Behind the microphone or behind the scenes, Kathy Kingston created magic. On January 30, 2020 Kathy peacefully passed away after conducting a two-day training program in Florida. It doesn’t seem possible that she is no longer with us. She was an incredible champion of fundraising professionals across the world. And she was my friend.
I first met Kathy 15 years ago, when I hired her to turn-around a fundraising event where I worked. From the moment I met Kathy, I knew I had met a friend. Her energy was boundless, her commitment to helping nonprofits sincere, and her ability to bring people together was inspirational.
When I started my own business, Kathy became both a trusted advisor and continued to be a dear friend. We started doing workshops together, and had a lot of fun creating ways to engage people in the fundraising process. I remember so many evenings having long conversations by phone. Kathy was always interested in transforming the fundraising event – using it to engage donors and build a sustainable program. While her auctioneering skills were legendary – her real talent lay in helping people understand and build a true platform for raising funds.
Her book, “A Higher Bid” quoted some of the giants in our field and today provides the roadmap for building events that create meaningful experiences for all those who attend. She was also so proud of creating her own philanthropic legacy – the Kingston Fund, which had just completed its recent round of awards.
She will be sorely missed in the world of philanthropy. And she will be sorely missed by me.
I’d like to quote from one of the last words in her book – and ask that we all remember Kathy and how she inspired all of us to be the best we can be.
“We all have transformational stories that will inspire others. Will you pass yours forward? Will you consider telling your stories with your donors, friends and colleagues? You’ll inspire others to tell why they care, too. That’s how to build a community of champions…”
Thank you for sharing your story all these years, my friend.