Virginia Association of Fundraising Executives

November 2017

Message from the President


In this season of gratitude, please know how grateful I am for all you do for VAFRE. Our strength is our membership and I am excited about all of the wonderful things that are happening  - especially with our strategic plan. Please see Harry Warner's update below. 

Best wishes to you and your families for a restful, relaxing and very happy Thanksgiving!

With gratitude,


Lynne Berkness,
2017-2018 VAFRE President

Strategic Plan Update

Since approving VAFRE’s strategic plan last April, the board of directors has made great progress implementing its goals. You will recall the three focus areas to be completed in the plan’s three-year time frame are:

  • Membership:  Increase membership by 50 to a consistent membership of 300.
  • Partnership and Collaboration:  Collaborate with related organizations to strengthen development in our community.
  • Building the Development Function:  Help development professionals advance their careers and nonprofits improve retention.

The board is implementing the action steps delineated in the plan at its and the committee meetings. The new website launched in September is an outcome of the strategic planning to better communicate with members and inform anyone interested of community-wide events and news, among other features. This past lunch meeting is an example of collaboration by VAFRE programs creating the planned giving panel and inviting members of the Virginia Gift Planning Council to join us. Several future lunch meetings will seek other sister organizations and professionals participation.

You will continue to see occasional updates on the strategic plan.  In the meantime, take a look at the entire document on our website.  Provide any feedback you may have to any of the board members.  Or, if you have any questions, feel free to contact board member Harry Warner.

New Members

Jennifer Cornell, Curry School of Education Foundation, university of Virginia

Judy Frederick, Virginia Community College System

Ali Mislowski, Virginia Public Access Project

Jill Mountcastle, Liberation Veteran Services

Julia Ratliff, Virginia Foundation for Community College Education

Log in to the Member Directory for complete details on these and other members.


Submit your nomination for VAFRE’s Rising Star or Nina Abady Awards for fundraising excellence.

About 40& of people in the U.S. have no philanthropic history and can't be counted on as potential donors.

As the #MeToo movement has recently taken off, what has often been less discussed publicly is the challenge fundraisers have faced from sexual harassment by donors.

The House of Representatives passed the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act on Thursday by a 227 to 205 vote. The bill has been roundly criticized by leaders in the nonprofit sector, who claim it will hurt charities.

Click here for other recent headlines from VAFRE and the nonprofit world.

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