After an eight-month search, LGBT grantmaking agency Delaware Valley Legacy Fund selected its new leader this month.
Michael Kendrick, 53, began as DVLF’s executive director on Monday and said he’s eager to utilize his varied fundraising experiences to benefit DVLF and the LGBT community.
Prior to coming the Fund, Kendrick, a native of Lancaster who is now living with his partner of 23 years in New Britain in Bucks County, served as the director of planned giving at Red Cross Southeastern Pennsylvania.
The search committee, which was comprised of seven people affiliated with DVLF or active in the LGBT community, opened the application process in two rounds and reviewed at least 50 applications per round.
“The National Search Committee was absolutely integral to making this process successful,” said DVLF board president Angela Giampolo. “They spent eight months attending a lot of meetings and looking over countless résumés. I can’t thank them enough.”
Giampolo said the search committee was confident its work paid off with the selection of Kendrick.
“Michael Kendrick really shined through as the candidate who has the ability to take DVLF to the next level at this very exciting time in our growth process,” she said.
Kendrick graduated from Millersville University with a bachelor’s degree in education and also holds certificates in nonprofit management and fundraising from New York University.
He operates his own independent consulting firm and has worked in such positions as director of development of the Bowman’s Hill Association in New Hope, director of development at Lebanese American University and executive director of the Purchase College Association at the State University of New York.
Kendrick had been with Red Cross since 2008 and said he was ready for a change of venue.
“I really wanted to work for a smaller organization,” he said. “Red Cross was something that was national and regional, and I was looking for something that would be more intimate so there could be more of an impact. I wanted to be able to use all of my experiences, combining my management experiences and my fundraising experiences, someplace smaller where I could really see the results quicker.”
Kendrick hopes to see such results in the form of a boost in the agency’s endowment, from the current almost-$1 million to $5-$10 million.
To get to that point, Kendrick said he will work to get to know members of the community and leaders of local organizations and help DVLF develop a new strategic plan.
“We’ll be reviewing what they’ve done right and what they’ve done wrong and working to improve that so that we can meet our goals,” he said.
Kendrick plans to continue to amp up DVLF’s fundraising capabilities through a combination of mail, phone and planned-giving strategies and will tap into his own resources to connect the group with a new pool of potential donors.
“I’ve been doing fundraising since I was 13: My family had a fundraising business in Lancaster, so I’ve been able to build my own fundraising skills. But I’ve also been able to build relationships with donors over the years, who’ve been following me and my work and who I still keep in touch with. I think you need to cultivate donors and not just ask for a donation once. You need to create real relationships, and that’s how you get some of those great legacy gifts.”
PNC Bank is hosting a meet-and-greet with Kendrick for the board, its committees and key stakeholders on Sept. 7.
The public will have the chance to connect with the new executive director at DVLF’s fourth annual HEROES Sept. 24.
The event, held from 7-9 p.m. at F.U.E.L. Collection, 249 Arch St., will honor Chris Bartlett, who served for a time as interim co-executive director of DVLF; Mazzoni Center and Whole Foods as this year’s Heroes.
For more information or to purchase tickets, visit www.dvlf.org.