Denise Durel began her experience in the non-profit arena as a volunteer with the Muscular Dystrophy Association which lead to a professional career with that organization. Starting as a Program Coordinator handling special events in outlying parishes, she then became the District Director overseeing the 15 parishes that make up Southwest Louisiana. After the success of achieving the #1 district in the country she was named the Director of the Greater Cincinnati area. While in Cincinnati she went on to manage a region for MDA that included 8 different district areas within 4 states. After 20 years with MDA, she was named the Development Director for United Cerebral Palsy. Then, in 2009 she relocated to Lake Charles to accept the position of President and CEO of United Way of Southwest Louisiana, a position that she continues to hold today.