Thank you to Julie Byrnes

Inspiring Leadership

Julie Byrnes just completed her term as our Board President but that is just part of how she’s contributed to our Playhouse in the past four years.

Julie is a Speech-Language Pathologist and learned about GiGi’s when our past Board President, Bill Henry, randomly connected with her on LinkedIn.  She quickly fell in love with the mission of GiGi’s Playhouse and jumped right into volunteering.

She is one of our top volunteers with volunteer hours totaling over 1,500 hours!

One of her first volunteer roles was on the Gala planning committee. This role morphed into her leading the Gala planning the last few years, including our first ever virtual Gala in 2020. She also quickly jumped at the chance to join our Board of Directors. She started as a member, then took on the Vice-President role and finally the President’s role.

During her time on the board the Playhouse was in a state of transition so she volunteered to step down from the board and step-in as interim Executive Director. She held this role for about 6 months until our new Site Manager was hired and moved to full-time.

Julie created our Advocate Committee


Julie is also one of our top Playhouse fundraisers! Our Chief Growth Officer, Kim Hanna, said ” she helped lead the charge to more than double Playhouse revenues in the midst of a pandemic.  Julie never faltered as she methodically and consistently chipped away opportunities with her team through it all.”  She has forged relationships with community businesses and donors and also personally contributes on an on-going basis. She even won our top individual fundraiser at our GiGiFIT Acceptance Challenge!

Julie as our top individual fundraiser and Kim as our top team fundraiser at the GiGiFIT Acceptance Challenge

Kim Arndt, our new Board President, shared “Julie was an amazing board president for the past 18 months.  Her leadership allowed the Madison Playhouse to prosper, even during the challenges of a pandemic.  Under Julie’s guidance, we were able to create new events, advance our fundraising efforts, and grow our Playhouse resources both with programming and staffing. ”

We are so grateful to Julie for her leadership and vision- she’s helped make hard decisions, challenged our team to be our best and continues to inspire not only our local Playhouse community but also our entire network. Julie will be staying on the Board of Directors to assist with the transition of our new Executive Board.

Thank you to Julie and to her entire family who all support GiGi’s Playhouse Madison in their own ways. Our Playhouse is stronger because of your efforts!

1 Comment

  1. Judy Heil on July 1, 2022 at 6:43 pm

    Thank you, Julie. We hope you stay apart of the GiGi’s Playhouse family in any way feasible.

Leave a Comment