Jessica Arend is the director of development at the Ronald McDonald House Charities of South Dakota. Jessica spends her time fundraising to help keep families close to their hospitalized children. After a career in banking, followed by fundraising in the political world, non-profit work is where she found her true passion.
Jessica was born and raised in Parker, Colorado. She majored in Political Science and History and minored in Religious Studies at the University of Sioux Falls. It’s at USF where she met her husband, Robbie, who is a Trust Officer at First Bank and Trust in downtown Sioux Falls. They have three active little boys – Jackson (9), Chase (8) and Austin (3). When Jessica is not at Ronald McDonald House Charities, she stays busy as a mom, enjoying her sons’ sporting events, traveling, hosting and attending gatherings with family and friends, and rooting on the Denver Broncos.
Dzenan Berberovic serves Avera Health as executive director for development at Avera McKennan Hospital and University Health Center. Previously, Dzenan held increasingly responsible roles at the University of South Dakota, where he most recently served as executive director, principal giving as part of a comprehensive $250 million campaign – Onward: The Campaign for South Dakota. Dzenan’s previous roles included assistant director of development, associate director of development, and director of development, respectively.
Dzenan holds a bachelor’s degree from the University of South Dakota. He received his M.A. from Saint Mary’s University of Minnesota in Philanthropy and Development. Dzenan and his wife, Kelsey, live in Sioux Falls, SD.
Brian Bonde, ACFRE
Brian Bonde is Chair of the United States AFP Foundation for Philanthropy and also serves on the South Dakota Arts Council, as board chair of Arts South Dakota, the board of Arts Midwest, South Dakota Association of Fundraising Professionals, and several others. He is a noted consultant and trainer to non-profits through his firm, Advanced Certified Fundraising, LLC. He has been in senior leadership positions for Sanford Health, Children's Care Foundation and Augustana University.
He has been involved in raising nearly $100 million for several organizations. He has been recognized by Association of Healthcare Philanthropy (AHP) with the Showcase Award for Planned Giving and by the Association of Fundraising Professionals (AFP) with the prestigious Award for Excellence in Fundraising. Brian is an Advanced Certified Fundraising Executive (ACFRE), one of only 107 professionals worldwide to hold this distinguished designation. He has been on various non-profit boards for over 40 contiguous years.
Greta Chapman is the CEO of the South Dakota Hall of Fame (SDHoF) that is one of a five organizations in the nation for the purpose of recognizing a state’s outstanding individuals for their qualities of excellence. SDHoF provides Ms. Chapman engagement with the top percentage of professionals in their field to further their influence and contributions in building Champions for Excellence: One Act at a Time in the state of South Dakota.
Upon obtaining her master’s in public administration from UNO Omaha, she pursued a career transition into nonprofit management. Ms. Chapman’s previous career in library administration encountered many of the issues found in nonprofit work, in particular successfully working with boards as the primary governance structure.
The current trend in nonprofit professions is challenging work found within an environment of a finite amount of resources. Ms. Chapman’s experience is established from a passion for vision, mission and values of an organization. She has demonstrated this through program development and sustainability with strategic planning initiatives and board development. In addition to the pursuit of a passion, her experience in foundational elements such as human resources, donor relationships and fund development is based on theory and practice.
Ms. Chapman has been instrumental in the administration of building initiatives, mentorship for employee career development, innovation through 21st Century technology applications and politically in-tune to navigate choppy waters.
As vice president of sales and support services, Molly Coke is dedicated to ensuring every person who interacts with Firespring is provided the best experience possible. As a board member and lifelong volunteer, Molly understands the challenges nonprofits face and focuses on developing strategies and methodologies that help organizations achieve ROI. Working nearly 20 years in customer service, she offers a unique perspective on building relationships and its pivotal role in donor retention.
Emma DeVos is a Product Manager at Innovative Systems, a software company based out of Mitchell SD. She is responsible for the NonProfit division of the company, which provides Fundraising/Donor Management and Phonathon systems. Previously she held a number of
roles in Project Management and Marketing for private and public-sector organizations in the US and UK. She is a member of AFP and CASE and serves on the board of Mitchell Main Street and Beyond, and The Kelley Center for Entrepreneurship at Dakota Wesleyan University.
Cindy Elifrits Peterson, MSW, CFRE
Cindy is a proven expert in resource development with 18 years of experience in fundraising, volunteer management, strategic planning, board development, facilitation, program design, and outcome measurements. In 2011 she founded Maximizing Excellence, LLC that partners with organizations that want to improve their effectiveness and achieve high impact.
Before founding Maximizing Excellence, Cindy directed the annual fundraising effort for the Sioux Empire United Way. Already boasting the second highest per capita of giving in the nation, under Cindy’s leadership the Sioux Empire United Way raised $44 million, producing a five-year increase of 20%. Prior to this role, Cindy worked at United Way of the Midlands in Omaha, Nebraska, and the United Way of Central Minnesota in St. Cloud, Minnesota.
Holding a Masters of Social Work degree from the University of Nebraska-Omaha, Cindy has a unique way of bringing people together by identifying personal motivators and incorporating them into a common objective. At Maximizing Excellence, Cindy customizes each project specific to the strengths, mission, and goals of the organization and its individuals. Even though she is a Certified Fund-Raising Executive (CFRE), Cindy is most known for being a catalyst of change while empowering and mentoring those involved in sustaining success.
Originally from Sanborn, IA, Ryan holds a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Economics and Business Administration from Northwestern College in Orange City, IA. His career includes 10+ years in sales, marketing and operational management roles in the commercial and residential real estate industry. Additionally, Ryan has several years of experience in manufacturing sales and marketing roles. Most recently, Ryan served as the Sales and Marketing Manager of Den Hartog Industries, Inc. in Hospers, IA. Before joining Village Northwest Unlimited in 2017. Further, Ryan also serves on several area boards and committees, including the HMS School Board, Deacon at his church, Sanborn, IA Chamber board of directors and Sheldon, IA Community Development Corporation marketing committee. Ryan and his wife Erica and currently reside in Sanborn, IA. They have three children: Samuel (16), Bennett (14), and Elise (13). When he’s not attending all of the kids’ events, he spends as much time as he can playing golf and hanging out with his wife.
Kim Haiar is the Director of Development for the LifeScape Foundation, joining their team in 2016, after working with the Sanford Health Foundation for 10 years as a Development Officer and then the Enterprise Director of Annual Giving. She also serves as a board member for the Drake Durkee Foundation in Colorado. Prior to her career in fundraising, she was an insurance agent for 10 years, earning President’s Club and serving on multiple insurance boards. Kim made a career change because she wanted to do something to make a true impact in her community, helping others with a servant heart. She has presented nationally at Children’s Miracle Network on cause marketing and event management, and her team was named the Top Fundraisers for Small Markets in North America for a consecutive eight years, among other awards. Kim feels very blessed to work in her current role, providing her the opportunity to build additional success to an already esteemed fundraising program, but more importantly, loves the opportunity to interact on a personal level with families and the people supported at LifeScape, as well as the donors that care about their community. LifeScape supports children and adults with disabilities across the state of South Dakota, as well as providing regional services to children from Iowa, Minnesota, Nebraska, North Dakota and Wyoming.
David Hanzlick, PhD, CFRE, CAE
David holds a PhD from the University of Missouri – Kansas City. He serves as an adjunct faculty member in the Nonprofit Leadership Program in the Helzberg School of Management at Rockhurst University and in the Hauptmann School of Public Affairs at Park University. He is a Certified Fund Raising Executive (CFRE) and Certified Association Executive (CAE). He is a past president of the Mid America Chapter of the Association of Fundraising Professionals.
An experienced fundraiser, David serves as the Director of Program and Development at Sheffield Place, a treatment and supportive housing program for homeless mothers and their children in the urban core of Historic Northeast Kansas City, MO. During David’s nearly eight-year tenure, Sheffield Place has dramatically increased its funding base and diversified funding sources. The agency has been recognized with both the Excellence in Nonprofit Leadership Award from Support KC and the Excellence in Fundraising Award from the Association of Fundraising Professionals Mid America Chapter.
Stephanie Judson grew up on a farm just north of Pierre in Sully County. After graduating from high school in Pierre, she attended and graduated from Augustana College in Sioux Falls with degrees in Business/Communication and Geriatrics/Gerontology.
Over the past 21 years, Stephanie has worked in a variety of roles with the organization before being named President of the South Dakota Community Foundation in January 2013. In her current position, she oversees strategic vision, donor relations and grant program development. She is thankful for the progress the SDCF has made since its inception in 1987 and is committed to deepening its positive impact on South Dakota.
Stephanie enjoys connecting with people who want to leave this state better than they found it, and who are committed to giving back to the places they’ve called home. She uses her skills as a Certified Financial Planner and a Certified Gift Planning Associate to guide donors and nonprofits to the best planned giving option for them.
In addition to serving on several civic organizations in her hometown of Pierre, Stephanie is a member of the Association of Fundraising Professionals, Partnership for Philanthropic Planning, and the South Dakota Planned Giving Council. She and her husband of nineteen years Matt, have two sons, Grant, age 16 and Blake, age 14.
Kacey is the Project & Brand Director with Maximizing Excellence, LLC. Kacey has many years of fundraising and volunteer management experience having spent 14 years at Sioux Empire United Way, most recently as the Campaign Director. During her time at United Way, Kacey was a part of developing and implementing fundraising strategies for a $7.1 million dollar annual campaign that increased to over $10.3 million dollars in 2016. With each campaign she worked with hundreds of volunteers training, motivating and assisting them to achieve their individual goals to ensure overall campaign success.
Through her role at Maximizing Excellence, Kacey takes great pride in the opportunity to partner with individuals and organizations and assist them in achieving their identified goals.
Christy Menning, CFRE
Christy Menning has been working in the fundraising field for 20 years. She spent several of her college years at the SDSU Foundation in Brookings. She was the Call Center Supervisor and also spent some summers working on direct mail campaigns. She wrote her first fundraising “ask” letter as a college student. After a brief career in television news at KDLT, Christy turned back to fundraising. Christy has spent the last 16 years working for McCrossan Boys Ranch, a home for at-risk youth ages 9-20. Christy earned her CFRE credentials in 2009 and has been involved with the Association of Fundraising Professionals, South Dakota Chapter for more than 13 years.
Heather McClintock, CFRE
Heather McClintock is currently the Political Action Committee manager at POET. Her responsibilities include fundraising, legal compliance, and event planning. Heather was previously a Location Philanthropy Consultant for The Good Samaritan Society for seven years. She received a bachelor’s degree in Advertising and Public Relations from the University of South Dakota in 2010 and her CFRE (Certified Fund Raising Executive) Credential in 2016.
Kevin Miles, a native South Dakotan, joined Ronald McDonald House Charities of South Dakota as Executive Director in 2013. He brings over 24 years of non-profit work and fundraising.
Beginning in 1988 with the Diocese of Sioux Falls, Kevin worked in areas of university and high school ministry programs. Transitioning in 2001, Kevin became director of the Catholic Family Sharing Appeal and served as Director of Special Events for the Catholic Community Foundation for Eastern South Dakota. In 2003 he transitioned into the Office of Stewardship and Annual Appeals where he led the creation, implementation, and collection of the diocesan annual appeal. As Director of Stewardship, he worked with diocesan communications where he furthered his campaign experience as the Cathedral of St. Joseph parish completed its “Beacon of Hope” effort as part of the restoration and beautification of the Cathedral in the spring of 2012. In June of 2012, Kevin joined O’Meara, Ferguson, Whelan, and Conway as an executive consultant and led the implementation of the “To Teach Who Christ Is” Catholic Schools $350 million capital campaign.
Kevin and his wife Shannon have four children. He holds a bachelor’s degree from Northern State University, Aberdeen, SD. Shannon currently teaches first through second grades at Horace Mann in the Bridges Program for the Sioux Falls Public School District
Dennis, earned his Bachelors in Social Work at the University of Northern Iowa, Cedar Falls, in 1976 and his Masters in Social Work at the University of Nebraska-Omaha, in 1988. He is a Licensed Certified Social Worker and a Qualified Mental Health Professional. Dennie has been employed with Capital Area Counseling Service in Pierre for more than 25 years and served as the Clinical Director prior to becoming the President & CEO in 2001.
His past work experience includes positions with the SD Department of Social Services, SD Human Services Center, and the SD Division of Mental Health. Dennie specializes in administration, program development, supervision, psychiatric rehabilitation and emergency mental health services. When asked what he enjoys most about his work, Dennie replied, “I am very proud to be a part of CACS. It's a place where critical, life-saving work happens every day.
Amy Pokela, CFRE
For seven years, Amy Pokela, CFRE, has been blessed to teach an online course introducing fundraising to both undergrad and grad students at the University of South Dakota. One of the central elements of this course is effective storytelling. The resources used in this course will serve as the starting point for this presentation.
Amy is also the Foundation Administrator for the Good Samaritan Foundation. This role has a strong emphasis on communication and strategic alignment between the Foundation and the Good Samaritan Society.
As a Sioux Falls native, Amy enjoys spending time enjoying all the city has to offer. Whether it’s a sporting event (Canaries games are a favorite way to spend a summer night), a local performance (Municipal band concerts at the Terrace band shell are another must), or a family outing (biking from Falls park through the river walk), Amy is always on the go.
Robin Prunty, CPA
Throughout Robin Prunty’s career, she has positively impacted lives through her work in the nonprofit sector. For decades, Robin has led development, finance, operations, and campaign efforts for social service and healthcare organizations. At Avera, Robin serves as vice president for Avera McKennan Foundation. A certified public accountant (CPA), she is known as a thought leader on development and healthcare throughout the region – especially across Avera’s footprint of 72,000 square miles, 86 counties, and 200+ facilities. Robin has been part of Avera McKennan since 2007. At Avera, Robin has led several transformational multi-million dollar campaigns to benefit patients, families, physicians, and staff as they are care for and are cared for by Avera’s healthcare ministry. Robin’s greatest joy comes from spending time with her family, especially her nine grandchildren.
Annie Rhodes serves as the Director of Foundation Strategy in the Corporations and Foundations division of Blackbaud. Annie helps philanthropic organizations leverage technology to track outcomes, optimize how they manage their giving and improve collaboration between funders and their grantee partners.
Most recently, Annie has led the development of Blackbaud Outcomes™, a technology solution that helps funders track and measure the results of their giving through a standardized taxonomy. Annie is also currently leading efforts to map Blackbaud Outcomes’ taxonomy to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to provide funders with the ability to measure how their grants are contributing toward the broader efforts to achieve the SDGs.
Prior to joining Blackbaud, Annie spent more than 10 years at the Ford Foundation where she managed grantmaking in the Human Rights unit working with the Women’s Rights and International Human Rights portfolios. Annie holds an MBA from Pace University and is an active volunteer with All Souls Church Monday Night Hospitality Soup Kitchen, Girls on the Run NYC and the Challenged Athletes Foundation.
Jill Ruhd is currently serving as a Development Officer at Dakota State University. She is in her 9th year of fundraising at the DSU Foundation. In college, she was a student caller & supervisor for the DSU Phonathon and then in 2010, started full-time at the DSU Foundation as the Annual Fund Manager working with the Phonathon, Faculty/Staff Campaign, Direct Mail Campaign and other scholarship fundraising. As a Development Officer, she is helping lead major gift fundraising for endowments and other scholarships opportunities, event fundraising and continues to oversee the annual fund. She is the secretary of the Rotary Club of Madison and is a graduate of Dakota State University with a bachelor’s degree in Business Administration.
Since 1995, Jona Schmidt has served as the Director of Alumni Relations at Dakota State University. In her role, Jona develops and implements programs to maintain lifelong interactions with the university’s alumni. As a member of the University’s Advancement team, Jona has served in various roles including leading the annual fund, planned and major gift fundraising, and several years as director of marketing and public relations. She is the editor of the Dakota State Magazine and executive director of the DSU Alumni Association Board of Directors. She also sits on the Lake County Historical Society Board and is currently chairing a capital campaign at her church. Jona is a graduate of Black Hills State University where she earned a bachelor’s degree in secondary education.
Tom Simmons is an associate professor at the University of South Dakota School of Law (as well as a proud graduate of the same institution) where he teaches Trusts & Wills, Estate Planning, Professional Responsibility, Holocaust Law, and Remedies & Equity. He is a fellow with the American College of Trust and Estate Counsel (ACTEC), the American College of Tax Counsel, and the American Bar Foundation, as well as a member of the South Dakota Governor’s Task Force on Trust Administration Review and Reform.
Prior to joining the faculty of the USD law school, Tom practiced in the areas of trusts, estates, and elder law for thirteen years with the Gunderson, Palmer, Nelson & Ashmore law firm in Rapid City and clerked for two years under federal district judge Andrew Bogue.
Paul J. Strawhecker, MPA, ACFRE
Paul is president of Paul J. Strawhecker, Inc., a full-service resource development consulting firm. His career spans over 30 years in managing fundraising programs throughout the country, generating more than $300 million in annual giving, planned giving and capital campaigns.
Paul’s experience includes initiating Boys Town’s planned giving program, overseeing the City of Omaha’s social service programs and serving as vice president of development for both a 75-hospital management group and a three campus university system.
Paul has been nationally recognized for his work as a development professional on the national level and has received the highest credentialing for a fundraising professional.
Ryan J. Strawhecker, MA, CFRE
Ryan started his career in 2004 when he began working at Paul J. Strawhecker, Inc., assisting with philanthropic planning studies and capital campaigns. In 2010, he became Development & Communications Director for Project Interfaith, a cultural and religious educational start-up nonprofit. Ryan's career then led him to Omaha Home for Boys as Planned Giving Officer and Grant Manager and to United Way of the Midlands as Senior Director of Corporate Relations & Major Accounts. During his time at the United Way of the Midlands, he was a primary contact for the Foundation, and later the annual $20 million fundraising drive.
Ryan earned two degrees in English, a bachelor's from Millikin University and a master's from Creighton University. He is a member of the Association of Fundraising Professionals and the Charitable Gift Planners of Nebraska.
Margaret J. Sumption, LPC, SPHR, SHRM-SCP
Margaret has over thirty-five years of experience as a teacher and counselor, nonprofit administrator, development officer, and volunteer board member serving a wide variety of organizations. Her company, Sumption & Wyland, specializes in strategic planning and the intersection of fund development and mission outcomes. She coaches executives to build capacity in leadership and organizational success and partners with nonprofit governing boards to achieve mission outcomes. Sumption & Wyland uses a customized design for strategic planning labeled “Mission Forward” and, along with her partner, Michael Wyland, has completed over 200 strategic plans for organizations from start-up to over $500M in revenue. She is a popular, dynamic, and effective speaker and trainer for nonprofit professionals, customers, and policy makers.
Tara Wilcox has a passion for non-profit leadership and community collaboration. With this motivation, she aims to empower people to act in ways that move themselves, their business, and our community forward. She brings hands-on experience in non-profit operations including team leadership, group facilitation, program development, systems creation, planning for results, and project management. She has served Black Hills Works for over 20 years and is currently the Director of Engagement. She is also a partner with Pathways-2-Solutions, offering assessment and support for non-profits and other "small shops" to find customized, affordable and efficient operational solutions. Tara is a graduate of Black Hills State University, National Leadership Institute, Leadership Rapid City, and SDCEO Women in Leadership. Additional affiliations include the Rapid City Area Chamber of Commerce Ambassadors, Black Hills Area Council Boy Scouts, Our Camp Inc., and Toastmasters International.
Margaret Williams the 2015 APRA Professional of the Year awardee, has served as the Director of Prospect Research at the University of South Dakota Foundation since 1999. Margaret manages and analyzes the prospect pipeline keeping each major gift officer’s portfolio fresh with the most willing and the most capable prospects. Margaret is an active member of APRA having served on the Awards Committee, the Data Analytics Symposium Committee and the Nominations Committee. Margaret is an active presenter having presented at APRA International, AFP-SD Chapter, and BBCON.
Michael Wyland is a partner in Sumption & Wyland, the Sioux Falls-based consulting firm he co-founded in 1990. He is an expert on nonprofit governance, leadership, policy, and practice who has been interviewed and quoted in more than 100 print and online publications. He currently serves as consulting editor for The Nonprofit Quarterly. In addition to his editing and consulting role at NPQ, he has written more than 400 articles and features for publication, including more than 30 articles addressing aspects of IRS and its oversight of charities and other nonprofits.