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Comfort Level

Chapter Leadership Brief 9.10.2021

By Michele Hall-Duncan, AFP-NYC Secretary
CEO and President of enCourage Kids Foundation

Fall events will be starting soon. Galas, tastings, festivals, and other events are planned for the end of the year. But as the Delta variant brings us all back into a cautionary space – what do we do? Some organizations have decided to revert to virtual or hybrid events after planning fall in-person events. Zoom is even trying to cash in on that trend by finally adding a donate button for nonprofits.

‎“How Will You Spend It?”‎

Chapter Leadership Brief 8.27.2021

By Jill Scibilia, CFRE, AFP-NYC President-Elect
Vice President, Development, Phelps Hospital, Northwell Health

There is one more week before Labor Day—the traditional end of summer in New York. 

Do you remember the last day of summer vacation before going back to school in the fall?  I do.  It always seemed to be the very best day of summer.  At least that is how I remember it.  It never rained.  The weather was just hot enough, but not too hot.  Our friends and all of us who hung out in the neighborhood where I grew up were on the best of terms.  Arguments were forgotten.  We were all suddenly the best of friends—at least for the day.  We played all day with abandon knowing it was the final day of vacation.  We stayed out as late into the evening as our parents allowed.  Every year I had the same thought, if only summer could last forever…

Looking for a Job?‎

Chapter Leadership Brief 8.13.2021

By Steve Jacobson, AFP-NYC President 
CEO, JCA, Inc.

No, I don’t have one for you. But chances are that there may be one out there for you. In one of the bright spots for fundraisers, the job market is picking up steam.  This is welcome news to the many fundraisers out there who were let go, took reduced pay or were furloughed due to the pandemic. According to the Association of Fundraising Professionals’ (our parent organization) annual compensation and benefits survey, the pandemic resulted in fundraisers’ salaries dropping 3% since the pandemic began in March 2020.  The survey also found that layoffs or furloughs occurred at 20% of the more than 3,200 organizations who responded to the survey.


Chapter Leadership Brief 7.30.2021

By Craig Shelley, CFRE, AFP-NYC Treasurer 
Managing Director, Orr Group

Does anyone ever listen to the Hamilton song, “Non-Stop” and think he could very easily be describing the life of a fundraiser?  The need for our work is always there, we often do what we do at the hours most convenient to our donors and least convenient to our families and social lives, we’re perennially working on under resourced teams, and every new fiscal year the clock goes back to $0 and the goals get larger.  Non-Stop has been the only pace I think I’ve ever experienced in my 20+ years fundraising, leading, and advising nonprofit organizations.

DO Call it a Comeback

Chapter Leadership Brief 7.16.2021

By Michele Hall-Duncan, AFP-NYC Secretary
CEO and President of enCourage Kids Foundation

As I write this leadership brief, we are in the throes of putting the final touches on our 18th annual golf tournament. If you’d asked me three months ago, my team, my board and even the golf committee themselves were managing expectations. No one knew what to expect between the moving target of vaccinations, venue limitations, and most importantly personal comfort level. I am so excited to share that we are nearly sold out and may even match our 2019 revenue. You know what I call that? A comeback! Was it tough? For sure. Exercising those old fundraising muscles, after months of being reactive instead of proactive required a shift, and for some, that shift was difficult.

SCOTUS Decision Protects Donor Privacy

Chapter Leadership Brief 7.2.2021

By Steve Jacobson, AFP-NYC President 
CEO, JCA, Inc.

Yesterday, the Supreme Court of the United States (SCOTUS) ruled in a 6-3 decision that California cannot legally compel nonprofit organizations to provide donor information to the state.  The case stems from a challenge by two conservative nonprofit groups based in California, the Americans for Prosperity Foundation and the Thomas More Law Center. These organizations claimed that California’s donor disclosure laws negatively impacted nonprofit groups’ abilities to fundraise and needlessly subjected donors to possible harassment.

Happy Juneteenth!‎

Chapter Leadership Brief 6.18.2021

By Jill Scibilia, CFRE, AFP-NYC President-Elect
Vice President, Development, Phelps Hospital, Northwell Health

June 19th is a new national holiday: Juneteenth National Independence Day.  President Joe Biden signed this into law on June 17, 2021 after it passed the Senate and the House earlier this week.  It is the first new federal holiday since President Ronald Reagan signed Martin Luther King Jr. Day into law in 1983.

I’m Feeling Optimistic

Chapter Leadership Brief 6.4.2021

By Craig Shelley, CFRE, Chapter Treasurer & Managing Director, Orr Group

I have this weird feeling I have not had in a long time.  I think it is optimism.  We seem to (finally? maybe?) have the pandemic under control as at least in the US vaccine rates rise and infection and death rates drop.  Things are reopening.  I have been able to spend time with colleagues, friends, and clients I have not seen in 15+ months.  Despite all our worst predictions’ philanthropy has rallied in the past year.  I gathered with this community at PhilanthroCon and was able to feel the energy of and learn from my peers.  I am looking forward beyond tomorrow and I like what I see for our world and for our profession.

Guideposts for an Effective Mentoring Relationship: Mentoring in the Age of COVID

Authors: Susan Shapiro, President, shapiroassociates
Madeleine Durante, Fundraising Innovation Manager, MoveOn

From the CEO to the Vice President and the young entry-level professional, everyone can remember that person, friend, family member, or career coach who helped to guide them, find their own voice, and make the best decisions to build their careers.

PhilanthroCon was AMAZING

Chapter Leadership Brief 5.21.2021

By Michele Hall-Duncan, AFP-NYC Secretary, CEO and President of enCourage Kids Foundation

I am still on a high after the PhilanthroCon conference. I thought it absolutely amazing. I know that we may be exhausted from all things virtual, (believe me I cannot wait to get back to in-person events), however the conference truly met my needs for connection, information, and inspiration. Beginning with the incredible keynote speech through the closing session, there was something for everyone.


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