As I See It | Barbara Shelton, CFRE | Vice President

Never More Proud To Be A Professional Fundraiser

I recently returned from vacation. Even though it was a brief oasis amidst the unfolding COVID-19 pandemic, I was refreshed and ready to jump into our work at M. Gale & Associates.

My first day back on the job I heard fellow consulting team members share the challenges, tribulations and realities of front-line fundraisers and their leaders gleaned from hours of in-the-moment consulting sessions. Hearing these stories, I’ve never been so proud to be part of such good.

The real, raw and insightful emotions nonprofit professionals shared with our team were profound. My teams’ insights on these conversations had a common theme that echoed thoughts I’ve been feeling for a while, a central truth that many organizations underestimate – being a fundraiser is having

real live people marshal the super-power of others. It’s difficult for many to imagine because fundraisers are often behind the scenes creating an ecosystem of service and opportunity built on the generosity of people.

While I remain steadfast in my love for the direct care worker and have compassion for the heavy decisions that leaders are making during uncertain times like these, our fundraisers are working quietly behind the front lines in extraordinary ways.

Fundraising professionals are called upon to not panic, to focus and figure out how to make things work from every angle to get the resources nonprofits, and their clients need by engaging donors and fulfilling promises. It’s challenging and important work and it makes me proud and motivated because I appreciate that they are doing more than most people expect. Thank you for living each day with meaning.

To my fellow fundraisers: You are my friends. You are my heroes. I wish everyone safety and good health for you, your families and your communities. May you have the strength to help lead during these daunting times.