Meet The Team

Our professionals bring years of experience in both consulting and in-house nonprofit roles to help your organization advance its mission.

 

Senior Leadership

Amy Schiffman, CFRE

President & CEO
Amy_headshot

Areas of Expertise:

  • Annual campaigns
  • Capital campaigns
  • Endowment and planned giving
  • Major gifts
  • Training and coaching 
  • Executive search

Client Focus:

  • Faith-based organizations
  • Education and youth
  • Federated organizations
  • Human needs

Recent Clients:

  • Prizmah: Center for Jewish Day Schools
  • JCC Chicago
  • Reading in Motion
  • Jewish Federation of Metropolitan Chicago
  • Union for Reform Judaism (URJ)
  • Spertus Institute
  • Israel Elwyn
  • Fuente Latina
  • Illinois Partners for Human Service

President & CEO

Amy Schiffman, CFRE

With more than 25 years of experience in the nonprofit field, Amy partners with organizations across a variety of sectors to develop effective fundraising campaigns, build strong leadership teams and empower them with the tools to visualize and achieve mission impact. She brings deep expertise in nonprofit fund development, strategic planning, coaching, training and executive search to every engagement. Amy is known for helping both professionals and volunteers maximize their leadership potential so they can position their organizations for a strong future. A seasoned volunteer board member and community activist, she understands the value of strong lay-professional partnerships and works with organizations to expand the circle of effective ambassadors for their cause.

As a co-founder of Giving Tree Associates in 2008 and President of Evolve Giving Group in 2020, Amy has helped clients raise tens of millions of dollars through individual major gifts, foundation and corporate funding. She has also served as a trusted fundraising coach to dozens of executive directors, development professionals and board presidents, enabling them to build strong ongoing relationships with their stakeholders. Prior to consulting, Amy served as director of development at Ida Crown Jewish Academy and as director of development and communications at Jewish Council for Youth Services, overseeing a diverse array of capital, annual, planned giving, government relations and marketing programs. Early in her career, Amy managed the midwest leadership development effort and regional major gifts program at United Jewish Communities, and served as director of campus campaigns for The Hillels of Illinois at the Jewish Federation of Metropolitan Chicago.

Amy is a frequent presenter at local and national gatherings, including the Association of Fundraising Professionals (AFP), Forefront, Jewish Federations of North America, Legacy Heritage Fund, Hillel International, JCC Association of North America, JCamp 180 and Life & Legacy. She co-designed and served as lead trainer for the Prizmah National Endowment Legacy Institutes from 2013-2019. Amy is a Certified Fund Raising Executive (CFRE) and a member of the Association of Fundraising Professionals (AFP), The Association of Consultants to Nonprofits (ACN), Women in Development North and Chicago Women in Philanthropy. She serves on summer faculty for the HUC/USC Zelikow School of Nonprofit Management in Los Angeles.

Amy received her bachelor’s degree in psychology from the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign and a master’s degree in social work with a certificate in Jewish communal service from the University of Pennsylvania School of Social Work and Gratz College. She lives in Wilmette, Illinois, with her husband and two children and enjoys biking, cooking and travel.

Jamie Klobuchar

Executive Vice President
JamieK

Areas of Expertise:

  • Annual campaigns
  • Major gifts
  • Development assessments
  • Strategic planning
  • Coaching and training

Client Focus:

  • Health
  • Human needs
  • Federated organizations
  • Startups

Recent Clients:

  • Malnati Brain Tumor Institute/Northwestern Memorial Foundation
  • CURE (Citizens United in Research for Epilepsy)
  • Keshet
  • College Mentoring Experience
  • Chicago Commons

Executive Vice President

Jamie Klobuchar

With nearly 20 years of nonprofit experience, Jamie brings a strategic vision and collaborative approach to each project. Clients value her ability to evaluate their practices and offer creative solutions to help them strengthen their base of support. Jamie is also known for helping new nonprofits create the right structure and processes to carry out their missions successfully.  She also leads business development efforts for the firm and is part of the management team.

Jamie has been with the team since 2015, when she joined Giving Tree Associates as a senior consultant. In 2020, she began a  new chapter in her role at Evolve Giving Group. Jamie has also held leadership roles for several well-known institutions, including the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation (JDRF), Rush University Medical Center, Illinois Institute of Technology and the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society. Jamie has first-hand experience securing six- and seven-figure gifts and has raised millions of dollars for both capital and medical research campaigns.

As a graduate of St. Olaf College, Jamie has a long history of volunteerism. Currently she serves on the board of the Oak Park Education Foundation and is actively involved in her daughter’s soccer club.  Jamie lives in Oak Park, Illinois with her husband and teenage daughter.  In her free time, she takes long hikes with Wilma (her rescue pup), bakes, and plans her family’s next travel adventure.

Judy Gadiel

Senior Vice President
JudyG

Areas of Expertise:

  • Strategy development
  • Campaign management
  • Institutional giving
  • Major gifts
  • Board and leadership development

Client Focus:

  • Education
  • Camps/youth organizations
  • Human needs
  • Faith-based organizations

Recent Clients:

  • Harold E. Eisenberg Foundation
  • Jewish New Teacher Project
  • The Montessori School of Englewood
  • Jewish Council on Urban Affairs

Senior Vice President

Judy Gadiel

Judy’s nonprofit career dates back more than 25 years to her early days as a camp counselor and a community based clinical social worker. For more than 11 years, she has focused on organizational development and fundraising. Judy’s strength lies in the blend of compassion and expertise she brings to her clients, and in the dedication and leadership she brings to her teams.

Judy has been consulting with nonprofit organizations since 2010, first as a Consultant with Giving Tree Associates and then becoming a Team Leader and a member of the management team. Since starting Evolve Giving Group with several of her colleagues, Judy currently serves as its Senior Vice President overseeing client projects and the consulting team. Judy’s previous roles in the Chicago nonprofit community, including Teen Living Programs and Jewish Child and Family Services, provide the groundwork for her understanding of both the clinical and management sides of nonprofit organizations. She is an experienced consultant who shines a light of possibility and offers trusted guidance to support transformational change in the organizations she serves.

After graduating from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, Judy went on to complete a master’s degree in social work at the University of Illinois at Chicago. She also holds a master’s degree in nonprofit management from the Spertus Institute for Jewish Learning and Leadership. Judy’s commitment to doing meaningful work carries over to her personal life, where she is a trustee with the Jewish Women’s Foundation of Metropolitan Chicago. Her sense of aliveness comes through being in nature, and she and her family recently moved from Chicago to Southwest Michigan to live a more quiet and peaceful life.

Lisa Tarshis

Vice President
Lisa

Areas of Expertise:

  • Feasibility studies and capital campaigns
  • Annual campaigns and campaign planning
  • Assessments
  • Board and staff development
  • Major gifts

Client Focus:

  • Education and youth
  • Federated organizations
  • Startups

Recent Clients:

  • Bernard Zell Anshe Emet Day School
  • Merit School of Music
  • Mishkan Chicago
  • Union for Reform Judaism (URJ)
  • One World Surgery

Vice President

Lisa Tarshis

With more than 10 years of nonprofit experience, Lisa brings a strategic vision and collaborative approach to each project. Clients love her ability to work quickly, big-picture thinking and ability to build successful teams. Known for her detail-oriented nature and direct approach to problem solving, Lisa is adept at navigating organizational barriers to build consensus and steer each project in the right direction.

Lisa has been with the team since 2012 when she joined Giving Tree Associates as an associate consultant before growing through the ranks into a consultant and team leader. In 2020, several members of the team began their journey as Evolve Giving Group where Lisa serves as a Vice President. Prior to Giving Tree, she spent three years working in political fundraising before joining JCC Chicago as the program director for JCC Camp Chi. In that role, she helped to develop two new weeklong summer camps, strengthened alumni support while growing the alumni database by 100 percent, and planned Camp Chi’s 90th anniversary celebration.

Lisa graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Madison with degrees in political science, consumer science (PR and marketing), legal studies and criminal justice. Lisa is a past president of the Young Leadership Division of the Jewish Federation of Metropolitan Chicago, a past chair of the JCC Camp Chi alumni committee and the current chair of the Ben Gurion Society of the Jewish Federation of Metropolitan Chicago.

Lisa lives in downtown Chicago with her husband, Alex, and their two young kids. She loves to try new restaurants and is always thinking about the next travel opportunity. 

Laura Knisley

Vice President, Finance & Operations
Laura Knisley

Vice President, Finance & Operations

Laura Knisley

Laura joined the Evolve team in 2020 as the Director of Finance & Operations, where she is dedicated to organizing and overseeing the daily operations of the firm.  She is also a member of the management team.

Prior to Evolve, Laura worked at Youth & Opportunity United (Y.O.U.) as the Chief Financial Officer. She previously served as Director of Finance & Operations at Josephinum Academy of the Sacred Heart in Chicago's Wicker Park neighborhood, where she led finance, human resources, and facilities management functions and as Chief of Staff at Braven, a startup nonprofit, where she managed strategic projects for the CEO and oversaw operations during a complex time when the organization broke off from its incubator.

Laura graduated from Tulane University with a Bachelor's of Science in Management and from Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University with an MBA. An active community leader and volunteer, Laura is the Treasurer of GlobeMed, a nonprofit devoted to promoting equity in global health.

Laura lives in Hinsdale with her husband, two young sons, and rescue pitbull mix. In her spare time, she enjoys taking fitness classes, playing tennis, reading, and spending time outdoors with her kids. 

Our Team

Jane Best

Senior Consultant
Jane

Areas of Expertise:

  • Annual campaigns
  • Capital campaigns
  • Major gifts
  • Board and staff development

Client Focus:

  • Faith-based organizations
  • Education and youth

Recent Clients:

  • Solomon Schechter Day School of Metropolitan Chicago
  • Rockwern Academy
  • JCC Chicago
  • Lubavitch Mesivta of Chicago
  • Akiba Schechter

Senior Consultant

Jane Best

Jane has been a fundraising and development professional for more than 30 years in the Chicago Jewish community, specializing in capital campaigns. With each project, she brings a breadth of fundraising knowledge and experience that helps to drive measurable results for clients.

Before joining the current team, Jane was a consultant at Giving Tree for four years. For ten years prior to that she was at Ida Crown Jewish Academy (ICJA), raising $38 million to build a new school in Skokie as well as working on major gifts. Early in her career, Jane worked in annual campaign management, including the development of lay boards and committees, major gifts and event planning for the Jewish United Fund of Metropolitan Chicago, American Technion Society, the United Jewish Appeal and many other nonprofit organizations.

Jane earned her bachelor’s degree from Indiana University in education and Jewish studies and her master’s degree from Wurzweiler School of Social Work at Yeshiva University. A dedicated community volunteer, Jane serves on the boards of her synagogue, Congregation Or Torah, and Jewish Child & Family Services of Chicago, and is a former member of the Jewish United Fund’s Women’s Board. Originally from Highland Park, Illinois and a mother of three boys, Jane currently lives in Skokie, Illinois with her husband.

Patricia Broughton, CFRE

Senior Consultant
Pat

Areas of Expertise:

  • Capital campaigns
  • Major gifts
  • Planned gifts
  • Strategic planning
  • Board development & training 
  • Assessments

Client Focus:

  • Human needs
  • Education & youth
  • Health

Recent Clients:

  • CURE (Citizens United for Research in Epilepsy)
  • AWAKE
  • ELNET

Senior Consultant

Patricia Broughton, CFRE

After close to three decades in front-line fundraising leadership, Pat took her experience and passion for fundraising into the consulting world, starting with Giving Tree Associates in 2019 and now with Evolve.

In her frontline work, she built major gift programs that significantly increased annual revenues, launched planned giving programs that will ensure future funding, and directed capital campaigns that transformed a shuttered hospital into a thriving community center and revitalized two camps.

In her consulting work, she particularly values partnering with organizations with audacious visions, and transmitting the practices of mission-based fundraising that engage volunteers and cultivate lifelong donors for organizations.

Pat has been a Certified Fund Raising Executive (CFRE) since 1999 and serves as Treasurer for the Board of Directors of the Association of Fundraising Professional (AFP) Chicago chapter. She is the immediate past AFP Chicago Vice President for Inclusion, Diversity, Equity and Access (IDEA) and continues to be passionate about helping organizations address IDEA. She values the perspective she gains as a volunteer fundraiser for the Evanston Public Library’s annual Fund for Excellent Campaign and for Thousand Waves Martial Arts and Self-Defense Center.

After earning her BSJ and MSJ from Northwestern University’s School of Journalism, Pat worked briefly as a newspaper reporter and much longer as a freelance writer and photographer. Evanston, Illinois serves as her home base for the outdoor adventures that feed her spirit.

Tina Herpe

Senior Consultant
Tina

Areas of Expertise:

  • Annual campaigns
  • Resourced development assessments
  • Major gifts
  • Feasibility studies
  • Strategic planning

Client Focus:

  • Human needs
  • Faith-based organizations
  • Education
  • Camps
  • Startups

Recent Clients:

  • Jewish Reconstructionist Congregation
  • Lake County Haven
  • Camp Judaea
  • The ARK
  • Carmel Catholic High School

Senior Consultant

Tina Herpe

With 30 years’ experience as a fundraising professional, Tina specializes in working with small to mid-size nonprofits utilizing a donor-centered approach. Tina’s attention to detail, clear communication, and strategic problem-solving capabilities help her clients achieve exceptional results.

Tina has been a consultant with the team since 2012. She started with Giving Tree Associates and has now moved to Evolve Giving Group. Prior to 2012, Tina worked at Lincoln Park Zoo as a major and planned gifts manager. She also served as the lead development officer at Interfaith Worker Justice, North Suburban Synagogue Beth El, and Housing Options (now named Impact Behavioral Health Partners).

Tina holds a bachelor’s degree in social work from the University of Illinois where she graduated Magna Cum Laude and a member of the Phi Kappa Phi Honor Society. She has a master's degree from the University of Chicago's Crown Family School of Social Work, Policy and Practice, formerly called the School of Social Service Administration. She is a former president of Women in Development North and has served on the boards of Good News Community Kitchen (now named A Just Harvest), and her synagogue, Beth Emet The Free Synagogue. She is a member of the Association of Fundraising Professionals and serves on the board of The Selfhelp Home.

Tina and her husband live in Wilmette, Illinois. In her spare time, she enjoys bicycle riding, boating, and spending time with her two grown daughters and their families.

Helen London

Senior Consultant
Our Team Headshots (2) (1)

Areas of Expertise:

  • Fundraising
  • Endowments
  • Governance
  • Major and Planned Gifts

Client Focus:

  • Education
  • Jewish Communal Organizations
  • Social Service

Senior Consultant

Helen London

Helen joined Evolve Giving Group in 2021, after retiring from her position as director of Prizmah's Fundraising and Endowment Programs. Clients appreciate Helen’s experience in navigating volunteer/staff relationship issues; her practical tips for managing fundraising campaigns, especially with a small staff; and her highly effective project management.

Helen’s career has focused mainly on the nonprofit sector in development and executive administration. For 13 years, she was the executive director of an educational organization providing scholarship and loan aid to college and graduate students. She tripled the public support of the organization through a major gifts initiative and developed a planned giving program that provides major support for the organization. Helen was PEJE’s senior manager for the Generations Day School Endowment Project, and the Governance and Fundraising Academy.

Helen lives in Baltimore, Maryland and is married to Larry, who loves to fundraise for his favorite charities.

Lisa Tylke

Senior Consultant
LisaTylke

Areas of Expertise:

  • Assessments
  • Board and staff development
  • Strategic planning
  • Coaching and training
  • Operations and business planning

Client Focus:

  • Arts and culture
  • Education and youth
  • Associations
  • Institutional and leadership transitions

Recent Clients:

  • Chicago Cultural Alliance
  • The Defiant Requiem Foundation
  • MAKE Literary Productions
  • Our Place
  • Pension Action Center

Senior Consultant

Lisa Tylke

Lisa has spent three decades in the nonprofit sector, working with nearly 100 organizations of all sizes and stages of institutional development. Her background in arts, education, philanthropy and associations has informed her consulting work, which focuses on organizational development, assessment, strategic planning, board development and leadership transitions.  Lisa joined Giving Tree Associates in 2018 and in 2020 moved with several of her colleagues to Evolve.

As a nonprofit executive, Lisa has served as Executive Director for the Chicago Dance Coalition, Director of Arts DuPage for the DuPage Foundation and Chief of Staff for the UFHI Foundation. As a consultant, she also conducted program evaluations for the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation and The Chicago Community Trust. In addition, Lisa serves as a SmARTscope®  consultant for the Arts & Business Council of Chicago, conducting SmARTscope organizational assessments. In 2011 and 2014, she served as a member of the Civic Knowledge Project team of instructors at the University of Chicago’s Graham School of Continuing Liberal and Professional Studies, supporting its Board Leadership Certificate.

Lisa holds a bachelor degree in Education from the University of Wisconsin and a masters of fine arts from the University of Utah. An active volunteer, Lisa serves on the board for the Glen Ellyn Children’s Resource Center, a literacy organization providing educational support services for low-income, immigrant and refugee children. Lisa lives in Glen Ellyn, IL with her husband, where she loves to run, garden, keep up with her book clubs and stay in touch with her young-adult daughter living in Boston. 

Pam Lookatch

Consultant
PamL

Areas of Expertise:

  • Feasibility studies and capital campaigns
  • Development assessments
  • Annual campaign implementation
  • Major gift strategy

Client Focus:

  • Education and youth
  • Special needs organizations
  • Faith-based organizations
  • Health-related organizations

Recent Clients:

  • CURE Epilepsy
  • JCC Chicago
  • Our Place
  • Temple Jeremiah

Consultant

Pam Lookatch

As a member of the Giving Tree team since 2017 and now at Evolve, Pam brings with her over 10 years of experience as a professional volunteer. Pam served on numerous boards, managed executive searches, chaired large-scale community and fundraising events, and oversaw committees ranging from community engagement to strategic planning workgroups. Her leadership, passion for philanthropy and fundraising experience lends itself perfectly to her role as a senior associate consultant. Pam feels it is a privilege to advise clients and work alongside professionals and volunteer leadership to build capacity, broaden an organization’s reach and create innovative fundraising plans to increase revenue generation year over year.

As a longtime consultant, Pam previously advised New York’s top corporations, law firms and banks on how to improve their organizational infrastructure to enhance service delivery and maintain cost efficiency. She utilizes her organizational development background to look inward at each organization she works with to ensure they have the most effective mix of staff, board support and volunteer leadership as well as the appropriate processes and technology in place necessary to successfully achieve their goals.

Pam has always approached fundraising through a lens of community engagement and relationship building. She prides herself on the philosophy that “By building a strong community first, you’re investing in your organization’s future because support will always follow”. As a leader, Pam is always results-oriented and committed to the big picture. Although never losing sight of the small details involved in growing and stewarding a community of donors that are the backbone of every organization. Clients appreciate her ability to think strategically and see the big picture, while always multi-tasking to manage the small details involved in successful major gifts strategy implementation and campaign management. She understands that the big picture and end-result are as important as every donor touchpoint along the way. Pam’s emphasis on effective execution, attention to detail and precise follow through in every aspect throughout a campaign puts her clients at ease and lets them focus on what is most critical - building relationships with their donors and the community they serve.

Pam earned a bachelor’s degree in advertising from the University of Florida. She continues to spend much of her time volunteering in the Jewish community and for organizations serving people with disabilities, including Temple Sholom of Chicago, Keshet, Jewish United Fund, the Misericordia and March of Dimes.

Pam lives in the Lincoln Park neighborhood of Chicago with her husband and three children. Pam is the mother of a child with special needs which has been her biggest challenge and the greatest accomplishment of her life. It has made her realize that time is a precious commodity. Thus, when coming back to work after many years as a volunteer, she was thrilled to combine her expertise as a consultant and passion for philanthropy in her role at Evolve. She enjoys spending time with family and friends, exercising, traveling, and being outdoors as much as possible during Chicago summers.

Erika Moczulewski

Consultant
Erika

Areas of Expertise:

  • Development assessments
  • Capital campaigns
  • Major Gifts
  • Strategic planning
  • Federated organizations

Client Focus:

  • Education 
  • Human needs
  • Arts & Culture
  • Health
  • Conservation

Recent Clients:

  • Malnati Brain Tumor Institute/Northwestern Memorial Foundation
  • Consortium for Applied Studies in Jewish Education (CASJE)/George Washington University
  • The Harold E. Eisenberg Foundation
  • Congregation Beth Israel
  • Keshet

Consultant

Erika Moczulewski

Erika joined the team at the beginning of 2019, starting at Giving Tree Associates and now has moved with her colleagues to Evolve. With nearly 15 years of nonprofit fundraising experience, Erika has elevated fundraising programs, increased annual fund and major gift support, secured critical project-based funding, managed events and worked to develop or enhance volunteer engagement plans. Erika also has experience with board development, capacity building and strategic planning. Fundraising career highlights include building advisory boards, strengthening individual giving programs and closing numerous major gifts for local, national and global organizations such as Roosevelt University, Feeding America, The Nature Conservancy and Chicago Opera Theater.

Erika loves helping organizations build sustainable fundraising programs. She enjoys educating clients and empowering them within their development work and careers. She highly believes in the utilization of natural partners within each organization and the power of creating an organizational culture of philanthropy. While Erika has worked on teams responsible for raising millions of dollars, she finds her greatest achievement is when fundraising programs and best practices are in place to set the organization up to be sustainable and successful into the future.

A graduate of Beloit College, Erika has a degree in Sociology with a concentration in business entrepreneurship. She then completed one year of service as an AmeriCorps-VISTA member focused on fundraising and community revitalization. Erika also holds a Master of Arts degree in Public Administration (MPA) with a concentration in Nonprofit Management from Roosevelt University, where she was adjunct faculty for several years creating and teaching nonprofit courses. Erika is a repeat guest lecturer and presenter on nonprofit management, career development and fundraising within the Chicago area. She is a former longtime board member of the Development Leadership Consortium and proud alumna of their annual fellows and management fellows programs. Erika is an active volunteer, former alumni board member and the 2019 young alumni award recipient for Beloit College.

A native of Santa Monica, California, Erika lives in Lakeview, Chicago with her husband, son and cat. She enjoys volunteering, yoga, jewelry making, traveling, hiking, and mentoring nonprofit development professionals.

Jamie Perry

Consultant, Executive Search
Jamie Perry

Areas of Expertise:

  • Search
  • Nonprofit management
  • Event planning
  • Fundraising
  • Board development

Client Focus:

  • Advocacy
  • Faith-based organizations
  • Human services
  • Education and youth

Recent Clients:

  • Jewish United Fund of Metropolitan Chicago 
  • Reading In Motion
  • Jewish Council on Urban Affairs

Consultant, Executive Search

Jamie Perry

With almost 10 years of nonprofit experience, Jamie brings a wealth of knowledge in nonprofit management, fundraising, volunteer engagement and board development to her executive search role at Evolve. She understands the value that talented team members play to drive the work of mission-driven organizations. With a fresh perspective and deep relationships in the nonprofit sector throughout the U.S., Jamie's clients value her diverse network of contacts, her ability to build consensus, and her willingness to roll up her sleeves to get the job done.

Prior to moving with several of her Giving Tree colleagues to Evolve, Jamie managed fundraising in the Midwest for BBYO, a global youth serving organization, and Friends of the Israel Defense Forces. Jamie has extensive experience in program and event planning both as a professional and volunteer in the Atlanta and Chicago areas.

Jamie graduated with honors from The University of Alabama with a BS in Human Environmental Science focusing on Hospitality and Event Management.  She is an active volunteer with many human service and advocacy organizations.

Jamie lives in Lincoln Park with her goldendoodle, Layla. She enjoys playing tennis, traveling, attending exercise classes, and all of the festivals and events Chicago has to offer.

Jami Bachrad

Senior Associate Consultant
Jami Bachrad

Areas of Expertise:

  • Philanthropy Management
  • Resource Development
  • Strategic Planning
  • Partnership Building
  • Organizational Leadership and Culture

Client Focus:

  • Grantmaking
  • Faith-Based Organizations
  • Startups
  • Health and Human Needs
  • Education and Workforce Development
  • Global Emergency Response

Recent Clients:

  • PwrdBy: Innovation for Social Change
  • A Vision of Health
  • Jumpstart Labs
  • Hide & Seek Foundation
  • San Diego Jewish Federation
  • Psychologists of Color

Senior Associate Consultant

Jami Bachrad

With over 20 years of experience in the nonprofit and philanthropic sectors, Jami has a deep passion for connecting powerful causes with resources and tools to actualize their potential. She is skilled in forging trusting and mutually meaningful relationships between funders, causes, and diverse partners and stakeholders. She has the strategic ability to identify and harness opportunities for growth and impact.

Jami joined Evolve Giving Group in 2021 as Senior Associate Consultant, after serving in professional, volunteer, and consulting roles with a variety of nonprofit and philanthropic organizations. She has held a number of leadership positions, including at Glazer Philanthropies, where she steered all aspects of grantmaking cycles and operations, stewarding several million grant dollars annually to organizations with local, national, and international reach. Prior to sitting on the funding side of the table, Jami spent many years generating financial resources (including annual and capital campaigns, grant writing and research, and board leadership development), creating and overseeing programs, and contributing to strategic planning and organizational change. She served in managerial roles at IKAR, Birthright Israel Foundation, UCLA, Jewish Federation of Los Angeles, and JVS SoCal. In addition, in her consulting portfolio she has guided a range of startup, mid-sized, and institutional organizations, empowering them to hone and align their missions, diversify their funding streams, and amplify their impact.

Jami received her bachelor’s degrees from Indiana University in Jewish Studies and Near Eastern Languages and Cultures and her M.B.A. in Nonprofit Management from American Jewish University. She has served on the boards of Jumpstart Labs and IKAR. She co-founded her children’s early childhood center and has chaired fundraising campaigns for their elementary schools. She has also served as a peer mentor with the MISS Foundation for bereaved parents. She frequently advises colleagues in the field on how to approach challenges and opportunities in new and creative ways. Jami lives in Los Angeles, California, where she can be found chasing her four children and two dogs and spending time with her treasured circle of family and friends.

Renee Davis

Senior Associate Consultant
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Areas of Expertise:

  • Fundraising Assessments
  • Annual Campaign Planning
  • Major Gift Strategy
  • Board and Staff Development

Client Focus:

  • Arts and Culture
  • Education and Youth
  • Health Services

Recent Clients:

  • Tucson Youth Project
  • The People's Music School
  • Opportunity Knocks

Senior Associate Consultant

Renee Davis

Renee joined the team at Evolve in 2021 with over 15 years of nonprofit experience. She has extensive knowledge of annual campaign planning, board and staff development, major gift strategy and crafting development communications. Renee believes that partnership and relationship building is the key to all successful fundraising programs, and she approaches client work with an entrepreneurial mindset to maximize resources and efficiencies. Renee has experience raising funds for large and small institutions, and her passion for the social sector and deep knowledge of fundraising drives measurable results for organizations of all sizes.

Before joining Evolve, Renee led projects helping small nonprofits and businesses build refreshed fundraising and communication plans, and optimize systems and technology for development teams. As a consultant, she has built strong institutional funding strategies and served as a contract grant writer for clients. Prior to consulting, Renee was the Director of Development at The People’s Music School, where she oversaw all development and marketing efforts leading to triple digit growth during her tenure. Earlier in her career, Renee led individual giving and board management activities at the Art Institute of Chicago, as well as Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago, where she managed high level volunteers and large scale events during a $700 million capital campaign. 

Renee holds a Masters in Nonprofit Administration from DePaul University, and a Bachelor of Arts in Speech Communications from Miami University of Ohio. Renee has volunteered with Chicago Women in Philanthropy and Ronald McDonald House Charities, and is a past annual fellow of the Development Leadership Consortium. 

Renee lives in Western Springs with her husband and three young children. She enjoys running, playing tennis and golf, hosting BBQs and dinner parties, and planning family travel adventures.

Myah Voronov

Senior Associate Consultant
Myah

Areas of Expertise:

  • Event management
  • Assessments
  • Campaign implementation

Client Focus:

  • Faith-based organizations
  • Human needs
  • Arts & Culture
  • Education and youth

Recent Clients:

  • Israel Elwyn
  • Defiant Requium
  • Congregation Beth Israel, Charlottesville

Senior Associate Consultant

Myah Voronov

Myah has been working with nonprofits in Chicago for more than eight years in the areas of public media, Jewish communal service, and sports-based youth development. Her focus is to connect individuals and institutions to meaningful missions through strategic and personalized engagement. She brings expertise in building relationships with corporate partners and major donors, annual fund reinvention and strategy, and event refresh and execution.

Prior to joining the team in 2020, Myah was an associate consultant at Giving Tree Associates.  Earlier in her career, Myah managed corporate partnerships at WTTW and WFMT, Chicago's public television and classical radio stations. In this role, she was responsible for leading the corporate outreach strategy in securing five- and six-figure gifts and fulfilling all aspects of partnerships, including employee engagement events and recognition. Myah is passionate about making the arts, education, and sports accessible to Chicago's diverse neighborhoods.

Upon graduating with majors in political science and religion studies from Muhlenberg College in Pennsylvania, Myah completed a year of service with AmeriCorps at Girls in the Game in a volunteer and community coordinator role. She also holds a Certificate in Jewish Leadership from the Spertus Institute for Jewish Learning and Leadership, and is currently pursuing a Masters in Philanthropy from the Lilly Family School of Philanthropy at Indiana University.

Born and raised in Ohio (go Bucks!), Myah now lives in Lincoln Park with her husband, Mike.

Noelle Gipson

Associate Consultant
Noelle Gipson

Areas of Expertise:

  • Strategic Planning
  • Operations
  • Board and Staff Development
  • Events
  • Capital Campaigns

Associate Consultant

Noelle Gipson

Noelle is an energetic development professional with a broad range of experience fundraising in both the non-profit and government sectors. She joined the team at Evolve in 2021 as an associate consultant. Noelle’s clients benefit from her expertise in development strategy, major gifts, annual campaigns, alumni/donor relations, strategic cultivation, stewardship, day-of-giving programs, development writing, corporate partnerships and more.

Noelle prioritizes relationship-building and service to design effective strategies for integrating necessary principles into organizational practices while ensuring that each process is tailored to every client’s unique brand, mission and goals. Prior to joining the Evolve team, Noelle served as a Director of Development and Communications for a Chicago based nonprofit and as a consultant for political and capital campaigns in Indiana.

Noelle earned her B.S. with a focus in public and nonprofit management and business foundations from Indiana University and her M.P.A. from Indiana Wesleyan University. When she is not working on projects for her clients, Noelle enjoys coaching and refereeing club and high school volleyball matches throughout the Midwest. 

Michalle Harvey

Associate Consultant
Michelle Harvey

Areas of Expertise:

  • Development communications
  • Alumni engagement & giving
  • Marketing
  • Social media strategy
  • Event management

Client Focus:

  • Education
  • Human needs
  • Youth

Recent Clients:

  • Saul Mirowitz Jewish Community School

Associate Consultant

Michalle Harvey

Michelle joined the team at Evolve in 2021 as an Associate Consultant. Michelle brings seven years of nonprofit experience in institutional advancement, donor communications, and event management to her work. She is also known for helping nonprofits create strategic marketing plans that include brand awareness and social media strategy.

Michelle previously worked in institutional advancement at North Central Texas College, where she oversaw the alumni giving program. During her tenure at NCTC, she doubled the alumni donor participation within a year and increased overall engagement and outreach for alumni. Before her role at NCTC, she gained experience in student philanthropy at her alma mater, The University of Southern Mississippi. While at the University of Southern Mississippi, Michelle increased student philanthropy efforts that resulted in an expansion of scholarship opportunities.

Michelle received her BA in Criminal Justice and MS in Sport Management from The University of Southern Mississippi. She is very active in her community as a member of her local Rotary Club, Junior League chapter, and Big Sister for BBBS. Michelle currently lives in Frisco, TX, but visits her hometown of Gulfport, MS often. In her free time, she enjoys trying new restaurants, traveling, and attending Dallas Mavericks games.

Amanda Snow

Associate Consultant
amanda

Associate Consultant

Amanda Snow

Amanda joined the Evolve team as an Associate Consultant in 2021. Prior to this role, Amanda has been working in the nonprofit field for 8 years. She brings experience in volunteer management, event planning, engagement, and education. 

Amanda holds a BA in Religious Studies from York University, a Certificate in Fundraising and Volunteer Management from Humber College, a Certificate in Experiential Jewish Education from the Pardes Institute of Jewish Studies, and a Masters in Jewish Education from the Jewish Theological Seminary. She is active in the Jewish community and is eager to see what new opportunities arise in Chicago.  

Originally from Toronto, Canada, Amanda recently relocated to Chicago from New York City. She loves to read and explore new restaurants in her free time. Amanda lives in Lakeview with her husband.

Dani Castonzo

Communications Manager
Our Team Headshots (2) (2)

Communications Manager

Dani Castonzo

Dani joined the Evolve Team in 2021 as the Communications Manager, where she supports the internal marketing and communications strategy of the firm.

Prior to Evolve, Dani worked as Development Communications Manager at Christopher House, an education nonprofit and social services agency in Chicago, where she oversaw communications and institutional giving. Outside of Evolve, she also works as a freelance journalist, copywriter, and creative writer.

Dani is a graduate of Indiana University Bloomington with a Bachelor of Arts in Journalism and Bachelor of Science in Informatics. She lives on the northwest side of Chicago with her partner and two kittens, who often make guest appearances on her Zoom calls. In her spare time, she enjoys taking long walks around the city, reading, writing poetry, and listening to music.

Christina Bourné

Adjunct Consultant
Christina Bourne

Areas of Expertise:

  • Diversity, Equity & Inclusion
  • Fundraising Assessments
  • Annual Campaign Planning
  • Strategic Planning
  • Board and Staff Development

Client Focus:

  • Arts and Culture
  • Education and Youth
  • Social Justice

Recent Clients:

  • Forward Momentum Chicago
  • National Guild for Community Arts Education

Adjunct Consultant

Christina Bourné

Christina Bourné is an accomplished educator, arts administrator, and fundraising professional with nearly 15 years of experience in the nonprofit sector. During her career, she has developed programs, facilitated workshops and lectures, and devised various arts experiences to discuss social and civic issues such as race, equity and inclusion, and gender equality.  She joined the Evolve team in 2021.

In her capacity as a consultant, Christina client’s have included organizations and individuals with a focus on fundraising, DEI (diversity, equity, and inclusion) implementation, strategic planning, board governance, and organizational leadership. She is known for her dynamic, engaging approach to client partnerships . She engages audiences to go beyond rhetoric to responsibility with authentic and innovative discussions aimed at developing a lasting change management framework. Her work has led her to facilitate workshops and lead conversations as a panelist and moderator for the National Guild for Community Arts Education, Chicago Women in Philanthropy, TCG: Theatre Communications Group, and many others. 

In addition to her work with Evolve, Christina also serves as the Director of Development for Forward Momentum Chicago, Vice Chair for the Board of Directors of Awakenings Art, and Finance Committee volunteer for the Joliet Arts Commission. When not enhancing lives through advocacy, equity, or enrichment program development, she can be found performing with her family of nine comprised of her siblings and mother—The Bournés.

Jessica Grossnickle

Adjunct Consultant
JessicaGrossnickle

Areas of Expertise:

  • Annual Campaigns
  • Development Assessments
  • Events
  • Donor Communications

Client Focus:

  • Advocacy
  • Human services
  • Education and youth

Recent Clients:

  • Pullman Community Center
  • CURE
  • Keshet

Adjunct Consultant

Jessica Grossnickle

Jessica moved with several of her colleagues to Evolve Giving Group in 2020, after serving for two years as a consultant and having more than 13 years of nonprofit experience. She has held leadership roles at a number of notable organizations, including PAWS Chicago and Girls on the Run, and brings significant expertise and a strategic vision to all of her projects.

Throughout her career, Jessica has been personally responsible for directing more than 40 large-scale events, securing five- and six-figure major gifts, and designing and executing one of the Chicago area’s largest peer-to-peer fundraising initiatives. Her acumen in giving trends has been a driving force behind her success and her ability to work collaboratively with clients to achieve their goals.

Jessica defines success as designing and implementing renewable funding streams and places a strong emphasis with her clients on integrating a culture of philanthropy across internal and external communication channels. While she has raised millions throughout her career, she views her greatest achievements through a more deeply rooted, sustainability-focused lens.

After graduating from the University of Virginia with a degree in psychology, Jessica spent two years as an elite athlete training to join the U.S. national rowing team while finding her niche in the nonprofit community. Jessica lives with her husband and two young daughters in Chicago’s Old Irving Park neighborhood.

Nora Hennessy

Adjunct Consultant
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Areas of Expertise:

  • Annual Campaigns
  • Assessments
  • Principal, Major, and Planned Gifts
  • Endowment Fundraising
  • Development Communications
  • Board Development & Governance

Client Focus:

  • Higher Education
  • Independent School Education
  • Arts & Culture
  • Environment

Adjunct Consultant

Nora Hennessy

Nora Hennessy brings 20 years of nonprofit experience to Evolve. Most recently, she served as Vice President of External Affairs at Openlands, an environmental organization whose mission is to create equitable access to nature for the diverse populations of Chicago. Previously, she spent seven years in development positions at the University of Chicago and four years as the first Director of Major Gifts for the Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago. Nora started her fundraising career in independent school education in San Francisco.

Nora is an agile nonprofit leader and prides herself on her ability to see strategy from the 30,000-foot-level while simultaneously building “on the ground” plans that accelerate fundraising growth. Nora has first-hand experience securing six- and seven-figure gifts in partnership with executive and volunteer leadership that produce positive, measurable impact on an organization’s mission.

Nora received her BA from Loyola University New Orleans, her graduate degree at San Francisco State University, and executive education at Center for Nonprofit Management at Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management. In 2016, she participated in the Executive Leadership Program at the University of Chicago Booth School of Business. Nora is an avid community gardener and finds inspiration in nature and in art.

Rashmi Narsana

Adjunct Consultant
Rashmi Narsana

Areas of Expertise:

  • Strategic planning
  • Mergers & Acquisitions
  • Operations Management
  • Process Planning & Design
  • Governance

Client Focus:

  • Education
  • Economic Development
  • Housing
  • Healthcare
  • Arts

Adjunct Consultant

Rashmi Narsana

Rashmi brings more than 15 years of leadership experience working with 501c3 and 501c4 organizations with annual  budgets of $1 million to $450 million. She focuses on operations management, business development, project management, strategic planning, change and culture management, financial management, mergers and acquisitions, and systems restructuring and redesign.

Currently, as an adjunct consultant with Evolve Giving Group, Rashmi leads capacity building and strategy projects that help organizations to create well-developed plans to achieve their goals through a research-informed and data-based process. She has led the strategic planning and implementation of operations restructuring and redesign process for over 30 nonprofit organizations to create efficiencies across the organization. Rashmi has also conducted financial and operational due diligence for 15 nonprofit merger projects. Clients include health care organizations serving low-income diverse populations, housing agencies, arts organizations, and education organizations. 

Most recently, as the Chief of Staff for Public School Allies, she oversaw the financial and organizational design processes to ensure effective implementation of the goals for the start-up advocacy venture fund. She led P&L, talent management, grants management, legal compliance, internal communications, and all aspects of creating a strong business model for the organization. As the Chief Operating Officer for Jobs for the Future (JFF) in Boston, she was responsible for governance, financial management, business development, knowledge management, publications & communications, and IT. 

Rashmi is an adjunct lecturer with the Master in Public Administration Program at the University of Vermont. She has an M.S. in Applied Economics and Community Development from the University of Vermont.

Sue Sherr-Seitz

Adjunct Consultant
Sue Sherr-Seitz

Areas of Expertise:

  • Executive Search
  • Talent Management
  • Fundraising
  • Strategic Planning

Client Focus:

  • Faith-based organizations

Recent Clients:

  • Mosaic United
  • Birthright Israel Foundation
  • National Runaway Safeline
  • Central Conference of American Rabbis
  • Headcount
  • SCN
  • Hebrew Academy of Nassau County

Adjunct Consultant

Sue Sherr-Seitz

Sue Sherr-Seitz brings 25 years of leadership experience in talent development, fundraising and turnaround management in the non-profit sector to her search consulting practice, specializing  in the Jewish philanthropic and social justice sectors.  

Building on her early experience as a recruiter for the national Jewish federation system, Sue  honed both passion and skill connecting promising organizations with inspirational leaders. Her  strong networks and straight-forward style enable her to make quick and accurate assessments  in each search process. Her experience with traditional as well as start-up agencies in the  Jewish communal sector inspires her work with clients and candidates alike. 

At DRG Talent Advisory Group, Mirkin Solutions and Evolve Giving Group, Sue recruited C Suite leaders for Jewish federations and foundations, development professionals and  management professionals for academic and Israel oriented organizations and synagogues.  

Her past searches include: The Jewish Federation of Greater Philadelphia, The Jewish  Federation of Dallas, The Jewish Community Foundation of Tidewater, American Friends of  Magen David Adom, The Jewish Agency, Hebrew College, The Birthright Israel Foundation,  Westchester Reform Temple, The Central Conference for Reform Rabbis and American Society  for Yad Vashem.  

Over the past year, Sue has expanded her practice into the social justice sector working with  HeadCount, Partnership for the Homeless, Brooklyn Legal Corporation A, North Brooklyn  Coalition, and National Runaway Safeline.  

Sue has held positions in executive management, fundraising, and talent management at the  JCC of Greater Baltimore, Jewish Federations of North America and UJA-Federation of New  York. Sue brought talent identification skills, team building prowess and “fixer” experience to  many national Jewish engagement and fundraising endeavors including Bikkurim, Hillel,  Birthright Israel, PJ Library, and the General Assembly at the Jewish Federations of North America (JFNA). 

A graduate of Jewish Theological Seminary of America, the Columbia University School of  Social Work, and the University of Maryland, Sue lives with her husband Brett in Baltimore,  Maryland and proudly cheers on the Ravens all football season.

Stefan Teodosic

Adjunct Consultant
stefan teodosic

Areas of Expertise:

  • Visioning
  • Strategic planning

Client Focus:

  • Jewish communal organizations
  • Day schools
  • Camps
  • Faith-based organizations

Recent Clients:

  • Hebrew Theological College
  • Brauser Maimonides Academy

Adjunct Consultant

Stefan Teodosic

Stefan Teodosic has worked for over 25 years designing strategies, managing cultural change, working with leaders, and building teams. Most recently, he served as the Executive Director of Beber Camp, Perlman Camp and the Perlman Retreat Center. Before his move to the nonprofit world, Stefan spent several years working in strategic financial services at American Express. He has deep experience in non-profit consulting and executive coaching, as well as facilitating groups of professional and lay leaders.

He has worked with numerous nonprofits and Jewish organizations including Bernard Zell Day School,  The Walder Foundation, Agudas Israel of Illinois, Camp Nageela Midwest, Camp Nageela East, The Grinspoon Foundation, JUF, BBYO, The Foundation for Jewish Camp, The iCenter, and many others. 

Stefan currently serves as a board member and Strategic Planning Chair for Moishe House and is a Professor of Management at Spertus and Hebrew Union College, as well as Communications at Gratz College. He has a B.A. in Economics/B.A. in Spanish from the University of Michigan and an M.B.A. with a strategy focus.

Stefan is at his best when he is helping people help people. He passionately believes that every project is about engaging/empowering the right stakeholders and building trusting relationships. With this foundation firmly in place, he facilitates a values-driven process and delivers actionable plans that are owned by the organization. Delighting clients is what Stefan does best, by understanding needs, meeting them in the most positive way and exceeding expectations. 

Jennifer Valentine

Adjunct Consultant
jennifer valentine

Areas of Expertise:

  • Grant writing and research
  • Operations
  • Board and staff development
  • Strategic planning
  • Development and Communications

Client Focus:

  • Youth
  • Workforce development
  • Legal aid

Recent Clients:

  • Camp Nageela Midwest
  • The Chicago Center
  • Jewish New Teacher Project

Adjunct Consultant

Jennifer Valentine

Jennifer joined Evolve Giving Group in early 2021 with a focus on foundation funding, including grant writing and research. Since 2015, she has helped dozens of startup organizations and small nonprofits build successful grant programs. Clients appreciate her attention to detail, ability to disseminate complex information, and her extensive knowledge of the institutional funder space.

In addition to her foundation and grant expertise, Jennifer also has counseled nonprofits on board development, strategic planning, operations, and individual donor programs. She has also presented to a variety of groups on the basics of nonprofit fundraising geared toward start-ups.

Prior to entering the nonprofit fundraising sector five years ago, Jennifer practiced law as an employment litigation attorney in the City Colleges of Chicago’s Office of General Counsel. Since leaving that role, Jennifer shifted gears to become a volunteer legal aid attorney and board member for the Pro Bono Network, a Chicago-area nonprofit that provides volunteer attorneys short-term, legal aid representation opportunities. In March of 2021, Jennifer joined the start-up nonprofit organization, Pandemic Parenting, to become its part-time volunteer Executive Director.  

Jennifer earned her B.A. from the University of Notre Dame and her J.D. from the University of Notre Dame Law School. Go Irish! Jennifer and her husband are parents of four: one teenager and tween triplets. They reside in Bloomfield Hills, Michigan. When Jennifer is not driving her kids to and from their sports and activities or cheering them on from the sidelines, she indulges in reading a good book, socializes with family and friends, and tap dances around the house for fun.

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