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Huntington, NY 11743

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Fundraising Forum Panel

Fundraising from the C-Suite 

Anne Nikas-Brigis, President & Chief Executive Officer - YMCA of Long Island, Inc.

When Anne volunteered as a young teenager at the Flushing YMCA, her local home town Y, she never imagined it would be the beginning of her life’s work.  Upon graduation she embarked on a successful career on Madison Avenue, but Anne’s love and passion of helping others brought her back to the Flushing YMCA.  After seven years at the Flushing Y, she accepted a position as Associate Executive Director of the newly built Great South Bay Branch.  It was clear Anne had a great vision for her YMCA and was appointed Executive Director.  Excitement, accomplishment and movement characterized those first few years.  She continued to rise thru the ranks and on July 1, 2012 she achieved her dream of becoming President & CEO of The YMCA of Long Island.

Anne’s priority has always been serving the Long Island communities with a spectrum of programs that center on the YMCA core values of caring, honesty, respect and responsibility.  Hope, dedication, drive, transformation, passion, nurturing, confident, connected and inspiring are just a few words to describe who we are, what we do and what we strive to mean to our members, staff, volunteers and the community.  A proven YMCA organizational leader with more than 30 years of YMCA executive management experience, outstanding communicator who enjoys engaging community leaders and volunteers to advance our mission.  More than transforming lives, our Y under her leadership has made a lasting impact.

Tom Kissane, Moderator - Principal and Managing Director, CCS

Tom Kissane is fortunate to have spent his 30-year professional fundraising career exclusively with CCS. During that time, he has partnered with hundreds of extraordinary organizations in designing, implementing, and providing strategic oversight to over 1,000 fundraising initiatives. The programs for which Tom has provided counsel have raised more than $3 billion on cumulative goals of $2.5 billion.

Tom’s areas of expertise include feasibility and planning studies, landscape analysis, development audits, philanthropic assessment programs, major capital campaigns, annual giving efforts, endowment fundraising, and board recruitment. He focuses on major gift identification and solicitation, campaign management, and client relations.

Tom currently serves on the Board of Trustees for St. Mary’s Children’s Healthcare System in Bayside as well as the De La Salle School in Freeport, and also serves on the Editorial Review Board of Giving USA.

Neela Lockel, CEO, Red Cross LI

Neela Mukherjee Lockel is the Chief Executive Officer of the American Red Cross on Long Island where she oversees Red Cross activities across Nassau County and Suffolk Counties, and sits on the Senior Leadership Team of Greater New York. She facilitates the Regional Board Diversity Committee, is a member of the Advanced Public Affairs Training Team and is a member of the American Red Cross LEAD, an internal leadership development program. She has deployed to Red Cross responses for Hurricanes Matthew (2016) and Florence (2018) and the California Wildfires (2017).

Neela has more than 20 years of experience in the non-profit sector. Before coming to the Red Cross, she served as the Founding Executive Director of Girls Inc. of Long Island. Prior to assuming this role in 2012, she worked in academia as an adjunct instructor at Stony Brook University and served as the Director of the Office of Continuing Education for the Adelphi University School of Social Work as well as a Director of Programs at EAC Inc. Neela has been recognized for her achievements by several organizations, including: City and State’s 50 Most Powerful People on Long Island, Long Island Press Power List, 40 Under 40 and Top 50 Women in Business by Long Island Business News; Leadership Award from the Shanti Fund and a Young Professionals Award from the American Heart Association.

Originally from New Jersey, Neela is now a resident of Suffolk County. She received an MPA in Public and Non-Profit Management from the NYU Wagner School of Public Service, an MSW from Fordham University, and a BA from Bates College.  Neela is a Partner (2015) and Member of the Board of Advisors for the Energeia Partnership through Molloy College, and holds Executive Leadership Certificates from both Fordham University and Adelphi University's Center for Non-Profit Leadership. She is appointed to the Board of Directors for the Middle Country Library Foundation, and the LIPA Community Advisory Board.

Paule T. Pachter, Chief Executive Officer of Long Island Cares, Inc., The Harry Chapin Food Bank.

Mr. Pachter is a graduate of the Adelphi University School of Social Work and has held several positions within Long Island’s human services community including Deputy Commissioner of the Nassau County Department of Mental Health, Mental Retardation and Developmental Disabilities.  He is credited with influencing the passage of New York State’s social work parity legislation, and in 1985, Mr. Pachter was selected “Nassau County Social Worker of the Year” by the NASW Nassau Division in recognition of his work in the areas of social work and political action, and for his contributions to the fields of mental health.  Mr. Pachter is currently a member of the Board of Directors of the Long Island Association; he is also a 2006 recipient of the New York State Liberty Medal, the state’s highest honor for his work in the relief efforts associated with Hurricane Katrina. Mr. Pachter also received the Town of Hempstead’s “Make a Difference Medal” in 2012 for his work in responding to Super Storm Sandy.

Long Island Business News has described Paule Pachter as a leader “who has transformed the work of a food bank to focus on the root causes of hunger and food insecurity by developing some of the most innovative approaches to helping people in need.”  As part of his vision, Pachter has redefined the role of a food bank to offer more direct services bringing Long Island Cares in closer contact with people in need, expanding mobile operations and building a network of community resources to increase distribution and capacity, which resulted in the organization receiving Feeding America’s prestigious Hunger’s Hope Award in 2011. 


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  • Huntington, NY 11743
  • Phone: 631.249.5008
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