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Margo Beland
Margo Beland
Finance Manager
207.620.8266 x108
Margo Beland joined MeHAF as Finance Manager in June 2015. As a newly created position for MeHAF, it will significantly strengthen MeHAF’s internal financial management capacity. Margo is responsible for the finances, human resource management, and working with the foundation’s investment advisors and the Board of Trustees’ Finance Committee. For several years, Margo served as MeHAF’s contract accountant through her former employer, Maine Development Foundation. Through her work, Margo has over 30 years of experience in the non-profit finance and operations administration. Margo is a graduate of Thomas College and a Leadership Maine alumna, Upsilon Class. Margo resides in Augusta with her husband Bob. Margo has a grown son and step-son and two grandchildren. She enjoys travelling in the winter and spending time at her camp in southern Maine in the summer months.
Charles Dwyer
Charles Dwyer
Program Officer II
207.620.8266 x103
Charles Dwyer joined MeHAF as Program Officer in December 2012. He currently oversees MeHAF’s Healthy Community and Rural Health Programs, and provides assistance to the foundation’s Governance Committee. Charles is also an advisor of the Maine Community Foundation’s Equity Fund. He has 16 years of public health experience, most recently serving as the health department liaison in the four county area of the Mid-coast. From 2006 to 2011 he served as the Director of the State Office of Rural Health and Primary Care which began convening the statewide Health Workforce Forum and the Maine Tele-health Collaborative under his leadership. Other roles at the Maine CDC have included Assistant to the Director of the Division of Infectious Disease; HIV, STD, and Viral Hepatitis Program Manager, Public Health Educator, and Disease Intervention Specialist. Charles is proud to be a former AmeriCorps National Service Volunteer and a lifelong resident of Maine, Charles graduated from the University of Southern Maine, School of Social Work in 1996. He completed the Northeast Regional Public Health Leadership Institute in 2002, and continues to explore opportunities to learn and grow both personally and professionally.
Jake Grindle
Jake Grindle
Program Officer I
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Jake Grindle joined the MeHAF staff in September of 2015. He currently oversees MeHAF’s Health Equity Capacity-Building and Advocacy grant programs. Jake also has responsibility for several research and communications functions. Prior to this position, Jake worked at Western Maine Community Action, where he served as the Project Coordinator for the Maine Community Action Health Navigator Project. In this role, Jake spearheaded community outreach and enrollment efforts for the statewide consortium of CAP agencies that have been engaged in health insurance Marketplace enrollment. Prior to assuming the Coordinator position, Jake served as the Field Director for the Northeast Archaeology Research Center and the University of Maine at Farmington. He has also worked as a Community Organizer for the Maine’s People Alliance and Maine People’s Resource Center, and was a founding member and organizer for Visible Community in Lewiston. Jake is a graduate of the University of Maine at Farmington. He currently lives in Pownal with his wife and two dogs, where he spends his free time tending his garden and small fruit tree orchard.
Holly Irish
Holly Irish
Grants Associate
207.620.8266 x115
Holly Irish is MeHAF's Grants Associate. She joined MeHAF in December 2011 as the Program Assistant. Holly is responsible for a range of duties related to the effective and efficient administration of the Foundation’s priorities. She provides administrative support to the Grants Manager and other program staff to facilitate the successful implementation, monitoring, and reporting of the grants program. Holly also coordinates all logistical needs for MeHAF's grantee meetings and the larger Learning Community meetings. Holly is the staff support for the Grants Committee and Community Advisory Committee. She also provides support to all Program Officers for their respective grant programs and is responsible for coordinating all grantee related meetings and gatherings. She is responsible of creation and distribution of MeHAF's bi-weekly e-newsletter and any press releases. Holly works with the staff-led website team to review and keep the Foundation's website up to date with any changes to layout, text and the addition of pages. Before joining MeHAF, Holly worked as an Administrative and Communications Assistant at Kennebec Behavioral Health, where she provided support to the Director of Communications, the CEO and the Executive Assistant. Holly is a native Mainer and a graduate of Maine Central Institute in Pittsfield. She resides in Clinton with her husband and two daughters, their dog and two cats. She enjoys the outdoors, music, cooking and spending time with family and friends.
Ruta Kadonoff, MA, MHS
Ruta Kadonoff, MA, MHS
Senior Program Officer
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Ruta Kadonoff joined MeHAF as Senior Program Officer in December 2016. She oversees the Thriving in Place program and MeHAF’s collaboration in funding the Tri-State Learning Collaborative on Aging as well as staffing the foundation’s Grants Committee. Ruta came to this position with over 20 years of experience in fostering and advocating for quality improvement and person-centered approaches in long term services and supports for older people. She has held leadership roles in a diverse set of national organizations focusing on policy, research and practice change. She currently serves on the board of Hospice Volunteers of Waldo County. Ruta grew up in Connecticut and moved to the Washington, DC area to attend The Catholic University of America where she received a B.A. in political science. She subsequently completed a Masters of Health Science degree in Health Policy from Johns Hopkins University’s Bloomberg School of Public Health and a Master of Arts degree in the Management of Aging Services from the Erickson School of Aging Studies at the University of Maryland Baltimore County. Ruta, her husband and their cats re-located from the Washington suburbs to Belfast in 2016, realizing a long-standing dream. She spends as much of her spare time outdoors as possible, and particularly enjoys walking and hiking, sailing, kayaking and photography.
Dani Kalian
Dani Kalian
Executive Assistant
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Dani Kalian provides administrative support and assistance to the President and other staff. She oversees general office operations and facility management as well as provides support to the Board of Trustees, Governance Committee, and Strategic Planning Committee. Dani joined MeHAF in 2008 as the administrative assistant and has been the Foundation’s Executive Assistant since 2011. Dani attended St. Bonaventure University in New York before moving to Maine where she graduated from Andover College.
Barbara Leonard, MPH
Barbara Leonard, MPH
President & CEO
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Ms. Leonard is MeHAF’s President and CEO, having taken on the role in October 2016 after a national search. Barbara brings over 25 years of experience and leadership in philanthropic and public health program development, administration, management and evaluation at the state and national level. Ms. Leonard originally joined the MeHAF team October 2007 as a senior program officer, and became Vice President for Programs in May 2008. At MeHAF, she has played a key role in developing and leading health reform initiatives such as a comprehensive portfolio of grants focused on payment reform, development of community-focused programs such as Thriving in Place and Healthy Community grants, and the multi-year Integrated Care Initiative. She serves as primary staff for the Board of Trustees, as well as the Strategic Planning, Finance, Governance, and Executive Committees. Barbara is a past president of the board of the Maine Philanthropy Center and the Maine Women’s Fund. Barbara was raised in Connecticut and first came to Maine as a student at Colby College in Waterville where she received a BA in Psychology. She has an MPH in Health Policy and Resources from Yale University. In her spare moments, she spends time with her husband, Dan, spoils their Labrador retrievers Cooper and Jessie, cooks for friends, sings as a soprano with the Maine Music Society Chorale, grows perennials and vegetables, and is an enthusiastic amateur at the Belfast Curling Club.
Jeb Murphy
Jeb Murphy
Communications Associate
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Jeb joined MeHAF as Communications Associate in November 2018. Jeb has worked in the communications field across the nonprofit sector in Maine for nearly a decade, beginning in Franklin County doing Outreach and Education work in the field of sexual assault prevention. Understanding the unique needs of different parts of the state he then moved to larger scale work, advocating for shelter animal rights and awareness with the Maine Federation of Humane Societies and eventually supporting the mission of Community Health Centers at the Maine Primary Care Association (MPCA). While at MPCA, Jeb began working both statewide and nationally on creating best practices for Enrollment Assisters and became a nationally recognized figure in promoting outreach and enrollment for the Affordable Care Act. This work eventually led to him and a number of national colleagues creating the National Association of Health Access Assisters. Jeb’s most current position at Crisis & Counseling Centers, Inc. in Augusta has given him a county level view of the behavioral health needs of Mainers, as well as insight into the challenges that both clients and agencies face in the growing opioid epidemic. In addition to nonprofit work Jeb has been adjunct faculty in the Maine Community College system, teaching Public Speaking, Interpersonal Communication, and English. In his free time Jeb is an avid reader and aspiring culinary genius. He lives in Central Maine with a spirited Himalayan/Flame Point Siamese cat named Bunsen and enjoys weekends on Pocasset Lake, time in Manhattan and San Francisco, and a growing extended family of nieces and nephews.
Frank Martinez Nocito
Frank Martinez Nocito
Program Officer I
207.620.8266 x116
Frank Martinez Nocito joined MeHAF as a Program Officer in January 2018. Frank is an innovative Public Health Nutrition professional with two decades of diverse statewide, national and international experience in program development, management and outcome evaluation, policy initiatives, and public-private collaborations. After earning a Master of Science degree from the Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy at Tufts University, he worked at the Food and Agriculture Organization in Rome, Italy where he focused on human nutrient requirements and public-private partnerships. For most of the past decade his work has focused on improving government benefit programs, health equity, and access to healthy food for vulnerable populations. Prior to MeHAF, Frank worked for the Commonwealth of Massachusetts as the Project Director of the Healthy Incentives Program (HIP), pioneering the implementation of 3 first-in-the-nation, healthy food access pilot programs for low-income families, for which he received both statewide and national accolades. HIP significantly improved SNAP recipients’ health, increased farmer incomes, and decreased food insecurity in Massachusetts. Before turning to public health policy, Frank earned Bachelor degrees in Nutrition and Cultural Anthropology from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, as well as a degree from the Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park, NY. Frank and his family enthusiastically relocated from Western Massachusetts to Maine in 2018. He is passionate about family, eating good food, cooking, gardening, running (half-marathons, marathons), hiking, food systems, and social capital.

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