Jeanne C. Tedrow, President & CEO, North Carolina Center for Nonprofits
The North Carolina Center for Nonprofits collaborates with regional capacity building partners across the state. When I joined the Center in August 2017, one of those who welcomed me and shared her experiences and connections was Natasha Davis, executive director of QENO (Quality Enhancement for Nonprofit Organizations).
After 11 years with QENO, Natasha recently decided to make some professional changes, and one was to leave QENO in pursuit of private consulting. While this is a bittersweet announcement, we know that she will continue to provide capacity building support for nonprofits as she pursues this next step in her professional journey.
Given the important capacity building work that QENO has been doing, Natasha leaves with great confidence in the team she leaves behind. She was a mentor to the current interim director, Stephanie Straughn, and the office and event coordinator, Davonna Cohen, both of whom began at QENO as UNC-Wilmington students. In leaving, she took time to recognize both for their professional growth, achievements, and commitment to equity and inclusion, social justice, and leadership. Natasha made it her mission to mentor others and to encourage so many in the Wilmington area nonprofit community. The example that QENO has offered as a community engagement arm of UNC-Wilmington has been impressive as QENO celebrates their 15-year anniversary.
Natasha’s message to her team resonates across the nonprofit community, which we can all echo: AMPLIFY our voices, CONNECT organizations to needed resources, CULTIVATE our nonprofit leaders, and STRENGTHEN our organizations.
Her legacy at QENO will continue to be felt as she transitions into a private practitioner role, where she will continue to “remain a fierce advocate for the Wilmington region’s nonprofit sector and the people that they serve, who are often ignored. This new opportunity allows me to have a greater voice at the state level that hopefully brings more attention and resources to our region.”
Natasha also expressed her gratitude for her work with others in the nonprofit sector. “The past 11 years have been the most rewarding years of my life. I am honored to have worked alongside you all in the amazing work that you do to better our communities and our world. To our nonprofit volunteers and staff, you all have inspired me, surprised me, grounded me, taught me, and supported me. To our community partners, thank you for seeking creative ways to address our communities’ needs, support our nonprofit sector, and devote the time and resources to work together for greater gain.”
As Natasha makes her way into her private nonprofit consulting career, we wish her well and offer kudos for all that she has done for QENO and nonprofits in southeastern North Carolina. We look forward to our paths crossing and continuing with the commitment and passion to build a strong nonprofit ecosystem.