April 2018 Print

President's Report

Happy Spring! (positive thinking),

As we look at the calendar for AFP-Nebraska this year, we have much to look forward to. Our VP of Education, Clover Frederick, continues to bring excellent speakers to our monthly meetings, Melinda Way-Stone is knee deep in planning a day of education for us at the Give and Gain Conference, and Lisa Sypal is hard at work planning our celebration of fundraising at the National Philanthropy Day lunch. Each of these women bring a quality to our chapter that is partly inherent, partly learned and always changing – LEADERSHIP. They build teams, influence others and draw on the strengths of those around them. Not only do they do this for our AFP chapter, but, I’m certain they do it in their respective professional positions.  

We have amazing leaders throughout our chapter of AFP! Whether you are a seasoned fundraising executive, or someone who is just starting out in the field, we each have something to bring to the table. As the year goes on, I encourage you to think more about your role with AFP and if you can see  yourself leading our chapter in other ways – chairing an event, sitting on our board, or inviting a peer to a monthly meeting. I am thankful for all of the members and guests who take the time to participate in our meetings and conferences. You don’t have to have a fancy title to be a leader! Go the extra mile – it’s never crowded.  

See you at the next meeting!

Suzanne Rogert

Back to top

Calendar of Events

Mid-American Conference – May 6-8, 2018

Fiesta at the Falls
2018 Mid-America Conference on Fundraising, scheduled for May 6 - 8, 2018 in downtown Sioux Falls, SD. There is an an outstanding line-up of speakers, keynote/learning sessions, and networking opportunities planned that are sure to leave you inspired and ready to take your fundraising to the next level. 


AFP-Nebraska May Meeting - May 17, 2018

Giving as a Way of Working and Living
Breakfast Meeting at The Nebraska Club in Lincoln
Speaker: Robert J. Crandall, Founder/Senior Consultant of Robert J. Crandall & Associates, LLC


Give & Gain – September 12, 2018

Building Habits for Success With Bill Sturtevant
Boys Town Conference Center | Omaha, NE

Are you a fundraiser that works with major and planned giving? Do you want to learn from an industry expert? Do you want to take home actionable items you can begin immediately after the conference? Do you want to assure your fundraising success? Then Give & Gain is for you! Give & Gain will held in Omaha at the Boys Town Conference Center.  We are excited to host speaker and author of “The Artful Journey: Cultivating and Soliciting the Major Gift.”  Each recipient will take home a copy of Bills book and through the break-out sessions will receive tools, checklists and guides to improve their major gift program. 


National Philanthropy Day

Save the date for Wednesday, Nov. 7, 2018 and help AFP-Nebraska celebrate National Philanthropy Day! The annual luncheon and recognition of our state’s philanthropy leaders will be held at Embassy Suites in Lincoln, Neb from 11:30 a.m. – 1 p.m. This is a great committee to share your time and talents with – contact Lisa Sypal today to see how you can be involved. 


Back to top

Member Q&A

Meet a Member

Meet AFP Board Member Melinda Stone 

Q: Tell us about where you work, your title and responsibilities? What do you like most about your job? 

A: I have been the development director for the Eastmont Towers Foundation for 3 years. The Foundation exists to support the residents of Eastmont Towers, a continuing care retirement community located in Lincoln, Nebraska, as well as those across southeast Nebraska served by our hospice house, The Monarch. Working for the Foundation was a big change, but one that had lots of benefits. We are a small shop with just myself, an assistant, and our Board of Directors, so we do a little of everything and every day is different. I have also appreciated the experience of supporting donors as they make their estate plans and find ways to leave a lasting impact in their community. In very few fundraising scenarios would you actually work in your donor’s home!

Q: What made you decide to go into fundraising as a profession?

A: As a social work major I wanted to spend my career helping others and it wasn’t until I was in the non-profit world that I discovered I could serve the greatest need by helping my favorite non-profits raise money. I was reluctant at first, but later realized how truly rewarding it was to help people achieve their philanthropic goals. I think once I learned I was asking for people to invest rather than begging for handouts, I was proud to consider myself a fundraiser.

Q: What was your first paid job?

A: At 15 I had the pleasure of being a waitress at Sizzler Steakhouse. I made $2.15 an hour while attempting to wow my customers enough to earn tips at a buffet. I still miss the Texas toast! 

Q: What do you like to do for fun when you aren’t at work?

A: I teach a decluttering class through OLLI called How to Simplify Your Stuff & Honor Your Memories and the advanced class, Living with Less Club. I’m the proud parent of two great kids, one who will graduate high school this year and the other who I take all over the country for her gymnastics competitions. Fun for me includes kickboxing and evenings with chips, salsa, and margaritas!

Q: What is your role on the AFP Board?

A: I’m excited to be this year’s AFP Give & Gain Chair. We are partnering with The Charitable Gift Planners of Nebraska in planning this conference. This is my first year serving on the Board.

Q: What are you most excited for during Give & Gain?

A: The theme of this year’s conference is Building Habits for Success with Bill Sturtevant. It’s great to have the opportunity to bring Bill to Nebraska to share his expertise with us. As a small shop fundraiser, my time and energy are precious, so I need to make sure that I will walk away from a conference with actionable items that can help me create greater impact. Bill is planning on giving us just that! Everyone who attends the conference will get a copy of Bill’s “The Artful Journey: Cultivating and Soliciting the Major Gift.” He will also provide a number of tools including tools to qualify prospects, a framework to develop effective cultivation strategies, and a guide to relationship building. To help you hit the ground running when you get back to the office, he is also providing a 10-Point checklist on how to implement changes when you get back to the office. If you work in major or planned gifts — or need to do more in major and planned gifts — this conference is for you!

Back to top

Job Postings

Is your organization seeking to add to your staff? Or are you looking for your next career change? Check out the classifieds on our website. 

Back to top