What was your role while at Development Guild?
I started as an Associate in 2006, supporting Karen Lieberman-Daly and was promoted twice during my five-year tenure. I was a Consultant when I left the firm in 2011.
What did you take away from your time here that has served you well in your career?
I often say that consulting was as valuable as, if not more valuable than, graduate school. I learned so much about the nonprofit sector and philanthropy and grew tremendously as a person and professional. One of the most important skills I learned early on at Development Guild is how to “manage up.” At the time, Karen was extremely busy launching projects with clients and selling new work. I built her trust by becoming a reliable partner to keep her 1-2 steps ahead of her client portfolio. As I gained her trust and developed a deeper knowledge of the fundraising and search practices, she threw me into the deep end (in the absolute best sense of that phrase) and pushed me to start leading my own client work, including on-site counsel with an NGO in Washington, DC.
My successful partnership with Karen has directly translated to the many productive partnerships with organizational leaders and donors that I have enjoyed since transitioning from consulting to front line major gifts roles.
What have you been up to since leaving?
Since leaving the firm in 2011, I have held positions at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health and currently work at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute. I am incredibly proud to be part of advancing the missions of both of these institutions and grateful to Development Guild for providing me the foundation to launch my front line fundraising career. Personally, I have been quite busy too. I got married in 2015 and have two children, Shoshana, age 3, and Levi, who recently turned 1. They keep us very busy, but we couldn’t be happier.
Tell us more about your current role.
I am a Director on the Principal and Major Gifts team at Dana-Farber, a team within Dana-Farber’s Division of Philanthropy and the Jimmy Fund. I raise funds for several departments including Psychosocial Oncology and Palliative Care, the Center for Neuro-Oncology, Population Sciences, as well as our community outreach efforts.
What is your fondest memory from your time at Development Guild?
My fondest memories are of the many friendships that started at Development Guild. I was in my mid-twenties at the time and had so much fun working hard and playing hard with my peers. I remain close with several Development Guild alumni and we often talk about organizing a DG alumni reunion. Everyone has been busy starting families and building careers, but we will make it happen one of these days!
Do you have any advice you would like to give to incoming employees?
Find a senior colleague who you admire and ask them to mentor you.