May 6, 2019
Contact: Lisa Demer, 907-334-0529
Anchorage, AK – Rasmuson Foundation is pleased to announce three new hires as we grow to better serve Alaska. One is our first external affairs program officer, with duties that bridge grantmaking and connections with the larger philanthropic world. Two are program officers on the Foundation’s grantmaking team. They bring more than six decades of work experience with expertise in the arts, child welfare and community collaboration.
Join us in welcoming these additions to the team:
Vaughnetta J. Barton, external affairs program officer. Barton joined Rasmuson Foundation in March 2019 with more than 30 years of experience in nonprofits with a focus on community partnerships and strengthening organizations. She has held senior leadership positions in early learning, mentoring and welfare-to-work. Her most recent position launched the University of Washington School of Social Work’s prevention-based project, Communities in Action. At Philanthropy Northwest, a close partner, she developed its fundraising strategy. She is an alum of the Puget Sound-area’s Leadership Tomorrow. In this newly created Rasmuson Foundation position, Barton will connect with other foundations and funders to encourage broad investment in Alaska.
Tanya Dumas, program officer. Dumas also joined in March with more than 15 years of experience in programs designed to help children, families and communities thrive. Most recently, she served as director of operations for the Indian Child Welfare team at Casey Family Programs, a national operating foundation. Before that, Dumas worked as a corporate litigator in San Francisco and devoted pro-bono time to cases addressing education, voting rights and more. She also is an alum of Leadership Tomorrow and earlier served as a VISTA volunteer, coordinating an early childhood literacy program in two rural Oregon schools.
Enzina Marrari, program officer. Marrari joined the foundation in February after 15 years of working for government and nonprofit organizations in Alaska. Marrari, a practicing artist, previously served as curator of public art for the Municipality of Anchorage. She also has worked as grants manager for Access Alaska, director of education for Planned Parenthood of Alaska and adjunct professor at the University of Alaska Anchorage. She currently serves on the Municipal Arts Advisory Commission and as board chair for Momentum Dance Collective. In 2018, Marrari was recognized as one of Alaska’s Top Forty Under Forty emerging leaders through the Alaska Journal of Commerce.
“We build from within, so we can do more for Alaska. It’s invaluable to have subject matter experts on staff especially in areas where we support expansive programs, such as the arts and human services,” said Diane Kaplan, Rasmuson Foundation president and CEO.
“Art making is a solutions-based practice,” Marrari said. “It is the process of identifying a challenge and understanding how to use tools to resolve it.” That creative process will help guide her work at the Foundation, she said. In addition, she hopes to provide greater insight into Alaska’s art landscape.
About the Foundation
Rasmuson Foundation was created in May 1955 by Jenny Rasmuson to honor her late husband, E.A. Rasmuson. Through grantmaking and initiatives, the Foundation aims to promote a better life for all Alaskans.