When Oklahoma-based fundraiser Somerlyn Cothran got into the political industry there was one thing missing: a mentorship and training program specifically geared toward campaign fundraisers. So she decided to jump in and help launch one.
Cothran, who runs Cothran Development Strategies, a fundraising firm that works with national political clients and trade associations, launched the National Association of Political Fundraisers earlier this year and brought the new group together in Washington, D.C. for its first winter conference last week.
Between an ever-changing regulatory landscape and the compliance challenges presented by online fundraising, Cothran says there’s a need for political fundraisers to unite as an industry. The new association’s primary goals: serve as a mentorship program for younger fundraisers, and bring the industry’s top professionals together to discuss ethics and compliance issues.