Thursday, February 21, 2008

Young NonProfit Professionals Network, Phoenix

Tonight, I attended the second meeting of the Phoenix Young NonProfit Professionals Network,

YNPN is a networking and professional development group for Metro Phoenix's many new nonprofit professionals. Each of the two meetings, I have met new and interesting young nonprofit professionals working for a wide variety of organizations. Many of them chose the field right out of college to fulfill a passion for service. They are motivated and looking for ways to move up, improve themselves, their organizations and the community.

Even though I have met new people at each meeting, it has been fun connecting with people I already know who are drawn to the group in order to network with professionals who share their perspectives. At each of the meetings, I have seen at least four or five others I have either worked with in my various roles at United Way or classmates of mine in the Master's program.

Knowing I am plugging in to a community through YNPN Phoenix fills me with a sense of excitement. Metro Phoenix is full of young, bright, energetic and passionate people in the nonprofit field and there is no other organization in the Valley which is providing this kind of opportunity for these individuals to connect. Wonderful things can come from linking together all these great minds!

The group meets the Third Thursday evening of each month, from 6-8PM, alternating each month between professional development and social networking.

Tonight's professional development opportunity gave YNPN members a chance to learn more about social entrepreneurship, a recent trend in nonprofit strategy. Our guest speaker was Terri Wogan, Executive Director for Social Venture Partners of Arizona(SVPAZ). SVPAZ links business professionals with nonprofit organizations to build philanthropy using a venture capital model. Terri gave the group insights into the philosophies of social entrepreneurship and the motivation for social entrepreneurs. Understanding the mindset of philanthropic business leaders is vital for any young executive who will someday take the reins of an organization.

In the next 10 - 15 years, today's young professionals will be called on to fill the shoes of retiring nonprofit executives. Much of their success will be influenced by what they learn and who they know. YNPN Phoenix is dedicated to cultivating a supportive and collaborative nonprofit network Valley-wide which will contribute to the professional development of young nonprofit professionals. I hope all you Metro Phoenix YNP's will consider joining the group. The more members we have, the stronger is our organization's efforts!

Please join us at our March social networking event, bowling, Thursday, March 20. A great chance to meet and talk with your peers in a fun setting and learn more about YNPN Phoenix. Please, feel free to email me if you have any questions.

See you there!

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