Meet Our Team
Meet the people who execute the vision of the Community Fund of Darien every day.
Charla Easterbrook joined The Community Fund of Darien in June 2019. A native Texan, she has considered Darien a home-away-from-home for many years. Charla has 20 years of nonprofit fundraising experience in animal welfare and academia. She raised funds for Texas Canine Search & Rescue Unit 1 during 911, traveled to Louisiana to provide assistance after Hurricane Katrina, set-up a make-shift kennel to accommodate 300 displaced animals in an abandoned garage after Hurricane Harvey, and served as lead for Service Enterprise through Points of Light. In addition, she served on numerous PTO Executive Boards in Highland Park. Charla lives in Darien and has three chldren.
Jen started her career in the for profit sector where she worked in the field of marketing for five years. Upon moving from Charlotte to New York, she decided to make a career change and returned to school to get her Master in Public Administration with a concentration in Public and Nonprofit Management from the Robert F. Wagner School of Public Service at NYU.
Following graduate school, Jen started her Development career at the American Red Cross, Greenwich chapter as Assistant Director of Development and later joined AmeriCares where she was an Associate Director of Major Gifts.
She became a stay at home mom and active volunteer when her first son was born in 2009. Jen volunteered for the Wilton Library Association, Wilton Public Schools, The Community Fund of Darien and served on the Strategic Planning Committee for Woodcock Nature Center and was a member of the Board of Directors of Zion’s Hill Preschool Program where she was Co-Chair for two years. Jen is currently a Board of Trustee for the Wilton Library Association.
Jen received her B.S. in Sociology from the University of Vermont. She lives in Wilton with her husband and two sons.
COMMUNITY INVESTMENTS DIRECTOR
Lisa Haas began working at The Community Fund of Darien in 2013 as the Director of Development and subsequently moved into the role of Community Investments Director in 2016. Prior to working at The Community Fund, she served on The Community Fund’s Board of Directors and participated in our grant review panels for
six years. Lisa worked in finance as a research analyst for Soundview and Schroders. She has a B.A. from Duke University and has an M.B.A. from Northwestern’s Kellogg Graduate School of Management. She has three children and
lives in Darien.
YOUTH PROGRAM MANAGER
Heather Gordon joined The Community Fund of Darien in August 2020. In her role as Youth Program Manager she works alongside parent and student advisors as well as clinical social workers to ensure the success of The Community Fund’s four youth programs: Youth Give Back, Freshmen Community Group, Youth Community Fund, and Youth Asset Team. In addition to her work at The Community Fund, she also serves as Youth Ministry Associate at Noroton Presbyterian Church. She holds a B.S. in Religion and a B.S. in Psychology from Pepperdine University and is currently pursuing a Master’s in Divinity at Fuller Seminary. Her work in psychology is being published by the American Psychological Association and her dedication to youth and non-profit work is vast, having previously worked with organizations such as YoungLife, Trinity Church, Save the Children, and the YMCA. She grew up in Norwalk and moved back in February 2020 after living in California for six years.
Emily Larkin joined The Community Fund staff in October 2015. She holds a B.S. in Counseling and Human Services and B.A. in Theology from the University of Scranton and is currently pursuing a Master’s of Social Work at Fordham University. In her role as Thriving Youth Program Director, Emily administers a $500,000 grant from Connecticut’s Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services (DMHAS) aimed at reducing teen substance use in Darien. Emily leads the Thriving Youth Task Force, oversees the development of the “Our Darien” campaign and serves as an advisor to our student groups. In 2018, she was selected as one of Fairfield County Business Journal’s “40 under 40.” Emily and her husband live in Stamford.
Barbara joined The Community Fund of Darien as bookkeeper in 2015. Barbara is a CPA with a background in public accounting and has been doing bookkeeping for small businesses since 1996. Barbara graduated from Darien High School and received a B.S.B.A. from Villanova University. She currently lives in Darien with her husband and three children.