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Astarita to join Institute of Fundraising board

Astarita to join Institute of Fundraising board
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Astarita to join Institute of Fundraising board

Fundraising | Gemma Ware | 7 Feb 2008

The Institute of Fundraising has invited Mark Astarita, director of fundraising at the British Red Cross and a recent critic of its handling of the debate over direct mail incentives, to become a trustee.

Astarita (pictured) joins Mike Barnes, director of marketing and business development at the Direct Marketing Association, as one of two new co-opted trustees on the Institute’s board.

Astarita described himself as a “vociferous defender of fundraisers and fundraising”. He admitted he had a “robust exchange of views about the use of incentives and lift devices” with the Institute late last year. However, he said he had already been approached last summer about the trustee position.

He wrote a strongly-worded letter to the Institute following its publication of a response to the consultation on the direct mail code of practice by a group of fundraising agencies which called for restrictions on charities’ use of incentives.

Astarita is a staunch defender of incentives, which he claims have brought in 250,000 donors to the British Red Cross over the last three years.

He said it would be an “honour and a privilege to serve the fundraising community” and looked forward to “ensuring the voice of frontline fundraisers is heard loud and clear at every level in the Institute”.

The news, which takes the number of trustees to 18, comes two weeks after the Institute announced that Paul Amadi, group director of fundraising at RNIB, would replace nfpSynergy’s Joe Saxton as chair in July.

The governance structure of the Institute’s board allows a maximum of five non-elected trustees, who are selected if the board feels they would bring particular expertise.

The Institute said it invited Barnes for his membership and marketing experience to help it move to a new phase of membership and policy development.

Barnes worked on regional retail and domestic marketing campaigns for British Gas before becoming marketing director for Emap Consumer Magazines. He joined the DMA as a director in 1999.

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