Posts Tagged ‘boca raton’

Debbi goes Boca!

July 6, 2010

Debbi Ricci, Director of Finance and Operations at Charlotte Community Foundation, was the lucky recipient of a scholarship to Planet Philanthropy 2010 in Boca Raton which was donated by AFP Suncoast president, Melody Marrs. Debbi was kind enough to share her thoughts and thanks, reproduced below.

Dear Melody and Lisa,

What a warm and wonderful experience I had at Planet Philanthropy, the AFP Florida Caucus 2010. Just imagine 400 fellow AFP members, all together to network, learn, and enjoy each other’s company. The venue was the Boca Raton Resort, absolutely elegant, and the June weather was steamy but sunny. After all, we were inside the Mizner Center during the hottest part of the day, and we had access to pools, the beach, and the lush green gardens of the resort after hours.

A member of AFP for two years, I have set my sights on attaining the CFRE certification that AFP has to offer. Lisa Intagliata and her committee did a fabulous job organizing everything. Events and activities ran smoothly. It was a difficult task to choose from the 71 Educational Sessions available, all levels of experience were covered, and the tracks were all-encompassing: Annual Campaigns, Capital Campaigns, Government Relations & Corporate Giving, Planned Giving, Senior Leadership & Management, Technology, Board Development & Volunteerism, Major Gifts, and Private, Family & Community Foundation Giving. We spent two full days in Educational Sessions, and were treated to program speakers and roundtable discussions at every meal. The opening reception combined refreshments, exhibitor booths, and “checking in.” The 30 exhibitor booths were available for three days to browse and many offered door prizes – there was even a casino table and Chinese auction. No wonder it took a committee of 40 people to tie it all together!

Most of the sessions I attended centered on Planned Giving and Major Gifts, a field I plan to move into as I develop my fundraising skills. However, I couldn’t resist some other sessions with names like “Community Sleuthing,” “Fundraising Partnership between Board and Staff,” and “Guerilla Marketing.” Curbside Consulting was also available, but I didn’t want to miss a moment of the educational sessions to explore that one-on-one option. 13 credits toward the CFRE certification were just a portion of the value I gained from this experience.

I would like to extend my most sincere thanks to Melody Marrs, Vice President of Development at the Hillsborough Education Foundation. She won a scholarship to Planet Philanthropy while attending the International AFP Conference in Baltimore last April. She donated the scholarship to our brand new Florida AFP Charlotte Harbor Chapter as a “welcome to the family” gift. How thoughtful and generous. That scholarship allowed me to participate for the entire event, immersing myself in so much encouragement and training in the many fundraising fields that AFP has to offer. I dream that every member of our chapter will attend next year.  What a giant step up that would be for the professional fundraisers in our nonprofit community!

-Deborah M. Ricci
Director of Finance and Operations
Charlotte Community Foundation, Inc.

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