AFP Leadership Institute

Learn more about AFP's week-long intensive leadership learning experience.

As baby boomers retire, nonprofits are having trouble finding qualified individuals to fill key leadership roles. AFP Global, in partnership with the AFP Foundation for Philanthropy, is addressing this gap with a new leadership development program, designed to provide the next generation with the skills they need to claim a seat at the leadership table.

AFP Leadership Institute

The fourth Leadership Institute Cohort will take place Sunday, Sept. 22 – Friday, Sept. 27, 2024 at 
the Community Foundation for Greater Atlanta in Atlanta, GA.



Leadership Institute CohortWhat is the AFP Leadership Institute?

AFP’s Leadership Institute is a week-long in-person learning experience. This deeply reflective, action-oriented program teaches both the theory, as well as practical applications, of key leadership concepts, with a focus specifically on applying these leadership skills to the fundraising profession. 

The fourth cohort will take place Sun., Sept. 22 – Fri., Sept. 27, 2024 at the Community Foundation for Greater Atlanta in Atlanta, GA. The Foundation is located at 191 Peachtree St. NE, Suite 1000, Atlanta, GA 30303.

Who is the Leadership Institute built for? 

This program is designed by fundraisers, for fundraisers who aspire to the next level of leadership in the nonprofit sector.       

Selected participants will have both fundraising and staff management experience, and, crucially, will represent the diversity of our field (geographically, demographically, and representing different organization sizes and career trajectories).        

Participants will be change agents, open to self-reflection, generous and willing colleagues, and ready to work.   

Here's what participants had to say about the program:        

BeckThe international design of the program, the authentic conversations, well prepared instructors, mixed with a diverse group of professionals, made for a very open and welcoming environment for everyone to be authentic and vulnerable. I would highly recommend this course to anyone who is serious about their leadership role or to someone who desires to lead. – Christopher Beck, CAP 

DerriaI had the privilege of getting to know 18 leaders across the country who committed to taking a deep dive into leadership practices, personal goals, evaluation of strengths, weaknesses, AI in the workplace, creating safe environments, providing feedback, agile thinking, growth mindset, and so much more. We laughed, challenged our thinking, discussed our goals, examined our strengths/weaknesses, but most importantly focused on           
embedding a growth mindset in our core ways of thinking. – Derria Ford, MBA, Ed. D     

View Testimonials

What will I learn?Classroom in Cohort 1

AFP's Leadership Institute focuses on key areas of leadership, essential to building a growth mindset, including learning agility, adaptability, communication, team development and motivation, decision-making, and strategic thinking. 

This program is focused on four key leadership skill sets: self-awareness, culture building, communication, and learning agility.     

Case studies, deliverables, discussion prompts, and guest speakers will all directly tie into fundraising and the experience of fundraisers.      

You will develop self-awareness and a practice of reflection to help you become an authentic leader, rooted in your own core values and strengths.       

The leadership skills learned are highly transferable across job positions, organizations, and hierarchies, and can be applied to management responsibilities like talent management, strategic planning, and board management.

How can the Leadership Institute benefit me?

We are not building cookie cutter leaders. We’re giving you tools and helping you build key competencies to support YOUR leadership trajectory in fundraising and beyond. 

  • Come away with an individualized career growth plan, reflective of your leadership goals, skills, and growth areas.
  • Connect with other aspiring leaders for ongoing conversations beyond the program.
  • Participate in 1:1 coaching sessions to develop skills specific to your needs. 
  • Learn effective culture-building strategies that focus on inclusion, diversity, equity, and access.

Key Application Information

Cohorts will be limited to no more than 25 participants. 

Program Cost: 

  • AFP Member discounted rate: $4,900 USD
  • Nonmember rate: $5,900 USD
  • Once accepted into the program participants will make a nonrefundable $500 USD payment to hold their spot.

Scholarships are Available:

  • All participants are eligible to apply for a scholarship (partial, half, or full scholarships are available).
  • Scholarships only cover the program fee. Scholarships will not cover travel expenses (airfare or hotel).
  • AFP members are eligible for partial, half, or full scholarships. Non-AFP members are only eligible for a partial or half scholarship.
  • Scholarships will not cover the initial $500 USD non-refundable fee to hold your spot if accepted.
  • Scholarships Applications are now closed.


To apply applicants should:

  • Have between 5 -15 years of fundraising or relevant nonprofit work experience. 
  • Have some supervisory experience. (Have managed at least one full-time staff member)
  • Be willing to engage with the leadership development cohort community following the week-long experience.
  • Aspire for career advancement!

What’s included with The AFP Leadership Institute:

  • 5 full days of immersive leadership development training.
  • All meals (breakfast, lunch, and dinner) from Sunday evening through Friday afternoon except for dinner on your own two nights during the program week.
  • Executive coaching sessions following the program week.
  • Networking and professional development opportunities in person, online, and virtual with all cohorts.

Participant Expectations:

  • Participants in the program will be expected to complete prework readings and take the CliftonStrengths Assessment.
  • Be fully engaged throughout the week and present.
  • Take advantage of the coaching sessions following the program.
  • Participate in evaluations to support the improvement of the program.

What’s not included:

  • Travel and hotel expenses
    • Program Hotel: Hyatt Regency Atlanta (265 Peachtree Rd NE.) | $230.00 USD plus tax per night

Application Process:

  • Applications are scored using a rubric. To support you through the process we have attached the application scoring rubric for you to review. 
  • In order to help guide the required letters of recommendation needed with your application, please refer to the following letters of recommendation scoring rubric.
  • Program applications are now closed.


Important deadlines:

  • Sunday, June 16, 2024 at 11:59 p.m. CT – The program application and scholarship application are BOTH due.
  • Wednesday, July 10, 2024 – Applicants are notified concerning their status in the program and any potential scholarship award.
  • Wednesday, July 17, 2024 - Participants confirm acceptance and participation in the program.
  • Wednesday, July 24, 2024 - Participants make (or confirm) $500 initial payment to hold their spot in the program.
  • Wednesday, August 14, 2024 - Final program fee payments are due.


If you have any questions at all, please don't hesitate to email Ian Adair, Director, Leadership Development & Credentialing, at

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