LIFEDesigns hires new CEO Russell Bonanno


LIFEDesigns extends a warm welcome to Russell Bonanno to fill the role of CEO as Susan Rinne retires November 11, 2017. LIFEDesigns’ Board invites the community to share this warm welcome with Russell as he becomes acquainted with Bloomington, IN.

Susan Rinne, LIFEDesigns CEO for the last 18 years, is a community leader who has dedicated her career towards righting social injustices specifically for people with disabilities. She has not only improved the lives of people with disabilities and made LIFEDesigns one of the most well-respected, successful non-profit agencies supporting people with disabilities in the state, but also made the entire community a better and more welcoming place. As she leaves, and Russell takes on this new role, he will provide the leadership that LIFEDesigns needs as the agency continually strives to improve services and community opportunities for people with disabilities. Russell states, “For more than 30 years, LIFEDesigns has provided innovative, community-based services designed in partnership with their customers and in collaboration with community members. It is an honor to be able to work with such a forward thinking Board and dedicated staff to continue and expand upon this history.”

Russell comes to LIFEDesigns from his most recent roles: Director of The Autism Program of Illinois, and non-profit consultant. Much of Russell’s background includes experience with policy and advocacy. He also has a strong background in marketing and program evaluation. He has been a member of the Illinois Autism Task Force, the Governor’s Health Care Reform Implementation Workgroup on Workforce Development, The Arc of Illinois, and the Illinois Chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics conference committees. He has experience in securing two federal grants to improve libraries accessibility to and services for individuals with autism and their families.

Vonnie Peischl, LIFEDesigns Board Chair states, “The Board is very happy that Russell Bonanno has accepted the CEO position at LIFEDesigns. We believe with his interdisciplinary background, along with his commitment to supporting people with disabilities to be independent in their communities, he is an excellent choice to lead our agency in the coming years.” There will be more information to come and a welcoming reception in the coming months. At this time we want to thank Susan Rinne for her leadership, and extend our hands to Russell as takes on the role of CEO and leads LIFEDesigns into the next phase of our journey to build inclusive communities.

About LIFEDesigns: LIFEDesigns believes that everyone deserves a home, job among their peers, and access to the community they live in. Everyone has abilities and deserves the opportunity to be valued for their contributions. Everyone deserves the opportunity to meet and make friends and to live in a diverse and welcoming community. The agency exists to provide the support and opportunities that people with disabilities need to achieve their goals. LIFEDesigns is a United Way Member Agency in Bartholomew, Lawrence, and Monroe Counties.

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