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Staff Spotlight: Grace Harcek

We’re so proud to work with each and every one of our staff members here at Donor Alliance. In our Staff Spotlight, we like to take a minute to share who we are and why we work at Donor Alliance. In this month’s staff spotlight, meet Grace Harcek. Grace is the Director of Performance Excellence at Donor Alliance and has been part of the team 17 years.

This Month’s Staff Spotlight is on Grace Harcek:grace-harcek-director-of-performance-excellence-donor-alliance-staff-spotlight

Name: Grace Harcek

Position: Director of Performance Excellence

Years at Donor Alliance: 17 years

Tell us a little about your role with Donor Alliance: In my role, I oversee and guide Donor Alliance through our performance excellence journey. This means I work with every area of the organization to evaluate and improve our systems and processes, so that we can get better every day to save more lives through organ and tissue donation and transplantation.

What do you enjoy most about your role/what’s the most rewarding aspect of your role? Being part of an organization that does such meaningful work is incredibly rewarding to me.

Tell us about a time at work that really moved you, most moving experience you’ve been a part of: I was traveling to a conference a couple of years ago, and a woman at the airport asked me where I worked. When I told her I worked at Donor Alliance, her face lit up and she said, “I love Donor Alliance!” She began telling me her story of her infant son who passed away 19 years earlier. Although he was not able to donate because of certain medical criteria at that time, she said that she was so appreciative of how a particular staff member showed empathy, compassion and care during her grieving process as she tried to understand the nature of her son’s death. I was touched and felt really proud hear her story her story about how her interactions with someone from Donor Alliance helped with her healing.

When you’re not working, what do you like to do for fun? I love spending time outdoors – mountain biking, skiing, camping, stand-up paddle boarding – especially with my husband Jerry, two kids (Sofia and Ethan), and Waffles the dog.

What piece of advice would you give your younger self? Life’s challenges no matter how big or small create the opportunity to make us better and stronger.

Thanks for reading our staff spotlight!