RESUMÉ

EXPERIENCE
 

Executive Vice President

Thompson Island Outward Bound Education Center

March 2015 - present

 

Thompson Island Outward Bound plays a significant role locally and nationally in closing the opportunity gap, engaging middle schoolers in a no-cost multi-year progression, integrating hands-on field science with a unique approach to challenge, compassion and leadership. Funding model combines multi-pronged philanthropy with a robust events business (weddings, conferences and corporate outings). 

Chosen as organization’s first EVP, serving in a Chief Operating Officer role, to: 
1) oversee all revenue lines for growing organization with 50 year-round and 100 seasonal employees, 
2) manage organization as CEO became more external-facing, 
3) ensure coordination across departments, 
4) significantly raise the organization's public profile.

Examples of accomplishments:

  • Oversaw 47% revenue increase, including unprecedented growth in both earned and philanthropic income; managed budget of $8.3M with $7.7m endowment

  • Hired and managed 7-person Senior Management Team, improving efficiency and diversity (across race, culture, socio-economic background, LGBTQ, and religion); directly managed CFO, VP of Development, VP of Human Resources, island's General Manager, and the Director of Communications and Marketing

  • During team transitions, served as interim VP of Education (six months) and interim VP of Human Resources (two four-month stints)

  • Designed interactive employee retreats, as well as tools to set goals and evaluate and reward performance

  • Consistently generated earned media (including 25 stories in the past three years), with coverage in Boston Globe, WBUR, Boston Business Journal, and national education magazines; revamped Communications dept

  • Created essential Board committees: Communications and Marketing, and Enterprise

  • Co-led planning process to double the number of students served, resulting in "Scaling Our Impact" 5-year plan; in year one of plan exceeded both revenue goal and numbers of students served

  • As soon as pandemic began, led the process of developing multiple budget scenarios and, with CEO, made early decisions to ensure mission strength and financial strength of organization

 
Mayoral Advisor and Senior Project Director – Education, Health, and Human Services

Mayor's Office, 1996-2014

 

Developed and implemented child/family policies and programs; managed teams across government, private sector, and non-profits; advised City departments and CBOs on marketing and strategic planning; member of senior mayoral staff strategy teams; crafted speeches, briefings and press releases; hired and supervised staff of new initiatives; generated funds for mayoral priorities.

 

Program:

  • Co-created Smart from the Start, documented to increase school readiness among the city’s lowest-income children.

  • Designed Y/BPS, public-private partnership to re-engage families in the city’s schools.  80% of participating families surveyed, originally planning to opt out of the public schools, instead enrolled their children in BPS.

  • Co-founded Countdown to Kindergarten, replicated in 4 cities, 7 states and the Netherlands.  Collaboration prepares parents to be partners in their child’s education and embeds outreach and customer service practices in the school system.                                                                                                      

  • Co-facilitated teams that developed Boston 2:00 to 6:00 initiative (now “Boston and Beyond”); the Office of New Bostonians; and Boston’s women’s health summit.

 

Resources:

Raised $8.5M in seven years.

 

Media:

Co-anchored TV series. Consistently obtained positive spotlights on Mayoral initiatives – via radio, television, print and social media.

 

Policy:

  • Developed Executive Order granting City employees paid time off to visit public schools for their children’s education.

  • Created BPS “School Preview Time” policy to ensure all schools offer a minimum of three opportunities for parents to explore their educational options.

  • Managed team of 100 Boston leaders to develop Thrive in 5 ten-year roadmap to prevent the achievement gap in the next generation, key component of Boston’s Opportunity Agenda.

 

 

Producer and Host of Parenting in Action TV Show
Boston Neighborhood Network and Mayor's Office, ​2009-2014

 

Following English and Spanish focus groups, designed weekly cable show on Boston Neighborhood Network, providing vital information to parents of young children. Sample topics: autism, asthma, tantrums and transitions, breast-feeding, parenting through crisis. Trained Haitian co-host. Recruited investors to develop show into 19-episode DVD series now being used in health centers, Head Start programs, and ESOL classes.

 

 

Coalition Executive Director, Allston-Brighton Healthy Boston

Developed Boston’s largest neighborhood coalition – 350 business leaders, human service providers, clergy, elected officials, and residents. Tripled coalition membership, oversaw multilingual strategic planning, and raised $1M to improve immigrant health access and expand youth programming. Facilitated monthly community meetings of 100. Managed part-time and full-time staff.

 

 

Speakers Bureau Director, AIDS Action Committee

Created education program for country’s 2nd largest AIDS service organization. Tripled number of people educated annually. Managed team of staff and trainers to speak before state legislators and lead workshops in shelters, businesses, schools and hospitals. Consulted to AIDS programs statewide.

 

 

Managing Editor, Bromfield Street Educational Foundation

Managed GCN, non-profit newspaper with ten full-time staff. Doubled fundraising income via grant-writing, direct mail, individual solicitation, and event production.  Prior to Managing Editor role, served as Advertising Manager, increasing revenue by 50%.

 

EXPERTISE
  • Strategic Planning

 

  • Resource Development

 

  • Marketing and Communications

 

  • Policy Creation

 

  • Staff Development

  • Public Speaking

 

  • Convening and Facilitating – Across Organizations and Sectors

HONORS
  • Boston Globe - profiled as one of “Six in the City,” leaders improving the quality of life in Boston

  • Presidential Commission on AIDS – testified on program management

  • Massachusetts State Senate – citation for professional work improving the quality of life for Boston residents

  • Heller Graduate School – chosen to deliver commencement address

  • Selected to participate in LeadBoston

  • BNN “Spotlight Award” for creating and producing Parenting in Action

  •  “Unsung Hero Award” for creating programming in Allston-Brighton that has endured for more than 15 years

  • Led public health teams that won awards from Boston Management Consortium for “overcoming significant barriers to successfully address key city issues,” and commendation from National Healthcare Forum for “outstanding efforts to improve community health status”

COMMUNITY INVOLVEMENT

Boards:

  • Children’s Hospital Office of Child Advocacy (5 years)

  • Playworks Massachusetts (2 years)

  • YMCA of Greater Boston (10 years)

 

Volunteerism and Mentoring:

  • Ride Captain, Rodman Ride for Kids/Family Nurturing Center

  • Creator and teacher of public speaking curriculum for students in grades 4-5 and college students

  • Former field supervisor, graduate Social Work students, Boston University and Boston College

  • Served on Boston AIDS Consortium team allocating federal treatment and prevention funds

  • Mentored teenagers in successful high school dropout prevention

PRESENTATIONS

TOPICS:

  • “Marketing in the Public and Non-Profit Sectors”

  • “Preventing Simplicity and Divisiveness in Social Policy Dialogues”

  • “Strategies for Working Families”

  • “Conducting Effective and Inclusive Community Meetings”

  • “Assessing Outcomes of Coalition Work”

  • “Evaluating Community Needs and Resources”

  • “Collaborative Models to Address Linguistic and Cultural Barriers”

 

AUDIENCES:

  • National League of Cities

  • Sustaining Urban Neighborhoods Conference

  • Panel with Attorney General Scott Harshbarger

  • B.U. School of Communications, UMass/Boston, Lasell College

  • Massachusetts Dept. of Public Health Statewide Conferences

  • Heller Graduate School

  • Brown University

Education

 

Heller Graduate School at Brandeis

Master’s Degree in Management of Human Services, 1992

Specialization in Health Policy

 

 

Brown University

B.A., Women’s Studies, 1984

University commendation for volunteerism

 

 

Harvard Business School

Executive Education Program, 1998

“Finance for Senior Executives”

 

   
 

Laurie Sherman

Author / Executive / Advocate

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© 2014

Laurie Sherman