs master’s program with a concentration in nonprofit management. She received a juris doctor with high distinction from the University of Iowa College of Law and a Bachelor of Arts in French with a minor in music from the University of Iowa.
Sara currently serves on WFIU Public Radio’s Community Advisory Board. She is also a partner member of the Association of Governmental Risk Pools (AGRiP) and a consultant member of BoardSource (Certificate in Nonprofit Board Consulting, 2018).
Her community service has included officer roles with the Monroe County Humane Association, the IAP2 USA Midwest Chapter, the Textile Center of Minnesota, and the Humphrey Institute Alumni Board; as well as work on the Nonprofit Alliance of Monroe County's training/outreach committee, the IAP2 USA board of directors, the Charities Review Council's marketing committee, and the League of Women Voters of Minneapolis' advisory board.