Nancy Racette is the co-founder and Chief Operating Officer of DRi. Driven by the belief that every person can have a fundamental impact on the world, Nancy spent decades designing innovative fundraising and communications programs to fuel the growth of sustainable non-profit organizations. In 2001, she began providing executive search and development consulting to help non-profits across the country build their own capacity to grow, thrive, and excel.
Nancy’s consulting work has helped numerous non-profits organizations design and fill powerful staff structures. Working with national organizations such as AAUW, the Armed Services YMCA, and Help Hospitalized Veterans, Nancy has advised Boards of Directors and CEOs on how to identify their most transformative initiatives and how to invest in staffing structures that advance them. Nancy’s advice has turned strategic plans into strategic hires for start-ups and established organizations engaging a new generation of stakeholders in imaginative ways.
In 2022 DRi joined with Waterstone Human Capital to form DRiWaterstone Human Capital, a culture-centric executive search, leadership advisory, and human capital firm focused on helping mission and purpose-driven organizations build high performance teams and cultures. Under the DRiWaterstone banner, the firm continues to offer executive search services focused on helping clients achieve sustainable organizational and cultural growth by finding leaders who align to the organization’s purpose and who can help take the organization and its culture to the next level.
Under Nancy’s leadership, DRi has developed partnerships with major environmental organizations, such as Wildlife Conservation Society and World Wildlife fund; top-ranked hospitals and healthcare organizations, such as MedStar Washington Hospital Center and the National Council on Aging; and to internationally recognized cultural institutions, such as George Washington’s Mount Vernon and the National Building Museum.
Nancy’s development consulting and executive search draw on her decades of experience developing initiatives that reshaped fundraising at the American Red Cross and Girl Scouts of America. Her broad expertise spans cause marketing, disaster fundraising, major giving, and fundraising campaigns, and she continues to mentor non-profit innovators today.
Beyond DRi, Nancy has been an innovative volunteer in the non-profit sector. She currently serves on the Board of Directors at YWCA USA. She has been a past president for the Association of Fundraising Professionals (AFP) – Washington D.C. Metro Area Chapter. She has also served on the Board of Directors of the AFP Foundation for Philanthropy, has chaired AFP’s Education Advisory Committee, and has been a member of the Professional Advancement Division committee. She also served on the Board of Directors of the Ellington Fund for the Duke Ellington School of the Arts.
Nancy is a graduate of Boston University’s School of Public Communications. She attended the Executive Management Program at Harvard University and held a Certified Fund Raising Executive credential from CFRE International for 24 years.