Mercyhealth and AriseNow Form Partnership for Loaned Executive to Lead Fundraising

JANESVILLE, Wisconsin – Through a loaned executive agreement, Mercyhealth will donate a half-time position for up to 18 months, to lead the fundraising and donor engagement initiatives for the revitalization efforts in downtown Janesville.

Kelli Cameron, Director of Provider Recruitment for Mercyhealth, will now share her time with AriseNow as the Director of Development and Community Engagement.

In this unique partnership, Mercyhealth will fully fund Cameron’s employment, at no cost to the community.

“As Chair of the AriseNow Committee, I am excited to have Kelli Cameron join our team as the Director of Development and Community Engagement,” said Tim Weber.  “She brings fund development experience and strong leadership skills to the job.  I especially want to thank Mercyhealth for supporting the ARISE project through this arrangement.”

“At Mercyhealth, we have a passion for improving the health and well-being of our communities. One way we do this is by supporting community development to make a true impact,” said Javon R. Bea, President and CEO of Mercyhealth. “We’re proud and honored to support Kelli in this initiative. We are excited to watch her use her expertise to help transform downtown Janesville into a vibrant neighborhood for all to enjoy.”

Cameron resides in downtown Janesville with her family, and has a vested interest in the success of the community.  She is the current President of the Janesville Morning Rotary Club, and serves on the Board of Directors for the Women’s Fund and GIFTS Men’s Shelter.  Earlier this year, she was recognized with the YWCA Women of Distinction award.

“I’m humbled to be able to serve our community in this role,” Cameron said.  “It is an incredible investment by Mercyhealth to advance the strategic initiatives of the ARISE Plan for Downtown Janesville.”

“Kelli will start at the end of July and focus on making this a project everyone can get involved with,” said John Beckord, President of Forward Janesville.  “The gift of the interactive water feature was just the start.  We want everyone to feel proud of our downtown.”

Cameron will report to the Forward Foundation Board and work closely with the AriseNow Committee, the Forward Janesville Board, Downtown Janesville, Inc., the City of Janesville as well as other key community stakeholder groups.  Her duties will include donor cultivation, communication and public relations, fundraising, and project management.

“So many people and organizations are supporting downtown development. Now is the time to make sure we knock it out of the park,” Cameron said.

AriseNow is a private-public sector group whose purpose is to facilitate and strengthen the implementation of the City’s long-term downtown plan, ARISE, as well as to support other key activities and organizations working to transform downtown Janesville. The principle efforts are focused on identifying and funding projects or amenities that fall outside the City’s ARISE plan. The impetus for forming AriseNow is that now is the time to truly transform downtown Janesville and support the many positive developments both public and private that have occurred recently.  The group is facilitated and supported through the Forward Foundation, the charitable arm of Forward Janesville, and represents a cross section of individuals from the community with different backgrounds, interests and associations.

AriseNow is focusing on the following efforts to support the revitalization of downtown Janesville:

  1. Place-making (pedestrian bridge, public artwork, benches, lighting, signage, gathering spaces)
  2. Programming and Activating Public Places (water feature, amphitheater, information kiosks)
  3. Connecting Downtown Areas (pedestrian bridge, river walks)
  4. Supporting Other Opportunities

The ARISE plan strives to be a bold vision for downtown Janesville’s long-term future, solidly grounded in community engagement and focused on feasible action steps that will give the plan the best chance at success.  The plan is intended to position downtown Janesville as a vibrant neighborhood where commerce, culture, entertainment, and history intersect.  It also serves as a “playbook” for aligning and focusing resources in such a way as to draw a consistent and sustainable critical mass of people to the downtown, thereby encouraging diversity in downtown development, businesses, and activities, and fostering private development.


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