Donna M. Oklak is the co-founder of Impact 100 Greater Indianapolis, founded in 2005. This all volunteer-based women’s giving circle has distributed $1.9 million in the Indianapolis community since it began. Ms. Oklak has had several roles within the organization including setting up the grant process when it began, serving as President from 2007 to 2009, leading the nominating committee, and leading the communications efforts. Currently, she leads their fundraising efforts. In honor of the organization’s 10th anniversary in 2015, she also set up a scholarship program for young women philanthropists, to participate in the grant review process.
Before co-founding Impact 100 Greater Indianapolis, she worked for the Indiana State Bar Association for seven years in Indianapolis and the Huber Heights Courier weekly newspaper in Dayton, Ohio. Ms. Oklak has served on numerous nonprofit boards and giving circles including the Ball State University Foundation, Herron High School, Prevent Blindness Indiana and the Little Red Door. She continues to serve at St. Mary’s Child Center, St. Francis Franciscan Healthcare Hospital Foundation, 100 Voices of Hope, Indiana University Foundation, Red Cross, Tiffany Circle, Oasis and Benjamin Harrison Presidential Site.
From 2000 to 2005, she served as the Executive Director at Sycamore Foundation, where she managed the Indiana Achievement Awards, a non-profit recognition program, as part of an internship for her graduate degree for four successive years. Ms. Oklak received her Bachelor’s degree in Journalism from Ball State. She later went back to school and graduated from Indiana University in 2003 where she received her Master’s in Philanthropic Studies from the Lilly Family School of Philanthropy.
Ms. Oklak has received the Women of Influence honor from the Indianapolis Business Journal in 2014 for starting Impact 100 and also received the St. Benedictine Angel of Grace Award during 2014 with the “messenger” Archangel Gabriel Award for her philanthropic work.