I BELIEVE IN RURAL PEOPLE. I BELIEVE IN COMMUNITY.   My passion is supporting organizations as they navigate change, undergo transformation, start fresh, heal from crisis, leap toward new opportunities, and learn to tell their own story.

I BELIEVE IN RURAL PEOPLE. I BELIEVE IN COMMUNITY. My passion is supporting organizations as they navigate change, undergo transformation, start fresh, heal from crisis, leap toward new opportunities, and learn to tell their own story.




…including but not limited to:

  • Development + Fundraising // grants, foundation + donor relations, capital + grassroots campaigns, diversified income strategies

  • Community + Organizational Processes // holistic planning, partnerships, program design + assessment, stakeholder engagement, non-profit leadership + governance, deep facilitation + meaningful meetings

  • Storytelling + Communications // traditional + social media strategy, public + community relations, narrative creation, brand development

…with special expertise in Foodsystem, Community, Sustainability, and Rural Issues.

Learn more at: turnstoneTN.com

Contact me to share your needs and discuss rates.

Here’s what some clients and colleagues say about working with me:

Sara is an exceptionally creative and talented professional, who is passionate about the power of people to change the world. She has deep skills in fundraising, communications, and facilitation. She worked for me for years—and proved the absolute best. My advice to you: hire her!
— John Piotti, President of American Farmland Trust
Sara’s got great insight and plenty of opinions, but I’ve never known her to force an unsolicited solution. She knows what real work looks like on the ground, and connects you to resources that address real community needs. It’s more than ‘grassroots.’ Sara’s is a deep commitment to forward movement that comes from an honest understanding.
— Jesse Pyles, Executive Director of Smokey House Center
Sara has dirt on her boots, service in her heart, and outside-the-box solutions in her mind... lots of them! She listens. She hustles. She is the real deal.
— Bob VanDeventer, Chairman of Volunteer Regional Food Pantry / Founder and Coordinator of the Mid-Maine Food Pantry Coalition
Sara has the proven ability to support creative planning, implementation, and reflection within nonprofits and the communities they serve. She effectively weds big picture thinking with attention to detail, critical thinking with a positive perspective, and collaborative process with decisive action. An articulate, moving speaker and writer- Sara is particularly valuable to organizations seeking to powerfully communicate about complex, sensitive, or innovative work.
— Mary Leaming, former Director of Unity Barn Raisers
Sara played a key role in several successful college/community grants that secured the funds to significantly expand a partnership bringing local food to the food insecure population in central Maine. She is an eloquent writer able to make a compelling case for support and a professional presenter able to persuade grant-making organizations. I was also very impressed with Sara’s keen financial and organizational acumen and her ability to fully envision success and translate that into comprehensive budgets and measurable outcomes.
— Robert Constantine, CFO of The White Mountain School
Sara Trunzo is a rare balanced combination of head and heart, driven to contribute positively to the world and her clients by innate passion and bootstrapping resourceful practicality.

A colleague for a decade of shared growth in food system work in rural Maine, Sara has been a colleague and collaborator in our paralleled tracks to serve farmers and our community. I had the privilege to witness Sara’s gifts of resourcefulness, moxie and grit in her role as director of a food bank farm, as well as her poise, patience and diplomacy as a fellow board member of a community nonprofit. Whether working independently or as a team, she has the hard skills to grow organizations, the determination to get the job done and the magnetism to build movements.

One aspect that truly sets Sara apart from those who are solely adept in nonprofit governance and management is her deliberate efforts to be on the frontlines. She can hold court in any boardroom just as easily as she can see a crop from seedling to harvest. These experienced and honed skills provide her with a depth of knowledge and understanding that has proven and will prove to grow stakeholder interest and involvement in any effort or cause.
— Colleen Hanlon-Smith, farming & foodsystem consultant / former General Manager of Unity Food Hub / former Executive Director of Maine Federation of Farmers' Markets
In my role as a Community Vitality educator at UMaine Extension, I saw Sara’s ability to navigate how citizens can gather, be heard, be respected for their differing ideas and opinions about community issues critical to their situation. Sara helped people think about the underlying common interests about why they gathered (e.g., a very small town planning how to upgrade its infrastructure, a volunteer advisory board that could think beyond rubber-stamping staff’s narrow interests, a library needing to serve all citizens - not only those with wealth, visions of the past, or those who did not want noisy, after-school youth disturbances). Sara’s down-to-earth presence welcomes people to meeting spaces where they feel like they all are important and can contribute. I’ve called on Sara to facilitate for and with me and will again whenever she can.
— Jane Haskell, University of Maine Cooperative Extension Professor / creator of Strengthening Your Facilitation Skills