Deborah Crocker, Principal & Founder

Deborah received her Master in Arts Administration from Columbia University. After moving to Philadelphia in 2007, she worked in senior positions at art and education institutions including Pennsylvania Ballet, The Miquon School, and Koresh Dance Company. Prior to obtaining her Master’s, Deborah worked as a professional dancer in New York City. Her experience at nonprofits as both a professional dancer and an administrator give her an acute understanding of the delicate balance between serving your mission while remaining fiscally solvent. She established Grounded in 2017 because she saw a need in the community for more individualized support.

The starting point for Deborah’s work with you is to understand your organization as a complete entity, and to design a project scope that truly addresses your needs. Adapting a single idea or approach that might  work for one nonprofit is rarely the right strategy for another.

Deborah has a successful track record creating and implementing plans and strategies that have led to increased revenue for organizations. Her specialty lies in fully understanding an organization’s unique community and then designing plans that are feasible and therefore rewarding for an organization. She has extensive experience in foundation and corporate relations, annual giving, major gifts, board training and committee work, and development assessments. She also is experienced in strategic planning and facilitating board and staff meetings.

Deborah has served as a member of the Yes And….Arts Collaborative Board of Directors and has been a speaker at the National Small Schools Conference.

Josh McIlvain
Senior Communications Specialist

With a BFA in Writing from NYU Tisch School for the Arts and a MA in Theatre from Villanova University, Josh brings a diverse background and unique expertise to Grounded. Josh has worked for a number of organizations in Philadelphia and New York City with a specialty in magazine and exhibitions-style publications and books. This includes being an Editor for Fodors Travel Guide in NYC for a number of years. He has extensive project management experience, as well as expertise assessing and managing website design.  As a grant writer, he has successfully secured funding for nonprofits due to his ability to write compelling narratives that are technically accurate , while also being easy to understand. His past clients include FringeArts, Bryn Mawr College, Cynthia Woods Mitchell Center for the Arts, Fodor’s Travel Guides, and Cardell Dance Theater, to name a few.

Josh has served as a member of the Cliveden of the National Trust Board of Directors. He also is a playwright, director, and producer who presents art throughout the Philadelphia area through his theater company, Automatic Arts.