Thank you for the opportunity to attend the Associate of Fundraising Professionals 2023 Icon Conference in New Orleans. This was my first time attending this conference, and I was extremely impressed with the level of professionalism, organization and depth of knowledge I received.
I was able to attend many educational sessions and was captivated by how many different topics and sessions were offered. I focused and attended the “Leadership & Management” sponsored by Lindauer Global, “Current & Prospective Donor Research” sponsored by iWave, “Rebels, Renegades and Pioneers and Ethics”, and “Accountability & Professionalism” sponsored by Brakely Briscoe.
Also, these below were of particular interest:
- “We Are All Not Ok – Building Cultures that Support, Heal and Strengthen” by Natalie Gupton, CFRE, MP. ASafe- Vice President and Chief Operating Officer
- “Uncomfortable Conversations” by Virginia Thumm, Virginia Fundraising Consultants
- “Are Your Leaders Leading Fundraising?” by Margaret Scott, CFRE, MBA, MBUS(Research), Margaret Scott & Associates-Director
In the Exhibitor Hall, I was able to make many connections and learn about great resources. Sandy at Charity Ace, Auction Consignment Experts were helpful and engaging and gave me ideas about potential auction ideas including trips for a future fundraiser. We are currently already using DonorPerfect, but it was useful to learn at this conference more expansive outreach tools they have available. Handwrytten communicated innovative and personal techniques to reach donors with their authentic form of communication I enjoyed talking with all of the exhibitors mentioned above and more, but my favorite was Qtego Fundraising Services. The representatives at this booth had great energy and demonstrated an abundance of experience in helping an organization. Their fundraising platform and service supports clients from beginning to end, offering initial event planning, support during, and a final analysis of the event. Otego partners/clients are given one on one support with tools and strategies specific to their needs. Their goal is to support your organization to exceed their fundraising goals. This was very exciting to learn.
Being new to AFP, I felt welcomed and supported. It was truly wonderful to meet other members from the Santa Barbara and Los Angeles Chapters, and be able to collaborate as well as discuss strategies and successes in our various endeavors. I have to thank Lauren Trujillo for personally reaching out to me to let me know that other members from my area would be gathering in New Orleans. What a great group of professionals.
I am looking forward to going to the conference next year and bringing my Development Coordinator along with me.
Thank you for this opportunity.