2019 Year In Review: The Year of Transformational Change
Updated: Oct 26
A terribly self-indulgent look back on my game-changing year.
It's hard to believe that the year is almost over. In the spirit of giving thanks, I'd like to take a moment to reflect on the highlights and look ahead at what’s in store for 2020. It is with no doubt that I will look back on 2019 as one of the most exciting and important years of my career. Together, with my colleagues, we’ve made true advances in our field, formed lifelong friendships and truly bettered our communities. Here's a look at some of my greatest memories and proudest moments.
Taking The Stage At AFP's International Conference
One of the proudest moments of my career happened in April 2019 when I was recognized as the AFP Global's Outstanding Young Professional Fundraiser. Little did I know attending AFP's International Conference (ICON) would be an unforgettable experience and reignite my love for professional development and innovation within our field. AFP ICON, the world’s largest conference for professional fundraisers with thousands of attendees, 100+ education sessions, and a massive marketplace, made one thing certain: everything’s bigger at AFP ICON.
The award recognizes fundraisers under the age of 31 who show exemplary work in raising funds, inspiring donors, helping manage campaigns, and giving back to the profession. I'll be honest, taking the stage before 4,000 people was equal parts terrifying and exhilarating but I could not have been more thankful, proud and humbled to have accepted the award in front of my AFP family. See you at ICON 2020 where I will be presenting two workshops: “Your Shop's Ops: The Top System Operations Fundraisers Need to Implement Today” & “How to Recruit, Engage, and Empower Young Professionals to Survive and Thrive on your Boards”. More to come on that soon!
Attaining My CFRE Credential
I remember it like it was yesterday. I learned of the Certified Fundraising Executive (CFRE) credential in 2011 and immediately added it to my "to-do" list. I was young and naive and didn't yet know it would take me years before I would even qualify to test. Ha!
I know that my colleagues holding the CFRE credential uphold the highest standards in ethics and professionalism in fundraising, and serve with a higher level of knowledge and accountability—factors that are vital for superior fundraising results. Considering that the CFRE certification is the only accredited certification for fundraising professionals and is recognized as the global standard for fundraising professionalism, I couldn't wait until it was my turn.
After many study sessions and sleepless nights, I formally attained my CFRE in September 2019. I am now looking forward to serving as a CFRE Ambassador in 2020. I'll be mentoring test-takers and representing CFRE at conferences around the tri-state area. Hard work pays off y'all! Stay tuned for a deeper dive and study tips soon.
Serving As AFP-NYC Emerging Leaders Chair
I joined AFP-NYC's Emerging Leaders committee in 2016. I didn't know it at the time, but serving on this committee was going to be life-changing and I am so proud of all the accomplishments we achieved. After serving as the committee's chair since 2018, in 2020 I will begin my term serving on the AFP-NYC Board. Thank you to my fellow board and chapter members for your confidence in me.
I am especially proud of our committee's recent activities including:
Bringing together a power-house panel of executives to discuss the importance of seeking mentors early on in your career. Thank you for the collaboration Laura Fredericks, Jethro Miller, Thembisa Mshaka, Zanetta Addams-Pilgrim and Susan Davies. The event could not have been possible without you!