Tag Archive for: Jerry Dillehay Scholarship

Every Chapter Challenge Tool Box

ECC Online Tool Box

The Tool Box items are provided as a resource to Chapter Presidents, leaders and members to assist with your fundraising efforts.

Questions? Want to learn more, email us: info@grantprofessionalsfoundation.org


  • Every Chapter Challenge Grant Expectations Blog Article by Danny Blitch
  • Press Release

Chapter Tools:

  • Every Chapter Challenge Top Ten Reasons to Give.pdf
  • Sample Request Letter
  • Sample Thank You Letter

How to Give:

  • Online via PayPal
  • Every Chapter Challenge – Star Gift Form
  • GPF Donation Mail-In Form


Building Bridges to a Better World

Lisa Deem, Grant Specialist, City of Flagstaff
December, 2014

I had the distinct honor of attending the 2014 Grant Professionals Association Conference in Portland, Oregon through a Jerry Dillehay Scholarship, sponsored by the Arizona Chapter. I became a GPA member in December 2011, supported by my position at the City of Flagstaff. I have attended state conferences, but never able to participate at the national level.  What an experience! The positive energy generated at the conference created an air of support for success. The hosting chapter and planning team were on target and on time, with logistical information and anticipating our every need. Kudos for a job well done!

The keynote speakers on Thursday and Friday were professionals at the top of their fields, providing strategies and insightful perspectives from both sides of the funder-grant seeking forum. I was pleased to hear the underlying reasons for why we were all there – the human element; building relationships in our community, bettering the world around us. Each and every person at that conference recognizes our ultimate mission – funding people, not paper.

Gil Tran, in the Plenary Session, provided critical insight on the rollout of the federal super-circular with his entertaining anecdotes and personal stories. The human element was very active in this lively discussion of OMB regulations, offering simple methods to navigate these new waters.

The variety and number of workshop sessions available were mind-boggling. I often found myself wishing I could clone to attend multiple workshops at once. I was amazed at the vast amount of knowledge and expertise present in each session, both by presenters and the audience.

  • I learned Grants Management is manageable.
  • I learned that FFATA is not a four-letter word, nor is 2CFR200.
  • I learned the importance of building your project team.
  • I learned the difference between “should” versus “must”.
  • I learned that performance indicators, inputs and outcomes are a grant professional’s friend.
  • I learned about logic models, and how they have the capacity to bring a project from good to great outcomes.
  • I learned about the importance of written policies and procedures to accommodate managerial controls and compliance.
  • I learned that grants are similar to one’s garden, requiring vision, planning and constant care.
  • I learned how to find statistical data to support my project.
  • I learned consistent, ethical management practices are the gold-standard.
  • I learned how to align your project with your funder’s objectives and demonstrate a compelling needs statement.
  • I learned that, while many grant professionals operate on a lonely field within their organizations, they have the capacity to bring together their “village” to create lasting, positive change.
  • I learned that grant professionals require an extensive skill set including concise writing, financial accounting, organizational management, setting policy standards, understanding technical-industry jargon, compassionate listening and exceptional human interaction skills.

Most importantly, I learned that grant professionals are some of the warmest, most-giving people I have known. They work tirelessly to improve the world around them, one grant at a time. I am proud to be counted in those numbers. And I thank the Grant Professionals Foundation for the opportunity to interact with other grant professionals in a supportive and educational environment. We were certainly Building Bridges in Portland, and creating lasting relationships. I wish to extend sincere thanks to all involved, for this learning experience.


16th Annual Conference: BUILDING BRIDGES

Geraldine Whitaker

Principal, GrantWise Consulting, LLC


May, 2015


This year, I was privileged to attend the GPA 16th   Annual Conference in Portland, Oregon. I was awarded the Susan Kemp Scholarship which covered my conference fee.

I agreed to spend four hours volunteering my services to support the conference activities. I volunteered at the hospitality table and the Silent Auction. I meet some amazing people from several different states and I learned some interesting facts about the City of Portland. There were various items showcased at the auction especially, books and grant making material, along with several other treats. With hundreds of items on display, GPA raised thousands of dollars and this event was a success, to say the least.

I am writing about my volunteer experience at the conference because this experience taught me so much about what GPA is really all about. By supporting this endeavor, educational opportunities are provided for grant writers and GPA ensures that resources are available to help all grant professionals improve their skills.

Overall, the conference was exceptional. The keynote speaker, plenary session speaker, and featured speaker, as well as the workshop presenters were prepared and well informed. Kent Stroman, the featured speaker, spoke about how to build bridges to relationships with funders. I now understand the “Why” it’s important to build these relationships rather than going out cold and asking a funder for money.

Networking during lunch with other grant professionals was an excellent way to learn and acquire information from attendees. Some very lively discussions were conducted while standing in the buffet lines. Information sharing occurred throughout the entire conference including games and exhibits that were ongoing during each day. The Thursday evening outing, “A Night at the Museum”, was a fun and relaxing way to network and get to meet new people also.

Over 70 workshops were offered at the conference. Each evening I would peruse the program book and deciding which workshops to attend the next day was always a difficult decision. Thanks to the GPA conference committee for providing all the workshops on a USB drive and including it in the conference bag.

The SIG workshop that I attended was for consultants. I learned about different ways to charge a client. We talked about return on investment (ROI), retainers and monthly billing. This workshop was on point for me because I have limited experience with setting fees for my clients.

The session, “Rome Wasn’t Built in a Day: How to Grow Your Grant Business,” was packed with tips and information that I was able to start using immediately on my return home from the conference. I started to do outreach using grant alert services to let the non-profits in my community know what RFP’s were out that they may be interested in.

“The Power of a Social Media for the Grant Profession” was fantastic. I opened my twitter account during this session. The presenters gave an overview on Google+, Facebook and Pintrest. The information I gained from this course will benefit me as a grant consultant and throughout my daily activities. I can also participate in #Grantchat.

The presenter of “Alignment Ain’t Just for Astrology! It’s for Grants Too!” offered insight into how to conduct a grant search. We discussed using google.docs vs. excel spreadsheets. This was a very intense, well delivered session packed into a limited time space. But the points were well taken.

The workshop, “Your Proposal Must Say This”, was an eye opener about always having a unified message. I learned the importance of always choosing the right words and when space is limited edit, edit, edit. This workshop is a must for the novice grant professional!

The conference title workshop “Building Bridges” was filled with information. I learned how to clue in on grant details and formulate a more targeted approach when applying for funding. Lastly, “Writing Powerful Case Statements to Support Grant Proposals”, emphasized the elements of a case statement, who, what, why, where, how, how much and so what. The “so what” outlines the ultimate impact of the project. This was an excellent workshop for the novice and a refresher for the seasoned grant professional.

The conference was the best three day investment of my time spent this year. I’m impressed by the dedication of the GPA staff who worked tirelessly to make this event the best that it could be. At the end of the day, I’m still in awe and thankful for the opportunity.