Vice President of Philanthropy and Strategy, The Connecticut Project
Purpose-driven and committed to equitable outcomes across the state, Mirellise serves as Vice President of Philanthropy at The Connecticut Project, where she leads philanthropic strategy development, stakeholder engagement, and the design and implementation of the organization’s myriad of social investments and grantmaking efforts.
Mirellise has over twenty years of experience in the public and non-profit sectors, including policy, advocacy, and philanthropy. Prior to joining The Connecticut Project, she was Executive Director of the Tauck Family Foundation, a Bridgeport-focused grant-maker. She has also held policy and advocacy leadership roles at several international nonprofit organizations. Mirellise’s professional career began at the U.S. Department of Labor, where her work centered on child labor and education technical assistance grant programs, research, and policy. She has also served in various capacities on a number of Connecticut nonprofit boards and philanthropic membership organizations. Mirellise lives with her family in Darien, Connecticut.
Why do you do the work?
For me, this work is very personal. When I look back on my own life – growing up low-income, as a person of color, the child of migrants, and the first person in my family to go to and graduate from college – I am well aware of the inequities facing too many of our fellow neighbors. At the same time, I am extremely grateful for every opportunity I was able to access and strongly believe everyone, irrespective of their zip code, should have equitable access to the resources and opportunities necessary to thrive and achieve their full potential.
What are some specific places or things you love in Connecticut?
I love taking family walks at Cove Island and Mill River parks in Stamford. I also love taking my two boys to our local beaches, parks, and playgrounds, as well as the many wonderful community-based organizations throughout Fairfield County that inspire their love of nature and science, including: the Darien Nature Center, the Stamford Nature Center, The Maritime Aquarium, Stepping Stones Museum for Children, and the Beardsley Zoo.