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KDD Philanthropy is proud to partner with the following individuals who are leaders in their respective fields. Their expertise and experience strategically aligns with the needs of our clients, allowing us to provide a customized approach to help each organization grow and succeed.

Planned Giving
Erin Kathleen Jones, CFRE, CSPG
3de84feErin Jones has a passion for helping donors create their legacy through a strategic approach to planned giving. She is currently the Director of Gift Planing for The Salvation Army. Prior to that, Erin was Principal of Shamrock Philanthropy, where she provides planned giving consulting services for a variety of nonprofit organizations and universities. She also served as Regional Director for the University of Notre Dame. In this position, Erin worked with alumni, parents, and friends of the Fighting Irish to create lasting legacies.

Her engagement with higher education philanthropy did not start with Notre Dame. She spent five years as the Senior Director of Planned Giving at San Diego State University. During her tenure at SDSU, the planned giving program raised more than $75 million. Before SDSU, Erin served as the Director of Planned Giving at San Diego Hospice where she spearheaded the acquisition of a Gift Annuities License for the agency. Under her leadership, the organization raised over $40 million in planned giving efforts.

Erin also worked for the Catholic Diocese of San Diego, Grossmont Hospital Foundation, and the American Cancer Society. She began her 25-year fundraising career with a national consulting firm where she ran 42 capital campaigns over a five-year period, which raised more than $40 million, collectively, through her efforts. Erin also expanded the firm’s West Coast presence when she relocated to San Diego.

Erin earned her bachelor’s degree from St. John’s University in New York. She is a Certified Fund Raising Executive, Certified Senior Advisor, and received a Certified Specialist in Planned Giving credential from the College of Continuing & Professional Education at California State University Long Beach.

Connect with Erin on LinkedIn.

Special Projects
Amy Lomas

Amy Lomas is highly skilled at project management, administrative management, and travel planning and coordination. She is described by colleagues and coworkers as organized, detail-oriented and professional. Able to work quickly and carefully on any task, Amy demonstrates her superior administrative skills in every project she works on.

Currently, Amy serves as an executive assistant for the Senior Vice President and Chief Philanthropy & Communications Officer at the San Diego Humane Society (a perfect match as she has quite a passion for animals). Prior to this position, Amy worked as an executive assistant to the Chief Executive Officer and Chairman of a public pharmaceutical company for two years. Additionally, Amy has managed a co-working space part-time, which allowed her to put both her administrative and customer service experience to use in one role. She has experience as a kindergarten teacher, in the customer service industry and as a personal banker for a large bank in the United Kingdom.

Connect with Amy on LinkedIn.

Strategic Talent Management
Nicholas Mancuso, MFA

Nicholas Mancuso has a passion for people. His experience in the burgeoning field of strategic talent management allows him to help development leaders build high-performing best practice teams.

Nicholas recently served as Chief of Staff at the University of Southern Maine (USM) Foundation, designing and overseeing a staffing restructure and reorganization of the Foundation into a best practice advancement operation. In this capacity, he built human resources and talent management systems for every piece of the advancement employee life cycle.

Prior to joining the USM Foundation, Nicholas supported The Bates Campaign at Bates College in Lewiston as the Associate Director of Alumni and Family Engagement. There he developed and implemented a nationwide alumni engagement strategy, and rolled out events and programs across the continental United States.

Before joining the Bates College Advancement team, Nicholas served as the Senior Strategic Talent and Operations Associate at Boston University for five years during the first comprehensive capital campaign in the University’s history.

Nicholas has been an avid volunteer with the CASE District 1 annual conference since 2014. He has presented on staff engagement and retention at CASE Strategic Talent Management and at District 1. Nicholas is also a member of the Advancement Learning Network and the New England Talent Management Consortium.

Nicholas holds a bachelor’s degree in Politics & Law and Literary & Cultural Studies from Bryant University, and a master of fine arts degree in Creative Writing from Fairfield University.

Connect with Nicholas on LinkedIn.

Marketing, Communications and Webinar Concierge
Leah R. Singer
Leah Singer is a freelance writer and editor. She is known for uncovering unique angles and hidden gems, and then creating clear and compelling communication that creates impact.

She was previously a speechwriter and communications manager for two college presidents at San Diego State University. Leah served as Director of Communications for the San Diego State Enrollment Services Department, and managed high-profile special events for the SDSU Office of the President. She also worked as a senior writer for University of California, San Diego Annual Giving, and in marketing and public relations at KPBS public broadcasting station.

She is the former managing editor of the Red Tricycle Spoke Contributor Network and San Diego city editor. Her work has appeared in USA Today; Indianapolis Star; The Huffington Post; The Good Men Project; Edible Indy and Edible San Diego magazines; Today Parenting; Babble; Scary Mommy; Red Tricycle; Terre Haute Living; and numerous other national publications.

Connect with Leah on LinkedIn.

Fundraising Essentials and Strategic Talent Management
Carol Spychalski
carolCarol Spychalski’s specialty is building: from teams to fundraising initiatives to comprehensive campaign infrastructure, Carol has a track record of helping people and programs achieve greater levels of excellence.

As a coach and manager, Carol supports professional success through a focus on:

  • Identifying and strengthening an individual’s unique strengths
  • Creating clarity around challenges and how to overcome them
  • Embracing accountability
  • Establishing professional presence

Through a career in higher education, healthcare, and community nonprofits, Carol has developed an expertise across a broad spectrum of advancement activities. As Senior Director, Philanthropy, at San Diego Humane Society, Carol raises the significant gifts that are essential to a cause she is passionate about while leading a team of planned, foundation, and major giving professionals. Additionally, Carol plays a significant role in developing the organization’s coming comprehensive campaign.

Previously, as Senior Director of Development at University of California, San Diego, Carol led the creation of, and fundraising for, several campaign initiatives while she hired, trained, and managed a large advancement team. Carol’s talent-focused approach provided her a critical role in the division’s staff development programs. She led a cohort of mid-level fundraisers for the university’s academic units; this process included setting clear goals and standards, building a cohort group for strategy and skill set development, and providing ongoing one-to-one coaching.

Connect with Carol on LinkedIn.

Praise for Carol:

“I worked as a fundraiser under Carol’s leadership for about 18 months and can say with complete sincerity that she was one of the best managers I’ve ever had. Carol cares deeply about her work and that is reflected in her management style. She is a champion for her team, a patient and thoughtful mentor, a dedicated coach, and an excellent supervisor. Under her guidance, I was able to sharpen my development skillset and to progress from being an entry-level development professional to a strategic major gift officer. Carol is an expert in brainstorming donor strategy, all facets of management (up, down, and at parallel levels), building team culture, and writing effectively as a fundraiser. She imparted many of these skills to her team at UC San Diego, and I am fully confident that I wouldn’t be where I am today without her support. It is rare to work with someone who is so committed to elevating the people around them. Carol does exactly that.” — Zachary Colombo, Associate Director of Development, Division of Social Sciences, UC San Diego

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