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Hispanic Heritage Month Spotlight: Lisa Garces

Monday, October 7, 2019   (0 Comments)
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Hispanic Heritage Month is currently on its way. Celebrate with AFP- GHC from now until October 15, as we spotlight one member per week. We’ll learn how Latino philanthropy impacted both their personal and professional life to hearing about their day-to-day tasks in the field.





Lisa Garces, CFRE

Sr. VP of Advancement

DePelchin Children's Center



What is your vision for Latino philanthropy?

My vision would be an increased presence of Latinos in leadership roles within nonprofit boards and foundations. It is not enough to just be a “percentage” of the board. We need emerging Latino leadership chairing boards, committees, serving as trustees, chairing events and campaigns. I am so thrilled to say for the first time in my career our signature event is being co-chaired by two young Latino couples. They are out there and willing to give and serve but they need to be asked. I have to add this is very much a “peer to peer” effort. It can’t be left to fundraising staff alone. I am very lucky to have a member of our board who is active in seeking to identify talent from diverse communities to serve on our board.


What was your first encounter or most memorable experience of Latino philanthropy within your family or community?

My mom serving in leadership in her company’s United Way campaign. My mother was the only female welder at her company. When a coworker got sick or needed an extra hand, she was always the one organizing a tamale sale or raffle. My mom was really proud of being asked to participate. The company newsletter she saved where she was featured promoting the campaign is something of hers that I held onto when she passed. As I got further in my career, I reflected on how someone in the corporate office must have identified my mother as someone those workers trusted and tapped her for that role. I don’t know who that person was, but if they are reading this, thank you!


How long have you been working in fundraising?

14 years


How long have you been an AFP member?

Probably as long as I have been in fundraising. It was one of the first things I did when I got a paycheck.


What keeps you motivated at your organization?

Our program staff. They have impressive credentials, they work hard, they really really love our clients. It is an honor to support the work they do to help keep our children safe and families thriving. 


If you could describe your job in one to two sentences, what would you say?

Right now I would say exhausting - LOL. But only because I am a new (single) mom of a 7-year-old! For 39 years, my career was my top priority and identity. It’s a huge change, but in a field that is majority female, it is the norm.   


How has AFP made a difference in your career?

Knowledge! Training! AFP Houston brings some of the best fundraisers straight to us. We get to learn from some of the best for $20 lunch. If that isn’t enough to motivate someone to attend, then please go for the orange rolls! You won’t regret it!



Want to share your own story? Use the hashtag #SomosAFP!

For questions contact: Berenice Espinoza,

OR Sydney Smith,

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