President's Message

AFP Greater AZ Chapter


Amy O’Sullivan, CFRE

President - 2023

AFP Greater Arizona Chapter

January - 

Happy New Year! As nonprofit professionals, the last few months of the year are extremely busy. Events, year-end fundraising campaigns, thanking our donors, and participating in activities specific to the communities and causes that we serve lead us to burning the candle on both ends. I hope that you have had the opportunity to relax, recharge, and are ready to make an impact in 2023.

My name is Amy O’Sullivan, and I am honored to be serving as the President of the AFP Greater Arizona Chapter this year. I am lucky to be surrounded by a dedicated and talented Board of Directors - we have lot of great things planned for you this year!

I want to start the year by encouraging you to get further involved with our chapter by joining a committee. We have openings on our Career Services, Education, IDEA, Marketing/Communications, Membership, National Philanthropy Day, and Sponsorship committees. Getting involved has been an essential part of my professional growth, and I have made invaluable friendships along the way. To learn more about one of these exciting opportunities, you can email

If there is anything I can help you with, don’t hesitate to reach out. I look forward to seeing you all at an AFP event this year!

February -

2023 started strong with two awesome Chapter events in January. 

We gathered at Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central Arizona for a Membership Mixer featuring our Past Chapter President Jessica Whitney.  It was wonderful to learn about her career path and more about their critical mission to create and support one-to-one mentoring relationships that ignite the power and promise of youth. 

A week later, our Education Committee planned a fascinating workshop featuring Greg Warner the CEO & Founder of MarketSmart.  He challenged us to think outside of the box of the traditional major gifts processes and institute a more innovative and modernized approach. It was wonderful to see new and old friends at both of these events!

Speaking of educational opportunities, did you know that all AFP members qualify for a $100 credit to use on any of AFP Global’s webinars or conference recordings?  Click here to learn how to take advantage this often-underutilized benefit of our AFP membership.

Wishing you all a wonderful February, and I hope to see you at a Chapter event soon!

March - 

I would like to start by congratulating our Chapter for earning the 2023 IDEA Champion Designation! AFP Global recognized 98 chapter this year that they feel accomplished many of the key objectives in the goal of advancing Inclusion, Diversity, Equity and Access (IDEA). As the year goes on, you will hear more about education events and affinity groups that focus on our IDEA initiatives.

You should have received an email from AFP Global announcing their new membership database. Be sure to take a moment to follow the directions on how to activate your login and reset your password. While there, peek at your profile and ensure that your information is up to date.

And finally, thank you to all members who have volunteered to serve on one of our committees. We still have room on our Advancement and Membership Committees. If you want to get involved, please reach out – we would love to have you!

I hope you have an opportunity to take a break, enjoy the beautiful weather and take advantage of the many things that our state has to offer this time of year.


The AFP Arizona State-Wide Conference is Coming to Phoenix!

This July, our Chapter is thrilled to be hosting the annual state-wide conference. This is an awesome opportunity for us to network, learn, and have fun with fundraisers from across the state. Here are a few details but stay tuned for more information to come!

·      The conference will be held at the Wild Horse Pass Resort. If you want to stay the night, the conference rate is $109 and can be booked online here. The deadline to book a room is June 30, 2023. 

·      On July 25, we are offering an official CFRE approved test prep course followed by a welcome reception for all conference attendees.

·      On July 26, we will be offering plenary speakers for breakfast and lunch as well as 12 workshop options for both seasoned and new fundraisers.

·      Are you interested in leading one of our workshop sessions? If so, please complete our speaker request form found here. Call for Speakers

·      Finally, we are looking for sponsors! The conference is a perfect opportunity to support our industry while also gaining exposure and making connections with fundraisers from across the state. Please contact Nancy Mitchell at for details, also visit our sponsorship page.

·      Ready to register? Click here for pricing and a link to register.

I hope that you are saving the date(s), and if you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to reach out!


Greetings, Fellow Fundraisers and Non-Profit Friends!

Last week, I spent some time enjoying sessions from the Responsive Nonprofit Summit put on by our friends and generous sponsor, Virtuous. There were several sessions that discussed the high level of burnout that is being felt among those in our industry and ways to combat this. Besides taking a much needed break this summer, one idea discussed was to spend time in community with others who may face common challenges. I’ve always known how grateful I am for the people that I have met through AFP, but now I know why. Having someone to go to when I feel frustrated or celebrate my wins with who really understands what it’s like to be a fundraiser is such a gift!

I encourage you gather with us this summer at one (or all!) of our upcoming Chapter events described in this month’s newsletter. And if you don’t have anyone to commiserate with or give a high-five to when you have a great day, don’t hesitate to reach out, I am happy to be that person who just gets it.

Thank you for being part of our community!


Happy June and Happy Pride month! Earlier this week, AFP Global ‘Mike’s Monday Message Takeover’ shared
about how we can support our fellow nonprofit professionals, donors, and friends who identify as LGBTQ+. They discussed some of the initiatives that AFP Global is working on to ensure continued inclusion and to
fight discrimination and disenfranchisement. This includes a complimentary webinar hosted by AFP
Global called “Don’t Just Slap A Flag On It And Call It Inclusive” – you can watch the replay here. Their message was clear: “We do believe in a world where every color in the rainbow has a place and feels like they can belong. And we encourage and implore you to join us in that vision – not just for one month of the year, but every day, in everything that you do”. Coupled with Juneteenth also observed this month, we are reminded of the importance of breaking chains and working towards a more inclusive and kinder world for all.
We’re proud that our AFPC Chapter was honored with a 2023 IDEA Champion Designation once again and hope that we are doing everything that we can to promote equity and inclusion here in Arizona. Despite our hope, we know that we can always do better; I invite you to let us know how we can better serve you.


We are so excited that the 2023 AFP Arizona Conference Presented by Virtuous is less than one week away!  For those of you who are attending, you can expect an opportunity to expand your knowledge about fundraising, forge connections, and network with fellow professionals in the nonprofit sector. The planning of this conference has been a labor of love, and I want to thank the conference co-chairs, Jessica Whitney and Cat Sebesta, CFRE, as well as the dedicated Conference Planning Committee for their commitment. 

Tonight, join us for our July Membership Mixer at the Arizona Community Foundation from 3pm-5pm.  This is a free event for AFP members ($20 for nonmembers), and you will hear from Kristen Mihaljevic about how to build ties with DAF donors. If you have not registered already, you can register at the door.

If you are not able to join us at one of our exciting events this week and next, I hope that you are on a relaxing vacation taking a break from the heat! 


It’s back to school season and I’m reminded of great teachers and mentors throughout my life and career.  The AFP Professional Mentorship Program Class of 2023 continues to learn and work toward their final project presentations, while applications for our Class of 2024 will be posted on our chapter website in early September.  I would like to encourage you to consider this opportunity, share it with members of your team newer to the field (1-5 years, whether a young professional or making a mid-career change) or think about giving back while learning by serving as a mentor (seasoned professionals holding the CFRE or ACFRE credential). We are so proud of our Professional Mentorship Program and look forward to meeting our newest Class!

It is also time to appoint the members of the 2024 AFP Greater Arizona Chapter Board of Directors. Joining our chapter’s board has been one of the best decisions that I have made in my career.  I encourage you to submit a nomination form for you or someone you know that wants to learn and do more to advance the nonprofit industry in Arizona. The nomination form can be found here, are due by August 25, and the new slate will be presented to our members in November. 


The air is starting to cool off (in the mornings and evenings at least!), which means that not only is fall around the corner, but so is our busy season as fundraising professionals. I hope that you are already working in some self-care habits and scheduling activities that will fill your cup and help you navigate this hectic time of year!  

Join us on September 21 for an AFP workshop catered to the Senior Network of Advancement Professionals (SNAP). We're excited to bring back these sessions that allow for more advanced, intimate conversations about topics that the Valley's philanthropic leaders are facing. Details are listed below. Walk-ins welcome. Immediately following this event will be our monthly membership mixer that is open to all! 

Finally, Chapter Lobby Week is coming up during the week of October 2 – further down in this newsletter, you will see a feature that shares some easy and impactful ways you can help advocate for our sector. I encourage you to take the time to read this and learn more. 

Enjoy your September! 


My plan for this month’s note to you was to joyfully promote the upcoming National Philanthropy Day Luncheon – one of my favorite events of the year. It is an opportunity to celebrate our industry, our colleagues, and those in our community who make a tremendous impact. Yet, with the reality of the past weeks, the horrific attack on Israel and the humanitarian crisis of Palestinians in Gaza, it felt trite to lead with enthusiasm.

Yet, as I pondered what to say instead, it hit me that this year’s theme, For the Love of Giving, is exactly what we need in this moment.  As nonprofit professionals, we advocate with intense passion, we act quickly and without hesitation when an issue or injustice arises, and we advance our missions each day. The National Philanthropy Day Luncheon on November 17 will celebrate Love – a love for giving, for equality, for community, and I can’t wait to see you there.

Thank you for leading with love and inspiring me every day. 


Happy National Philanthropy Day to you!

National Philanthropy Day was the vision of Douglas Freeman, a self-proclaimed "gratitude enthusiast" who was deeply committed to finding ways to express gratitude for those who dedicate themselves to helping others. In 1986, President Ronald Reagan officially declared November 15 as National Philanthropy Day, a day that serves as a chance to reflect on the significance of giving and the incredible possibilities it creates.

You have dedicated yourself to working in the impact profession – making the culture of philanthropy a driving force in your every day. And for that, I thank you. You give of yourself to make a difference in your community. Today is a day to celebrate YOU.

At this point in the year, halfway through the month of November, we are all spread very thin. Focusing on year-end fundraising priorities, executing events, stewarding our donors, not to mention the myriad of non-work-related social activities planned during this season, we are busy to say the least. Despite the frenzy, I hope that you are taking a moment to take care of yourself doing the things that bring you the most joy.

I am tremendously grateful to you for being part of our AFP family. Now go out and celebrate!