Entering college with a vision of changing the world through the foreign service, Mary Claire is now involved in changing lives through the institutions, volunteers and executives she serves as a Dini Spheris consulting team member. She began volunteering and giving back to her community at a young age. Mary Claire ventured from her Houston home to enroll at the University of Chicago to study religion and history. However, after an internship at Interfaith Ministries for Greater Houston, Mary Claire became captivated by the transformative power of philanthropy and the integral role fundraisers play in making dreams a reality. One internship became many, and by graduation Mary Claire had worked in several development departments across Houston and Chicago.
What drives Mary Claire every day is a deep passion for service and a sincere belief that – in the words of Margaret Mead – a “small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world.”
Immediately prior to joining Dini Spheris, Mary Claire managed individual giving and the annual fund at Young Women’s Leadership Charter School in Chicago. While there, she helped develop the organization’s first major gifts program, quadrupling individual gifts within a single year.
Since joining Dini Spheris, Mary Claire has worked with clients throughout Texas and across the country. Engaged in a variety of capital and endowment campaign settings, she has helped development and executive staff to believe that vision – coupled with patient, diligent hard work – can overcome the most daunting challenge. In addition, Mary Claire continues teaching and mentoring the next generation of nonprofit leaders as an adjunct lecturer with the University of Houston Nonprofit Leadership Alliance.
Representative Clients Served
- Allied Arts
- American Cancer Society
- American Cancer Society - Oklahoma City
- Child Advocates of Fort Bend
- Galveston Historical Foundation
- Glenwood Cemetery Historic Preservation Foundation
- Institute of American Indian Arts Foundation
- Kendall County Women's Shelter
- Literacy Council of Fort Bend County
- Matagorda Regional Medical Center
- Mercy Health - Mercy Hospital Oklahoma City
- Midland Shared Spaces
- Network of Community Ministries
- Pensacola State College
- Sire, Inc.
- Smithsonian Institution, National Museum of the American Indian (NMAI)
- St. Louis Community College
- Stephen F. Austin State University
- Texas Ranger Hall of Fame and Museum
Reports & Insights
- Michelle Buchanan, CFRE Principal
- Victor Brooks Consultant
- Jacquelyn C. Buss Consulting Projects Manager