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National Philanthropy Day Outstanding Professional



Last week we were thrilled to share that our Founder and President, Ellen Hongerholt, had been awarded the Outstanding Fundraising Professional Award for the Upper Mississippi River Valley of the Association of Fundraising Professionals (AFP). Ellen received the award on November 15th at an awards ceremony luncheon held at the Lunda Center on the campus of Western Wisconsin Technical College in La Crosse, WI. Other categories recognized included outstanding philanthropists, corporation, volunteer fundraiser, and youth in philanthropy. Ellen has been a member of AFP for more than 25 years.


This is what the Association had to say about Ellen:


Ellen Hongerholt, MA, completed her bachelor’s degree from Winona State University and master’s Degree in Philanthropy and Development from Saint Mary’s University of Minnesota. With a public relations/media background, Ellen was introduced into the fund development field while employed at Community Memorial Hospital in Winona, now Winona Health. She fell in love with the craft and decided to make it her career path.


As the owner and founder of Crescendo Fundraising Professionals, LLC, and formerly Crescendo Consulting, LLP, Ellen has met 45 capital campaign goals over the last 25 years. She specializes in capital campaigns for start-up organizations and non-profits/municipalities that have never completed campaigns. Ellen also has expertise in creative annual fund development, campaign readiness studies and major gift strategies.


Ellen also serves as the Director of Advancement & Marketing for Family & Children’s Center (FCC). With a budget of $10.7M in 2022, the agency is one of the largest social service agencies in southeastern Minnesota and western Wisconsin operating facilities in five communities in La Crosse, in Winona, Minnesota and the surrounding area. She is honored to serve FCC’s prevention, intervention and treatment mission to support mental health and child abuse prevention initiatives.


We are proud and thankful to have Ellen as our leader!

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