2014 Fundraiser of the Year: Margaret Scott

Margaret Scott FFIA CFRE, received the highest accolade in February this year – the 2014 Arthur Venn Fundraiser of the Year Award.

Find out below what winning this award has done for Margaret personally and professionally and why you should start thinking about who you can nominate for 2015.


What does it mean to you to be the winner of the 2014 Arthur Venn Fundraiser of the Year Award?

Professionally it meant a great deal to me to be recognised for my contribution towards fundraising and the journey that ‘fundraising’ has towards being recognised as a profession.

It also added an element of understanding of fundraising for my family. That night I texted my four sons saying that I had been given the highest award in Australia for fundraising and as a fundraiser. They sent messages back saying ‘we are proud of you mum’ and other nice things.

Personally, I found it humbling. I choose to do what I do for my profession – not for any monetary gain. As I said on the night, I love fundraising and I love asking people for money.

How has winning this award impacted on your fundraising career, or how do you think it will in the future?

Well, everyone wanted a piece of me. The Salvation Army (where I work 3 days a week) put me on their website and in their glossy magazine – that was great for fundraising in The Salvation Army too and gave recognition to fundraising and that you can achieve awards in fundraising. Announcements about the award circulated that night and for a few days I had congratulatory emails and texts from lots of people, including the leaders of the Salvation Army. WOW!

QUT, where I am studying, are using me in promotional communication about the University. I also received congratulations from Deans of Schools. I am often introduced when attending functions (all sorts) as Australian Fundraiser of the Year. This is quite prestigious.

I see it as a great thing for my career because it says to people that I have received an award which recognises my long career in fundraising and other people think I’ve done pretty well too. On hearing about the award people are impressed that it is AUSTRALIAN fundraiser of the year.

I think it also goes together with other achievements that I have made i.e. being a Fellow of FIA and CFRE. All these things are complementary. Now that I have my own consultancy – it also says that my achievements have been recognised and I am (hopefully) reliable, ethical and professional as a fundraiser and that I can help other organisations.

Would you encourage people to nominate someone for an award? Why?

Yes, it’s great when someone nominates you. That means that your peers can vouch for you and that they respect your achievements.

So, I think the message is look around for someone to nominate and do some hard work on that. It’s not a simple task when you look at the guidelines, but there are great fundraisers out there and more of them need to be recognised for their efforts.