director of advancement & leadership giving
Susan Patena joined LACO’s staff as Director of Advancement and Leadership Giving in December of 2016. A long-time patron and supporter of music and the arts, Susan comes from a background in both fundraising at nonprofit organizations and wealth management for high-net-worth individuals, bringing to LACO a unique combination of skills to add to the fundraising and donor engagement team.
Prior to working at LACO, Susan ran the Los Angeles Chapter as Development Director for Back on My Feet Greater Los Angeles, a non-profit that uses running to combat homelessness. She excelled at working with corporate, institutional, and individual donors to grow the organization. Susan brings a clear understanding of strategy, planning, and evaluation to the LACO team.
She received a Master of Business Administration in Finance and a Master of Public Policy in International Relations from Pepperdine University. She also received a Bachelor of Arts in history with a minor in Entrepreneurship from Tufts University. She currently serves on the board of MBA Women Los Angeles, the local chapter of the National Association of Women MBAs.
Susan lives in Simi Valley, California with her husband Nate, whom she has known since they played French horn together in the middle school marching band. In her free time, Susan is an avid runner who enjoys training for marathons, reading, playing piano, and spending time with her husband and two dogs, Gizmo and Gidget.