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Chapter Leadership Brief 2.16.2018

Chapter Leadership Brief 2.16.2018

By Craig Shelley, CFRE

Like many of you I fell into this career.  I didn’t grow up thinking I wanted to be a fundraiser, nonprofit leader or consultant on either topic.  I’m pretty sure I wanted to be a cowboy.  Or maybe a lawyer.  But as I reflect back on the nearly 20-years I’ve been doing this work I can’t imagine I could have found a more fulfilling career.  Fundraising and nonprofit management make our world a better place.  We facilitate people who care investing funds that make so many things possible in our society from feeding and housing the hungry, to improving education, to ensuring art and culture remain a vibrant part of our lives.  None of this happens without fundraisers which is why I am so proud and grateful to be one.

As a member of our Chapter’s Executive Committee, and of New York City’s fundraising community, it is important to me that the Association of Fundraising Professionals New York City Chapter recognizes and promotes our profession commensurate with the value it has in our community.  We have long been a place for fundraisers to gather to exchange ideas and for camaraderie.  We’re eager to aggressively double down on and expand these purposes.

In the year ahead, I am optimistic you will see our chapter:

-          Actively participate in the dialogue and thought leadership that shapes our profession and our sector.  The best and brightest nonprofit leaders and fundraisers call our chapter home and the chapter should be a microphone through which our talented community finds and amplifies its voice.

-          Provide professional development opportunities that continue to be not just on the leading edge but defining it.  We’re eager to maintain the high quality of these sessions and expand the audience of those who benefit from these opportunities.

-          Be a place where members can commiserate, exchange ideas and make lifelong friends.  Let’s face it, we’ve chosen a commonly misunderstood profession where hearing “no” is more common than “yes”.  It can be a bit lonely and discouraging.  The chapter should facilitate forming these important relationships all of us value and need within the profession.

I look forward to working with you to accomplish these and other goals in the year ahead.  If you have ideas or suggestions please always feel free to contact me directly at  If you’re interested in my thoughts on fundraising and news in the sector, sprinkled with the occasional picture of my kids, please follow me on Twitter @craigshelley.

Thank you for everything you do.

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