Meet the New Mountain West Executive Director!


We are pleased to announce that, as of November 21, Ellen Penrod has officially joined the JDRF Mountain West Chapter as our new Executive Director!

Ellen joins JDRF with over 25 years of experience in health non-profit fundraising and management, which includes chapter- and national-level experience in volunteer and board development; individual giving; corporate engagement; special event planning and management; and strategic planning and implementation.

With a Masters of Non-Profit Management from Denver’s Regis University, Ellen is a graduate of Augustana College in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, where she received a B.A. in Business Communications and a B.A. in Psychology.

For the past five years, Ellen has served as Executive Director for the American Lung Association in Colorado. Prior to that, she was Associate Executive Director for the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation, managing a territory that included Colorado, Montana and Wyoming. Additionally, her nearly 15 years with the National MS Society included service as a National Senior Manager for Walk and Teams.

Ellen is excited to now be a part of the JDRF mission of supporting families and empowering all people who live with T1D. As a self-proclaimed “research nerd,” she loves that JDRF has a focus on bringing new treatments for T1D directly to market. The Penrod family has connections to a rare type of diabetes known as MODY (Maturity onset diabetes of the young). While very different from type 1 diabetes (T1D), the research JDRF funds does have a direct impact on her family.

Ellen is a Colorado native who enjoys adventuring around the foothills and mountains near her home with her 3 children and 2 dogs. She also loves cozying up at home in front of a fire with a 1000+-piece puzzle.

Ellen can’t wait to meet all the individuals and families working together to find cures for T1D. She loves that this work gives people the chance to change the world for the better.

Please join us in welcoming Ellen Penrod to JDRF!