By SF Goodwill
“I’ve always loved nonprofits, and never questioned wanting to work at one. It’s who I am.” – Katherine Bella
San Francisco Goodwill Board Member and Development Committee Chair, Katherine Bella, has been awarded the prestigious Hank Rosso Outstanding Fundraising Professional Award from the Association of Fundraising Professionals (AFP) Golden Gate Chapter. Katherine has been a professional nonprofit fundraiser for over 40 years, and has consulted with over 100 nonprofits in her time. As Chief Strategy Officer at PRC, Katherine works to address the social risk factors that impact wellness and potential for people affected by HIV/AIDS, substance use, or mental health issues.
Her award will be highlighted as part of National Philanthropy Day (NPD), a day to celebrate the charitable work done to make a difference and impact their communities. NPD was officially proclaimed in 1986 by President Reagan to reflect on the meaning of giving and all that it has made possible. The Hank Rosso Award, named after a fundraising legend, is awarded to an individual fundraising professional who practices their profession in an exemplary manner. The AFP has collectively fundraised over $1 trillion for their communities since 1960.
Katherine’s career began at a women’s health center in New Haven, Connecticut, her first job after finishing a Master of Social Work at the University of Connecticut. Her role was health educator and community organizer opposing the Hyde Amendment—the most well-known anti-abortion legislation after Roe v. Wade. When a development director role opened up at the women’s center, Katherine stepped up to the plate and never looked back.
Despite turnover at nonprofits being notoriously high and fundraising an often uphill battle, Katherine has never questioned leaving the sector. She has always been involved in nonprofits, starting by volunteering in high school and Board service from a young age. While it can be difficult, she finds it rewarding interfacing with people from so many other professions and constituencies.
Katherine attributes her success to having a mentor from an early stage in her career, and fundraising being a great career path for women. Acting as the representative for both the donor and the organization is critical, as it is being transparent, good stewards of money and what it gets used for.
Katherine joined SF Goodwill initially as a consultant and eagerly accepted the invitation to be a part of our Board. She cites her experiences working with the team and in particular President & CEO William Rogers, as factors for her decision to join. “SF Goodwill has such a special mission, so many positive things about the brand, the programs, and our impact. There are limitless possibilities for growth with our organization.”
Nonprofits simply cannot exist without skillful fundraisers like Katherine. Join us in thanking Katherine for her service and leadership on National Philanthropy Day (and every day), and giving her a well-deserved congratulations!
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