Editor | Frontdoors Media
Karen Werner is the editor of Frontdoors media. A writer, editor and media consultant with experience in a number of different platforms, she frequently serves as an adjunct professor of editing and magazine writing at the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism at Arizona State University.
Werner is the founder and principal of KWink media, a consulting firm that helps create publications and manage social communications for a number of prominent for-profit and nonprofit organizations, including the Virginia G. Piper Charitable Trust and BHHS Legacy Foundation. She previously served as executive editor of Arizona Foothills and Custom Homes magazines and has produced publications for the Musical Instrument Museum, the Arizona Office of Tourism, Phoenix-area NPR affiliates KJZZ and KBAQ, and the City of Glendale.
Before moving to Phoenix, Werner earned a master's degree in journalism at NYU, interned at The New Yorker, worked at Parents Magazine, co-wrote a full-length interactive play, and won a silver medal in an international film festival for a documentary about cabbies.
Vice President, Commercial Banking Relationship Manager | BBVA, USA
CEO | Rayvan Group
Jarrett Ransom, CEO of The Rayvan Group is also known as The Nonprofit Nerd. With more than 20 years leading the nonprofit sector, Jarrett has been in the philanthropic trenches. “As a disruptor of conventional approaches,” explains Jarrett, “I work with nonprofit organizations to develop strategies that bring abundance and measured success.” The proof of this philanthropic philosophy is evident. To date, Jarrett Ransom has been involved with 5 capital campaigns that resulted in more than $86 million. In 2020, a most challenging year, Ransom raised $500,000 for clients within the first six months.
The Nonprofit Nerd is also the co-host of American Nonprofit Academy’s The Nonprofit Show. The nation’s only live daily talk show dedicated to the nonprofit sector is quickly becoming a voice of reason in the ever-changing world of philanthropy.
President and Chief Executive Officer | Mile High United Way
Christine Benero is President and CEO of Mile High United Way where, in line with their mission, she works to advance the common good and believes all children, individuals and families should have the opportunity for success.
Christine is the former CEO of the American Red Cross Mile High Chapter. Prior to that Christine was the Director of the Office of Public Liaison for the Corporation for National and Community Service in Washington, DC. She served in two Presidential administrations working for both Presidents Bill Clinton and George W. Bush.
Christine currently serves on the Boards of HealthONE, National Domestic Violence Hotline, Denver Public Schools Foundation and Executives Partnering to Invest in Children. She has been honored with a plethora of awards throughout her career including The Colorado Governors’ Citizenship Medal, one of the highest honors bestowed upon citizens and organizations of Colorado for their meritorious contributions to the strength and vitality of the state.
Marla Williams is a director and audit committee member of Sturm Financial Group, the holding company of ANB Bank, a community bank with over 30 centers serving customers in Colorado, Wyoming, and the Kansas City metro area. She also serves on the board of directors of the Merle Chambers Fund and on the governance committee for the International Women’s Forum of Colorado where she was formally the president.
Prior to joining Sturm Financial Group, Williams was President and CEO of Community First Foundation from 2010-2019. She also served as president and CEO of The Women’s Foundation of Colorado and continues to serve as an Honorary Trustee.
Williams has served on many boards throughout her career, including SCL Health, a multi-state hospital system. She is past chair of the board of the Colorado Association of Funders and a founding member of the Community Chest fund at The Women’s Foundation of Colorado.
Principal | Colorado BlueOcean Consulting
Su Hawk is one of the original judges for the Eide Bailly Resourcefullness Award and is a nonprofit industry leader. She owns Colorado BlueOcean Consulting, where she brings new innovative thinking to leading industry and membership associations, nonprofit organizations and communications organizations to create success and transform organizations, including those in transition.
Su is dedicated to STEM education, nonprofit financial sustainability and community leadership and serves on the Board of Directors for Mentor Colorado and is leading the youth initiatives for National Philanthropy Day - Colorado. Previous roles include on the Board of Directors for the Blind Institute of Technology, Monfort School’s Business Advisory Council, CSU’s ISTeC Advisory Council, the Technology Executive Council of North America, Colorado Enterprise Fund, Girls Count, Colorado MESA, and Open World Learning. She is the past Board Chair of Colorado PRSA and Family Tree.
Partner | Excelsior Bay Group
Eric Snyder and his wife, Kim, own and operate the Excelsior Bay Group – a consultancy that helps nonprofit organizations to improve their impact and fundraising capacity.
Prior to joining the Excelsior Bay Group, Eric held management and leadership positions in public, nonprofit and for-profit organizations. In his current role Eric leads the firm’s nonprofit strategy and philanthropic advisory practices.
Eric earned an MBA and a Master’s in Public Affairs from the University of Minnesota and a Bachelor’s degree in English from the University of Nebraska. Eric also holds a Chartered Advisor in Philanthropy (CAP) certification from the American College of Financial Services.
Eric currently volunteers as board member of Community for the Commons. Previously, he has served in governance roles for a number of organizations including the Excelsior Parks Commission, FairVote Minnesota and ResourceWest.
President and CEO | Volunteers of America Minnesota and Wisconsin
Julie Manworren is President and CEO of Volunteers of America Minnesota and Wisconsin, a health and human serving organization that serves more than 25,000 low-wealth people in over 110 neighborhoods and communities across MN and WI.
Julie has over 35 years of experience working in complex human service nonprofits and prior to Volunteers of America, she provided leadership serving families impacted by intellectual and developmental disabilities as President and CEO of Living Well Disabilities.
She is a transformational executive with demonstrated leadership expertise across diverse positions, particularly within housing and family services previously acting as Executive Director of Simpson Housing Services, Vice President at Children’s Home Society & Family Services and Chief Operating Officer at Family Service of Greater St. Paul.
President | Minnesota Council on Foundations
Susie Brown is the President of the Minnesota Council on Foundations. In this role she works to connect, strengthen and mobilize Minnesota’s philanthropic community. Prior to joining the Council she was the Executive Director of the Hennepin County Bar Association and Hennepin County Bar Foundation. She also served as Chief Operating Officer of the Minnesota State Bar Association, Public Policy Director of the Minnesota Council of Nonprofits, and Executive Director of Child Care WORKS. Additionally, Susie served for 12 years as faculty at the Hamline University School of Business where she taught in the Masters of Nonprofit Management program.
Susie earned a Master of Public Administration from the University of Vermont and a Bachelor’s degree in International Affairs from Lewis and Clark College.
CFO & Senior Vice President of Finance and Operations | North Dakota State University Foundation
Allyson Peterson is the CFO/Senior Vice President of Finance and Operations for North Dakota State University Foundation. She leads the Accounting, Information Services, Donor Compliance Services, and Human Resources teams and is responsible for monitoring and directing all financial and operational aspects of the organization.
She graduated from NDSU in 2007 with a degree in accounting and a minor in fraud investigation. She obtained her CPA license in 2009. Previously, she worked as an auditor in public accounting specializing in nonprofits, governments, and low-income housing audits.
CFO | Theodore Roosevelt Medora Foundation
Clarence Sitter is the CFO of the Theodore Roosevelt Medora Foundation (TRMF). He is also currently serving on the boards of the North Dakota CPA Society, Faith Revealed and the Medora Chamber of Commerce – all of which are nonprofit organizations. He has also previously served as a member of the program committee for the Non-Profit Leadership Alliance organization and on the ND 4-H Foundation board.
Prior to joining TRMF, Clarence spent over 11 years in public accounting where he worked for Eide Bailly. He received his Bachelor of Science in Accounting and his Master of Business Administration from the University of Mary, Bismarck.
Senior Vice President of Education | North Dakota Bankers Association
Dorothy Lick is Senior Vice President of Education for the North Dakota Bankers Association, a trade organization that represents banks throughout the state.
Dorothy is actively involved in the community, where she serves as a United Way board member and is a past chair of Women United. She also served as a board member for the Missouri Valley Family YMCA and is a volunteer with North Dakota Leadership Seminar, a leadership experience for high school sophomores. In 2013, Dorothy was a graduate of the Center for Technology and Business’s Women’s Leadership Program.
A graduate of the University of Mary, Dorothy worked for the North Dakota Department of Commerce for six years before joining NDBA.