McDonald joined the nonprofit in February after a decade in the private business sector, but it wasn’t a totally new environment for her.
Her first job out of college was working for AmeriCorps and Habitat for Humanity in Baton Rouge, La.
"My original intention right out of college was to work in a nonprofit," she said. "Eventually, I found my way back."
McDonald grew up in Lima, Ohio, and went to Xavier University in Cincinnati – as did her father and most of her siblings – earning a degree in economics.
She spent 10 years in sales and affiliate relations with Music Choice, which provides music to cable TV companies and other subscribers. After stints in Los Angeles and Chicago, McDonald moved to Wichita last year when her husband’s government job transferred him here.
A contact at Cox Communications, which is one of the owners of Music Choice, helped direct her toward the Rainbows United job.
McDonald will oversee fundraising for Rainbows, which serves children with special needs and their families.
"Special events, planned giving, the annual campaign – everything related to raising funds," she said.
Outside work, McDonald enjoys teaching Pilates. She and her husband, Ryan, had their first child, Leo, in October.