Whew! APRA Wrap-Up
Well, it's over. I'm at the Austin airport, exhausted and drained of presentation adrenaline. The above image was a gift from Stacy B., a member of my team, and companion at the conference. She gave it to me to commemorate my presentation. As you can imagine, I love, love, love it!
The presentation itself went really well. I talked too fast, which is normal for me. I've been working on this, but it's my perennial challenge. My friend Jess B. talked too fast in her presentation also. "That's because smart people talk fast," I told her. People alternately loved or disliked my use of historical charts, just as they alternately loved or disliked my very-enthusiastic presentation style. If you want to check out a similar presentation I did (with more historical charts than this one, and a more measured pace of speaking), you can find it here. And if you made it there in person: thank you! Thanks for attending, participating, and giving me great feedback (both overwhelmingly positive, and helpfully constructive).
I'm also pleased to report that the middle of my slideshow did not suddenly contain a million photos of my cats that I had to scroll through, as happened in my anxiety dream last night. But they are really cute cats!
The folks I talked to tended to have very positive reviews. On a local note, APRA-NW was out in full force. Represent!
There were two points of controversy this year: 1) the much smaller swag bags APRA offered (personally, I'm pro); 2) the appointment of someone who works for a vendor as APRA president. As you can imagine, this latter controversy was the more substantive issue. Word around the conference is that everyone has a lot of respect for Michael Quevli, the incoming president, but also a healthy dose of suspicion toward Blackbaud, the vendor-behemoth that has been buying up smaller vendors left and right, and which was the "gold sponsor" of the conference.
All in all, this was a great conference. I was really impressed with the quality of the sessions, and it's always lovely to be around my people, the fundraising nerds of the world. I also fell in love with Twitter all over again, and @amandajarman may just become active again. No promises though.