Belong! welcomes Lynn O'Connell as our new executive director.
Lynn O’Connell is a nonprofit professional with more than 30 years working in the nonprofit sector. She has served 23 years as an executive director at three different organizations prior to Belong - Computer CORE, Docs In Progress (an arts nonprofit) and the Physician Assistant Foundation. Before her work with nonprofits, Lynn served 12 years as a Foreign Service Officer. Most of her time overseas was spent in sub-Saharan Africa although she served on shorter assignments in western Europe and in countries of the former Soviet Union.
"I am thrilled to be joining Belong! The mission of Belong! to connect, equip and empower those in need is critical at this point in time. The pandemic has been hard on us all, but it HAS BEEN PARTICULARLY TRAUMATIC for the underserved. We need to work together and strengthen our community for today - and for the future," says Lynn. "ALSO, A SPECIAL THANK YOU TO VIENNA PRESBYTERIAN CHURCH FOR THE WARM WELCOME AND SUPPORT."
Lynn holds a Masters in Philanthropy from Indiana University, a Certificate in Executive Non-Profit Leadership from Duke University, and is a Fulbright Scholar. Lynn is also on the faculty teaching nonprofit courses at Catholic University and at Northern Virginia Community College.
Lynn is a past board chair of Volunteer Alexandria as well as Empowered Women International. She currently serves as board chair for Together Women Rise, a national giving circle which supports organizations in developing countries that are working to educate and empower women and girls; she is also a member of the local chapter, Vienna/Fairfax Together Women Rise. A strong supporter of giving circles, she was a member for many years with the Giving Circle of HOPE and is currently a member of Giving Together and the Awesome Foundation. She is a member of AAUW-Alexandria and the Junior League of Washington. She attends National Community Church-NOVA.
In her spare time, she enjoys live theatre, and one of her recent favorites was "A Child's Christmas in Wales" produced by the Vienna Theatre Company.