Courtney Manuel is I Live Here I Give Here's Executive Director

I Live Here I Give Here is pleased to announce the appointment of Courtney Manuel as the nonprofit’s new executive director. She is set to begin in this role on Tuesday, January 22 and will lead the organization, which is focused on making Austin the most generous community in the nation, in a continued period of growth and success for the nonprofit.

Manuel will take over for interim executive director, Lindsay Muse, who will return to her role as senior director of operations in advance of ILHIGH’s annual Amplify Austin Day campaign, which returns for a seventh year on Thursday, February 28 through Friday, March 1. The organization is inspiring Central Texas residents and neighbors to give $11 million to over 700 local causes during this year’s campaign to build upon the $45 million they’ve raised for the community over the past six years.

“Our efforts are supported by local companies, foundations, nonprofits, and individuals who are dedicated to making Austin a better place for all. That said, we are so thrilled to have found our new executive director in Courtney Manuel. Courtney’s talents and her passion for community building shone through, and we knew she would be the perfect fit to take our organization to greater heights. Her leadership will carry the organization forward, driving transformative community impact and engaging new givers,” said Blake Absher, ILHIGH board of directors search committee chair.

Manuel joins ILHIGH with over a decade of experience in fund development, management, and leadership. She began her career in the nonprofit sector working in collaboration with the City of West Hollywood and the Jewish Family Service of Los Angeles. Following a move to Chicago, she held the position of special events & communications manager at Literacy Chicago, and then as senior manager of sponsorship & special events at the American Red Cross of Greater Chicago.

Most recently, Manuel held a variety of positions at the University of Texas at Austin in Austin, Texas, where she advanced to eventually serve as executive director for development at Dell Medical School that she helped to build from scratch and lead development operations. Manuel’s professional experience boasts many impressive highlights, including leading a campaign at Dell Medical School that has raised over $200 million to date towards a $1 billion, 10-year goal. To accomplish this goal, she worked closely with visionary donors, the Dell Medical School dean, and faculty, as well as key University of Texas partners, to create a case for support and a comprehensive, successful development plan. Manuel additionally designed the development department structure and strategically selected a talented team of development professionals to support this work.

“I am so fortunate to have chosen a career that prioritizes improving the community in which I live and work. But to now lead an organization whose vision is to make Austin the most generous community in the nation is the opportunity of a lifetime. Therefore, I am honored, and humbled, to serve as the next executive director at I Live Here I Give Here -- an organization whose stellar reputation and enormous impact across our city's vast nonprofit landscape has already made an indelible mark. I am eager to begin working with the brilliant staff and dynamic board of directors to further grow and shape the organization as we move into our next decade of service,” said executive director Courtney Manuel.

Celeste Flores, who served as executive director of ILHIGH for three years, departed from the nonprofit in August of 2018. Lindsay Muse, senior director of operations, served as interim executive director throughout the search process for a new executive director.

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Catherine Lucchesi