President & CEO | The Rayvan Group
Jarrett Ransom is known as the Nonprofit Nerd. She began her consulting firm in 2009 and works exclusively with nonprofits. She is passionate about creating community, empowering others to see and exceed their full potential.
She wears many hats, and under her leadership and guidance, her teams across the nation raise millions of dollars every year to support and sustain their mission. The Rayvan Group has helped create sustainable fundraising strategies for start-up to multi-million dollar charitable organizations. As President and CEO of The Rayvan Group, Jarrett consults with nonprofits to help them see the future of their organization—not just their immediate needs, but several years down the road—by providing strategic planning extending three, five, 10 years and beyond.
In addition, Jarrett is the co-host of the American Nonprofit Academy’s Nonprofit Show. She brings her dynamic energy and enthusiasm to the weekly show featuring nonprofit thought leaders and topics from around the globe.
Nationally Recognized & Emmy Award Winning Social Impact Entrepreneur
For eight years, Courtney served as the Co-Founder and CEO of SEED SPOT, a social impact incubator ranked as one of the “Top 20 Accelerators in the World” and “Top 3 Social Impact Incubators in the United States.” SEED SPOT has served over 1,000 founders—over 70% woman and entrepreneurs of color—and holds an Emmy award for their partnership with Univision serving Latino entrepreneurs.
Courtney is currently working with several high-impact startups serving in a freelance and board capacity and is a fellow with the Edmund Hillary Fellowship in New Zealand, a prestigious program for global social impact entrepreneurs.
She has received many awards for her work and has been named “One of Arizona’s most Influential Millennials,” a “Top 10 Business People of the Year in Phoenix” and one of “Arizona's Most Intriguing Chief Executives.” She has also been recognized as one of the nation’s “Top 30 Civic Leaders Under the Age of 30.”
Founder & President | The Phoenix Philanthropy Group
Richard Tollefson established The Phoenix Philanthropy Group with nearly 20 years of fundraising and advancement management experience, and he now has more than three decades of successfully helping strengthen nonprofits and other organizations.
The Phoenix Philanthropy Group partners with organizations and individuals to build the strategies and resources to optimize their impact on our global society. They have served more than 180 clients in education, human and community services, arts and culture, healthcare, social justice and the environment in the Southwest and around the world.
Chief Development Officer | Mile High United Way
As Chief Development Officer for Mile High United Way, Chelsea oversees inclusive and sustainable resource development efforts in order to achieve the community impact goals of the organization. As a fierce advocate for the mission: to unite people, ideas and resources to advance the common good, she leads all fundraising, grants, events, donor engagement and volunteerism efforts, raising more than $25 million annually and connecting more than 7,000 volunteers to opportunities to provide impact throughout the Front Range. In 2020, the organization exceeded $50 million in revenue and was a recipient of Mackenzie Scott’s philanthropy, securing a $20 million gift to create community change.
Having spent the last 15 years of her career at Mile High United Way, Chelsea has been privileged to sit in a variety of roles within the Resource Development Team. Additionally, she serves as a member of the national Major and Planned Giving Leadership Council and as a mentor to several fundraisers in the Denver community.
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.
Owner | Colorado BlueOcean Consulting & Executive Director | RizeX
Su Hawk is one of the original judges for the Eide Bailly Resourcefullness Award and is a long-time association and nonprofit industry leader. Through her company, Colorado BlueOcean, she serves as the Executive Director for RizeX, a business owner community of leaders focused on growth, team development, giving back to the community and serving others. She also is the VP of Technology Associations for The Influence Board, a platform designed to curate meetings between vendors and executives to raise funds for charities.
Su is dedicated to STEM education, nonprofit financial sustainability and community leadership. She serves on the Board of Directors for Mentor Colorado and is leading the youth initiatives for National Philanthropy Day - Colorado. Previous roles include 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 also the past Board Chair of Colorado PRSA and Family Tree.
President | Jerome Foundation
Ben Cameron is President of the Jerome Foundation, which supports emerging artists in Minnesota and New York City. He also served simultaneously for two years as President of the Camargo Foundation, a residency center for artists, scholars and scientists in Cassis, France, which shares the common founder Jerome Hill.
From 2006-2015, Ben was Program Director for the Arts at the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation in New York, NY, supervising both an annual $15 million grants program focusing on the theatre, contemporary dance, jazz and presenting fields, and an additional $50 million initiative designed primarily to serve individual artists, above and beyond the annual budget. During his tenure, the Foundation received the National Medal of the Arts from President Barak Obama in September 2015.
Previously, he managed philanthropic programs for Target Stores and the Dayton Hudson Foundation, served as the Executive Director of Theatre Communications Group and was Director of the Theater Program at the National Endowment for the Arts.
CEO | Stanton Adams Consulting and the Diversity Institute
Cecilia Stanton Adams is a visionary thought leader with more than 15 years’ experience as a strategic diversity, equity and inclusion expert. As a native New Yorker with roots in Honduras, she grew up surrounded by diversity. Early on, she recognized that despite the ideals of meritocracy, many places lacked equity and inclusion. Stanton Adams took it on as her mission to bridge the gap between opportunities and those who lacked access to them.
In 2010, Cecilia partnered with her wife Malissa Adams to launch Stanton Adams Consulting, a family owned and operated diversity consulting firm. They also saw a need for high quality training to individuals who wanted to drive diversity, equity and inclusion within their organization. It was with that vision that the Diversity Institute was created. She now spends her time coaching diversity champions, practitioners and executive leaders as they navigate the challenges of culture change.
Chief Executive Officer | People Serving People
Rinal Ray is the CEO at People Serving People. She leads a dynamic team in responding to the crisis of family homelessness and works to change systems to prevent the experience of family homelessness in Hennepin County. Rinal is a former deputy public policy director for the Minnesota Council of Nonprofits where she advanced the organization’s policy agenda at a state and local level, trained leaders on nonprofit advocacy and lead special legal projects for the statewide association. Rinal currently serves as a co-chair for the Voices & Choices Coalition for Children and is on the Board of College Possible Minnesota. She teaches Nonprofit Advocacy in the Masters in Advocacy and Political Leadership (MAPL) program at Metropolitan State University.
Director of Growth and Outreach | Northeastern Nevada Regional Hospital
Terri Clark has a history of building programs, organizations and networks. Currently, Terri is the Director of Growth and Outreach for Northeastern Nevada Regional Hospital where she works to expand the hospital’s services and connect with community stakeholders. Prior to her work at NNRH, she was the Northern Nevada Operations Director for Nevada Health Centers, which included managing both clinical practices as well as a family practice residency in conjunction with the UNR School of Medicine. She also played an integral part in growing Communities in Schools (CIS), not only in Nevada but also nationally.
Throughout her career, Terri has founded a number of programs, such as Miles for Smiles and Crackdown on Cancer and Telehealth Mental Health Consulting, some of which were award winning. She has also been an active volunteer throughout Nevada being appointed by multiple governors to various boards and committees in addition to serving on local boards and committees for organizations such as the Northeastern Nevada Regional Development Authority, the Community Foundation of Elk County and the Great Basin College.
President & CEO | Community Foundation of Western Nevada
Christopher Askin, CSPG, CFRE, has been the President & CEO of the Community Foundation of Western Nevada since June 2000, during which time the Foundation has grown from assets of less than $1 million to $145 million, while distributing more than $140 million in grants.
A graduate from San Diego State University with a degree in Administration, emphasis in Youth & Family Agencies, Chris began his career with the YMCA in La Jolla in 1982, advancing from Program Director to Executive Director. Chris has a strong background in community engagement, nonprofit administration, fundraising, and in bringing people together to address community needs. Chris spent ten years serving in development positions with local and national organizations raising funds through grant writing, major gifts, capital gifts and planned giving. Chris completed the YMCA Executive Development Program in 1998, became a Certified Fund Raising Executive in 1996 and a Certified Specialist in Planned Giving in 2003.
Executive Director | Martis Camp Foundation
President & CEO | The Village Family Service Center
Jeff Pederson has been the President & CEO for The Village Family Service Center for the past 3.5 ½ years. Prior to this, he served as the President for Catholic Health Initiatives (CHI) Friendship and CHI Riverview for the previous 24 years. Jeff’s passion is to serve people in hopes of making a difference in their lives. Jeff and his wife of 39 years make their home in Fargo. They have 2 daughters and 3 (soon to be 4) grandchildren. When not involved with his nonprofit work, Jeff enjoys golfing and fishing.
Vice President | BSC College Advancement & Executive Director | BSC Foundation
Kari Knudson joined Bismarck State College in September 2007 as vice president of the National Energy Center of Excellence and was also responsible for the Great Plains Energy Corridor. In 2016, Knudson became executive director of the BSC Foundation and BSC vice president of College Advancement.
Prior to joining BSC, Kari acquired 17 years of domestic and international experience in the oil and gas and the utility industries while working for ConocoPhillips and MDU Resources. Knudson graduated from the University of Oklahoma with a Bachelor of Business Administration degree and obtained a Master of Business Administration degree from the University of Mary.
Chief Financial Officer/Vice President of Finance | SCHEELS
Michelle began working in the Scheels Corporate Office in 2000 where she has served in a variety of positions over the last 21 years. In 2012, Michelle was added to the Board of Directors and named CFO. She is the first female CFO in the history of Scheels and only the second female Board Member in the company’s history.
Beyond her work with Scheels, Michelle is actively involved within the Fargo-Moorhead community. She chaired United Way of Cass-Clay’s annual campaign in 2012 raising a record $5.1+ million. She has also served on the Board of Trustees for the United Way as Treasurer, chaired the Finance Committee, and was a member of the Tocqueville Committee. Michelle started the Women’s Leadership Summit for Scheels in 2013 and founded the nonprofit The Great North Pole in 2017 with her husband, Nick. Beyond sitting on the Scheels Board of Directors, Michelle currently serves on the Affinity Insurance Captive Board, the Sanford Medical Center Board, and the Great North Pole Board.