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Let YOUR cause
be OUR cause.

Our team specializes in fundraising and strategic consulting for nonprofits. The approach is simple: your mission is our mission. We bring practical, effective solutions to accelerate the growth of your nonprofit and positively impact the communities you serve.

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INGRID ALVARADO

Founder and CEO

Dr. Ingrid Alvarado specializes in educational nonprofits and organizations that support Black and Brown communities. Ingrid has been fundraising for more than 15 years and has a proven track record of securing multi-year, multi-million dollar investments from diversified sources. Her strengths include building relationships, connecting partners with funding opportunities, developing fundraising strategies, leading capital campaigns, building individual major gifts programs, and facilitating solicitation meetings. Prior to founding Acceleraise, Ingrid led strategic planning and development for several renowned universities and nonprofits. She has a doctorate in Educational Leadership from the University of New Orleans as well an MBA and a BA in Communications from Spring Hill College. Ingrid’s passion is helping develop Black and Brown leaders into becoming confident fundraisers.

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PAOLA ANDRADE

Design, Central Services, and Operations Coordinator

Paola spearheads design initiatives at Acceleraise, creating impact reports, websites, pitch decks, and fundraising collateral. Her innovative and creative designs are instrumental in helping partners with marketing pieces that represent them individually. Paola also coordinates central services to ensure that projects are managed well internally and delivered on time. She earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Digital Filmmaking and a minor in Mass Communication from Loyola University New Orleans. An artist at heart, Paola also finds joy in digital filmmaking, journalism writing, and social media marketing.

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KELLY CONNELLY

Senior Consultant

Kelly is a full-time Senior Consultant at Acceleraise and directly manages the fund development strategy and execution for nonprofit partners. In her first two years at Acceleraise, Kelly secured close to $6 million in philanthropic funding for nonprofit partners. Kelly joined Acceleraise after a 10-year career in journalism and communications. She is an expert in researching and synthesizing information to present complex ideas in simple language. At Acceleraise, Kelly also leads capital campaign feasibility studies and has won major gifts for capital projects in New Orleans. Kelly holds a BA in English with a Concentration in Film Studies from Hendrix College in Conway, Arkansas.

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JOAN JUNGBIN LEE

Central Services and Operations Manager

Joan Lee is a dynamic and community-focused individual with a strong operational mindset. As the neurodivergent eldest child of immigrants, Joan gained early insights into the critical need for adaptable and fair educational support. Her dedication to promoting equitable education and fostering accessible opportunities has profoundly influenced both her professional and creative endeavors. Joan enhances the consulting team's impact by leveraging her expertise in development, research, and writing. Her systematic thinking is evident in her role in expanding Acceleraise's CRM capabilities. Joan holds a Bachelor's degree in History and Philosophy from Boston College, where she became the first in her family to graduate from university.

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DENICE MITCHELL

Senior Consultant

Denice Mitchell is a strategic and collaborative development professional with over 15 years of experience in education, business development, and non-profit management. As a Senior Consultant, Denice works with local and national nonprofits and education institutions to create sustainable, diverse funding strategies to serve youth. She leverages her diverse experience as an educator and director of business, program, and fund development to collaborate with partners on campaigns, communications, and engagement tactics to help them meet their goals. She is a proud alumna of Spelman College in Atlanta, Georgia where she received her BA in Spanish and International Studies.

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CHEYENNE SALUD-GONZALES

Director of Central Services and Operations

Cheyenne Salud-Gonzales holds a multifaceted role at Acceleraise. She oversees aspects of operation, communication, and client partnerships. This involves developing and implementing policies and procedures, streamlining workflows, and optimizing resource allocation to enhance organizational efficiency. In addition to day-to-day administrative responsibilities, she leads the Central Services team in developing materials and conducting research that contributes to partner client success. Her strategic approach ensures a seamless integration of operational excellence and effective partner client services. She holds a BS in Psychology and an MBA from the University of New Orleans, where she graduated magna cum laude.

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SIMON SPADARO-BLISS

Vice President of Strategy, Learning, and Impact

As Vice President of Strategy, Learning, and Impact, Simon drives strategic growth for Acceleraise by developing scalable organizational structures to support our team and ensure that our partners receive customized, best-in-class development services. Simon's role involves designing and implementing Acceleraise's organizational strategy, fostering an inclusive culture of high performance, and managing a team of external-facing development consultants and an internal operations team. His additional responsibilities include overseeing organizational data strategy and systems, managing organizational and team performance, and leading learning and training design for internal and external audiences. Simon holds an MS in Instructional Systems and Learning Technologies from Florida State University and a BA in Sociology with a minor in Justice Studies from the University of New Hampshire.

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SARAH STICKNEY MURPHY

Senior Consultant

Sarah Stickney Murphy is a proud New Orleans native with over 15 years of experience in nonprofit leadership, fundraising, strategic planning, and community-centric management. She has a proven track record of success, having raised over $50 million in revenue throughout her career. As a Senior Consultant, Sarah partners with local and national organizations that are working to dismantle systems of oppression and build up self-determined Black and Brown communities. Sarah holds a Bachelor of Music, Cum Laude, from Loyola University of New Orleans and is currently pursuing a Master of Business Administration from the same institution, with a capstone concentration in artificial intelligence supported fundraising solutions for social impact organizations. Sarah is a certified Google Project Manager and AI Product Manager, and she holds a Google Analytics Individual Qualification.

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EMILY WILLIAMS

Prospect Research and Writing Manager

As a seasoned fundraising professional who specializes in prospect research and writing, Emily brings a wealth of experience to the Acceleraise team. Emily conducts in-depth research on potential grant opportunities and analyzes funding priorities and guidelines to ensure alignment with client goals. She has a keen eye for detail and a passion for uncovering valuable insights to aid mission-driven organizations in securing additional funding. Emily holds a BA in history and political science from Louisiana State University. She also holds a MA in history, with a concentration in public history, from the University of New Orleans, where she graduated summa cum laude, and an MBA from Tulane University, with a specialization in finance, where she graduated magna cum laude.

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