Valerie Stewart

Director, Capacity Building and Leadership for Healthy Communities


As Director, Capacity Building and Leadership for Healthy Communities, Valerie leads grantmaking and partnerships that support community-driven priorities, cross-sector collaborations and cultivates technical assistance and training opportunities for leaders creating change in communities across the state.

During her time with the Foundation, Valerie has been engaged with various funder collaboratives that have focused on participatory decision-making and is proud to have incorporated self-care and well-being supports as well as coaching into most cohorts she manages. Valerie brings more than 20 years of experience in relationship building, program design and project management, communications, and event planning that influences the way she leads. She completed a coaching certificate program with the Healthcare Coaching Institute and Duke University’s nonprofit certificate program. She holds an MBA from Kenan-Flagler School of Business at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and a BA from Butler University.

What I love about my work:
I love activating the many possibilities to create change and doing it in a way that is people-centric, mutually supportive, nurturing, and holistic. I believe we have a lot of power to do things differently and that motivates me every day to show up authentically and transparently while being accountable to community.

When not at my desk:
My dog runs my physical activity schedule along with showing up to support my kids’ activities. You can also find me fueling up on good coffee, running with friends, enjoying dog friendly patios, volunteering in the public school system and addressing food insecurity in my community. I also love traveling and exploring destinations locally and around the world.

Favorite thing about North Carolina:
I love being outdoors most of the year and my happy place is the beach with the mountains being a close second.