Karla Rothan: Nonprofit Woman Leader Creating a Better Central Ohio

Community Shares of Mid Ohio is taking the month of March to highlight the women leading our member charities for making a difference in the community as part of Women's History Month. 

Head shot of Karla Rothan, Executive Director of Stonewall Columbus

Karla Rothan, Executive Director of Stonewall Columbus


How long have you been in your current position?

9 years

How did you decide to pursue a career in the nonprofit field?

I started as a volunteer for the organization in 1995. Prior to my work at Stonewall, I worked for nonprofit arts organizations.

What do you see as the barriers, obstacles, and/or challenges? How did you or how do you recommend that these be overcome?

It always seems like the needs of our community are so much greater than the scope of services that our nonprofits can provide. One of the goals for Stonewall Columbus is to create long-lasting partnerships with other government businesses and organizations in order to overcome that challenge.

How do you plan to help the next generations?

Stonewall Columbus is committed to our youth and our next generations. We have internships and volunteer opportunities for young people who are interested in working in the nonprofit sector. I have traditionally been a "hands on" leader and am involved in team building and coaching at the center. Also, our   programs include a history initiative which will help us catalog the history of the LGBTQ community and leave that information for future generations.

Would you encourage the young women in your life to pursue a career in nonprofit? Why or why not?

Yes! Our nonprofit organizations in Central Ohio contribute greatly to the quality of life that we have as residents of this city. Helping others and working passionately for a cause can give a person a great sense of personal and professional fulfillment.

Your best piece of advice for women leaders, now or in the future is:

Work for a cause that you believe in.


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