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  • Writer's pictureKen Phillips

Ken Wins the Prestigious AFP 2024 Fundraising Professional Award

Introduction : In a momentous recognition of his lifelong dedication to enhancing and promoting fundraising practices and leadership globally, Ken Phillips has been awarded the AFP 2024 Outstanding Fundraising Professional Award, “the highest honor that AFP bestows, recognizing effective, creative, and inspiring fundraising, as well as the practice and promotion of ethical standards and best practices within the industry.” At the AFP ICON in Toronto with 3,000 fundraisers and executives applauding, AFP leader Roger Ali proclaimed: "Join me in welcoming Ken for his amazing career!"

Ken's career in fundraising spans six decades, during which he has played a pivotal role in shaping modern fundraising strategies and practices. His innovative approaches have significantly increased funding for numerous NGOs, enabling them to expand their reach and impact. 

Ken Phillips got his start in fundraising as a student, raising funds to cover traineeships for foreign students in 1961 and hosting a 1964 national conference for which he raised $25,000 (equivalent to $250,000 today). Then as the elected national president of AIESEC-US, he inspired more students to join and together they increased traineeship offers by 50%. 

This passion for global understanding led to his position at the Institute of International Education where he raised the equivalent of $18 million in today’s currency for international study opportunities for American minorities and international students in the U.S. and other programs.

Moving up through the ranks, he served as VP of fundraising at Save the Children US and president and executive director at Plan International USA. He revolutionized the approach to marketing and donor outreach at these organizations, implementing strategic plans that professionalized fundraising efforts, and tripling revenue.

To broaden his impact, Ken started his consulting company, NGO Futures LLC in 1995. Over the next 20 years, he provided consulting and hundreds of training courses in 35 countries, initially in Eastern Europe and also in Asia, Africa, Latin America, Western Europe, and the U.S.

He is an accomplished author, creating articles, resources, and books on leadership and fundraising, strategic planning with strong values and engaging culture, proven strategies for fundraising, and meaningful ethics and strategic evaluation to gain donor support, with several French and Spanish translations.

Conclusion As we celebrate this remarkable achievement, Ken continues to inspire and lead an unwavering commitment to making a difference. This award not only honors his past accomplishments but also underscores his ongoing influence in the world of fundraising.

Call to Action Join us in congratulating Ken on this prestigious recognition. Discover more about his groundbreaking work in leadership and fundraising at And stay tuned for further blogs about his achievements and advice for leadership development and fundraising progress.

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