11 Dec A Conversation with Marianne Haver Hill
A Conversation With:
Marianne Haver Hill
How long have you been volunteering in the community?
It has been close to 40 years that I have been active in the community, including my time working and volunteering in Salinas, California, then in Southeast Arizona, and finally in the Los Angeles area, particularly in the San Fernando Valley.
My volunteering in LA has included participation and leadership roles over the years with the Valley Industry and Commerce Association, Valley Leadership Institute, the Pacoima Coordinating Council, Directors of Volunteers in Agencies, Advisory Committee for the California State University, Northridge (CSUN) College of Business, the Community Foundation of the Valleys, my church in Pasadena, community choirs, and numerous other committees and events.
Tell us a little about yourself.
I am currently the Executive Director of PROPEL LA – the implementation of the Countywide Strategic Plan for Economic Development, housed at the Los Angeles County Economic Development Corporation. I supervise a team that works with more than 500 stakeholders as they operationalize the Strategic Plan, which includes seven aspirational goals focused on investing in education and workforce development, creating more livable wage jobs, and building livable communities. The fundamental purpose of the Strategic Plan is to promote greater equity and prosperity for all residents who live in the region.
From 1987 – 2016, I served as the President and CEO of Meet Each Need (MEND) with Dignity, one of the largest and most comprehensive poverty relief agencies in the San Fernando Valley. While I was there, MEND expanded its reach to serve an average of 37,000 applicants monthly through our onsite and offsite work, utilizing a volunteer work force of more than 5000 and a team of 34 staff. In July 2012, MEND was named the California Nonprofit of the Year by the Governor’s Office for Volunteering and Service. I was honored to be the recipient of the 2017 The Valley Economic Alliance Star of the Valley award in leadership.
I have been an adjunct instructor in nonprofit management at the University of Southern California (USC) Price School of Public Policy.
I am married to Dr. Randall W. Hill, Jr., the Executive Director of USC’s Institute for Creative Technologies, and a research computer scientist at the university. We are the parents of a son, Austin, who is a 2017 graduate of CSUN with a major in Music Industry Studies and a 16-year-old daughter, Aria, who is a junior at Maranatha High School in Pasadena, where she plays on the varsity tennis team. Our family loves to travel, watch USC football, go to concerts, and entertain in our home. I majored in music in college and continue to enjoy singing.
For more information visit my LinkedIn: www.linkedin.com/in/marianne-haver-hill
What is one of your Passion Projects that you are working on?
My many years working at MEND confirmed and expanded my passion for assisting our neighbors in the Valley who struggle in poverty. Over the decades, I visited hundreds of families in their homes – which were often garages, shacks, travel trailers, or rooms in a house – and saw first hand the daily choices they had to make as they stretched their meager incomes: choices between buying much-needed medicine and buying food; getting a car repaired so they could get to work versus buying appropriate clothing for those jobs; paying for health insurance or an unexpected medical bill or paying rent; and so many other decisions that caused a daily grind of unrelenting stress.
Through my current work with Propel LA, we are running a short-term job training program that is being funded by a Citi Foundation grant. The program helps underemployed clients of agencies such as MEND get into career pathways like aerospace and bioscience; careers that offer livable wage jobs, and the means to move out of poverty and onto self-sufficiency. For me, this is an exciting opportunity to bring about transformative change for a population that has long been close to my heart.
Why do you continue to be a member of The Valley Economic Alliance?
It has been a privilege to be a member of The Valley Economic Alliance (TVEA) Board of Governors for a number of years, and to support TVEA’s work in education, business development, job creation and retention in the Valley, marketing, and special events. TVEA convenings have provided wonderful opportunities to learn more about the good work that is going on all around the San Fernando Valley – allowing me to be a better ambassador of this good work! – and to meet and network with many prominent leaders and new stakeholders. Collectively, TVEA members and partners “lean in” for the greater good of pursuing a Valley that is a wonderful place to live, work, and go to school.