September 23, 2019
MASSCreative and Merrimack Rep Name Fundraising Leaders

February 9, 2019 — MASSCreative, a Boston-based nonprofit that advocates for creative communities statewide, and Merrimack Repertory Theatre, a Lowell nonprofit that focuses on producing contemporary plays, recently announced appointments of new fundraising leaders.

MASSCreative named Elena Ruocco Bachrach as its new development manager, responsible for overseeing fundraising efforts to support the organization's growth and long-term sustainability.

“Elena is a dynamic, collaborative leader and skilled fundraiser who is passionate about the arts and its capacity strengthen our communities economically and socially,” said MASSCreative executive director Matt Wilson. “She’s just the person we need to help MASSCreative and our coalition partners continue our work building a Commonwealth that is more vibrant, healthy, and equitable through investments in the creative sector.”

Before joining MASSCreative, Bachrach was executive director of the Newburyport Art Association for eight years, growing the organization to 650 members and a hub of the North Shore creative community.

Under Bachrach’s leadership, outreach to the Greater Newburyport community expanded to include numerous collaborations with cultural and business partners. Other major projects implemented by Bachrach include the 2016 launch of the Range Lights Community Sculpture Garden, a 2880-square-foot outdoor exhibition in downtown Newburyport; fundraising for a new education space; and significant expansion of 2019 programming.

Earlier, she was a business partner to Jewett Farms Studio, helping the custom cabinet-making firm design, create, and manage its new studio arm and showroom location. Bachrach’s experience also includes two years as program director at the Center for Museum Education at South Carolina’s Greenville County Museum of Art and researching and writing grants for the Office of Institutional Advancement at the College of Creative Studies in Detroit.

“Exposure to the arts and creativity improves our lives and our communities,” Bachrach said. “I’m thrilled to join an organization dedicated to educating the public and policy makers about the value of the arts, so that more of the Commonwealth’s residents can enjoy access to and the benefits the arts contribute to our communities.”

Bachrach holds a doctorate in political science from Northwestern University.

For the year ending June 30, 2017, MASSCreative reported $191,000 in revenue, all of which came from contributions and grants, and $318,000 in expenses, according to its most recently available federal tax filing.

Boston Ballet Gifts Officer Names Director of Development

The Merrimack Repertory Theatre (MRT) named Laura Frye, who previously served as director of development at MRT for three seasons, as director of development, responsible for all fundraising efforts.

“We’re thrilled that Laura Frye is joining our team. Her extensive fundraising experience, commitment to the city of Lowell, and understanding of MRT’s mission make her an outstanding choice to lead our development efforts,” said Executive Director Bonnie Butkas. “Her leadership is another step in our strategic efforts to build an organization that supports our ambitious artistic vision of creating nationally-recognized new plays.”

Frye's appointment comes as MRT, celebrating its 40th season this year, embarks on a new strategic plan.

During her earlier tenure at MRT, Frye increased donations by 22%. In 2015, she moved to the Boston Ballet, where she managed a portfolio of nearly $1 million.

She also has worked as a fundraiser for the University of Massachusetts Lowell and the Boston Symphony Orchestra. A graduate with a Master’s of Science in arts administration from Boston University, she served as an officer from 2015-18 on the board of the Lowell Cultural Council.

For the year ending June 30, 2016, MRT reported $2.19 million in revenue, of which $867,000 came from contributions and grants, and $2.33 million in expenses, according to its most recently available federal tax filing.

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