Julie was part of the CI family and a fierce champion for Oregon’s children. In partnership with her family, we have set up a dedicated donation page in her memory so we can continue to work hard to make sure children and communities thrive.
The journey from the start of her career as a preschool teacher to a board member on Children’s Institute’s Board of Directors was a full-circle moment. “Coming to Children’s Institute feels like coming home,” she said.
We will always remember Julie as someone who refused to allow the status quo to define how she treated others, especially children. She was someone who saw them, cared for them, and loved them dearly.
Leading in the Wilderness of Love
Originally published September 2, 2022 by Kali Thorne Ladd
Earlier this week, we lost one of our fiercest champions for children in Oregon, Julie Mancini.
Julie began her career as an early childhood educator and when she joined the Children’s Institute Board, said it felt like “coming home.”
Julie held many titles — mother, grandmother, leader, mentor, advocate, and friend. For those of you who knew her, you inevitably experienced her light and passion. Her irreverence for the status quo and commitment to always doing what was right by kids — no matter what — set her apart from many, and exemplified her special power.
To say that it was an honor to have her as a part of the CI family seems an understatement at best. Her presence, sharp wit, fabulous sense of humor, and eagerness to change things for the betterment of all are part of her lasting legacy.
And of course, Julie’s leadership extended beyond just children: she led and served in many nonprofits in Oregon including College Possible, Mercy Corps, Caldera, and Literary Arts.
But where Julie led best is in the wilderness of love. She loved her people, and she let them know it. Perhaps this is what made her shine brightest, because to be seen and loved is the greatest gift. Julie bestowed this gift upon many, and our lives are forever changed for the better because of it.
We love you back, Julie. And we will miss you.
But know this: We will continue to do the hard work on behalf of children in your honor; you wouldn’t want it any other way.
With the deepest gratitude,
Kali Thorne Ladd