MBJ Group leads chief development officer search for local nonprofit

Admin Clients In The News

MBJ Group, a talent management company, led the successful search for the chief development officer for the Jewish Family and Children’s Service of the Suncoast, Inc., a fully accredited, community-based social service nonprofit.

With over 15 years’ experience in leadership of nonprofits, Laura McManus-Mesia has led organizations into new eras of income generation through strategic funding partnerships. She has managed high-level major capital campaigns totaling over $60 million.

In McManus-Mesia’s new role, she will support the CEO and further the mission of Jewish Family and Children’s Service (JFCS) by increasing its financial sustainability through the development of a viable philanthropy program. She will oversee the planning, development and implementation of marketing strategies, communications and public relations and coordinate with the organization’s other departments to increase awareness and fundraising.

“Laura is a strategic leader with creative vision and acute business acumen,” said Heidi Brown, the CEO of JFCS. “She has excelled in nonprofit fundraising and has a proven track record in securing corporate and charitable sponsorships. Laura is enthusiastic and very passionate about finding solutions for those in need and truly embraces the importance of our partnerships and our donors. She does not fear new challenges and is a success on an international level.”

Prior to joining JFCS, McManus-Mesia served as a philanthropic advisor for her family’s business management firm in Beverly Hills, Calif., where she managed a range of clients in the U.S. and the United Kingdom.

The Ireland native was also the chief of development for the Marine Society and Sea Cadets, two separate nonprofits with a focus on national and international maritime education and youth training. Before that, she was the head of regional fundraising for Mencap UK, the United Kingdom’s leading learning disability nonprofit to provide provisions to the UK National Health Service and contribute to international research and developments for learning disability organizations.

“As a mother and a fundraiser, it is my mission to combine my empathetic nature with my expertise and apply that to this dynamic and forward-thinking organization,” said McManus-Mesia, a mother of two young boys with her husband, who is a Sarasota native. “Considered thought leaders in the community of care in the region, I was drawn to the organization because it embraces all cultures and reaches to the root of the problem, giving directly to those who need it locally. I hope to service and secure a legacy for future generations, strategically grow the organization’s income and embrace donors along their giving journey.”

A graduate of the University of Ulster, Ireland, McManus-Mesia has a diverse international education. With a heart for helping others, McManus-Mesia serves on the board of the T.J. Martell Foundation and assists with the nonprofit’s events in Los Angeles, New York and Miami.

JFCS delivers a broad range of professional counseling and social services to individuals, families, seniors, adults, children and veterans on a secular, non-denominational basis. Through comprehensive counseling and social service programs, the nonprofit empowers individuals by helping them make life-altering changes to improve the quality of their lives. JFCS promotes self-sufficiency, providing people with the resources not only to cope but also to overcome life’s challenges.

About MBJ Group

Sarasota residents and co-owners Jim and Mary Beth Bos founded MBJ Group in 2000. The company focuses on four areas, including facilitating searches for nonprofit and for-profit organizations, working with professionals in career transition, utilizing career assessments to assist organizations in the hiring process and coaching senior-level executives. For more information, visit www.MBJGroup.com.