Hires to handle fundraising, comms, strategic initiatives

WASHINGTON, DC — The Truman Center for National Policy (501c3) and Truman National Security Project (501c4) are proud to welcome three new staff members: Mira Patel, Julie D. Carter, and Thomas Pierce.

Patel will serve as Visiting Senior Fellow focused on State Department reform and diversity, equity, and inclusion. Carter is the Interim Director of Development and will be leading private philanthropy initiatives, engaging individuals and corporations. Pierce will be the Acting Director of communications. He will format strategy for traditional and digital media, including a website revision so it is more useful for members.  

M. Patel (they/their) served in the Obama Administration advising two Cabinet officials, including Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, on foreign affairs and economic policy.  Most recently, they led economic opportunity programs globally at Facebook and served as a fellow at the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative.

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In the Obama Administration, Patel was appointed to Secretary Clinton’s Policy Planning Staff at the U.S. Department of State, developing policy, programming, and communications on international human rights. They also served as the Senior Advisor for the U.S. Small Business Administration. In these roles, Patel launched multimillion dollar public-private partnerships including the Global Equality Fund, a $30M fund that has directly supported LGBT advocacy organizations in over 40 countries and authored the first ever Presidential Memorandum on international LGBT rights. Patel previously worked in the U.S. Senate for Senator Clinton, the Center for American Progress, and Lehman Brothers.

Patel is a Council on Foreign Relations Term Member, serving on the Term Member Advisory Board and co-author of the CFR National Security and Innovation Task Force report. They are also an Out In National Security 2020 Leader, and previously served as a Point Foundation Scholar and an Atlantic Council Millennium Fellow.

Ms. Carter (she/her) shares a wealth of expertise with her clients by drawing on 35 years of professional fundraising and nonprofit administration experience. Ranging from small start-ups to longstanding national organizations, she helps clients establish clear goals and paths to reach them, and builds their capacity to attain and sustain the funding to accomplish their missions. 

Among boutique firms, Ms. Carter is highly regarded as an expert in discovering donor passions.

Current and past clients include the White House Historical Association, the McLean Project for the Arts, Center for Strategic and International Studies, and Treasury Historical Association.  The International Foundation for Electoral Systems, Americans for the Arts, The Washington Ballet, American Cancer Society, Cancer Action Network, and many others have engaged Carter Consulting Group for a variety of services. 

Previously, as chief advancement officer with Wolf Trap Foundation for the Performing Arts and Mount Vernon Estate and Gardens, Ms. Carter led teams to raise in excess of $200 million from local, regional and national sources. She built and expanded programs encompassing individual, foundation, corporate and government support. 

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Working closely with executive leadership, the Board of Directors and other community leadership, Ms. Carter successfully planned and completed the Wolf Trap Foundation, a $21 million capital campaign to build and endow the Center for Education at Wolf Trap.

More recently, she worked on the initial stages of Mount Vernon’s $100 million campaign to establish, build and endow the National Library for the Study of George Washington. The campaign closed at $106 million with the opening of the library in October 2012. 

Ms. Carter is a member and serves on the board of the Association of Philanthropic Counsel.  She is a trained facilitator in ToP Methods, and a member of the Association of Fundraising Professionals, the National Capital Planned Giving Council, and the American Alliance of Museums.                                                  

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Mr. Pierce (he/him) is a strategic communications expert who spent 26 years as a US diplomat specialized in public affairs. During his Foreign Service career, he served, at various times, as spokesperson, social media coordinator, speechwriter, crisis communications specialist, grants officer, political analyst, and Fulbright foundation director at US diplomatic missions in Athens, Accra, Rangoon (Yangon), Ankara, Tirana, and Geneva. In Washington, he served as public affairs advisor at the State Department’s Bureau of Population, Refugees, and Migration. He recently retired as a member of the Senior Foreign Service.

He spent most of his diplomatic career overseas. Highlights include restarting the Fulbright program in Burma after it had been dormant for 17 years, and, as Director of the American Center, quintupling membership in the library, which became the busiest in the country, and a hub for human rights activists. In Athens, where he served three tours, he created the first Embassy-sponsored massive open online class, in coordination with Case Western Reserve; the final lecture delivered in the courtyard of the ancient Agora. He has worked extensively in social media, having commissioned a 25-part video series on work life in America through the experience of Greeks and Greek-Americans, and overseen ambassadorial Twitter launches/feeds.

He has a BA in English from Stanford University and an MA in History of Art from Yale. He speaks French and Modern Greek fluently, and some Turkish, Italian, Burmese, and Albanian. He lives in Miami Beach, where he likes to run, write, cook, read, volunteer at Feeding South Florida, a food pantry that feeds 1.3 million people per month.