Toolbox for Fundraisers

tookbox_graphic As the number of nonprofit organizations increases each year, the ability to create and nurture relationships with donors is critical.  Fundraising can be a daunting task if you are not sure where to start or how to stay on track.

For more than 20 years, local fundraising professionals have shared their expertise through a course originally titled “The Art of Fundraising”.  The course is updated each year to include current trends and information and is now known as “Toolbox for Fundraisers”.

The 2016 Toolbox for Fundraisers course will provide detailed materials and instruction from fundraising professionals with more than 88 years of combined fundraising experience:

Charlotte Rhodes, ACFRE     Patricia A. Ward, CFRE     Katharyn Wiegand, CFRE

Presented  the Amarillo Area Foundation’s Nonprofit Service Center, Toolbox for Fundraisers course topics include:

*                Essential Tools to be an Effective Fundraiser

*                Establishing a Development Office

*                Creating a Case for Support

*                Constructing a Development Plan

*                Marketing Your Organization

*                Making the Ask

*                Stewarding Donors

*                Preparing for Your CFRE Certification

Upon successful completion of the course, each participant will have developed a case for support and a development plan for the organization of his/her choice.

The course is presented in weekly sessions from 9:00 AM to noon on Wednesdays from September 7, 2016 through November 16, 2016.  Sessions are held at the Amarillo Area Foundation – 801 S. Fillmore, 7th floor.

Participants who successfully complete the 33 hour course will receive 3.30 continuing education credits (CEUs) through Amarillo College.  This course also meets the requirements for those seeking credit hours for the Certified Fund Raising Executive (CFRE) designation.

The course fee is $250 for members of the Association of Fundraising Professionals (AFP) and $295 for all others.

To reserve a spot for the fall 2016 course, contact Roxann Ball by phone (806.376.4521) or e-mail ( by September 2, 2016.toolbox_topics

Dugger Legacy Continues Through Scholarship Fund


AMARILLO, TX – The Amarillo Area Foundation is the benefactor of a major gift from Bus and Freda Dugger in the amount of $1 million. The gift, finalized after Bus Dugger’s passing in April of this year, will establish an endowed scholarship fund for juniors and seniors attending West Texas A&M University. It is the largest principal scholarship gift designated specifically for high school students from the Texas Panhandle the Foundation has ever received.

Born, raised, and originally educated in Oklahoma, Dugger’s career in sales brought him to Amarillo where he met Cal Farley. Dugger and Farley formed Kids Inc., Amarillo’s youth sports organization, in 1945.  While garnering support for Kids Inc. from Glenwood Elementary’s PTA, Bus met his wife, Freda – an Amarillo native and music teacher. They married in March of the same year.

The Dugger’s were strongly connected to our local Panhandle postsecondary institutions. Freda began her education at Amarillo Junior College and finished with a Master’s in Education from West Texas State University. Bus completed his Bachelor’s and Masters at West Texas A&M University in 1955 and 1956, respectively.

Both Freda and Bus were educators themselves. Freda taught in Enid and Shallowater as well Humphrey’s Highland and Forest Hill once she and Bus returned to Amarillo. Bus was the Supervisor of Adult Education at Amarillo College from 1961-1966 until Cal Farley convinced Bus to take a position at Boy’s Ranch. Bus stayed at Boys Ranch until his retirement in 1982.

Bus was inducted as the 137th member to the Texas Panhandle Sports Hall of Fame for his work with Kids Inc. and his role as a basketball and football official for high school, college, and the NIBL for 33 years.

Kids Inc. President & CEO Jimmy Lackey, a close friend of the Duggers, had this to say about the intent behind their gift to AAF: “Mr. and Mrs. Dugger were unable to have children of their own. This scholarship endowment is their way of extending their genuine care for young people that will provide educational opportunities for students from the Texas Panhandle from now on. What a gift.”

College juniors and seniors with a 3.0 GPA attending or planning to attend West Texas A&M University who completed high school in the 26 northernmost counties of the Texas Panhandle are eligible to apply for the $2,000 annual scholarship. The scholarship is renewable for two consecutive semesters for college juniors.

To apply for the Dugger Scholarship please visit Our general scholarship application for the 2017-2018 academic year will open on November 1, 2016 and close on February 10, 2017 at 12:00pm.

To donate to the CC “Bus” and Freda Dugger Endowed Scholarship Fund please contact Kasey Long, Director of Development, by email or phone 806-476-4521.

Philanthropic Trends


Have you read Vikki Spruill’s article on the misinformation surrounding DAF’s, yet? If you haven’t do so below.

Donor-advised funds (DAFs) are a popular topic these days. DAFs are powerful giving mechanisms set up at financial institutions and community foundations that allow donors to support and remain connected to causes and issues they care about most.

When explained, people get it. They see the power and need for DAFs. Despite the inroads we have made in educating elected officials, journalists, and the general public about DAFs, damaging misinformation continues to be put out about them.

Granting Opportunities: Gateway to Health Careers


In honor of our 2015 Annual Report, which focuses on the various components of healthy communities, we wanted to highlight the work of a past grant recipient that is fostering healthy communities. The Gateway to Health Careers project coordinated by the Coalition of Health Services was an easy choice. The project received $125,000 in funding from two Amarillo Area Foundation supporting organizations and cultivates the health of 13 rural communities by providing health science education for its young people. The goal is to retain local talent for the healthcare workforce in rural communities, while also providing quality healthcare for local residents.


Across the Panhandle instructors available to teach more nursing students are lacking, especially instructors that are able to facilitate instruction in rural communities. A lack of available equipment for training and a lack of facility space for students are also problems prohibiting accessible healthcare across the Panhandle.

Continue reading

She Gives: Berklye Bonifield

She_gives_graphicIn this edition of She Gives we are featuring Berklye Bonifield’s inspiring philanthropic story. You will be moved by her wisdom and strength.

Thank you for sharing your story, Berklye.

I give back. It’s something I always wanted to do and was brought up to do. The question as a relatively young adult is now just a matter of where to create the most impact since the decision is completely my own.

Growing up in church, I saw my parents faithfully tithe and I grew up learning the importance of giving back. My parents would give me an allowance for doing chores as a little girl and I had the opportunity to tithe a little portion of it. As I grew older our church youth group would actually go out into the community and serve. Seeing the need firsthand as a young girl left a lasting impression on me. Needless to say, giving has been engrained in me since I was a young and was and will always be a top priority for me.

There are so many options to donate to but I knew in my heart I needed to give to something that focused on children. I have always had a passion for helping children. I am drawn to children because they are innocent and cannot help what situation they are born into. People willing to give not only money but time can change the circumstances for children. After all, they are our future and we need to help provide the best possible support for them to help grow and shape the community. Continue reading

Panhandle Pattern Wind Grant Given



The Amarillo Area Foundation will distribute $25,000 to Panhandle Independent School District in the second grant cycle of the Panhandle Wind Community Benefits Program. An additional grant cycle for the Panhandle Wind Community Benefits Program was held to disburse the remaining $25,000 allocated for organizations providing direct educational opportunities for Carson County residents.

Earlier this year on behalf of Pattern Energy, the Amarillo Area Foundation distributed $175,000 to various Carson County civic and education organizations. Pattern Energy’s Panhandle Wind facility established the Panhandle Wind Community Benefits Program at the Amarillo Area Foundation to benefit residents of Carson County. An advisory committee of Carson County residents reviews grant applications, recommends specific charitable projects to support, and advises on the timing and size of distributions.

The $25,000 distribution to Panhandle Independent School District from this grant cycle will purchase a plasma cutter for Panhandle High School’s welding and metal trade programs, as well as upgrade its culinary arts program. Continue reading

HRMC Grant Cycle Now Open


Request for Proposals

The AAF Community Health Foundation, otherwise known as the Harrington Regional Medical Campus (HRMC), is proud to announce new grant programs.

The intent of the Harrington Regional Medical Campus (HRMC) Resident Grant Program and the Harrington Regional Medical Campus (HRMC) Community Health Grant Program is to improve the quality and accessibility of healthcare ultimately leading to an improved quality of life for residents of the top 26 counties of the Texas Panhandle.

Both grant programs are competitive and proposals for healthcare related projects will be accepted from organizations that hold a current tax-exempt status under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code; a recognized government entity: state, county, or city agency, including law enforcement or fire departments, that are requesting funds exclusively for public purposes; a K-12 public school, community/junior college, state college or university; or a church or other faith-based organization with a proposed project that benefits the community at large.

HRMC Resident Grant Program: The HRMC Board will accept grant applications from Medical Campus resident nonprofit institutions and other eligible organizations located in the Medical Campus for projects and capital improvements.  Preference will be given to Ronald McDonald House, Turn Center, Amarillo Botanical Gardens, Don Harrington Discovery Center, and Coffee Memorial Blood Center.   $21,000 is available and proposals for up to $20,000 will be accepted. High priority will be given to specific project-related proposals.  Operational support is a low priority.

HRMC Community Health Grant Program: The HRMC Board will accept grant proposals from eligible organizations located throughout the 26 county region.  $42,000 is available and proposals for up to $20,000 will be accepted.  High priority will be for specific project-related proposals as well as challenge and/or matching grants.  Proposals will be accepted for capital projects, capacity building, innovative projects, and research projects.  Operational support is a low priority.

Organizations may only submit one grant application per twelve month period; however, Medical Campus Residents may submit a grant application to both the HRMC Resident Grant Program and the HRMC Community Health Grant Program in the same year

The Amarillo Area Foundation will accept applications for both the HRMC Resident Grant program and the HRMC Community Health Grant Program until noon on Thursday, September 15, 2016.  Applications for both grant programs must be submitted through the Foundation’s online portal which can be accessed on the Internet at Applications or parts of applications submitted in any other manner (paper, e-mail, etc.) will not be accepted.  For more information regarding the online application please see

Selection Process Both grant programs are competitive. Applications will be reviewed by AAF staff for eligibility and completeness. The HRMC Board of Directors will review the applications and make funding decisions.

For information on how to apply go here:

Contact information Contact or call 806.376.4521 with any questions.

Finding Will


I am busy. That’s my attitude most of the time. I am just too busy to solve the world’s problems. I am in the stage of life where balance between life, family, and work is key. I literally have no time. Besides, I am just me, one person, what can I do. I am sure you find yourself with the same sentiment at times.

Then, I sat through what I like to call “the indoctrination of Doug Curry.” Have you met him? Have you ever heard him talk about young people? He inspires you to put aside your own expectations or judgments. He talks about chance encounters and how to influence our young citizens. He has a plan to ensure all students are pestered until they create a plan for life after high school. So, now, wherever I go, I ask young adults, “What’s your plan?”

Doug and Dr. Dana West started this movement, and now I cannot stop asking the question. One day, an unsuspecting sacker at United, whom I will call Will, was just minding his own business. I asked him where he went to school, he said, “Tascosa, I’m a Rebel.” He said that in a way that let me know it wasn’t just his mascot, but perhaps a way of life.

Then I released the hounds, “What’s your plan after high school, Will?”

He stuttered and spurted and finally let it out: “I’m an artist, I don’t think school is for me.”

“Really? I have a ton of friends who are artists, and they all went to school,” I replied.

“Yeah, I don’t like people telling me what to do when it comes to art,” Will said back.

It was clear that I was dealing with the typical thoughts of teenagers, who today have a lot of pressure on them. “You know graphic artists are very talented, and they do really important work. The process of school will not make you lose your artistic expression, but more like unearth all the talent that’s within you. Amarillo College and WT both have great programs for artists,” I explained. Continue reading

Amarillo Area Foundation Request for Grant Proposals

CNS_Blog_headerFor Immediate Release: June 21, 2016

On behalf of Consolidated Nuclear Security, LLC, responsible for the management and operations of the Pantex Plant, the Amarillo Area Foundation (AAF) announces a Request for Proposals (RFP). The Advisory Committee for the CNS Pantex Community Investment Fund, a component fund of the Amarillo Area Foundation, will entertain proposals from nonprofit and charitable institutions throughout the twenty-six northernmost counties in the Texas Panhandle (individuals and non-charitable organizations are not eligible). Grant amounts will range from $2,500 to $10,000. The application process will be competitive. Organizations who fit the eligibility requirements and whose work is in line with the priorities are encouraged to apply. The priorities for funding are:

  • Basic Needs (Food, Clothing, and Shelter)
  • Children, Youth, and Family
  • Community Development
  • Education
  • Health and Wellness

Priority will be given to proposals from organizations located and operating in twelve contiguous counties surrounding the Pantex Plant. These counties include Deaf Smith, Oldham, Moore, Hutchison, Gray, Donley, Hall, Armstrong, Swisher, Randall, Potter, and Carson.

Applications are available online at and are due August 15, 2016 by 12:00 noon. See for instructions on how to register in the Spectrum portal. If you have any questions about eligibility or the grant process, please contact Kathie Grant, Grants Administrator, at 806.376.4521 or If you have any questions about priorities, please contact Jessica Tudyk, Grants Manager, at 806.376.4521 or Anticipated timeline is below.

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The Amarillo Area Foundation is a community foundation that serves the northernmost 26 counties of the Texas Panhandle. The Foundation’s mission is to improve the quality of life in the Texas Panhandle. Since its inception in 1957, the Foundation has provided grants and a variety of other services to strengthen nonprofit organizations and the services they deliver.

Innovating. Empowering. Impacting.


The Women’s Philanthropy Fund was founded at the Amarillo Area Foundation in June 2008 to address the needs of women and children in the Texas Panhandle through impactful grant making. Because the Women’s Philanthropy Fund had a deliberate, meaningful mission from its inception, 73 Panhandle Area women convened to the found the inspirational program.

Seventy-three women joined together, pooled their resources, and established the Women’s Philanthropy Fund — again 73. I can only imagine how empowering it must have felt to be a part of a group of women whose sole purpose in meeting was to transform the lives of women and children in the area they live. The Fund’s first purpose statement was “to unite, serve, and empower women to become leaders in philanthropy.” Every year the women of the Fund unite their $500 or $1,000 memberships to give away grants totaling over $35,000. As of 2015, the Fund had given a total of $250,000 in grants to nonprofit organizations in our area. Continue reading