My journey has not been a very straight path.
In fact, most fundraisers I know did not start their career raising money!
I am an entrepreneur, communicator, relationship builder, and have a deep love of fundraising. I started my career in the advertising and marketing industry, sharing the stories of companies, products, people, and organizations through the written word, photography and video production.
At midlife, I started to feel a pull to do something that made a bigger difference in my community. I wanted to create impact. I wanted my life to mean something more than how I spent my days at a “j.o.b.”.
Taking all of my 25 years experience from the advertising industry, I began a consulting company that focused on “cause marketing” which, at that time, meant raising the awareness for non-profit organizations and shining the light on great ideas that were generating real impact in the world.
Communication is my true love.
I love the entire process of diving into an organization’s offerings and choosing the right channel to reach key stakeholders. The pace by which the messages are communicated as they build relationships and advocacy is what gets me up in the morning!
In my job as a sales representative for all that time in advertising, I learned the importance of building relationships.
Starting my own non-profit was a tremendous part of the journey.
Inspired by a client’s work with urban youth and education, we decided to start an educational non-profit that would help high school students meet their true potential. Minddrive was born – a hands-on, Saturday program that engages mentors from professional industry with Kansas City’s opportunity youth. Together, the mentors and students define a new future of promise and hope. It’s a very exciting and thriving organization today!
As you might guess, from that experience I’ve come to understand the intricacies of creating an initiative from the ground up, and all of the challenges that come along with it.
I gladly wore many hats and acted as marketing and PR director, community outreach and events manager and the organization’s key fundraiser. I took on any and all roles necessary to realize the success of this organization (my baby) in its developing phase and watched it grow from startup to a full-fledged organization, creating impact for many or our youth.
Along the way, I discovered my passion – fundraising and donor relationships.
As a fundraising consultant, I understand the struggles around fundraising and communication. I’ve heard those voices in my head that can prevent us from taking the action we know we need to take to sustain a thriving non-profit organization.
I’ve grown to love talking with and engaging donors, and I can help you love it, too. We all have to start where we are. I believe that anything is possible!
If you want to read more about why I love to raise money for causes I believe in, you may read my blog post “I Fundraise Because“.
What else about me?
I happily serve on the governing board of the AAF-KC Foundation where we provide scholarships to college juniors and seniors that are interested in pursuing a career in Advertising or PR.
I’m also serving on the board of a start-up organization, Kanbe’s Markets, which is working hard to eradicate the food desert problem in the urban core of Kansas City. This just launched in January 2018 and it’s very exciting!
I have been blessed to be named by KC Magazine as one of the 2015 Most Influential Women of Kansas City Business. Previously, I was also named one of Kansas City’s Top 100 People Who Make Kansas City A Great Place To Live.