Sara Peterson


Member profile details

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Middle name
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Personal Information

Area of Expertise
Nonprofit Management
Sara is a management consultant to nonprofits, government, foundations, and community groups. She spe-cializes in practical governance and board development, a wide range of planning and facilitation, evaluation, and organizational assessments.

Since beginning practice in 1998, she has assisted well over 200 organizations from small, all-volunteer start-ups to a multi-billion-dollar funder. Her portfolio has spanned the United States and included organizations in Africa, Asia and the Caribbean.

From 2000 to 2010, Sara worked at LarsonAllen LLP. During that period she led organizational development, planning, program evaluation, and search engagements; made numerous presentations on governance, evaluation and organizational change; managed the firm’s annual nonprofit conference; and managed marketing efforts within the firm’s nonprofit and government consulting group. She left the firm in 2010 to set up her own business – guiding clients in strategy, governance, and management.

Prior to her employment with LarsonAllen LLP, Sara developed expertise as a funder and an attorney, serving as program officer to the James Ford Bell Foundation in Minnesota and as litigator for the Child Support Recovery Unit in Iowa. At the foundation, she managed a multi-organization collaboration, administered grant programs, and maintained information systems for the philanthropic consulting firm in which the foundation was housed.

Sara’s education includes all course work toward a Master of Arts in public policy from the University of Minnesota Humphrey School of Public Affairs with a concentration in nonprofit management. She obtained a juris doctor with high distinction from the University of Iowa College of Law and a Bachelor of Arts in French with a minor in music from the University of Iowa.

Sara serves as treasurer for the IAP2 USA Midwest Chapter, is an active member of the Nonprofit Alliance of Monroe County's training/outreach committee, volunteers with the Monroe County Humane Association – currently serving as chair of its board of directors (interim executive for a portion of 2013-14), serves on the Bloomington Rotary Club’s international service committee, and has recently joined WFIU Public Radio’s Community Advisory Board. Sara’s service to her community has also included the marketing committee of the Charities Review Council, the advisory board of the League of Women Voters of Minneapolis, president of the Humphrey Institute Alumni Board, secretary for the Textile Center of Minnesota, and the IAP2 USA board of directors.

Fnally, Sara is or has recently been a member of the Association of Governmental Risk Pools (AGRiP), BoardSource, the Democratic Women’s Caucus, the Greater Bloomington Chamber of Commerce, the Indiana Coalition for the Arts, the Indiana Evaluators Association, the International Association for Public Participation (IAP2 USA), the Nonprofit Association of the Midlands, and The Nonprofit Centers Network.
Nature of Business

Community of Practice

Years of Experience
10+ years

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