Kirsten Russell is Vice President of Community Impact at the Community Foundation of Sarasota County.
Kirsten first joined the foundation in 2014 as a consultant leading our community’s first Campaign for Grade Level Reading effort. Over time, as the initiative expanded to include a two-generation approach, she planned our region’s inaugural 2Gen Summit in partnership with Ascend at the Aspen Institute in 2016. The following year, she joined the foundation team as Director of Community Investment and in 2019 was promoted to Vice President.
In her current role, Kirsten builds the community impact strategy and vision for the foundation’s initiative work including Season of Sharing, the Suncoast Disaster Recovery Fund, and several education related initiatives including Strauss Literacy Initiative, EdExploreSRQ and the Student Emergency Fund. She is a former member of the Human Services Advisory Council (HSAC) and currently serves on the Lee Wetherington Board of Directors and our local LCAN steering committee. Kirsten is 2023 graduate of Leadership Florida.
Passionate about our community and how we care for each other, Kirsten volunteers with her daughter for local organizations and initiatives such as All Faiths Food Bank, the Suncoast Campaign for Grade Level Reading, Riverview Kilties, and Rise Above Performing Arts.
Kirsten holds a BA in English from Drew University and an MBA in Finance from The George Washington University. Prior to joining the Community Foundation, Kirsten worked as Vice President of Client Development at Marsh & McLennan, Group Publisher for The Magazine Group, and Publisher and Director of Sales and Marketing for Business Forward magazine.