About

Raise The Bar Consulting is made up of powerful nonprofit professionals and proven change makers. Our team ranges from seasoned fundraising experts to grant writing masters, to effective executive interim leaders. Together, we bring decades of experience to the table as we guide various organizations and agencies to success.

Our customized, tailored approach ensures we take the time to learn about your vision, business objectives, short and long-term goals and team dynamics. We build our team to compliment your organizational culture and we customize solutions designed to meet your unique needs.

Our team has started dozens of businesses and community programs; raised over $170 million for program, operational and capital needs; assisted organizations through transitions, and developed marketing strategies to help our clients shine.

We enjoy working with clients who welcome us as part of their team, seek innovative solutions, and focus on being the best they can be. Contact us, and take the first step in putting our team to work with and for you.

Together, we have worked with more than 150 organizations and led more than a dozen organizations through executive transitions.

MEET THE TEAM

Jennifer Tersigni Headshot

Jennifer Tersigni

Jennifer Tersigni’s professional career began at The White House, where she worked on a team that supported fundraising, leadership and change management in action after the Oklahoma City bombing, a federal government furlough, and Clinton Administration headlines. Since then, she has helped multiple nonprofit organizations spark growth and transformation through efforts that combine the best in fundraising, organizational development, strategic consulting, and transformational leadership.

While working in the nonprofit sector, Jennifer started Raise the Bar Consulting out of a desire to provide relevant and innovative consulting solutions that help organizations to thrive, so that they could meet their mission and further their goals in contemporary and cost-effective ways.

Jennifer never anticipated becoming a fundraising powerhouse – it just happened that way. In her unforeseen 25-year career, Jennifer has served as a chief development officer, transitional leader, CEO, university instructor, and entrepreneur. Thus far, Jennifer has raised more than $160 million, and she and her team have assisted close to two-hundred organizations to stabilize, grow, and flourish.

When you’ve pulled yourself up by your bootstraps from an early age, chartered your own path, and recognized your own strength and skills, it’s natural to help others do the same. Jennifer is a certified Professional Interim Executive and has held the Certified Fundraising Executive (CFRE) credential continuously since 2008. She is also a member of the Association of Fundraising Professionals (AFP), the Association of Nonprofit Specialists, the Third Sector, and adjunct faculty at Arizona State University Lodestar Center for Nonprofit Innovation. She holds a bachelor’s degree from Indiana University of Pennsylvania (IUP) and a master’s degree from the University of Arizona. 

In her free time, Jennifer enjoys travel, cooking, yoga, investing, and spending time with her family and friends. Jennifer has lived in and traveled to more than forty-eight countries to-date, brings cross-cultural experience to her work, and always looks forward to life’s next great adventure.

Brian Best is a seasoned non-profit fundraiser and interim leader on Raise The Bar team.

Brian has worked in the nonprofit sector for decades and is driven by creating change. His experience in the field allows him to efficiently assist organizations in achieving their goals, and then some.

Brian has accomplished much in his long career, however, he holds two milestones close to his heart; raising over $1,000,000 for a capital campaign, and providing one year of interim leadership to guide a nonprofit from the startup to growth phase. He most enjoys working with social justice issues and immigration policy.

Brian’s served as the Interim Executive Director of the Colibrí Center for Human Rights. Its work of collecting missing persons reports to help identify the remains of migrants found in the Arizona desert brings about healing to families whose loved ones have perished, and helps draw attention to the human rights crisis on our southern border. Brian felt honored to guide the organization from being a start-up to being positioned to grow, and to work with its incredible staff and board.

Brian Best

Brian Best

Brian Best is a seasoned non-profit fundraiser and interim leader on Raise The Bar team.

Brian has worked in the nonprofit sector for decades and is driven by creating change. His experience in the field allows him to efficiently assist organizations in achieving their goals, and then some.

Brian has accomplished much in his long career, however, he holds two milestones close to his heart; raising over $1,000,000 for a capital campaign, and providing one year of interim leadership to guide a nonprofit from the startup to growth phase. He most enjoys working with social justice issues and immigration policy.

Brian’s served as the Interim Executive Director of the Colibrí Center for Human Rights. Its work of collecting missing persons reports to help identify the remains of migrants found in the Arizona desert brings about healing to families whose loved ones have perished, and helps draw attention to the human rights crisis on our southern border. Brian felt honored to guide the organization from being a start-up to being positioned to grow, and to work with its incredible staff and board.

Jennifer Fields

Jennifer Fields has more than twenty years of experience in proposal development, project implementation & evaluation, nonprofit administration and informal science education. Through her work in science centers, universities and as a consultant, she has broad experience in developing, assessing, and disseminating exemplary programs and experiences for general and targeted audiences. Her work has resulted in a wide range of capabilities including grant writing, project conceptual development and management, curriculum development for informal and K-12 audiences, education research, project evaluation and dissemination of best practices through publications, conference proceedings, and workshops for practitioners.

Marta Schoenle is passionate about helping nonprofits actualize their goals. She strives to integrate accessibility, equity, and empathy into everything she does.  As a consultant, educator, and scientist, she has experience in communication, assessment, and data-driven evaluation. Over the course of her PhD studies, she learned how to ask questions, find answers, analyze results, and present findings to diverse audiences. In 2021, she was awarded the Liberatory Writing Across the Curriculum fellowship at Pima Community College, during which time she created a social and environmental justice curriculum that she has incorporated into her chemistry classes.

One of Marta’s proudest accomplishments is writing a grant for the creation of a science exhibit for the Bisbee Science Lab, in Bisbee, Arizona. Her involvement didn’t stop once the grant was awarded, as she collaboratively created the exhibit on the interplay between structure and function in biology. Upon its completion, the exhibit toured around Southern Arizona and Mexico and reached over 3,000 students. Marta is passionate about supporting STEM education and youth with disabilities, as well as issues pertaining to social and environmental justice.

Cynthia Anderson

Marta Schoenle

Marta Schoenle

Marta Schoenle is passionate about helping nonprofits actualize their goals. She strives to integrate accessibility, equity, and empathy into everything she does.  As a consultant, educator, and scientist, she has experience in communication, assessment, and data-driven evaluation. Over the course of her PhD studies, she learned how to ask questions, find answers, analyze results, and present findings to diverse audiences. In 2021, she was awarded the Liberatory Writing Across the Curriculum fellowship at Pima Community College, during which time she created a social and environmental justice curriculum that she has incorporated into her chemistry classes.

One of Marta’s proudest accomplishments is writing a grant for the creation of a science exhibit for the Bisbee Science Lab, in Bisbee, Arizona. Her involvement didn’t stop once the grant was awarded, as she collaboratively created the exhibit on the interplay between structure and function in biology. Upon its completion, the exhibit toured around Southern Arizona and Mexico and reached over 3,000 students. Marta is passionate about supporting STEM education and youth with disabilities, as well as issues pertaining to social and environmental justice.

Cynthia Wasco

Cynthia Wasco has an innate ability to communicate, influence, and educate others. She has vast experience with creating compelling opportunities that support an organization’s mission, and is constantly creating strategies to advance an institution’s mission to the next level.

Responding to current needs, in real time, gives Cynthia passion and purpose. Her favorite Raise The Bar project was the Courageous Conversation Series, as she was able to discuss racial and social injustices within the nonprofit sector as it was happening.

Cynthia was recognized by the National Association Women In Construction (NAWIC) as a 20 Women Leaders Awardee in February 2020 and Co-producing the Courageous Conversations Series. Although her heart lies in the performing arts, Cynthia believes that advocating for basic needs (food, shelter, etc) is one of the most impactful ways she can serve the nonprofit sector.

Mark Zero thrives on meeting new people who have dedicated their lives to solving community problems in innovative ways.

Mark is most passionate about the Arts. His greatest achievement thus far is guiding the Tucson Pops Orchestra transition to new leadership. Mark stepped in as their Interim Executive Director in a critical moment in the organization’s history, ultimately saving Arizona’s oldest professional musical ensemble. Mark has also secured multiple federal grants for multi-phase public/private initiatives to end domestic violence, in collaboration with the Tucson Police Department and Pima County Attorney’s Office.

Mark’s was able to support Mobile Meals of Southern Arizona during the peak of the COVID-19 crisis. During the pandemic, Mobile Meals needed to rapidly update antiquated fundraising systems and community outreach. Mark not only helped Mobile Meals of Southern Arizona to continue providing daily meals to their existing clients, but was responsible for the organization’s expansion of more than 30%.

Mark Zero

Mark Zero

Mark Zero thrives on meeting new people who have dedicated their lives to solving community problems in innovative ways.

Mark is most passionate about the Arts. His greatest achievement thus far is guiding the Tucson Pops Orchestra transition to new leadership. Mark stepped in as their Interim Executive Director in a critical moment in the organization’s history, ultimately saving Arizona’s oldest professional musical ensemble. Mark has also secured multiple federal grants for multi-phase public/private initiatives to end domestic violence, in collaboration with the Tucson Police Department and Pima County Attorney’s Office.

Mark’s was able to support Mobile Meals of Southern Arizona during the peak of the COVID-19 crisis. During the pandemic, Mobile Meals needed to rapidly update antiquated fundraising systems and community outreach. Mark not only helped Mobile Meals of Southern Arizona to continue providing daily meals to their existing clients, but was responsible for the organization’s expansion of more than 30%.

BIG WINS

Humane Society of Southern Arizona

Humane Society of Southern Arizona

2020-21. Org & Leadership Assessment, Strategic Consulting, Strategic Planning, Board Readiness, Org Transformation. Mission to serve pets and the people who love them. 78 years in business. Lots of historic board and CEO leadership dysfunction,...

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Colibri Center for Human Rights

Colibri Center for Human Rights

2019-2020. Interim Executive, Strategic Planning, Fundraising, CEO Search. Mission to bring dignity to people found dying in the desert trying to migrate to the U.S. Provide anthropological DNA testing and match services to identify the dead and support...

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Mobile Meals of Southern Arizona

Mobile Meals of Southern Arizona

2019-2020. Interim Executive, Fundraising, CEO Search. Mission to deliver freshly prepared meals (lunch and dinner) to isolated people, M-F. Utilized a volunteer model of delivery – 6 staff, 300 volunteers. Was a 50-year-old org, changed little during the...

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