Natalie P. Van Eron

Chief Development Officer

Natalie has always considered advocating on behalf of children to be her life¹s purpose. Her career and professional development has been entirely focused on improving the lives of children with physical, intellectual and developmental disabilities, as well as children who suffer economic challenges, educational inequalities or who have been abused and neglected. A fifteen year veteran of the non-profit industry and an attorney by training, Natalie's non-profit expertise includes major gift acquisition, donor relationship development, board structure/management, event sponsorship and non-profit branding/marketing.
 
Natalie began her career running a mentoring in Bridgeport, CT for low-income and at-risk children. She also served as the Director of Development and Marketing for Take Stock in Children, a mentoring and scholarship program in the State of Florida. In 2004, Natalie left TSIC to begin her career at Best Buddies International as the Vice President of Development and Marketing. In this capacity, she played a key role in the inaugural Hearst Castle Challenge and also forged many new sponsorships in New England in support of the Hyannis Port Challenge. Natalie also launched an aggressive new fundraising effort in New York City and spearheaded several national cause-related marketing efforts with Fortune 500 companies like the LIMITED Corporation.
 
In 2007, Natalie moved to Manhattan to pursue an opportunity at Changing Our World, one of the world¹s leading philanthropy consulting firms, where she served in both the Fundraising and Planned Giving divisions of the company. Natalie also worked privately as a consultant to some of the country¹s leading non-profit organizations, providing a fundraising structure and strategic plan to ensure financial stability. During this time, Natalie also graduated from the Connecticut School of Broadcasting and moonlighted as a local Sports Broadcaster in Nashville, TN.
 
In 2011, Natalie was very excited to return to Best Buddies, an organization that has always had a special place in her heart. In 2013, she was instrumental in launching the first ever Best Buddies Challenge Miami, a ride that exceeded its financial goal in its first year! She also oversaw fundraising efforts for the biggest Miami Gala in its 17 year history. Later in 2013, she was honored with the "Headquarters Employee of the Year Award" by her colleagues and in 2014, she was promoted to Vice President, National Development and Miami Challenge. In this new role, Natalie continued her successes in Florida, while also overseeing development efforts in Texas, Washington D.C. and New York City.
 
In a legal capacity, Natalie has worked for the Guardian Ad Litem Program (on behalf of abused and neglected children in dependency court proceedings). She has also worked under Robert E. Weisberg (a leading Civil Rights and Anti-Discrimination attorney in Florida), The HIV Education and Law Project (HELP, Inc) and the School Board of Miami-Dade County. She also received a fellowship from the University of Miami School of Law to design and implement a program for Special Education students through the Miami-Dade County Juvenile Public Defenders¹ office.
 
Natalie received her B.A., cum laude from Fairfield University in CT and her J.D., cum laude, from the University of Miami School of Law. She is also a proud member of the Miami Scholars Program, which recognized her strong academic achievements and demonstrated commitment to public service by providing her a full ­tuition merit based scholarship upon entering her first year at UM.
 
She is thrilled to join the YouthBuild family and is honored to serve as its first Chief Development Officer.  In this newly created role, she will work alongside CEO John Valverde and other members of the Senior Leadership Team to secure new sources of revenue and to diversify revenue streams. She will also be building out a focused Development Department and consolidating the grant management functions organization-wide. She looks forward to becoming a long-term and successful member of the team!