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Bill Smith, GPC

Brief background statement including education, training, and career path:

I came into the grants profession full time in 2002, following a career that included journalism, technical writing, and HR, where I was certified Senior Professional in Human Resources (SPHR). I worked in government, industry, and technology before nonprofit grants. I served on the first GPCI subject matter expert panel (and subsequent panels) developing the GPC certification. I chaired the GPA Marketing and Finance Committees and served on the Nominating, Chaptering, HR and Executive Committees.


Current professional position and description of grant-related duties:
I am Senior Director of Grants and Fundraising Services at Second Harvest Food Bank of Middle Tennessee, with a budget of $50 million. I have led the grants team since 2002. Additionally, I serve as Treasurer on the GPA Board of Directors. I regularly provide fundraising and communication consulting to End Slavery Tennessee. And I serve on the Missions Board at my church, making decisions on funding to 40 nonprofit organizations.

A statement of your vision/direction for GPA and how you see us achieving this:
We should focus on growth, advocacy, and financial stability.

I advocated accelerating developing a marketing plan to grow membership. That plan will roll out in the coming months.

Our CEO and the Government Advocacy Committee has made good progress in the past year, and the board should continue to support and guide efforts to serve the industry and validate our brand.

In 2018, our reserves slightly dipped. Now we should plan to catch up and continue to build.


Given resource restraints, what suggestions would you make to move GPA forward?
As stated previously, we should focus on growth, advocacy, and financial stability. And the ultimate goal is to serve members and the industry.

We should clarify what “diversity” means to GPA and then proceed wisely to foster diversity in membership and leadership.

We should continue to guide and strengthen chapters so they more consistently provide value worth joining for.


Involvement in a national, fast-growing organization is extremely time-consuming. What is your availability and how much time can you devote to GPA (please be specific)?
In many years of GPA Board service, I have not yet missed a meeting. I have consistently served on GPA committees for 15 years and am currently fulfilling duties as GPA Treasurer. So, I’ve proven my availability, and I expect to continue as in the past.

Please disclose any relationship you have a with GPA Business Alliance partner, exhibitors at any GPA and GPA chapter conference and events, and GPA and chapter sponsors.
I have been engaged over the years as a book editor for CharityChannel, and I am personal friends with Stephen Nill. So, I would recuse myself from any matter directly related to CharityChannel.