Merica Whitehall brings over 25 years of experience empowering teams; strengthening organizational operations; improving financial performance, planning infrastructure reinvestment, and planning and implementing long-term strategy. Merica is an experienced consultant whose clients include ArtsWA, STG’s Paramount Theater, Seattle Center Festal Cultural Festival Series, the Seattle Community Law Center, the Seattle Police Department, and SouthEast Effective Development. Most recently Merica served as the Executive Director of Fontenelle Forest in Bellevue, Nebraska. While at the helm of Fontenelle Forest, spearheaded the creation of a 20-year master plan and completed development of new revenue streams, capital projects, and acquisitions including the $1.6M Treerush Adventures aerial park and the 37-acre Camp Wa-kon-da overnight campground. Prior to leading Fontenelle Forest, Merica served as Executive Director of the Nature Consortium in West Seattle. There she led a team that engaged over 3000 volunteers annually in the Green Seattle Partnership and dramatically strengthened the organization’s financial profitability before negotiating for DNDA’s acquisition of Nature Consortium.
Merica earned an Executive Master’s Degree in Nonprofit Leadership from Seattle University where she taught frameworks for community engagement as a faculty member following completion of her degree. While serving at Seattle University she also led the Treehouse Tutoring Corps providing year-round academic support and mentorship to youth living in foster care. As an executive director she has championed the integration of DEIJ into organizational values, culture, planning, and operations. And as a volunteer she serves as a member of the Association of Nature Center Administrators DEI Committee to advance DEI nationally.