Meet Our Team

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Sondra Lintelmann-Dellaripa
President and Principal Consultant

Sondra Lintelmann-Dellaripa is principal consultant at Harvest Development Group, LLC.
A twenty plus year veteran of the philanthropy industry, Sondra specializes in assessment, strategic planning, revenue development, research, and board relations. Her professional experience includes Vice President of the ECHN Community Healthcare Foundation, Director of Corporate and Foundation Relations at Connecticut Children’s Medical Center, Director of Development for the Governors Prevention Partnership as well as Community Director for the National March of Dimes. Additionally, she has provided counsel for a wide variety of national non- profits, helping to define and re-energize philanthropy programs, recruit outstanding leadership and facilitate vision and strategy.

Sondra’s professional enjoyment comes from improving underperforming or new philanthropy programs, enhancing trustee engagement, building strategic direction, and growing leadership.

Sondra has been a frequent conference speaker over the last 12 years, presenting at Blackbaud’s International Conference on Philanthropy, NACHRI-The National Association of Children’s Hospitals and Related Institutions, the Association for Healthcare Philanthropy, the Association of Fundraising Professionals, The Center for Nonprofit Success, and OEG Fundraising conferences along the east coast, as well as curriculum development and instruction at the Ct. Association of Nonprofits. Her presentations include corporate social responsibility, creating balanced fundraising programs, improving board fundraising, innovation, capital campaign management, and building a better board. Her rants, discussions and editorials on philanthropy can also be found on her blog at . She is a frequently published freelance contributor to a variety of nonprofit association journals and newsletters.

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Melanie Cecarelli
Client Engagement Manager

Melanie joined the Harvest Team in August, 2014 as a Senior Consultant after a long and successful career at Aetna. Melanie has served on several nonprofit boards, including the Board of Trustees at the University of Saint Joseph, where she also served as the University’s Alumni Council President. In her past positions at Harvest Development Group, Melanie served as Interim Director of Development for The New Children’s Museum before and was later named Client Relations Manager for Harvest.

Melanie has traveled extensively through Canada, as well as Italy, Ireland, Jamaica and most recently Australia, and combined with her personal travels and Aetna career, has visited 30 states.

What did you prior to joining the nonprofit sector and Harvest Team?
Prior to joining the nonprofit sector, I enjoyed a long and successful career at Aetna in the National Account Division. After leaving Aetna, I joined the nonprofit sector as a consultant for United Way of Central and Northeastern Connecticut and advanced the work of their newly launched Women’s Leadership Council and created their signature event, “Power of the Purse” to raise funds for the Council’s Family Financial Centers.

What attracted you to the nonprofit sector?
After serving on several boards, I realized helping nonprofits achieve their goals was important to me. I guess you can say, too, that it’s in my DNA. My parents were very community and civic minded and giving back to one’s community was just a way of life.

What is your favorite quote?
“This above all to thine own self be true”. Shakespeare’s Hamlet, Act 1; Scene 1
This was one of my Dad’s favorite quotes and it resonates with me, especially when faced with making major decisions.

What do you gain from your client interactions?
Our clients bring passion to their work and their mission and it’s a privilege to work with organizations who are so committed to their work. It’s inspiring!

At the end of the day…….
I want to know that I had a positive impact on someone.


Chelsea Johnson
Executive Assistant

Chelsea joined the Harvest Team in June, 2015 and is a vital member of the team, overseeing the daily operations of the organization.

Chelsea pursued a degree in visual arts at Loyola University in New Orleans and her creative talents are evident in her approach to innovative solutions for our team and clients. After
moving back to Connecticut, Chelsea’s organizational and project management skills were evident as a warehouse supervisor of a team of 20 employees for a large online jewelry company.

Chelsea’s passion to help others in the nonprofit sector started as a child when she donated proceeds from her lemonade stands and tag sales to a local children’s hospital. Her desire to give back to the community   continued throughout her college career; helping to rebuild houses in New Orleans following Hurricane Katrina, and organizing fundraising activities with her sorority for victims of domestic violence.

Her resourcefulness to problem solving has earned her the nickname “MacGyver” for those who know her well!

 What attracted you to the nonprofit sector?
What attracted me to it was my desire to help change the nonprofit world, one organization at a time. The more I learned about the work that Harvest Development does, the more I felt that my passion to help  these nonprofits could be put to use on a larger scale. And I had one of the best teachers of the business…my mom!

What is your favorite quote?
“There is more madness to my method than method to my madness.” – Salvador Dali

What do you gain from your client interactions?
What I gain from my client interactions is perspective. The more client communication I have, the more perspective I gain on nonprofit management.

Tell us something personal about you!
I have seven tattoos, and I plan on getting more! I like to do anything crafty or artsy and I love animals of all kind – especially my German Shepherd, Buddy! I’m married to an incredible man, Robert, who is an Army Veteran and my favorite human! I love to work; Harvest Development Group has been fundamental to my growth as a young professional.

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Safirah Fequiere

Safirah joined our team in June 2016 as an Intern at our Connecticut office. Her leadership skills combined with her ambitious personality make her an excellent addition to Harvest. Safirah attends Fairfield University where she studies Political Science and works as co-president for the only female empowering club on campus. Her management background and notable problem solving skills are significant to her role in supporting the Harvest Development Group team.

What did you do prior to joining the nonprofit sector and Harvest Team?
I was a volunteer at Yale New Haven Hospital and a research assistant at St. Vincent’s Medical Center. Aside from those, I work throughout the academic school year as an office assistant, and work in retail.

What attracted you to Harvest Development Group?
What attracted me to Harvest Development was the genuine care the company has for other rising companies. The humbling core values display a great and hardworking team that would do anything in its power to give the best results.

What is your favorite quote?
“ le temps perdu n’est jamais retrouvé ” – unknown
(lost time is never found again)

What have you done in the nonprofit sector?
When I volunteered at Yale New Haven Hospital as an ambassador, I had to know the hospital like the back of my hand. The routes could last from 2 to 15 minutes, depending on how far the destination was. I would use that time to speak to the person/family and make a friendly connection with them. When I was a research assistant at St. Vincent’s Hospital, part of my job was to ask patients a series of questions for the hospital’s research, which allowed me to have more detailed and personal conversations with the patients. In both experiences I had a wonderful time because I got to build a relationship with everyone I spoke with.

Tell us something personal about you!
I have a pretty huge family. I have 19 aunts and uncles, roughly 150+ cousins; which makes family reunions really fun.


Peter Curtin
Senior Consultant

Peter joined the Harvest Development team in November of 2016, after twenty-seven years of extensive not-for-profit development consulting experience for a wide-variety of nonprofit organizations.

He started his career working for three of the largest development consulting groups in the United States, before acting as the campaign director and the planned giving officer for one of the preeminent hospitals in the State of Connecticut.

Prior to coming to the Harvest Group, Peter ran his own successful non-profit consulting firm working with small and medium-sized charities on major gift programs, capital campaigns, annual fund work, planned giving, board development and organizational development.

What attracted you to the nonprofit sector?
During my time at Trinity College, in Hartford, Connecticut, I was fortunate enough to intern at one of the area’s most impact full nonprofit organizations. This experience demonstrated to me the great influence that nonprofit organizations have on peoples’ lives, the tremendous needs that exists in our communities, and the great satisfaction that can be achieved by helping others.

What is your favorite quote?
“One person can make a difference, and everyone should try” – President John F. Kennedy

What do you gain from your client interactions?
One of the greatest benefits of working in this industry is my opportunity to assist inspirational, visionary and philanthropic individuals, with a passion for giving back for all that they been blessed with, in achieving their goals

Tell us something personal about you…
I was the captain of my high school golf team, was fortunate to play college golf, and caddied on the PGA Tour between high school and going to college.

Mary Jane Lund

What did you prior to joining the nonprofit sector and Harvest Team?
I have worked in the development field for more than 30 years – at the high school, college and civic level. Responsibilities have included administration of special events, planning and implementing strategies for cultivation and solicitation of major gifts from individuals, foundations and corporations for both annual operating and endowment purposes.

What attracted you to the nonprofit sector?
Working in the nonprofit sector for me means I get to mix the opportunity to work with my heart with the opportunity to help effect change. It has always been important to me to try to give back for the privilege.

What do you gain from your client interactions?
Working with clients allows me to recognize more fully the need I have to be both a mentor and to be mentored. Every day I learn to listen better and that we all should be more open and tolerant of differences and change.

What is your favorite quote?
“Attitude is a little thing that makes a BIG difference.” -Winston Churchill

Mary Kate Cox

What did you prior to joining the nonprofit sector and Harvest Team?
I have done all of my professional work in the non-profit sector. I’ve taught sixth grade, counselled law students and international students and, for the last 20 years, raised money for colleges and other non-profits. Of all of my work in non-profits I am most passionate about fundraising. I’ve seen the pure joy people get from using their wealth to help make the world a better place, and I’ve seen the transformative effect it can have on a non-profit’s mission and work.

What attracted you to the nonprofit sector?
I think non-profit work helps you multiply your instinct to “do good” in the world. Instead of working with one hungry child at a time or one student who can’t afford college, I’ve worked to help my non-profits make the world better for tens of thousands of people.

What is your favorite quote?
“I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.” Maya Angelou

What do you gain from your client interactions?
You cannot give effective fundraising advice without knowing the history and culture of your client organization. Interactions with a client’s leaders, board and other staff – sometimes intentional sometimes by happenstance – help me figure out exactly which strategies applied in precisely what way will bring the best results. I find this strategic work to be like jigsaw puzzle. It’s very absorbing, sometimes frustrating but ultimately very satisfying when all the pieces come together.

Tell us something personal about you…
I am learning to play golf – a most humbling and exasperating endeavor.