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New Director of Development

Published by
Susan Metts
September 25, 2023

A Q&A with Rich Kells

NeighborHealth is excited to welcome Rich Kells as its new Chief Development Officer – an important role focused on raising awareness and funds to support our mission to serve Christ by loving our neighbors through excellent, compassionate and accessible healthcare. Here, we get to know a bit about Rich, his love for relationship-building and his passion for the non-profit world – as well as the generous donors who support this important work.

Q: Tell us a little bit about yourself.

My family and I have lived in Durham for 15 years now, and I’ve spent the past 20 years working in the non-profit sector. My wife and I have two school-aged girls – we spend a lot of time watching them do the activities they love, and we’re trying to squeeze in as many family trips as we can while we’re all still under one roof. As a frequent marathon runner, I start my days off with a few miles to clear my head. Since I’m a Duke University alumnus, we’re big Duke fans, but we really enjoy all the local sports – including the Durham Bulls which is right down the road from us.

Q: What do you love most about working with philanthropic donors?

Meeting people who have a heart for giving – and helping them make a difference in communities and the lives of real people is an incredibly rewarding career. I often feel like a match-maker – spending time learning what a donor is passionate about and connecting them with programs that align with their heart. In my career, I’ve helped countless donors fund or even establish new programs – and helping them see how people’s lives have been impacted by their gifts is very powerful.

Q: What is your vision for NeighborHealth’s fundraising programs?

Building relationships is what my job is all about – and for me, it starts with bringing greater awareness to the incredible work NeighborHealth has been doing quietly, under the radar, for the past five years. As our community continues to expand, the healthcare needs will only continue to grow. When you look at the non-profit community here in the Triangle, NeighborHealth is still a relatively new organization. My first priority is to generate greater awareness for the incredible work we’re doing here among our local community members, business leaders, and prospective donors. In addition, there’s so much opportunity to engage the community in our work through programs, events, volunteerism, and more. I look forward to thinking creatively about how we can amplify and multiply our community impact in the coming months and years.

Q: How did you get into philanthropy and non-profit work?

My career began in the U.S. Navy where I served as an active-duty officer for five years – which is what afforded me the opportunity to receive a full scholarship to Duke University. When my service ended, I had to figure out what I wanted to do in the civilian world. When the opportunity to work for my alma mater arose, I began a career working in fundraising at the university level – a role I cherished for more than 10 years. From there, I spent the past five years with Habitat for Humanity in Durham. That experience was humbling and beautiful and inspired a passion in me for serving the underserved. Witnessing firsthand how much impact philanthropic donations can have on individuals and communities brings meaning to the work I do.

Q: Why did you choose to join the NeighborHealth team?

From the moment I first learned about this opportunity, NeighborHealth’s mission and faith-based model stood out to me. The way that NeighborHealth is stepping out in faith to serve Christ by loving our neighbors is incredible, and I’m excited to play a role in helping improve access to healthcare for everyone who needs it.

Once I walked into the clinic, I witnessed firsthand the love and compassion this team has for its patients and for one another – it’s an incredibly unique place. The opportunity to serve NeighborHealth and help increase the impact we can have on the health of our community is very exciting. I’m so thrilled to be here.

Mark your calendars

Wow, it’s hard to believe that in just a few days, we will be in the final quarter of 2023! At NeighborHealth, it has been a very busy year. In the first quarter, Women’s Health moved from our original Lake Boone Trail facility to our new, 16,000+sf clinic on Blue Ridge Road, completing the final piece of the move that began in the Fall of 2022. We are seeing more patients and welcoming more medical providers to the staff to provide quality care for our patients from infants to seniors. In the second quarter, NeighborHealth celebrated it’s fifth anniversary; and in the third, we wrapped up the Growing for Good campaign.

Thanks to each and everyone who supports us with your prayers, your time, and your gifts! We look forward with anticipation to what God has in store for NeighborHealth over the next five years.

As you begin thinking about year-end giving, you may be looking for a way to help further our mission. If you are 70-1/2 or older, a charitable rollover directly from your Individual Retirement Account will reduce your taxable income and satisfy your required minimum contribution. For more information, contact Rich Kells, Chief Development Officer, at or 919-943-2172.

Mark your calendars! Giving Tuesday is a global generosity movement and occurs each year on the Tuesday after Thanksgiving. So, get your turkey leftovers eaten, do your Black Friday shopping, and plan to join NeighborHealth for our first Giving Tuesday campaign on November 28th. Keep an eye on our website and social media for more information this November!

Thank you for your continued partnership.
With gratitude,
Daniel Lipparelli
Chief Executive Officer

Serving Christ by loving our neighbors through excellent, compassionate, and accessible health care.

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NeighborHealth Center, Inc. (NHC), is a private, non-profit 501(c)3 agency founded to meet the healthcare needs of the underserved in the Raleigh area.