My guest for this episode is Irene Shih. For 18 years, Irene has served students in low-income communities — as a middle and high school classroom teacher in Arizona, a strategic advisor to superintendents in large urban school districts like Boston Public Schools, and a thought leader on state-level education policy in Massachusetts and Connecticut. Irene joined Minds Matter Bay Area (MMBay) as its first full-time CEO in March 2019, returning to her hometown roots in the Bay Area.

Irene is a corps member alumna of Teach For America, holds an M.P.P. in Social & Urban Policy from Harvard Kennedy School, and completed a B.A. in English Literature and Women’s Studies from U.C. Berkeley. She is a member and contributing writer on the Forbes Nonprofit Council and a contributing writer for the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation and Nonprofit Quarterly.

As the CEO of Minds Matter Bay Area, Irene has led the organization and its 300-student and 300-volunteer-strong community through the adversity of a global pandemic, through changing cultural attitudes about remote work and work-life balance, toward unprecedented levels of growth. Above all, Irene and her leadership team are focused on the culture and values of MMBay, fostering an educational environment that nurtures generational impact on its students by cultivating relationships between students and an ecosystem of volunteer mentors.

Here’s what to expect during the episode:

  • What notable challenges has Irene faced since taking on the role of CEO, and how has she overcome or addressed them?
  • What are the three core volunteer roles in Minds Matter Bay Area (MMBay)?
  • How do leaders effectively convey gratitude and acknowledgment for the hard work and dedication of volunteers?
  • What common errors do organizations make when recruiting volunteers, and how do these mistakes impact the overall recruitment process?
  • How can leaders create a positive, engaging volunteer experience to ensure long-term commitment and satisfaction?

Connect with Irene Shih!




Link for Trust Building Action Plan

Mary’s book is available on Amazon or wherever books are sold: Love Your Board! The Executive Directors’ Guide to Discovering the Sources of Nonprofit Board Troubles and What to Do About Them.

Be sure to subscribe to Inspired Nonprofit Leadership so that you don’t miss a single episode, and while you’re at it, won’t you take a moment to write a short review and rate our show? It would be greatly appreciated!

Let us know the topics or questions you would like to hear about in a future episode. You can do that and follow us on Facebook.

Connect with Mary!


Inspired Nonprofit Leadership Facebook Group:

Company Facebook: