About The Team

Our Founder

Barbara Harman

Founder | bharman@cfp-dc.org

Barbara Harman began her career as a college English professor, landing at Wellesley College in 1977 where she taught literature and writing for 25 years. A graduate of Tufts University with a PhD in English from Brandeis University, she is also the author of three books (Harvard University Press, University of Virginia Press, Garland Publishing). After completing a study of women in the public sphere in 19th century British fiction, which she wrote over a ten-year period in a very small room in her house, she decided it was time to step out into the public sphere herself. She became Executive Director of the Harman Family Foundation in 2000 and founded the Catalogue for Philanthropy: Greater Washington in 2003.

Barbara has received numerous awards and commendations. Under her leadership the Catalogue garnered eight Wilmer Shields Rich Awards from the Council on Foundations for Excellence in (web and print) Communications (2005-2010). She also received Latino Student Fund’s Community Builders Award (2007), Posse Foundation’s Power of 10 Award (2011), Young Playwright's Theatre's Giving Voice Award (2018), DC Campaign to Prevent Teen Pregnancy’s Change the Conversation Award (2019), After-School All-Stars Rising Star Award (2019), and Learn-Serve International’s Civic Champion Award (2020). She shared with Jane Harman the Mayor's Arts Award for Visionary Leadership in the Arts (2013). She was named one of Washington's "most powerful women" by Washingtonian magazine in 2013, 2015, and 2017, and a Washingtonian of the Year in 2016.

Barbara enjoys living half in a bucolic suburb of Boston and half in the busy Penn Quarter/Chinatown neighborhood of DC. She likes to work out, play with her three young grandchildren, discuss TV series with her professor husband, and read long novels. Barbara also likes speaking and writing–these days, about philanthropy.

Catalogue Staff

Matt Gayer

Co-Executive Director | mgayer@cfp-dc.org

Matt joined the Catalogue in 2017, developing and launching the Learning Commons, the training and support we offer our nonprofit partners, as well as expanding our impact beyond our network for the first time. He is passionate about the role nonprofits play in the community, and about building their capacity to grow their impact. He believes in the power of community and that the Catalogue is positioned to play a unique role in building community, supporting local changemakers, and prioritizing equity and resiliency.

Before joining CFP, Matt worked in healthcare consulting at The Advisory Board Company. He is a Truman Scholar, who has experience in several nonprofit settings, largely in civic engagement and public health prior to the Catalogue. In 2022, the Washington Business Journal named Matt a "40 under 40" local leader.

He holds a Masters of Public Administration degree with a focus on nonprofit management from Syracuse University, and a B.A. in Public Policy and Political Science from Southern Methodist University. Matt loves all things DC and enjoys exploring the hidden gems the city has to offer.

Aaron Gonzales

Co-Executive Director | agonzales@cfp-dc.org

Aaron joined the Catalogue in 2017 and serves as the organization's Co-Executive Director bringing with him a unique mix of fundraising, marketing, and resource development experience from his time both in the for-profit and nonprofit sectors. In his role as Co-Executive Director of the Catalogue, he is responsible for the organization's day-to-day operations, fundraising efforts, and financial performance.

Prior to joining the Catalogue, Aaron worked with two Catalogue partner organizations in operational and development roles, seeing firsthand the important impact the Catalogue has on the local nonprofits it serves. Prior to his nonprofit experience, Aaron led a successful career as a financial services attorney in the DC area. He started his legal career at an AmLaw 100 law firm in DC representing banks, brokerage firms, mutual funds, hedge funds, and other financial services companies. After leaving the firm, Aaron accepted an in-house counsel position serving as general counsel to an online brokerage firm managing more than $4 billion in assets where he oversaw all legal aspects of the company’s business.

Aaron received a BA in Economics from Princeton University with a certificate in Finance and his law degree from the University of Virginia School of Law. He lives in Rockville, MD with his wife Jenny; his children Gavin, Gabby, and Eva; their Great Dane, Fia; and the newest addition to the family, their tuxedo kitten, Lucy.

Nancy Swartz

Editor & Director of Special Events | nancy@cfp-dc.org

Nancy Swartz has been with the Catalogue since its beginning in 2003 and is also the Grants and Operations Manager at the Harman Family Foundation. She began her career as Associate Producer for Special Projects at The Good Day Show at ABC affiliate, WCVB-TV/ Channel 5 in Boston, and worked in television production and media for over 20 years. A graduate of the University of Massachusetts Amherst in Mass Communication, Nancy has been a board member of the Needham Education Foundation and the Needham Friends of Music, as well as a longstanding volunteer in her community.

In her dreams, Nancy would be on a stage in New York City singing and dancing. In the real world, she would like someday to work in the theater department of a local college or university. For now, she couldn't be happier collaborating with a wonderful group of people who entertain her daily! When not working at the Catalogue, Nancy loves to spend time with her kids, listen to music, sing (as long as no one is listening), try to beat her parents at scrabble, read, watch movies, jog, work out, and laugh (which her husband makes her do on a regular basis)!

Elyse Nelson

Director of Operations | enelson@cfp-dc.org

Elyse joined the Catalogue in December 2015, where she serves as the primary point of contact and manages finance and logistics. She is committed to helping donors realize the full potential of their dollars by building capacity for local nonprofit organizations, and previously served in this role at The Community Foundation for the National Capital Region. Before moving to the Greater Washington area, Elyse served as an AmeriCorps VISTA, where she developed a long term disaster recovery program for a flood-affected community in Colorado and managed a volunteer coalition to end homelessness. She holds a degree in economics from Colorado College.

Elyse lives in Maryland with her husband, son, and a whole menagerie of pets. In her spare time, Elyse enjoys baking and amateur photography and has been known to play a video game or two.

Sarah Hall Aguila

Director of Development | saguila@cfp-dc.org

Sarah joined the Catalogue in the fall of 2019 after 4 years as Director of Operations for the Central American Resource Center (CARECEN) in the Columbia Heights neighborhood of DC. Previously, Sarah lived and worked in El Salvador, first as a volunteer with Brethren Volunteer Service, teaching English and conflict resolution skills with youth, then as Grassroots Program Coordinator with the SHARE Foundation, building relationships with Salvadoran communities and faith groups in the United States. A common theme in Sarah's career trajectory is relationship building related to social justice, and has consistently served as a bridge in her many roles in Central America and in the US.

Sarah holds a BA in Peace Studies, Human Rights, Language, and Culture from Manchester University (formerly Manchester College) in North Manchester, Indiana. She is passionate about social justice, human rights, immigrant rights, international law, women's empowerment and food sovereignty.

In her spare time, Sarah serves as treasurer for Hyattsville Mennonite Church and participates in committees and actions related to immigration and empowerment in Latin America. She is an avid home cook and baker, and finds joy in movement, whether walking, dancing, taking Barre3 exercise classes, or her most recent hobby, gymnastics. She and her husband Mario live in the Parkview neighborhood in northwest DC.

Chiara Banez

Nonprofit Programs Manager | cbanez@cfp-dc.org

Chiara Banez joined the Catalogue in 2021 and serves as the Nonprofit Programs Manager. In this role, she manages the Catalogue's capacity building and professional development efforts. She previously worked as a program manager at a DC-based nonprofit, The Partnership for Public Service, managing and facilitating leadership development programs for federal employees.

Her passion for nonprofit work developed through her time at Ohio State University where she studied nonprofit management and graduated with a B.A. in Public Management, Leadership and Policy and a minor in Leadership Studies from the John Glenn College of Public affairs.

In her spare time, Chiara spends her time reading, testing new recipes or playing pickleball.

Amanda Liaw

Communications & Marketing Coordinator | aliaw@cfp-dc.org

Amanda Liaw joined the Catalogue in 2022, where she engages in communications, marketing, and storytelling for the Catalogue and its nonprofit partners. Prior to joining the Catalogue, she held a communications, development, and programs role with PEN/Faulkner, a Catalogue partner organization.

Born and raised in Singapore, Amanda holds a BA in Cinema and Media Studies from the University of Southern California, where they discovered their passion for using art and storytelling to spur narrative and cultural change.

Amanda spends their spare time pole dancing, exploring DC, writing in community with others, and learning about gardening. She is also involved with mutual aid work and organizes with a local chapter of the Democratic Socialists of America.

Board of Directors

  • Brandolon Barnett, Founder, Chief Product & Strategy Officer, The Regular; ANC District 1A06
  • Rahsaan Bernard, President, Building Bridges Across the River
  • Jennifer Browning, Nonprofit Consultant
  • Celeste Flores, US Communities Director, GivingTuesday
  • Jade Floyd, Senior Vice President, Communications and Public Affairs, Global Strategy Group
  • Nadine Gabai-Botero, President, Focus Fundraising LLC
  • Barbara Harman, Founder, Catalogue for Philanthropy; Executive Director, Harman Family Foundation
  • Cari Rudd, Principal, Caribou Strategies
  • Steve Sousa, Senior Vice President, Consulting Services, CGI
  • Kathryn Stephens, Independent Consultant, Interim Executive Services
  • Lora Zuk, Director, CohnReznick
  • Aaron M. Gonzales, Co-Executive Director, Catalogue for Philanthropy (ex officio)
  • Matthew C. Gayer, Co-Executive Director, Catalogue for Philanthropy (ex officio)
  • Advisory Board

    • Brian Argrett, President & CEO, City First Bank
    • Katherine Bradley, Founder & Chair, CityBridge Education
    • Mary Brown, Executive Director, Life Pieces to Masterpieces
    • Eileen Daly, President, Philip L. Graham Fund
    • Hon. Jane Harman, President & CEO, Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars
    • Leon Harris, NBC4 Washington
    • Don Neal, Founder & CEO, 360 Live Media
    • George Schindler, CEO, CGI Global