Over the next few months, we will be highlighting 25 people who have been key to the success Women’s Fund in honor of our 25th anniversary. Meet Jennifer Young Dzwonar, Board Chair for Women’s Fund.

How did you get involved with Women’s Fund?

I first joined the communications committee of Women’s Fund to learn more about the organization and its work. From afar, it looked like something I’d like to support, but I wanted to see how Women’s Fund provided support to direct-service organizations. The more I knew, the more I appreciated what we were doing and who we were helping.

What has been your favorite memory of working with us?

I think the visits to the grantee organizations are the most powerful. Visits to Dove House, La Plaza and Exodus Refugee stand out in my mind. To hear how Women’s Fund helps them do their work, and to see the places they work, and how they help women and girls is nothing short of life-changing.

How have you seen Women’s Fund positively impact the central Indiana community?

I didn’t mention this above, but visiting the Women’s Prison was unforgettable, and hearing how Women’s Fund helps make it possible for incarcerated women to stay in touch with their children was awe-inspiring. For anyone who’s made one of these visits, the most impactful part is learning that these women are just like me/us. One wrong move or decision, and the trajectories of our lives are forever changed. But Women’s Fund helps these women know they’re worthy of support.

What do you look forward to as Women’s Fund moves into the future?

The word I often use to describe Women’s Fund is “fearless” and I look forward to seeing where our next fearless moves take us. To support women on their paths to economic independence, to uplift women and girls struggling with mental health issues, to actively assist women of color rising to more prominent positions of leadership, and more. Women’s Fund keeps its finger on the pulse of women and girls to identify needs, find partners who can best meet those needs, and then helping to fund those needs. The future is bright!

How will you use your influence to help Women’s Fund in their efforts to make central Indiana more equitable for Black and Brown women?

I’ve been blessed to have many friends of color, but through Women’s Fund, I’ve made even more friendships and connections with remarkable women of color. They have shed light on how Women’s Fund can help correct systemic issues, how we can make relatively small changes in our professional and personal lives that can make a real difference, and how we can work toward large changes that directly impact people’s lives. When we hire more equitably, lives are changed. When we support programs helping girls dealing with trauma, lives are changed. I have taken lessons learned from Women’s Fund into my work as a business owner and into my work as a communications consultant to make our city more equitable for women of color in both small and significant ways.