Darren is the CEO and founder of Powered by Professionals. Under Darren’s leadership, PBP has started 13 charitable organizations in 15 years. In 2007 alone, Darren led a new charity – one of the first that he helped to create – to reach their fundraising goal of over $1 million. In 2011, PBP and the Sarcoma Foundation of America raised over $1.2 million dollars in conjunction with the SFA’s 10th Anniversary Fundraising Gala, which also marked the organization’s fourth consecutive year working with PBP. As of June 2016, PBP is thrilled to announce that we have raised donations totaling over $100 million for our clients.
With Darren’s guidance, countless community members have been able to rise up from devastation and work with PBP to channel their grief and compassion into sustainable and popular foundations that continue to make a difference everyday. Darren has 20 years experience in fundraising. In addition to PBP’s clients, he has successfully raised funds and coordinated events for organizations and companies such as the American Red Cross, Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation (JDRF), Make A Wish Foundation, Webstakes.com and Entrepreneurs Organizations (EO) and recently served as a board member on the New York Chapter of JDRF for six years and was formerly on the board of EO. His areas of expertise include corporate sponsorship solicitations, membership development and public speaking. He has recently been solicited to speak to numerous corporations and organizations concerning the importance of philanthropy and charitable giving.
Darren has been an influential member of the JDRF since 1993. He was the Chair of the Long Island Walk in 1994 and 1995 and the same year started the JDRF Young Leadership Committee, which he ran for ten years. Darren was a member of the Board of Directors from 1996 – 1998 and 2001 – 2006. As the Vice President of Fundraising, Darren was an integral part of the team that raised over $8 million for JDRF.
An important aspect of fundraising and event planning is working with professional staff and volunteers. His experience as a volunteer in leadership positions provides him with an understanding and sensitivity to management and lay leadership.
In addition to his experience with charitable and event fundraising, Darren has nine years of professional experience in sales and marketing, while with the New York Law Publishing Company as the National Sales Manager and with Promotions.com as a Vice President of Sales. He was also responsible for building, training and managing sales teams.
Darren holds a B.S. in Marketing from the University of Maryland, and resides with his wife Jill and their daughters Erika and Gabrielle in New Jersey. He is an avid sports fan and competitor as proven by his completion of eight New York City Marathons as well as the Lake Placid Ironman Triathlon.
Heidi Edelstein, Vice President of Marketing & Events
Heidi Edelstein is an accomplished Integrated Marketing and Event Management professional with more than 20 years experience creating innovative solutions for Fortune 500 companies and leading consumer brands.
As a senior executive in the media industry for distinguished publishing companies including CONDE NAST, HEARST and TIME, INC., Heidi has been responsible for developing integrated marketing and live event strategies as well as executing highly-successful experiential marketing campaigns for key clients. She has both industry-wide and consumer-facing event experience managing noteworthy stunts in NYC’s Times Square, planning off-site Corporate Sales Meetings for 100+ employees, producing live/music concerts and acoustic performances and overseeing sponsorship activations at retail centers, festivals, and film premiere/screenings.
During her 10-years at PEOPLE Magazine, Heidi produced high-profile marketing events and forged strategic alliances across the retail, music and entertainment industries including but not limited to the Recording Academy (GRAMMY Awards), Country Music Academy (Country Music Awards) and The Television Academy EMMY Awards).
Heidi spent 7 years in non-profit at The Cystic Fibrosis Foundation, Greater New York Chapter as the Special Event and Development Director where she raised over $3,000,000 in revenue from numerous corporate, gala, auction, sport (walk, run, bike, golf) and grass roots events ranging in attendance from 250-2,500 participants.
A graduate of Tulane University, she continues to lend her cause-related and marketing expertise to alumni programs and many local organizations/charities as a volunteer for school, sports & recreation committees/boards in her hometown of Tenafly, NJ where she resides with her husband and two sons.
Jill K. Alcott, Vice President for Strategic Development
Jill, a highly skilled and passionate non-profit development and fundraising professional, is the Vice President for Strategic Development at Powered by Professionals.
During the course of her career, she has worked with a wide range of non-profits to help them broaden and deepen their constituencies and raise funds, from start-ups to established organizations - and everything in between. Her activities include local, national and global campaigns and events such as World Wildlife Fund, Save Our Everglades, American Tap Dance Foundation, Atlantic Salmon Federation, American Museum of Fly Fishing, Winston Preparatory School, Project Healing Waters Fly Fishing and Coalition for the Homeless, among many others.
After graduating from Barnard College, Columbia University, Jill launched her non-profit development career at the Wildlife Conservation Society's Central Park Zoo (WCS-CPZ). There, she coordinated the fundraising Galas and all other special events for the re-opening of the Central Park Zoo (eleven events in ten days); established, marketed and managed the Society's special events department (headquartered at CPZ); inaugurated its Corporate Entertainment and Junior Committee programs; forged innovative strategic fundraising partnerships, and later, managed the major gifts and corporate development programs.
On the PBP team, Jill works on many fronts to introduce new services from PBP's tool-kit that will re-invigorate fundraising and continue to generate increased success for our clients.
Allison Geisinger, Senior Manager of Events
Allison is an Senior Event Manager at Powered By Professionals. She graduated from the University of Vermont in 2011 with a BS in Art Education and later received her New York State teaching license in Art Education. Allison has worked with non-profit organizations, including the 92 Street Y, over the last five years as an educator and program coordinator. In the past she has interned with Ronald McDonald House Charities, Burlington City Arts, Art From the Heart and volunteered with First Book.
As a member of the PBP team, Allison worked on the past six event seasons with the non-profit organizations Brooklyn Volunteer Lawyers Project, Sarcoma Foundation of America, The National Pancreas Foundation, The New York Hedge Fund Roundtable, the Brooklyn Legal Services Corporation A, and R Baby Foundation. Allison has been working at PBP for two and a half years now and has had the opportunity to work closely with many of our PBP clients.
MaryGrace Stephenson, Manager of Events
MaryGrace is an Event Manager at Powered by Professionals with a background in non-profit event management. She moved to New York after graduating from Marquette University in 2014 with a BS in Marketing. MaryGrace has a strong background working with non-profit organizations to coordinate national and single-market events. Her strong organizational skills give her a keen eye for logistical planning. She has previously worked with LeadDog Marketing Group on their non-profit initiatives, as well as volunteered with the Alzheimer’s Association for several years.
As an Event Manager at PBP, MaryGrace works alongside many clients including BrainUp, Brooklyn Legal Services Corporation A, Melanoma Research Foundation, Runway of Dreams Foundation and the Sarcoma Foundation of America. She is excited to work alongside passionate individuals who are dedicated to supporting these great organizations that PBP works with.
Meredith Fisher, Event Coordinator
Meredith is an Event Coordinator at Powered by Professionals. She recently graduated from the University of Texas at Austin with a BA in Marketing and a minor in Advertising. Before moving to New York, Meredith interned with the Alzheimer's Association where she helped to plan Central Texas' Walks to End Alzheimer's. During college, she was also Chairman for her sorority's philanthropy Gala that raised money to benefit the American Heart Association.
Meredith has been very involved with various non-profits in the past, including Ronald McDonald House Charities, Dell Children's Hospital, the Meals on Wheels, and is passionate about the work done by these organizations and others. As an Event Coordinator at PBP, Meredith is excited to work with great organizations to help them put on outstanding events and exceed their goals.