Nadia Villagrán

Field Catalyst

2024 - 2025

Focus Area:
Community and Economic Development
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Local Initiatvies Support Corporation
Director, Rural LISC
Indio, California

Nadia Villagrán joined the Local Initiatives Support Corporation (LISC), a national nonprofit organization dedicated to advancing community development work in communities across the country, in January 2017 as a Program Director providing broad oversight and input for LISC’s national program Rural LISC.

Nadia now serves as the Director of Rural LISC after acting as the interim Director of Rural LISC and Vice President since January 2024. She leads a team of 20 toward the group’s mission of working with residents and partners to support resilient and inclusive rural communities as they become great places to live, work and innovate.

Wearing her strategic partnerships “hat,” Nadia works closely with the Rural LISC leadership team to oversee the administrative, financial, and programmatic strategies of Rural LISC to expand, grow and fortify the rural network of Partners, allies, and collaborators. Additionally, she maintains close relationships with team members in the field, keeping abreast of challenges and successes within their partner portfolios for fundraising and collaboration opportunities.

She also assists in planning and determining program content, schedule, logistics, marketing, and funding for the Rural LISC Annual Seminar.

In her fund development role, Nadia researches and develops proposal strategies for foundation, corporate and public funders, and helps manage the stewardship of Rural LISC’s funding relationships, including coordinating data and research for proposal and reporting purposes. She also tracks grant and report deadlines and requirements, manages the donor acknowledgement process, and works closely with the National LISC Development team on development related activities and reports.

Nadia has more than 18 years of experience in communications, fund development, and community development. Before joining LISC, she served as the Director of Operations and Communications at the Coachella Valley Housing Coalition (CVHC), a longtime Rural LISC Partner in Southern California, where she oversaw all administration, human resources, and community service activities. Nadia previously served as the Single-Family Development Director and the Community Services Director at CVHC. She started her career as a reporter for The Desert Sun in Palm Springs, California.

Nadia credits her commitment to nonprofit management, community development and affordable housing to having watched her parents build their family home in Southern Arizona, when she was six years old. Her parents joined their neighbors to build their homes under the USDA-Rural Development Mutual Self-Help program. Nadia joined CVHC, one of the nation’s largest USDA-RD Mutual Self-Help program operators in the country, to help further that invaluable work.

Nadia is the mother of three young ladies (24, 7 & 6) and is married to a fellow community development advocate, Mike Walsh.