Starr is the founder and principal of Advancement Connections, a firm dedicated to serving advancement professionals and volunteers in schools throughout the United States and internationally. Based in Charleston, SC, Advancement Connections provides fundraising, constituency relations, marketing/enrollment, strategic planning and communications services exclusively to PS-12 schools.
Prior to Advancement Connections, Starr was the executive director of the Advancement Program Council (APC) in Washington, DC.
Starr has worked in independent schools since 1972 as a teacher, administrator and more recently as advancement director for Greenhill School in Dallas; Heritage Hall in Oklahoma City; and Ashley Hall in Charleston. From 1982–1997 Starr directed Starr Snead & Associates, an international consulting firm in New Haven, Connecticut.
Starr holds an A.B. degree in Psychology from Wheaton College in Massachusetts, an M.A in Reading Education from the University of Rhode Island, and an M.S. in Special Education from Fordham University. She is an alumna of two Connecticut schools – Pine Point in Stonington and Westover in Middlebury. Starr served as a trustee of Pine Point from 1989–1996 and on Westover’s Alumnae Association Board of Governors from 2001–2010.
In August 2009 she joined the board of trustees at Trident Academy, a K-12 school for students with learning differences, in Mount Pleasant, South Carolina, serving that school for three years. In July 2010 Starr was appointed Executive Director of the Palmetto Association of Independent Schools (PAIS), a part-time position she held until October 2017. In October 2010 she was elected to the President’s Commission at Wheaton College. She is currently a trustee at Westover School, and as of April 2019 now serves as board president.
Starr is a frequent speaker at CASE and NAIS conferences. Her popular workshops and seminars offer practical solutions to today's development, enrollment and advancement challenges, combining nearly five decades of personal and professional experience with the "best practice strategies" of many of our nation's leading independent schools.