When it comes to making positive, long-lasting change through philanthropic leadership, Lourdes Germán is a trailblazer with incredible drive and dedication.
Lourdes has taken on many roles at United Way for over a decade, devoting her time and resources as a donor, board member, and volunteer. Her reason for doing so can be captured in one word: Impact.
“United Way makes an incredible impact in my community that is remarkable and 100% local. I know of no other non-profit that creates pathways to change the lives and trajectory of children, youth, and families in my community at the scale that United Way does,” says Lourdes.
Initially, Lourdes became a donor and a volunteer by watching the work of United Way staff who led by example. “From the start, they helped nurture my interest in becoming a donor and volunteer by understanding my passions and priority for making a difference. Karley Ausiello, who leads community impact, and my sister Rita German, who formerly directed several programs at United Way, were integral in introducing me to the many ways to contribute as a donor and volunteer aligned with my interest in supporting and enabling women.”
About 10 years ago, Lourdes helped created the volunteer program for the United Way Women’s Initiative as the first co-chair of the Women’s Leadership Council with Kimberly Reinert and Alicia Canady Adamson. “It was incredibly gratifying to help form the initial channel that would allow thousands of rising young women leaders to contribute to their community in meaningful ways.”
Volunteering for United Way has been one of the most rewarding experiences fo Lourdes. She particularly enjoys being a part of the Thanksgiving Project, the Community Baby Shower, and volunteering within local United Way grantees, such as the Crianza Con Cariño program at the Brighton Family Nurturing Center.
“It’s incredibly gratifying to see a child or family better positioned to succeed after a small contribution of hours as a volunteer to programs like this and to hear directly from them what it means to have support from our team of volunteers,” she says.
Today, Lourdes say that she is fortunate for the thoughtful cultivation efforts of Lisa Rowan-Gillis, Chief Development Officer, and her team members – particularly Janet Collins and Rosie Martel-Foley – who help frame the many opportunities she has to contribute to United Way in ways that are aligned to her interests.
One of the ways Lourdes continues her philanthropic efforts is by being a member of the Tocqueville Society. “I understand the vital role that my personal philanthropic actions can play in creating long-last changes in society and I am proud to join a community of like-minded leaders who share that vision at United Way.”
Lourdes Germán is Director of International & Institute-Wide Initiatives at the Lincoln Institute of Land Policy and is founder and Director of the Civic Innovation Project – an online thought leadership platform that was recognized in 2017 by GovCio Outlook Magazine as one of the Top Ten Companies using technology to advance government civic engagement. Lourdes also serves on the faculty of Boston University where she teaches a graduate course on urban management and public finance.
Outside of work, Lourdes is the appointed Chair of the Massachusetts State Finance and Governance Board by the Governor of Massachusetts; is an appointee of the Mayor of Boston to the board that oversees the City of Boston’s audit and budget; serves on the board of United Way; and serves on the board of the Rappaport Center For Law and Policy at Boston College. In addition to her professional roles, Lourdes is also a published author – her co-authored book, Finance for City Leaders, was published by the United Nations in 2016.