It has been my honor to serve as President of AFP Southern Colorado for the last two years. The incredible dedication and commitment of my Board colleagues have made this one of the most rewarding experiences of my professional career in fundraising. The energy, passion, and achievements of your AFP SOCO Board has been nothing short of remarkable – from expanding into members-only programs such as webinars and coffee chats, to elevating the Summit on Philanthropy to a truly world-class event for sponsors, speakers, and attendees alike, to formulating a robust and ambitious strategic plan to carry the chapter’s work into the future. Some of the highlights from 2019 include:
My most personally satisfying experiences have stemmed from this collegiality and camaraderie among you all, fellow fundraisers. As we prepare our leadership transition, I am thrilled to be passing the torch to a new generation of leadership. President-Elect Kelly Shelton will carry our work forward with the same excellence you have come to expect from AFP, bringing you the best in professional development, networking, and best practice sharing.
Thank you for allowing me the opportunity to serve. See you at the Holiday Party!
Jennifer Malenky, MBA, CFRE
PS That’s me and my son Max enjoying The Nutcracker! Celebrate your holiday season and new year!
You may have seen the recent announcement from AFP International about a $30 increase in annual dues for Professional and Associate members effective July 1, 2019. I know this affects many of our current and prospective members, so I wanted to take a minute to share my thoughts as President of the AFP Southern Colorado Chapter.
First, while the national dues are increasing, the local portion of your dues are not. AFP SOCO will continue to elevate our programming, providing our members with even more valuable education and opportunities to connect with industry peers, all while maintaining our current dues structure.
Second, this increase has been under consideration for a while. Dues have remained the same for 10 years, and as AFP International continues to look at increasing member value (including through new online programs like the AFP 360 career coaching service and negotiation training with AAUW) and growing as an association (including a greater emphasis on inclusion, diversity, equity and access initiatives), a $30 increase is understandable.
Finally, while this will impact a significant portion of our members, there are several dues categories that are not increasing, including Young Professional, Retired and Small Organization. Your board understands the frustration that can accompany these announcements, especially for anyone already questioning the value of their membership. However, we encourage you to explore all that AFP offers. There is more value than ever in your AFP membership, both locally and nationally. Our local educational programming such as our Lunch and Learns, webinars, coffee chats, and annual Summit on Philanthropy make your membership go even further and bring you networking and professional development opportunities that can only be found at AFP Southern Colorado. Please reach out to me or other board members with any concerns, questions or feedback. As always, we thank you for being a part of our AFP SOCO Chapter family and elevating the fundraising profession in our state and local communities.
Jennifer Malenky, MBA, CFRE
Thanks to the outstanding facilitation support of Chad Sunderland, VP, Strategy & Business Consulting at the United States Olympic Committee, the AFP-SOCO Board of Directors held a retreat on February 1st at the El Pomar Foundation and identified our strategic plan goals for the next three (2019-2022) years to focus on organizational excellence, membership growth, program impact, and effective communication. As leaders, we proudly embrace behaviors of high quality, impact, passion, innovation, and collaboration. And we tackled the big questions, such as why we are members of AFP, what programs to focus on in future, how to expand our reach and offer new value to members, and the collective impact on the community of our work. We welcome your feedback on our refreshed Purpose Statement: AFP Southern Colorado is a network of ethical fundraising leaders who set the gold standard for Southern Colorado philanthropy. We provide educational resources, professional development, and best practices to advance our nonprofit community.
Each of us so very proud to represent you in the collective good we are doing to advance the transformational power of philanthropy in our region. Your feedback is always welcome! Thank you for being a part of our community of fundraising professionals.
I am honored to be serving in my second year as your AFP-Southern Colorado Board President. I hope each of you was able to take some much needed time over the holidays to reconnect with your families and loved ones. Fundraising is hard work! But our rewards – to see changed, transformed lives in our communities – has always been worth it to me. I am sure you feel the same.
We welcome a new board slate this year who are dedicated to bringing you the best opportunities for your professional growth and development, networking, and camaraderie. Our members-only offerings last year were extremely successful, and we will continue to diversify programs such as coffee chats and webinars available only to members. Our Lunch and Learn Series will also feature our friends and colleagues in the field to focus on topics such as planned giving, development planning, monthly and/or online giving, and donor engagement. Chamberlain Scholarships for first-time attendees to the AFP ICON as well as scholarship support for those taking the CFRE (Certified Fund Raising Executive) exam will once again be available. And as always, the Summit on Philanthropy, our signature education event, will highlight a nationally known speaker to focus our energies and broaden our understanding of how to follow best practices in the profession.
Your AFP-Southern Colorado Board of Directors passionately believe in the power of philanthropy to change and transform lives by promoting what is best in the profession and advocating for ethical practices and donor interest. Please share your feedback, ideas, and suggestions with us! We are here to be of service to you, and to the profession we all love.
I personally welcome your thoughts and ideas at any time – please contact me at email@example.com.
Welcome to another new year of fundraising success!
I am honored to be stepping into the role of President of AFP-Southern Colorado, most recently filled by the extraordinary Gina Taranto. Building on our legacy of excellence in leadership, we are proud and excited to offer you the best in professional fundraising educational opportunities, networking with colleagues, and support of the profession through best practices sharing.
Our quarterly Lunch & Learn series will continue to bring you relevant topics to increase your skills and effectiveness. We are currently planning topics such as donor stewardship, managing your donor pipeline, and building a culture of philanthropy.
We are also exploring providing more scholarships to enhance your professional development. In addition to the Chamberlain scholarship, which sends a first-time attendee to the AFP International Fundraising Conference, we will be offering scholarship support for obtaining the Certified Fundraising Executive (CFRE) credential. Look for details to come later this year.
We always love to welcome new faces to our monthly mixers, held the third Tuesday of every month at varying locations. Ours is a warm, welcoming, and collegial group! Bring a friend or colleague; the first drink is always on us!
One of my favorite sayings has been, “The grass may be greener on the other side, but you still have to mow it.” Making the leap to the ‘other side’ does not always mean you will be happier. Things can always be better, but regardless of which side you are on, you still need to work hard at reaching your goals or achieving something you desire.
I also have a slightly different version of that quote that I think is equally as important. It is “You may think the grass is greener on the other side, but if you take the time to water your own grass, it would be just as green.”
Taking the time to water my grass has been a constant cornerstone throughout my career. From the start, I have always made professional development a priority. A continuum of learning, networking, and support activities that better prepare me and improve my knowledge, competence, skill, and effectiveness. And without a doubt, it has paid off in spades for me.
AFP has been a big part of my grass watering – attending the educational sessions, the monthly networking socials, the annual Summit on Philanthropy conference, and more. It also includes being not only an active member, but also an engaged volunteer to help put on all the programs and services offered by the chapter. And now for the last two years, it has also included serving as President of the Board of Directors.
I think of our AFP Southern Colorado Chapter as small, but very mighty! Whether you are an AFP member or simply attend our programs, I hope you find it valuable and that it helps water your grass. If there is something you are needing, please reach out and let us know. We’ll see what we can do.
And I encourage you to do more than just water your own grass, but consider helping others by getting more involved with AFP. There are many ways to pitch in, and every bit makes a difference. Please reach out and start a conversation with us. We’ll see what we can do to get you engaged. I promise it will be time well spent.
As I finish my term as President, a big thank you to you all for helping me water my grass. It has been an honor to serve in the position, and I hope my service has helped you all in some small way to have greener grass. Let’s keep the watering going! Best wishes for a wonderful holiday season, and I look forward to a lush new year with you all.
All my best,
Gina Taranto, CFRE
President, AFP Southern Colorado Chapter
CFRE approved provider
2020 Ten Star Chapter
2021 Ten Star Chapter