Williamsport, Md. — After more than seven years as president of the C&O Canal Trust, Robin Zanotti has announced she will retire in early 2023. Zanotti is participating in a year of succession planning and transition management with a succession planning team led by the Trust’s Board of Directors. This is meant to ensure the change in leadership is seamless and the organization maintains its momentum in both revenue and program growth.
As the official nonprofit partner of the C&O Canal National Historical Park (NHP), the mission of the C&O Canal Trust is to work in partnership with the National Park Service and local communities to raise funds to preserve the park for future generations, and to broaden support through programs that highlight the park’s historical, natural, and cultural heritage and recreational opportunities. The Trust raises critical funds and resources to support a variety of projects and visitor services in the park. A search for a new president and CEO of the C&O Canal Trust will be launched this month by the Trust’s succession planning team.
“My work with the C&O Canal Trust has been the work of a lifetime,” Zanotti said. “I’ve been part of truly dedicated teams of board members and Trust staff collaborating to advance the Trust’s mission of supporting the C&O Canal National Historical Park. Donors and volunteers alike have joined us in making this important work possible. It is rewarding to be leaving to my successor a vibrant, growing organization with a bright future.”
Under Zanotti’s leadership, the C&O Canal Trust has attracted philanthropic support sufficient to double its revenue and achieve substantial organizational growth. Staff size has grown thereby enhancing the Trust’s ability to engage communities in its work to preserve and protect the C&O Canal NHP.
“Robin Zanotti has been a tremendous and visionary president of the C&O Canal Trust,” said Chairman of the Board of Directors John Guttmann. “She has made us a stronger organization, with greater reach and an enhanced ability to support the park as it serves its visitors. We wish her joy and happiness as she moves on to the next phase of her life.”
Zanotti’s 40-year career in fundraising and nonprofit executive leadership has spanned several high-level positions with West Virginia University Healthcare and Shepherd University in West Virginia, as well as St. Joseph Mercy Oakland Hospital, Capuchin Ministries, and University Liggett School in her native Michigan. She is one of approximately 100 individuals internationally to have earned the Advanced Certified Fund Raising Executive (ACFRE) credential. Prior to joining the Trust as president in April of 2015, Zanotti ran her own business, Zanotti Nonprofit Solutions, LLC, where she aided clients with strategy, fundraising, and management.
“It’s crucial for the leader of the Trust and the superintendent of the park to have a good working relationship,” said C&O Canal Superintendent Tina Cappetta. “Robin and I have a synergy that will be difficult to replicate. I wish her well in her retirement and look forward to providing input to the process of selecting the individual who will lead the Trust forward as it continues to grow and support the park.”
About the C&O Canal Trust
The C&O Canal Trust, as the official nonprofit partner of the Chesapeake & Ohio Canal National Historical Park, works in partnership with the National Park Service and local communities to raise funds to preserve the park for future generations and to broaden support through programs that highlight the park’s historical, natural, and cultural heritage, and recreational opportunities. It is a 501(c)(3) organization. For more information about the Trust, visit www.canaltrust.org.
About the C&O Canal National Historical Park
The Chesapeake and Ohio Canal National Historical Park preserves and interprets the historical, natural, and recreational resources of the C&O Canal. The 11th most visited national park, the C&O Canal NHP has more than 5 million visitors annually. For more information, visit the park’s website at http://www.nps.gov/choh.