Toronto Seminar: Leadership Skills for Fundraising Professionals 1.0

Thursday, January 17, 2019

8:30 AM - 4:30 PM

Training Centres of Canada
330 Bay St #610, Toronto, ON M5H 2S8 (map)

AFP Members: $100 + HST
Non-Members: $125 + HST



9:00 am - 9:45 am ~ Assessing Your Leadership Skills: Understand Your Strengths and Unlock Your Hidden Potential

PRESENTED BY: Brian G. Bachand

Assessing Your Leadership Skills: Management Skills for Fundraising Professionals will focus on specific areas of what qualities set leaders apart for success. Brian will lead a realistic discussion on management skills and foundations that define fundraising leadership

10:00 am - 11:30 am ~ HR Tools for Fundraising Professionals: Hiring and Managing for Success

PRESENTED BY: Tara George, MBA, KCI (Ketchum Canada Inc.) and Ellie Rusonik, KCI (Ketchum Canada Inc.)

Making a transition to manager is a significant step for any fundraising professional. Indeed, growing into a leadership role takes a baseline set of skills that starts with having the right talent on your team. Yet managers are not always equipped with the required HR-related training. This gap becomes all the more urgent when it comes to hiring, onboarding and evaluating employees, particularly in today’s environment where employee turnover continues to be a challenge. This session will provide you with the tools and tips you need to thrive when hiring, onboarding and evaluating employees. Whether you are currently managing a team or looking to secure a management role, discover how to cultivate HR skills essential to identifying and stewarding the next generation of leaders in your organization.

Learning Outcomes:

  • Hiring for success: What skills, qualities and values should you look for in a new employee?
  • Fine-tuning your interviewing skills, including the most effective questions to ask, elements to look for in a potential hire, and identifying the right “fit” for your organization’s culture
  • Effective onboarding: setting the stage for success
  • Managing your new hire’s performance: setting expectations, measuring results, and delivering effective feedback. What differentiates high performers from high potentials? And how can you as a manager support the journey to high performance?

11:30 am – 12:30 pm ~ Breakout Groups

12:30 pm - 1:30 pm ~ Luncheon

1:30 pm - 2:45 pm ~ Boost Your Financial Literacy – Key Concepts to Enhance this Must-Have Leadership Skill

PRESENTED BY: Chris Pipka, (Michael Garron Hospital, Toronto East Health Network)

As a manager, it is critical to gain sufficient financial proficiency to meet the evolving needs of your organization. This session will help you increase your understanding of financial statements, accounting principles and innovations in budgeting and forecasting. By boosting your financial literacy, you will be able to think more strategically, drive performance and make better decisions as a manager and fundraiser.

Learning Outcomes:

  • Understand how to read and interpret financial statements
  • Get the latest developments in budgeting and forecasting
  • A guide to fundraising and administrative disclosures

2:45 pm - 4:30 pm ~ Lead Like a Coach: Coaching Essentials for Fundraising Leaders

PRESENTED BY: Janice Cunning, ACC, CPCC, Executive Coach & Trainer, Fundraising Leadership and Juniper Locilento, CFRE, Director of Annual Giving, Operations & Strategy, YMCA of Greater Toronto Chapter

As a non-profit leader, you need to excel at frontline work and managing your team. Often it can feel like you are being squeezed between these competing priorities. Coaching is now well established as one of the most important competencies for maximizing and sustaining individual and team performance. The return on investment on coaching is well documented with major improvements in employee morale, effectiveness, and retention. During this workshop, we will focus on practical skills and techniques to help you create a coaching culture within your team. You will learn to lead like a coach by practicing essential skills – curiosity, listening, and intuition - and receiving feedback. Finally, participants will work together to create coaching toolkits for various management scenarios, such as prioritization, accountability, and feedback. These toolkits will ensure you can return to your organization ready to put your learning into action.

Learning Outcomes:

  • Understand how a coaching culture can serve your organization
  • Practice essential coaching skills – curiosity, listening, intuition – and receive feedback
  • Explore how to use open-ended questions to create a culture of accountability and learning
  • Create toolkits that allow you to put this learning into action with your team

4:30 pm ~ Seminar Adjourns

Brian Bachand


Formerly, Brian was a Partner in the Phelps's Board Services, Healthcare & Life Sciences, Fundraising, and Not-for-Profit Practice Groups. As a highly respected member of the advancement and philanthropic communities in both Canada and the United States, Brian has an unparalleled knowledge of the people and organizations who are at the intersection of private sector investment, academic research, and public policy globally.

Brian is first and foremost a connector of corporations and individuals, with ground-breaking opportunities. As a strategic and collaborative leader, he has a successful track record of achievement earned throughout more than 15 years in the advancement and development sector. Brian has particular expertise in the recruitment and management of senior board development. In the past five years, Brian has completed several recruitments in the healthcare and NFP sector.

Before joining Phelpsgroup, Brian worked at the Faculty of Medicine at the University of Toronto, where he led the Faculty’s Advancement program – the largest such program in Canada. Prior to the University of Toronto, Brian led a highly effective fundraising team at NYU Langone Medical Center in Manhattan, as Executive Director. His team met and exceeded the goals of annual giving, major gifts, and capital campaigns. He also served as Director of Corporate Development for the American Cancer Society, responsible for all corporate development activities with Fortune 500 companies within metropolitan New York.

Brian is active in the Toronto community, currently serving as Vice-Chair of the Board for ACCES Employment, assisting job seekers of diverse backgrounds. He is also a Board Director at Gardiner Museum in Toronto. Finally, he was recently appointed as an Advisory Committee Member of the Economic Club of Canada.


Janice Cunning, ACC, CPCC

Executive Coach & Trainer

Fundraising Leadership

Janice Cunning is a certified coach and facilitator with 17 years of experience as a fundraiser. Janice was a Senior Consultant at KCI where she provided coaching to leading prospect research departments with a focus on strategic planning, teamwork, and communication. Janice is passionate about partnering with fundraisers to help them create an inspired vision that transforms lives. She has coached senior leaders at institutions across North America and worked with fundraising teams at United Way Toronto & York Region, TGWHF, and Camp Oochigeas. Janice has served on the boards of APRA-Canada, APRA, and the International Coach Federation – Toronto Chapter.

Tara George, BSc, BEd, MBA

Partner / Lead, Search + Talent

KCI (Ketchum Canada Inc.)

Tara has led or played a key role in more than 320 searches during her 10 years with KCI. These have including CEO searches and other C-suite searches, plus senior fundraising, alumni, marketing communications, and advancement services searches for a wide variety of healthcare organizations, hospital foundations, universities, and other not for profit organizations.

Beyond her executive search work, Tara focuses on organizational development issues, helping clients to define their staffing needs, organizational structure, and recruitment, retention and succession strategies. As a Senior Vice President with KCI, Tara also serves as an internal advisor and consultant for colleagues who focus in other KCI practices areas.  Tara’s outstanding strategic thinking and project management skills, superb communication abilities, and solid business acumen allow her to deliver exceptional services to both clients and candidates. 

A highly respected professional with extensive networks across Canada and around the globe, Tara is a committed volunteer and passionate advocate of the social profit sector. Tara has served in a variety of volunteer leadership roles including on Providence Health Care’s Strategic Planning Sub-Committee and Awareness Sub-Committee. An in-demand speaker, Tara has spoken at numerous professional organizations, including the Association for Healthcare Philanthropy (AHP), and Association of Fundraising Professionals (AFP).

Tara holds a Masters of Business Administration (McMaster University), a Bachelor of Education (University of Toronto), and a Bachelor of Science (University of Guelph). She has also completed the Institute of Corporate Directors Not for Profit Governance Essentials course.


Juniper Locilento, MPNL, CFRE

Senior Director, Development

YMCA of Greater Toronto

Juniper Locilento, MPNL, CFRE is Senior Director, Development at the YMCA of Greater Toronto where she leads annual giving, events, donor relations fundraising operations and a capital campaign for the new Vaughan Metropolitan YMCA. 

Juniper is passionate about coaching teams through change initiatives to drive revenue growth: during a six-year tenure with KCI (Ketchum Canada Inc.), she provided counsel for six capital campaigns and supported her clients in raising over $100M. 

Juniper began her career in the arts, working with Soulpepper Theatre Company, Tapestry New Opera Works, the Canadian Opera Company and many others to nurture new audiences and secure public sector and philanthropic support. 

As a volunteer, Juniper serves as a Director and VP, Public Affairs for the AFP Greater Toronto Chapter, a Director for the AFP Canada Foundation for Philanthropy and as a Communications Committee and Government Relations Committee Member for AFP Canada. She recently earned a Master of Philanthropy and Nonprofit Leadership from Carleton University and serves frequently as a coach, presenter and trainer for all things fundraising. 

Chris Pipka, CPA, CGA

Manager, Finance

Michael Garron Hospital

Chris Pipka is a CPA, CGA with a H.B.Comm from Laurentian University. Chris has a background in both corporate and not for profit finance and currently works for Michael Garron Hospital Foundation as their Manager, Finance. Chris also freelances for small organizations in need of occasional finance and accounting consulting.

Ellie Rusonik

Senior Search Consultant

KCI (Ketchum Canada Inc.)

Ellie Rusonik is a highly experienced development professional with over twenty years’ in the not-for-profit sector.  Ellie brings broad expertise in event and major gift fundraising, marketing, and communications to her role.   

Ellie is known as a dynamic leader and consummate team player who has hired, inspired, and coached many promising and successful fundraisers.  She joined KCI’s Executive Search team to share that expertise with our clients.  Ellie is valued for her strategic thinking, strong project management, and collaborative and communicative style. 

Prior to joining KCI, Ellie held an executive role at Geneva Centre for Autism as the lead for marketing, communications, and fundraising.  Prior to that she spent 16+ years with the Multiple Sclerosis Society of Canada in a range of fundraising and marketing leadership roles. 

Ellie is an active volunteer who makes an impact by sharing her skills and expertise.  She currently serves as a board member with the Ontario Volleyball Association.  Ellie holds a BSc in Kinesiology and a certificate in Sport Administration from York University.