Invigorated by its success to date, RISE invites you to join its operational committees!

Posted in: Community Service, RISE

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Invigorated by its success to date, RISE is consolidating its organizational structure, and invites Rotarians of all clubs as well as Non Rotarians to become members of its various operational committees, and assist in making RISE a comprehensive community project in Frederick County.

Please see the section RISE - Operational Committees below, for the list and descriptions of the committees.

RISE - Background:

In the spring 2013, RISE (Rotarian Initiative for Successful Employment) was created by the Rotary Club of Carroll Creek in partnership with the Housing Authority of the City of Frederick to address the high unemployment rate in Frederick’s public housing communities.  It has formed alliances with a wide range of community organizations, including Frederick County Workforce Services, Frederick Community College, the YMCA, Second Chances Garage, and many businesses, which have served as internship sites. 

The RISE program offers residents of one public housing community—Lucas Village—a chance to succeed in employment.  Those adult residents who are motivated and ready to succeed are invited to be assessed through Workforce Services, screened by RISE, and accepted into a two week intensive job prep program facilitated by a trained workforce development trainer. RISE participants are then given an opportunity to gain valuable work experience in a paid 4-8 week work internship at a site that will help them move forward with their careers. 

During this process, each participant is paired with a mentor for a 6-month period, follows monthly skill building sessions, and benefits from childcare and transportation assistance as well as other employment related supports on a case-by-case basis. 

RISE - Vision

RISE empowers public housing residents toward gainful employment.

RISE - Mission

RISE strives to reduce unemployment in public housing by mentoring dedicated adults, offering a web of public and private services, and providing access to opportunities.

RISE - Strategy

RISE meets the needs of the residents by providing vital services such as professional training, workshops, internships, childcare, transportation assistance, mentoring, networking, and by sourcing the financial requirements of those programs.

RISE - Success to date:

Since May 2013, RISE had three cohorts with a total of 23 participants.  In the first two groups, all but one is now employed, and in the current group of ten, all but three are working or going to school.   RISE expects to invite another 16-20 participants into the program over the next 12 months.                                   

RISE - Funding:

RISE has so far raised over $100,000 in cash donations and service contributions to fund its operations from organizations such as the Ausherman Family Foundation, Frederick County Workforce Services, Graphcom, Matan Companies, Rotary Club of Carroll Creek, State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance Company, Walmart, Women's Giving Circle, as well as various individual donors.

RISE estimates the cost per participant for a 6-month period to vary between $3,000 and $4,500, depending on the length of the work internship.

RISE has established "The RISE FUND”, a component fund of the Community Foundation of Frederick County which is a public charity under IRS subsection 501(c)(3); 170(B)(1)(a)(vi). 

RISE - Executive Committee

Lisa Ausherman, Co-Founder, Ausherman Family Foundation

Member, Rotary Club of Carroll Creek

Chair, RISE Development Committee


Chris Colville, Chief Executive Officer, YMCA of Frederick County

Member, Rotary Club of Frederick

Chair, RISE Networking / Rotary Liaison Committee


Eric Dallavalle, Accountant, Dallavalle & Co., P.A. 

Member, Rotary Club of Frederick

Chair, RISE Finance Committee


Michelle Day, Manager, Employment and Training,

Frederick County Workforces Services


Guy Fletcher, Editor-in-Chief, Frederick Magazine

Member, Rotary Club of Carroll Creek

Chair, RISE Communication / Marketing / Website / Media Committee


Kelli Goetz, Workforce Training Consultant and Summer Jobs Program Coordinator,

Frederick County Workforce Services

Member, RISE Participant Support and Administration Committee


Bernard Gouin, Corporate Finance Consultant

Member, Rotary Club of Carroll Creek

RISE Executive Manager


Jeff Griffin, Chief Finance Officer, Community Living Inc.

Member, Rotary Club of Carroll Creek

Member, RISE Communication / Marketing / Website / Media Committee


Joyce Heptner, Executive Director, Ausherman Family Foundation

Chair, RISE Strategic Planning Committee


Jason Lee, Owner, Top Quality Janitorial Service

President-Elect, Rotary Club of Carroll Creek

Member, RISE Networking / Rotary Liaison Committee


Josh Pedersen, Chief Executive Officer, United Way of Frederick County

Member, Rotary Club of Carroll Creek

Chair, RISE Mentoring Committee


Ann Ryan, Project ALIVE Coordinator, Housing Authority of the City of Frederick

Chair, RISE Participant Support and Administration Committee


RISE - Operational Committees: 

1. Mentoring:             

Chair: Rotarian Josh Pedersen

Member: Kristi Jacobs Woods, RISE Program Assistant

  • Actively recruit mentor candidates
  • Help staff in matching mentors and mentees
  • Assist staff in mentor orientation session planning
  • Support mentors by serving as their main RISE point of contact
  • Offer feedback to improve mentors’ experience for subsequent RISE cohorts

2. Networking/Rotary Liaison:        

Chair: Rotarian Chris Colville 

Member: Rotarian Jason Lee

  • Grow RISE network through Chamber of Commerce, Frederick county employers
  • Actively promote RISE participants’ “Marketplace Profiles”
  • Work with staff on cultivating RISE opportunities such as internship and employment sites
  • Promote RISE within Rotary Clubs

3. Development:     

Chair: Rotarian Lisa Ausherman

Member: Rotarian Richard Foot 

  • Identify and develop strategic relationships with foundations, endowments, and donors
  • Identify and manage all grant applications
  • Conceive and organize community outreach events and fundraisers as needed
  • Work with staff to develop and maintain list of donors/partners

4. Communications/Marketing/Website/Media

Chair: Rotarian Guy Fletcher

Members: Rotarian Jeff Griffin

                 Kristi Jacobs Woods, RISE Program Assistant                

                  Rotarian Jack Topchik

  • Promote the RISE brand across all media
  • Communicate the RISE messages/stories/events with various audiences such as Rotary Clubs, Chamber of Commerce, Frederick County employers
  • Provide general oversight and regular update to the new RISE self-standing website

5. Participant Support/Administration 

Chair: Ann Ryan, Housing Authority of the City of Frederick 

Members: Kelli Goetz, Frederick County Workforce Services

                 Kristi Jacobs Woods, RISE Program Assistant

                 Ryan Trout, Housing Authority of the City of Frederick

  • Provide general oversight of participant involvement in all aspects of the RISE program
  • Provide case management, and coordinate all monthly skill building workshops
  • Assist with mentor training and help facilitate successful mentor/mentee relationships.
  • Maintain database including participants, mentors, internship sites, contact info, donors, etc.

6. Finance 

Chair: Rotarian Eric Dallavalle 

Members: Rotarian Peter Fitzpatrick

                  Rotarian Bob Kimble

  • Consolidate and maintain RISE financials and consumable reports
  • Develop and provide continual oversight for RISE operating budget
  • Interact with partners to deliver performance reports and annual reports
  • Initiate and supervise future 501(c) 3 application process 

Please contact the Chair of the Operational Committee of your choice by clicking the corresponding email.

Thanks for your willingness to serve in RISE, and in helping us make a difference one life at the time!