Maria Paredes ’09
Director of Development, California Lutheran University
Maria Paredes ’09, MA, is a professional fundraiser with ten years of experience working with philanthropists supporting arts organizations and universities in Southern California.
Before joining California Lutheran University, she served as the Director of Development at the Younes and Soraya Nazarian Center for the Performing Arts (The Soraya) at CSUN. As the frontline fundraiser for The Soraya, she developed strategic relationships with funders to present a wide variety of performances that not only include new and original work from the Los Angeles region but also work from around the world that appeals to all of LA’s rich and diverse communities.
Maria is devoted to best practices in philanthropy to develop resources for organizations that spark, nurture, and sustain the fire of aesthetic and intellectual creativity. She has worked with philanthropists of diverse interests and backgrounds to create a positive impact in their respective areas of interest through significant gifts. Previously held positions with Center Theatre Group, Freewaves, Arts Orange County, the Wolf Trap Foundation for the Performing Arts, The Dia Art Foundation, and the Idyllwild Arts Academy. She also likes to give back to her community, and from 2011-2014 she led the Emerging Arts Leaders Los Angeles (EAL/LA) Development Committee to implement professional development workshops for the organization’s constituents. She co-founded the CMC San Fernando Valley (SFV) Alumni Chapter, which aims to connect, build, and maintain meaningful relationships between SFV based alumni and the CMC campus. As a Kravis Leadership Fellow, she mentors college students and advises on leadership program development at CMC.
In 2011, Maria received her MA in Arts Management from the Peter F. Drucker and Masatoshi Ito Graduate School of Management, and in 2009 she received her BA in Studio Art from Claremont McKenna College. During her time as a student, she received the honors of Posse Scholar, Parsons Foundation Arts Management Fellow, and Ronald E. McNair Graduate Fellow.
During any spare time, she enjoys all things wellness and creating artwork. As an artist, she examines the collaboration between biomorphic forms and the idea of transformation. As a wellpreneur, she focuses on healthy and sustainable living for the mindful professional.