Fundraising Day

AFP-CNY Annual Fundraising Day Conference

May 2nd, 2024

Rosamond Gifford Zoo

Fundraising Day is AFP-CNY’s largest educational event of the year for fundraising and development professionals. The conference offers professional development, networking, and collaboration with peers and community partners. 


Thursday, May 2, 2024
9:45am - 5:00pm

Rosamond Gifford Zoo
1 Conservation Place
Syracuse, NY 13204

Pricing (includes materials & lunch)
Members: $60
Nonmembers: $80

Registration Closed

Conference Schedule 

Note: Speakers and session descriptions will be updated as they are confirmed. 

9:45am - 10:15am

Registration and Check-In

10:15am - 10:30am

Welcome and Introductory Remarks

10:30am - 11:30am

Everything you need to know about Capital Campaigns!
Presenter: Julie Billings

11:30am - 12:30pm

Headshots/ chair massages/ table work

12:30pm - 1:30pm


1:30pm - 2:30pm

Afternoon Session 1
Fundraising 101 - back to the basics/refresh your fundraising
Presenter: Maya Gasuk

2:30pm - 2:40pm


2:40pm - 3:40pm

Afternoon Session 2
Mindful thinking/Self-care
Presenter: Allison Graff, mindful health coach

3:40pm - 5:00pm

Meet and Mingle with Zoo Ambassador

For questions or more information please email

Sponsorship Opportunities

Being a sponsor of AFP-CNY's Fundraising Day Conference is a great way to connect with the region’s nonprofit community. AFP-CNY members represent a multitude of organizations including health and human services, education, religious institutions, the arts, and consulting firms. Click here to learn more!

Meet Our Speakers

Julie Billings

Julie Billings owns Core Lynk, a project and association management company that offers comprehensive support to organizations and professionals. With over 25 years of experience, Julie's expertise covers various areas, including development, strategic planning, event coordination, and project management.

Julie's background spans over 25 years and includes roles such as Chief Advancement Officer for the Girl Scouts of NYPENN Pathways, CCS Campaign Director of The Commonwealth Medical School, and Executive Director of the Community General (Hospital) Foundation in Syracuse, NY. She's held the position of Past President of the Association of Fundraising of CNY Board of Directors, and her achievements include being a Leadership Oswego County Graduate and a recipient of the 40 under 40 award.

Julie's educational qualifications include an MBA and a BA in International Relations. She and her husband live in Fayetteville, New York.

Allison Graff

My name is Allison and I am a survivor, yogi, and health coach. I’ve survived a lot of life and health crises, but I continue to make lemonade out of my lemons with a positive outlook, mindful movement, and attention to physical & mental health. I credit mindfulness & yoga for my healing.

Now, I help others approach their health and wellness through the lens of mindfulness. I offer programs that improve self-awareness, balance, focus, and patience. Whether teaching yoga, leading mindfulness practices, or coaching clients, I hold space for mindful health.

I offer a unique perspective as a survivor of multiple heart conditions, including cardiomyopathy and atrial fibrillation, mini-strokes, and brain surgery before age 48. I also survived divorce, custody battle, the COVID era, and my dad’s battle with ALS. My health experiences and my personal wellness toolkit, coupled with certifications in yoga, mindfulness meditation, and integrative nutrition, make me an excellent guide for your mindful health journey. I guide clients through identifying what their unique body/mind/spirit needs and how to fulfil those needs, one moment at a time.

I specifically help stressed-out superfolk chart their mindful health journey – navigating the everchanging terrain of their whole health needs. My clients are looking for the answers that lie between medicine and wellness. They are looking to answer the questions – “What am I doing to contribute to my health?” “How do I manage my stress instead of ignore it?” “What is standing in my way of better health?”

Let’s start charting your mindful health journey towards a happier and healthier life! Visit for more information.

Maya Gasuk

Maya is committed to supporting and championing the efforts of her clients by providing strategy, inspiration, and motivation to help clients achieve goals – whether for campaigns, annual fund programs, or increased engagement. Maya brings 35 years of fundraising experience to her work at West Wind Consulting, and her analytical and problem-solving skills create exceptional results – as a practitioner in the past, and as a consultant today.

Maya graduated Magna Cum Laude from the S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications at Syracuse University. She began her fundraising career as a freshman student caller, asking alumni and parents for gifts, and has never stopped fundraising.

As a practitioner, during her 19-year career at Cornell University, Maya set new records in giving, tripled the endowment during her college’s campaign, and then grew the annual fund from $10 million to $27 million in unrestricted revenue per year during her tenure as Annual Fund Director for the University. Maya was honored to serve a four-year term as member of Cornell University Council in recognition of her leadership and service to the University, and currently serves as a Community Fellow.  She recently completed a 6-year term as a board member for a local community organization, chairing both the Development Committee and Nominating Committee.

Having served for 13 years as a volunteer rowing coach in her community, Maya has a passion for teaching and leading teams to greater levels of achievement and satisfaction, and is a regularly requested speaker for CASE, AFP, and other organizations across the country.