CNL Makes Mark at AFP-NNE Conference

Three management faculty and core consultants in Marlboro College’s Center for New Leadership figured prominently in the annual conference of the Association of Fundraising Professionals Northern New England Chapter (AFP-NNE) in Portand, Maine, this week. Leading consultant and trainer Andy Robinson delivered the keynote address, and Debra Askanase and Joe Heslin presented a workshop on communications and marketing titled “Do You Matter?”

“Debra and I presented a way to engage with external stakeholders in a way that goes beyond mission,” said Joe, principal of Joe Heslin Strategies. “We do this by looking at “matterness,” the idea of seeking out what your stakeholders care about so that you can engage them where they are and in what they care about.”

“Development is essentially about the importance of relationships,” said Debra, founder and digital engagement strategist for Community Organization 2.0. “I really enjoy working with development teams because they understand that creating a deep online connection can double a donation, or bring in a lapsed donor. At AFP-NNE, I always look forward to hearing about what’s new in the field of fundraising, and also exchanging ideas and approaches for relationship-building.” Debra will be teaching a class this winter trimester at Marlboro titled Social Media for Social Change (find it on our elective course list).  

Andy Robinson’s keynote address, titled “What Do You Want to Be When You Grow Up? Creating a Sustainable, Successful Organization,” was actually more of an experiential workshop engaging every one of approximately 150 attendees. Together, and in small groups, they explored the hallmarks of a successful organization, benchmarks used to measure success, and how to look beyond the next funding crisis to design a sustainable nonprofit.

“It was wonderful, and I think a perfect example of how trainers and speakers dedicated to the principles of adult learning can make a positive impact on the ‘learning’ that happens at a conference,” said Julie van der Horst Jansen, business manager for CNL and a conference attendee. “We got to know each other pretty well, and talk about our organizations with one another, so the space and framework for some intense networking was also very present in Andy’s ‘keynote workshop.’”

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