The Nonprofit Risk Management Center is located in historic Leesburg, Virginia. Our offices are 13 miles from Washington’s Dulles Airport and 32 miles from downtown Washington, DC. Our address is: Nonprofit Risk Management Center, 15 N. King Street, Suite 203, Leesburg, VA 20176. Our telephone is: (202) 785-3891. Our fax number is: (703) 443-1990.
Melanie Lockwood Herman, Executive Director
In a world that is fraught with danger, it is comforting to know that Melanie Lockwood Herman is holding on tight to the handlebars of the Nonprofit Risk Management Center. The Center provides training, technical assistance and informational resources to help nonprofits take a practical approach to managing risk so that they can fulfill their missions and stay out of trouble.
A prolific author of a more than a dozen comprehensive (and comprehensible!) guides on various risk management topics, Melanie has delivered countless workshops, seminars, and keynote presentations for organizations simply unwilling to leave success to chance. Melanie earned a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Urban Affairs from American University (Washington, DC) and a Juris Doctor from George Mason University (Arlington, VA). She is a member of the District of Columbia Bar Association.
On August 1, 2013, Melanie was named to The NonProfit Times Power & Influence Top 50, the 16th annual “celebration of the executives moving and shaping the nonprofit world.” This is Melanie’s fifth appearance on the list: she was first recognized in 2007, and then again in 2008, 2011 and 2012.
Melanie is the former chair of the Legal Section Council of ASAE/The Center for Association Leadership, and during 2010-2013 she served on the Not-for-Profit Advisory Committee (NAC) of the Financial Accounting Standards Board (www.fasb.org).
A calculated risk taker, Melanie loves raw fish, scalding coffee, and riding her 2009 Buell Blast, 1964 Norton Electra or 1970 BSA Bantam motorcycles (she always wears her helmet). She also embraces risk by serving on three nonprofit boards. To be on the safe side, she is a certified lay speaker for the United Methodist Church.
Upcoming Speaking Engagements
- December 6, 2013—“Nonprofit Forecast and Risk Review: Preparing for 2013,” Association TRENDS, Washington, DC
- January 9, 2014—“Risk Management Resources for Community Action,” Management and Leadership Training Conference, Community Action Partnership, Ft. Lauderdale, FL
- January 13 - 14, 2014—“TD&T Financial Risk Seminar,” TD&T CPAs and Advisors, P.C., Oskaloosa, IA and Iowa City, IA
- January 24, 2014—“Risk Management Resources for CIS Leaders,” Communities In Schools, Leadership Town Hall, Charlotte, NC
- January 25, 2014—“Board Orientation,” American Diabetes Association, Alexandria, VA
- February 7, 2014—“Capacity Building Institute,” YMCA of the USA, Santa Fe, NM
- March 21, 2014—“Risk Management," and "HR Risk Management,” Austin Community College & the Texas Association of Nonprofit Organizations, Austin, TX
- May 28, 2014—“Risk Management Track,” Pennsylvania Bar Institute, 2014 Nonprofit Institute, Philadelphia, PA
Kay Nakamura, Director of Client Solutions
As Director of Client Solutions, Kay is our go-to staff member for the array of products and services offered at the Center. Finding solutions makes her day. With a career in customer support, Kay can help your nonprofit find fit-to-suit tools and resources that will help you recognize, evaluate and manage the risks your nonprofit faces.
Kay earned a Bachelor of Business Administration, with a Finance Concentration, from Saint Mary’s College (Notre Dame, Indiana) and a Master’s of Business Administration, with a Marketing Concentration, from the University of New Mexico. She has directed consumer projects across several industries and understands operational as well as program risks. Volunteering has been a big part of Kay’s life as well. She has chaired nonprofit fund raisers, fêtes, and galas, and has been an enthusiastic volunteer at nonprofits in the U.S. and overseas.
A fan of both fine cuisine and travel, Kay maps her next journey based on local specialties. One of her favorite delights is sampling spicy foods, particularly from Asia and the Southwestern United States. She has bravely tried many unusual dishes over the years, and always has a glass of milk nearby! She recognizes that the reward of tasty, spicy food comes with a bit of risk. Her personal mantra is, “Make sure you have a backup plan!”
Alexandra Ricketts, Project Manager
Alex joined the Center in 2013. As a project manager, she leads and supports consulting projects and answers questions from Affiliate members and Center clients. Her responsibilities include drafting articles, factsheets and reports on a wide array of risk management topics. She is enthusiastic about the opportunity to work with and support nonprofit organizations in the U.S. and around the world.
Alex is a recent graduate of Virginia Tech where she earned a B.A. in Communication. Throughout her college years, she was involved with several on-campus organizations. As an intern at Virginia Tech Motorsports, Alex coordinated PR for a senior design team of engineers. Prior to that, she was a lead broadcast news anchor for the Virginia Tech student television station and a feature writer for HerCampus.com, an online magazine for college women. While at Tech, Alex enjoyed participating in intramural sports and volunteering at the local Humane Society.
When she is not reading or writing, Alex enjoys photography, watching the latest blockbuster, and dancing—even if she doesn’t have much rhythm. An avid traveler, Alex isn’t afraid to explore unfamiliar territory. Whether she’s visiting a new city, helping a nonprofit leadership team understand their risks, or on the hunt to alleviate her incurable sweet tooth, Alex is comfortable taking risks and embracing adventure.
Arley Turner, Project Manager
As project manager, Arley writes engaging content, supports consulting projects, and fields inquiries from Center clients and members. She also creates educational materials and helps develop custom cloud applications. She enjoys working with the diverse array of organizations served by the Center, and is inspired by the mission and work of nonprofits.
Arley graduated from Furman University (Greenville, SC) in May of 2013 with a B.A. in Communication Studies. During her time at Furman, Arley was involved with several on-campus organizations and held numerous leadership positions. As Vice President of her sorority, she led meetings and organized presentations. Arley also worked in the admissions office and assisted with campus visits and tours. When she wasn’t busy with on-campus volunteer activities, Arley interned at a local communications firm, DNA Creative Communications, which supports the communications needs of small nonprofits.
Always ready for a new adventure or experience, Arley brings an eclectic mix of interests and activities to the Center, from painting, traveling the world, to watching football with her dog. Arley is always willing to take a risk to show support for the Denver Broncos. She has been known to wear Denver apparel into opponents’ stadiums (but only with friends and family by her side). Although she’s a staunch fan, she also understands the importance of a good support system!
The following professionals provide invaluable support that brings the Center’s mission to life. Throughout the year these dedicated team members support our publishing, software development, training and consulting programs. When you engage the services of the Center (or purchase one of our products or tools), your nonprofit benefits from the expertise and dedication of a diverse array of talented professionals.
If you ask Don what he does for a living he’ll tell you he’s a Geek. Actually, he is the principal of Don Withrow Consulting, a Fairfax, VA-based firm specializing in mission critical application development. These days much of his development work is for web applications and the backend services that support those applications. Don’s expertise is an ideal fit with the mission of the Nonprofit Risk Management Center, where he serves as a key team member in all of the Center’s web application projects. Don says that the real fun in his work comes from the variety of people and challenges he finds working with his clients from the nonprofit, financial, publishing, training and legal communities.
When Don isn’t working, which is seldom, you might him find riding his Harley on the beautiful back roads of Virginia, West Virginia and Maryland. Or, you might find him in Fairfax teaching students how to learn to ride a motorcycle and manage the risks along the way. Don is something of an expert in motorcycle-related risks. He began riding at age 12, and although you wouldn’t know it otherwise, he claims this was “a very long time ago.”
Edward M. Mulherin, CPA, Esq.
Ed has over 30 years of experience providing audit, CFO and consulting services to a diverse group of nonprofit clients nationwide. In 1990 Ed was one of the founding members of Leonard, Mulherin & Greene, P.C., a CPA and consulting firm specializing in nonprofit clients and has been instrumental in the firm’s direction and dramatic growth over the past twenty years. In 2000, Ed conceived and founded eCratchit, a revolutionary concept for bookkeeping and accounting services. eCratchit has developed and supports a proprietary Web-portal software that allows the company the ability to perform daily bookkeeping functions for client organizations, while ensuring clients complete access to accounting records and software online. In addition, the company provides setup and cleanup services as well as CFO and Controller consulting. The company currently has over 150 (including 50 nonprofits) clients located all over the country for which they provide bookkeeping and accounting services and has 20 employees. Ed has lectured and written extensively on nonprofit finance topics and prides himself on his ability to take a practical, realistic approach to finance issues. Ed works with dozens of nonprofit Boards, helping them understand and support their missions with strong financial management. Ed has served as the Nonprofit Risk Management Center’s “Virtual CFO” for the past nine years and has also partnered with the Center on several client engagements.
When Ed is not advising clients on financial management issues, he spends as much time in Vermont as possible, trying to accomplish his personal 20/20/20 goals: challenging yourself to do something you love 60 times a year. Ed’s 20/20/20 interests are Snowboarding, Golf and Fly Fishing. Ed is a magna cum laude graduate of Boston College and is a cum laude graduate from Suffolk University Law School. He served on Intuit’s Advisory Council for QuickBooks users in 2004 & 2005
Diana Del Bel Belluz is a risk management evangelist. As a child, she wanted to become either a mathematician or a pastry chef. A true generalist, at university, she completed undergraduate and master’s degrees in systems design—the ‘artsy’ engineering program. In 1990 she landed in the risk management field and found it was the perfect opportunity to blend her analytical skills with her creative side. Ever since she’s been doing innovative risk work with clients in the corporate, government, and nonprofit sectors—helping them to make well thought-out, proactive, systematic, and bold decisions that balance risk and reward. Diana is enthusiastic about spreading the gospel of risk management because she regards it as an essential discipline for any organization with ambitions to deliver the most good it can with the resources entrusted to it.
In her spare time, Diana advances the field of risk management by organizing conferences, teaching courses and management training seminars, speaking to groups, and authoring publications on a wide range of risk management topics. Through her company Risk Wise, based in Toronto, Canada, she publishes the Risk Management Made Simple Advisory, a free online newsletter with tips on how to actually implement systematic risk management. And she’s developed into a fine cook and still bakes the occasional pastry!
Alan is a nonprofit management professional who is oddly passionate about nonprofit accounting and financial management. He has provided financial training and consulting to nonprofit organizations in California and Washington State and has presented workshops and seminars across the U.S. Alan is pretty sure no one went into nonprofits because they like finance and risk management, but notes that those are the areas that can get charitable organizations into a lot of trouble. Alan has worked as a consultant and also as the Director of Finance and Quality Reporting with the California Association of Nonprofits. Alan enjoys working with organizations to get their systems in shape so they are able to focus on their missions. When not consulting with or blogging about nonprofit accounting he can be found in his wood shop, trying to keep all his fingers while making wooden toys. A more detailed bio can be found at "www.linkedin.com/in/alanstrand.
Mike Gurtler is a risk management professional who enjoyed 25 years as a YMCA professional before forming Safe-Wise Consulting in 2007. Safe-Wise works with nonprofits all over the US helping to nurture sound safety and risk management practices. Mike subscribes to the Center’s broad but practical approach to risk management and tries to avoid being type-cast as an expert who tells people what they cannot do. Mike is a key team member in the Center’s youth-protection, aquatic safety and recreation consulting practice. According to Mike, “I think the challenge for insightful risk consulting is being able to say “Yes” in a responsible way that is acceptable to the organization and its mission.” Mike has produced a substantial body of topical resources on various risk management topics and is a capable and popular trainer and presenter.
Mike lives in Maine with his family: Michele (spouse of 17 years), Mason (son of 9 years going on 30), Bella (the dog) and Lucy (a very independent cat). The Gurtler family braves the New England winters in order to enjoy the mountains, lakes, ocean and small town community living. An avid basketball player, Mike can often be found at the local Y chasing after his errant shot attempts and setting up orange safety cones.
Joe Risser, CPCU, ARM-P
Joe Risser is a risk management consultant who presents, trains and writes on risk management topics in the areas of special events, student interns, camps, contract insurance requirements, waivers and vehicle operations.
Before retiring from a career in higher education risk management Joe served as Director of Risk management for California Polytechnic State University in San Luis Obispo. Joe brings invaluable experience to Center projects involving nonprofit and public entities with special events, facilities, workplace safety and camping exposures.
Joe’s professional metamorphosis from camp director to public entity risk manager is fitting for a former Boy Scout who loves to keep people safe. Years of community service in Search & Rescue operations taught him the value of preparation and the hard lesson that even with good planning, bad things can happen.
Thankfully Joe took to risk management like a duck to water. He quickly learned that applying the basic tools and lessons of risk management can keep the bad thing from happening, or at least lessen the negative impact.