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Outstanding Young Professionals for 2022

Five fundraisers younger than age of 31 were selected as Outstanding Young Professionals for 2022 by the Association of Fundraising Professionals (AFP).

The award is given to fundraisers who, after just a few years in the profession, have already shown exemplary work in raising funds, inspiring donors, helping manage campaigns and giving back to the profession.

The Outstanding Young Professionals for 2022 are:

  • Sara Paracha, director of development, North Side Community School, St. Louis, Mo.;
  • Dana Patterson, director of development, Kidango, Inc., Fremont, Calif.;
  • Natalie Reilly-Finch, MPP, CFRE, director, Foundation Development, Ascension St. Vincent’s Foundation, Jacksonville, Fla.;
  • Casey Saunders, CFRE, director of planned giving, The ALS Association National Office, Washington, D.C.; and
  • Terrel White, director of advancement, The Center for Nonprofit Excellence, Charlottesville, Va.

The five honorees were recognized at AFP’s ICON (International Conference) 2022 in Las Vegas, Nev., during the Opening General Session.

“While this honor has the word ‘young’ in its title, these five fundraisers have already demonstrated the level of incredible skills, knowledge, and expertise that you’d find in an experienced profession,” said Mike Geiger, MBA, CPA, president and CEO of AFP. “We are recognizing them not just for what they’ve already achieved in their career, but also for serving as role models for other fundraisers new to the profession. They’re an exciting and vibrant group of fundraisers, and we look forward to hearing more from them in the future as their careers develop.”

“Winning this award is a great honor. In my community alone, I work with some incredibly dynamic and inspiring young professionals, so to have been selected amongst a global audience feels epic,” said White. “It feels fantastic to be seen and supported by colleagues who recognize my passion for my work and what I do, even outside of work.”

White has been a fundraising professional for 12 years, building his frontline fundraising career by supporting nursing education initiatives at the Wayne State University College of Nursing. During his time there, White transformed the college’s Giving Day campaign and Nurse’s Week event programming and implemented new initiatives that significantly increased donor engagement and donor-centric solicitations. He will be taking these experiences and successes into his new role at The Center for Nonprofit Excellence.

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