Get to know David Huffine – Vice President of Advancement at St. Joseph’s Villa and this week’s ConnectVA User Spotlight!
Tell us about yourself.
My name is David M. Huffine, CFRE and I?m the Vice President for Advancement at St. Joseph?s Villa in Richmond. My 29-year career in fundraising, external relations and management for non-profit organizations, has been focused in higher education and human services. Prior to the Villa, I?ve worked for Union Presbyterian Seminary (Richmond) and North Carolina State University (Raleigh). Selection as the Association of Fundraising Professionals 2015 Outstanding Fundraising Professional is a humbling honor, but working with amazing teams for inspiring causes is the true secret of ?my? success.
What is the focus of your work and the need you are addressing?
The Villa serves those in homelessness, with developmental disabilities, mental illness, or customized educational needs. Our profile and community awareness is on the rise, and in my 7 years here, we?ve gone from impacting the lives of about 800 children and families a year to almost 2,800! But the Villa can?t change even one life without the support of this community. My work is leading an extraordinary team for fundraising, marketing and volunteer engagement. Together, we?ve built a lot of community care and support for the Villa?s work, and I am excited about further increasing the community?s engagement in the Villa?s mission.
What do you find most rewarding about your work?
Every success has its own story. When I get to see young people?s lives turn-around, grow and flourish because of something I may have done to help them on their journey ?what could be greater?
Tell us about your biggest accomplishment in this position?
Many people do not realize that St. Joseph?s Villa is the longest continuously-serving non-profit for children in the country. In 180 years, however, it never held a capital campaign. I came to the Villa to help lead its first campaign, seeking to raise $10-million to redevelop the treasure of its campus. That was 2008, just as therecession was beginning to decrease overall giving in the U.S. for the first time in decades. Despite the downturn, we pressed forward to successfully exceed the goal ?and the campus transformation is truly amazing! What I learned is nothing replaces keeping your team of staff and volunteers motivated and moving forward. They looked to me for confidence in the game plan, so I showed it, even when I wasn?t sure what was around the corner.
What?s coming next for your organization that really excites you?
The Villa?s history is one of evolving to keep up with the changing needs of children, families and our community. That?s our future, too. We are able to create programs for emerging needs. We constantly keep an eye on the road ahead, and my excitement is finding ways to voice those changes as opportunities for our supporters and community to get in and help us drive there.
How are you leveraging ConnectVA to achieve your mission?
ConnectVA is a key resource for the Villa in promoting special events that support our homeless and developmental disabilities programs, as well as recruiting for our family of over 200 staff. The daily update emails are invaluable for raising our awareness of the good work others are doing in our community and thereby opportunities for partnership.
Anything else you would like to share?
My professional and volunteer work aligns with my life?s mission to help children, youth and young adults live into brighter, more hopeful futures ?for themselves, their families, and our community. I endeavor to do this through telling their stories, raising funding for programs that equip them, and in many cases by direct mentoring and encouragement. My advice to young professionals ?to anyone?figure out what your passion is, and like a magnifying glass in the sun, focus your light there.