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The Women’s Fund of Greater Birmingham welcomes Ashley Thompson as the Senior Director, Development.
“The Women’s Fund of Greater Birmingham just wrapped an eighth month long strategic planning process that centers on growing our philanthropic investments, elevating and expanding rigorous research, and building influence and leadership on statewide public policy,” explained Melanie R. Bridgeforth, President & CEO. “None of this is possible without an experienced, talented leader raising the critical funds necessary to take our organization to the next level. Ashley has a proven track record and we are thrilled to have her on our team.”
Thompson joins The Women’s Fund of Greater Birmingham from Vulcan Park Foundation where she directed successful fundraising and development activities, working alongside the board and colleagues to secure more than one million annually through diverse revenue streams including major gifts, grants, corporate, and events. One successful program which was implemented at Vulcan for which Thompson fundraised was free field trips to the museum for Birmingham City and Jefferson County schools. Approximately 2000 students were able to visit Vulcan to learn and bring to life the history of Birmingham through tours, exhibits, and live theatre performances.
Prior to her time at Vulcan Park Foundation, Thompson led the Vestavia Hills City Schools Foundation (VHCSF) as Executive Director for more than seven years, increasing the foundation’s endowment from $1.6 million to $2.3 million. In a period of significant growth for VHCSF, Thompson actively recruited board members and volunteers, developed and executed VHCSF’s long-range plan, and maintained and grew the donor base, personally cultivating and soliciting donors.
Thompson’s involvement in the Association for Fundraising Professionals of Alabama has led her to serve on multiple committees within the organization, most recently as the Membership Chairman. Additionally, she serves on the Scholarship Committee for Executive Women’s International. Thompson has also held a variety of crucial volunteer roles in the Vestavia Hills City Schools system for more than a dozen years.
“The Women’s Fund of Greater Birmingham is a dynamic and unique foundation with a commitment to improving the lives of women through the power of philanthropy that is second to none,” said Thompson. “The fund’s research to deliberately address the hard questions and dedication to creating systemic change for women through advocacy is what drew me to the organization. It will be a privilege and joy to work with Melanie and the exceptional board, team, and community stakeholders.”
Thompson and her husband Robert live in Vestavia Hills and have three sons Griffin, Graham, and Bennett. She is a 2008 graduate of Leadership Vestavia Hills and proud alumna of Clemson University where her grandfather was the longest-serving president of the university.
Thompson began her role as Senior Director, Development on March 11, 2019.