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Greater Professionals, Greater Philanthropy, Greater Austin


DATE: Friday, October 14, 2016

TIME: 8:00am-3:00pm

RGK Center for Philanthropy and Community Service
LBJ School of Public Affairs
University of Texas at Austin
2315 Red River Street
Austin, Texas 78712-1536

In our one-day training, FundraisingForward, AFP Greater Austin gathers community leaders and fundraising professionals to broaden organizational culture, examine ways to engage new donor bases reflective of the community we serve, challenge perceptions that hinder our success, offer insights into attracting and retaining young donors, and prepare our organizations for new and diverse donors.

Through presentations, panels and breakout sessions, FundraisingForward provides current and prospective AFP members with new tools and broadened perspectives on community awareness, donor engagement, and leadership training.


8:00 Check-in

8:30 Keynote

10:00 Panel: Giving Groups

11:30 Lunch

12:30 Panel: Engaging and Retaining Young Givers

1:45 Panel: Getting Your Organization Ready for New Donors

3:00 Wrap-Up


AFP Members: $30

Non-Members: $40


5.0 hours/5.0 points



8:00 Check-in

8:30 Keynote

Change, Innovation and Nonprofit Leadership

In this interactive keynote session, you will:

  • Get X-ray vision into what goes on in an organization during change
  • Learn the essential (and overlooked) skill for effectively managing change
  • Understand the 6 stages of change, as well as how to help move people (and your self!) through them

Speaker: Jessica Sager

10:00 Panel: Giving Groups

This panel discussion offers insights, tactics, and successes in engaging new donors that better reflect our communities. Giving Circles are one way to gain support from specific groups. Young professionals, youth, and specific interest groups all have unique ways of supporting organizations and staying involved.


  • Priscilla Cortez, Futuro Fund
  • Ami Kane, Girls Empowerment Network
  • Harriett Kirsh Pozen, Shalom Austin
  • Yvette Ruiz, JP Morgan Chase

11:30 Lunch

12:30 Panel: Engaging and Retaining Young Givers 

This panel discusses capturing the next generation of givers and tips on keeping them engaged with an organization. With changing technology, new ways to interact with potential advocates emerge every day.


  • Shiloh Daniels, Blackbaud
  • Catherine Lucchesi, I Live Here, I Give Here
  • Karishma Thakor, The University of Texas at Austin

1:45 Panel: Getting your Organization Ready for New Donors

A changing donor base can have internal implications on an organization. This talk offers insights on how to make an organization prepared for new and different donors.


  • Ruben Cantu, LevelUp Institute
  • Virginia Cumberbatch,Urban League
  • Kate Perez, Cisco, Blanton Museum, Be At The Symphony, Ballet Austin

3:00 Wrap-Up

Priscilla Cortez
Since 2008, FuturoFund has raised and awarded over $200,000 in grants to nonprofit organizations making a difference in the Latino community.
Priscilla serves as a nonprofit consultant with Bacon Lee & Associates, assisting nonprofit organizations with program design and implementation, governance and management, and fundraising. Priscilla earned a bachelor's degree from Texas A&M University, a master's degree in education administration from The University of Texas at Austin, and a law degree from St. Mary's University.
She is involved with the Junior League of Austin and serves on the boards of Ballet Austin and Leadership Austin.  She is a graduate of Leadership Austin's Emerge Program and Essential Class. Priscilla and her husband John-Michael enjoy traveling, giving back to the community, and spending time with their daughter, Isabella.

Virginia Cumberbatch
Virginia Cumberbatch began serving as Director of the Community Engagement Center (CEC) in the fall of 2016. The CEC is an arm of The University of Texas' Division of Diversity and Community Engagement and incubates the Social Justice Institute, research projects and community partners working to address health disparities, social inequity and racial injustice. In 2015 she co-founded HUX STORYHOUSE, LLC, a branding and creative strategies collective that uses culturally relevant storytelling to help clients engage thoughtfully and authentically with markets across the Black diaspora. HUX focuses on education, urban affairs, and the creative economy. Virginia serves as the communication & advocacy strategist. Prior to pursuing her Masters in public policy, Virginia worked for Hahn Public Communications from 2010 - 2014 as a Manger of Client services, focused on nonprofit branding. She received her BA from Williams College in 2010 and her MA from the Lyndon B. Johnson School of Public Affairs at the The University of Texas at Austin in 2016.
A native Austinite, Virginia is a founding board member of Six Square: Austin's Black Cultural District, an organization focused on preserving Austin's Black history and heritage in East Austin and curating ongoing cultural economic contributions of Black Austinites. She is currently serving as Curator for the Austin Shapers (a hub of the World Economic Forum), and was vital in relaunching the Austin Area Urban League Young Professionals, serving as president from 2011 - 2014. She is the recipient of the 2014 Greater Austin Black Chamber of Commerce Emerging Leader Award and the Austin American-Statesman named her "Person to Watch in 2015" for her work in community engagement and racial justice.

Daniel, Shiloh_headshot

Shiloh Daniels
Since completing a Masters of Public Affairs at the LBJ School in 2000, Shiloh has been helping non-profits raise money through technology. In her current role at Blackbaud’s Austin office, she coaches organizations daily on everything from peer-to-peer fundraising best practices to the best way to code responsive emails. Shiloh also leads a program to promote reading for homeless children through St. David’s Episcopal Church, as well as serving on her vestry. 





AFP Ami Kane Headshot

Ami Kane
Ami Kane, is the Development Director at Girls Empowerment Network, where she has been on staff since 2010 and in fundraising since 2012. She holds a Masters of Public Affairs in Nonprofit Management from Indiana University. Prior to her time at GEN, Ami worked briefly with Foundation Communities and before relocating to Austin in 2009 she was with Girls Inc. of Greater Indianapolis for four years. She is a member of the Association of Fundraising Professionals, Impact Austin, and the Leadership Austin Emerge class of 2014. Her largest volunteer commitment each year is leading the girls’ giving circle, Girls Giving Grants.



Harriett Kirsh Pozen
Harriett has a BA in Latin American Studies from the University of Texas and is fluent in Spanish and Portuguese. She served as the Executive Director of Candlelight Ranch for 8 years and led a dramatic advancement for the ranch with the number of kids served, establishing financial security, new capital projects and the creation of a strong working Board of Directors.
Harriett has extensive background creating programs, in development, training, public relations, creating large community-wide events and working with people of all ages and backgrounds. Harriett has dedicated herself to the non-profit world for her entire career. 
She has seamlessly woven her volunteer and professional roles. Among her volunteer work, she was instrumental in the creation and conception of the Dell Jewish Community Campus in Austin and is currently the Generations Campaign Director, to continue the vision of the Dell Jewish Community Campus with a $25,000,000 expansion.
Harriett has won numerous awards, but her greatest gift is her two sons, Scott and Nathan. She enjoys yoga, running on Lady Bird Lake, travel, the Austin music scene and enjoys playing with her white fluffy cat, Chauncey.

Lucchesi, Catherine_Headshot

Catherine Lucchesi
As Director of Communications and Programming, Catherine produces I Live Here I Give Here’s programs, outreach, and works to develop strategic partnerships. In addition to managing the organizations events, like The BIG Give, she also is responsible for I Live Here I Give Here’s development activities, social media content, and branding.
Originally from River Forest, IL Catherine came to Austin after an eight-year stint in New York City. After graduating from New York University with a degree in art history, creative writing, and business, she worked at the New Museum managing corporate and private rental events as well as internal museum events. Prior to being the Special Events Manager, she worked as the Department of External Affairs Associate assisting with press, marketing, and community outreach. She also enjoyed working as a freelance wedding planner with Baton NYC and Fete during her time in New York.
Catherine moved to Austin in 2013 with her husband Tucker. She is passionate about giving back to the local community in Austin and is involved with local organizations such as Austin Speech Labs, The Contemporary, and AFP.

Kate Perez 
Kate Perez is an experienced marketing professional focused on the technology industry with more than 10 years of experience building strategic programs for companies such as a Cisco and Dell. Kate holds a Bachelor of Arts in Economics and an M.B.A. from the McCombs School of Business at the University of Texas. She is a member of the Board of Directors for Ballet Austin, President of the Board for the Symphony BATS, is actively involved in The Blanton Museum and Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central Texas. Perez is also part of the Advisory Board of the Texas Conference for Women and is a Next Generation Project Texas Fellow with the LBJ School of Public Affairs. She is a graduate of Leadership Austin’s Essential Class of 2013 and Emerge Class of 2009 and has previously been involved in organizations including Leadership Austin and Greenlights 501 Council.

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Yvette Ruiz
Yvette E. Ruiz joined JPMorgan Chase in 2014 and serves as Vice-President for the Office of Nonprofit Engagement, based in Austin, Texas. Primarily focusing on the supporting the needs of low-income communities, Yvette’s work with community thought leaders and nonprofit organizations advances policies and programs in that are key to inclusive growth and economic prosperity. Prior to working with JPMorgan Chase, Yvette managed employee and community outreach programs at National Instruments.




Jessica Sager, MS
Jessica Sager, MS is an Organization Development and business consultant with a passion for developing leadership and a knack for aligning and energizing teams. Her background ranges from working with entrepreneurs and small business owners to grow and scale their businesses to strategic consulting with Fortune 500 companies. She has a multi-disciplinary, holistic approach to creating change in organizations and developing leaders. Currently she works with Impact Hub Austin and Wake Up in developing their innovative programming and partnerships, and with Delta Associates, as a Senior Management Consultant.
She is passionate about social impact, community, and entrepreneurship. She volunteer mentors with innovative nonprofits as a Social Venture Partner with Mission Capital, she hikes, climbs, and bicycles with a gaggle of teenage girls as mentor with Explore Austin, and she helps high potential individuals break out of poverty through her work with Dream Come True Foundation. Ever inspired by the stories of everyday courage around us, in her spare time she is also developing an interview series and podcast called “The Overcome Project.”

Karishma Thakor
Karishma Thakor represents University of Texas at Austin professor Pamela Paxton’s course Power of Giving. Pamela Paxton is professor of sociology and public affairs and the Christine and Stanley E. Adams, Jr. Centennial Professor in the Liberal Arts at The University of Texas at Austin. Dr. Paxton has intersecting research interests in pro-social behavior, politics, gender, and methodology, which she uses in her course to engage and motivate the next generation of givers.