AmFund's Golden Pear Story


The American Fundraising Foundation (AmFund) is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization with a Platinum rating from Guide Star. 

It has been serving other nonprofit organizations for over 20 years and has donated over $40 million for worthy causes.


Each year AmFund’s Board of Directors carefully selects organizations to support through sponsorship of their events.


The Golden Pear, prominently part of AmFund's new logo, is deeply rooted in history as well as in its mission. Throughout history, even before the written word, mankind has honored the pear as a sacred fruit signifying wisdom, prosperity, good health, longevity, and future happiness- all the things AmFund seeks for its nonprofit partners. 


And behind every golden pear is a great story. It may be the story of a child receiving special literacy assistance, or a woman finding shelter from an abusive relationship or an animal being rescued.


Every time AmFund helps an organization it is helping others. Each person has a “golden pear story” to share. That’s AmFund… The nonprofit with the golden pear.

How It All Began...

AmFund's Founders, Barbara and Wade West worked as news anchors and reporters for over 30 years. Throughout their award-winning careers, they were frequently asked to emcee charity events to raise money for worthy missions. 

Having attended these fundraising events, they noticed that worthy nonprofits were leaving money on the table by not making the most of their captive donor audience. 

Growing tired of focusing on crime, crisis, and corruption, they knew there was something better. Using their experience and knowledge, they made it their life mission to form the nonprofit American Fundraising Foundation also known as AmFund.

Using our 20 years of experience in fundraising special events, open asks, silent and live auctions, AmFund partners with 501(c)(3) nonprofits across the United States to help them meet their fundraising goals, one community at a time.

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Since 1999, AmFund has donated over 38 million dollars of unrestricted funds to local and national nonprofits. At no cost to our nonprofit partners, we have helped hundreds of charities, hospitals, animal shelters, hospices, food banks, schools, and community organizations at thousands of events.  We really do help to “Fund Your Cause”.

Executive Team


Co-Founder & President

Wade West

A former television news anchor and reporter, Wade was media trainer for members of Congress and on behalf of the U.N. and U.S. State Department, he taught physicians and government officials around the world how to use media to fight illicit drug use and eradicate human trafficking. A popular emcee and fundraiser at special events, Wade became a licensed auctioneer and founded what is now AmFund, the American Fundraising Foundation. He pioneered the concept of “Travel for a Good Cause” by creating bespoke travel adventures to raise large amounts of additional funds for qualified organizations at their fundraising events.  Since its inception 20 years ago, AmFund has written checks for more than $38 million to deserving nonprofit organizations.



Barbara West

An Emmy Award winning news journalist, Barbara enjoyed reporting about the powerful work nonprofits did in our communities.   Her televised blood drives raised more than 60,000 units of blood and her stories on health and community needs generated floods of financial contributions.  She personally raised 2.7 million dollars for survivors of the first responders who lost their lives on 9-11.  After anchoring the news for 25 years, Barbara left television to devote herself to fundraising for deserving organizations nationwide. She is AmFund’s co-founder.

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Chief Operating Officer & Senior Vice President of Development

Deborah Marshall

An expert in strategic initiatives, Deborah is a seasoned and innovative administrator who oversees all operations at the American Fundraising Foundation. She has held significant leadership roles in nonprofit management, fundraising, healthcare, business development, marketing and public relations, and real estate investment.

Deborah knows first-hand the challenges our nonprofit partners face in the ever-changing climate of grant cycles and funding shortages. Her disciplined and logical approach to managing any situation, combined with her business acumen and passion for success, provide a firm foundation for AmFund’s phenomenal growth in helping hundreds of deserving nonprofits nationwide achieve their fundraising goals.

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Development Team

Monica Sakurai - Director of Marketing & Professional Development

Kalley Dunn - Director of Strategic Initiatives & Senior Development Director

Barbara Elyea - Director of Partnership Development

Deborah Roberts - Senior Development Director

Wendi Humble - Senior Development Director

Joelle Toth-Dyer - Development Director

Drew Gregory- Development Director

Julie Manninen-Development Director

Chris Williams- Development Director

Natalie Simkins-Development Director

Sylvia Bova- Development Director

Queila MacDonald- Development Director

Madison Wlazlinski- Development Assistant

Kayli Hannah- Development Assistant

Travel Team

Diane Rice - Director of Travel

Doug McEachern - Travel Insurance Manager & Travel Specialist

Jessica Giles - Travel Specialist

Steven Akers - Travel Specialist

Joanne Bayless - Travel Specialist

Azeema Khan - Travel Specialist

Lisa Walls - Travel Information Supervisor

Vladimir Torchon - Travel Information Specialist

Operations Team

Sherri Jones - Chief Financial Officer

Morgan Lewandowski - Director of Operations

Jennifer Miller - Director of Donor Relations

Chelsea Longacre - Director of Production

Kent Jordan - Auction Engineer & Production Specialist

Luis Rodriguez - Auction Implementation & Administrative Specialist