Brown, Leslie W., CFRE, passed away July 28, 2009. Leslie Brown's professional fundraising and management career began 40 years ago. After retiring as Executive Director of the Broward Performing Arts Foundation, Ms. Brown created LW Brown Company to consult with non-profit organizations on board development, campaign planning, major gift acquisition and ethical fundraising practices. At the Broward Performing Arts Foundation, Ms. Brown created and spearheaded the Vision for the 21st Century Campaign, which successfully eliminated the Broward Center for the Performing Arts' mortgage 11 years early and grew an $11 million endowment. Prior to joining the Foundation, she was Vice President for Development at Nova Southeastern University. During her career, she provided staff support and consulting services to the administration and board members of not-for-profit organizations such as Brown University, Trinity College, the USO and AFS International/Intercultural Programs. Ms. Brown was a catalyst in the creation of the first Certificate Program in Fund Raising Management at New York University's School of Continuing Education and remained involved in all facets of philanthropic development. Most recently Leslie devoted her time to Fort Lauderdale Children's Theatre, where she served as a consultant and mentor with passion and dedication. Committed to her profession and the community, Ms. Brown, a graduate of Hofstra University, was a certified Fund Raising Executive. She was a founding board member of the Fort Lauderdale/Broward Chapter of the Association of Fundraising Professionals (AFP) and served as a past president. Leslie was a past member of the national board of directors of the AFP Foundation for Philanthropy in Alexandria, VA and served as their immediate past chair of the Committee on Directors. She was named Outstanding Fundraising Executive by her colleagues in 1996 at the National Philanthropy Day celebration and founded the AFP "Fundamentals of Fundraising" course. Now in its tenth year, Fundamentals has trained hundreds of not-for-profit staff and volunteers in best practice fundraising throughout Broward County. With a national reputation, Leslie frequently lectured on fundraising and board development and has been published on best practices and ethical fundraising. Leslie was a proud member of FAB!, Entourage, Bonnet House, the Fort Lauderdale Historical Society, FLCT's Spotlight Circle of Friends and the Broward Women's Alliance. To recognize her commitment to the performing arts and her profession, the Broward County Board of County commissioners named "Leslie Brown Appreciation Day" in Broward County on September 20, 2006. Leslie was an avid Marlins fan and ballroom dancer; both activities she enjoyed best with her loving partner, Judge Robert Fogan. She is survived by Judge Fogan and many loving relatives and friends. Leslie was born in Brooklyn, New York, on January 31, 1947 and lived in Manhattan for many years before making South Florida her home. She died peacefully from complications of pancreatic cancer on July 28, 2009. A celebration of Leslie's life will be held at Star of David Funeral Chapel, 7701 Bailey Road, No. Lauderdale, FL 33068 at 10:30am on Friday, July 31, 2009. In lieu of flowers, it was Leslie's wish that donations be made in her honor to Fort Lauderdale Children's Theatre.
Published in Sun-Sentinel on Jul. 30, 2009.