Sue Sena

Name: Sue Sena
Title: Principal
Organization: Sena Consulting LLC



How did you begin volunteering for the Chapter?
I began volunteering with AFP in 1997 as a young fundraiser, at that time working as a Major Gifts officer at Planned Parenthood Federation of America. The incomparable, power-house of a fundraiser, Pat Pollok, was consulting with PPFA at the time and was chairing the inaugural National Philanthropy Day celebration for the chapter. I had - and still have! - a profound respect and love for Pat; she was one of my mentors in this business as a young woman. And I loved the idea of celebrating all of the generous people who make New York City strong and compassionate and beautiful. I couldn’t resist!

Why did you say “Yes!” to volunteering?
For me, saying yes to volunteering had a few motivations - to network with other fundraisers and non-profiteers who love their work, to get additional skills in working with a diverse committee of volunteers, to give back to AFP, an association that has taught me so much and nurtured me over these last 20 years in the field.

How would you summarize your volunteer experience?
I loved the National Philanthropy Day event so much, I continued to volunteer on the committee, serving as its Co-Chair in 2012 and 2013, for 16 years. It has truly been one of the highlights of my volunteer and pro bono life. Experiencing a packed to the rafters event this past year, and getting to see the joy, pride and honor of the panelists and honorees was worth all of the work. That’s what National Philanthropy Day is all about - a celebration of giving.

What have you learned from volunteering with the chapter?
Over the years serving on the National Philanthropy Day committee I got to experience the gift of the watching seasoned event planners work their magic, I met many professionals who became consultants to my organizations, I learned how to work with a diverse committee and ultimately how to lead and manage very busy volunteers, and as I began my own consulting practice I was able to access the network I had become a part of for clients, new projects, the latest best practices, and partners to help build a successful business.

Would you recommend that other members volunteer for the chapter?
I would absolutely recommend that other members volunteer for the chapter - with a special word to those in the early years of their careers. You get so much more than you give, always - a bigger network, mentors, ideas about what’s possible for your future in the field, new experience and knowledge from our industry’s most seasoned professionals, and contacts for vendors, consultants and partners who can help you do your job better and raise more money for your organization.

Interested in learning how you can get more involved with AFP NYC? Contact Trish Lambe, AFP NYC Chair, Volunteer Relations, at

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