Meet Shannon Isaacs // Director of Development

What is your role/title and industry? 

I’m currently working for the National Underground Railroad Freedom Center.

Who or what would you attribute to your success so far?

I attribute my success to hard work, high standards, and resilience.  Working to be truly of service to the cause and organization I work for as well as being compassionate at work.   The many people who have mentored and empowered me have had a tremendous impact on my career. 

Leadership opportunities in the nonprofit sector, such as my board service, has provided invaluable skills, which have also been fundamental to my overall success.


From your experience, what advice would you have for women in the workplace?

A. True leadership draws out the wisdom of the group and is not all about the leader. 

B. Building trust in the work place is essential to doing good work and being successful because the more trusting the environment the more people can bring their full skill set and talent to work.

C. What you do and how you do it are not separate things. You have to walk the walk, privately and publicly. For example, you cannot speak out for truth while also telling a lie. You cannot work to uplift and empower women yet fail to listen to women in the process.

Do you have any passion projects outside of work? If so, can you tell us more?

I am currently serving on the City of Cincinnati Taskforce on Gender Equality, a taskforce appointed to address gender inequality in the city government workforce.  I am very excited about the places I can work toward gender equity. I have also been getting involved with Social Enterprise which is one of my passions.  I also serve on the board of the Women’s City Club of Cincinnati, which is an organization that I love!

Who inspires you today? 

I am constantly inspired by friends, coworkers, activists, and authors (my list included almost everyone I know).  A few people recently: activists for their unrelenting hope and vision, Waangari Maathi, my boss, who when there is difficulty she is the one you want on your team. Sasha, for creating new things that make the world better, a local nonprofit executive who is always challenging people to be fearless and work for justice, a close friend of mine for her brilliance and compassion. Gandhi, for his unrelenting search for truth.

Thank you for sharing Shannon!