Amber Sheikh is the chief impact officer and owner at Sheikh/Impact (formerly Thurlow/Associates), where she and her incredible team work to raise the capacity of organizations solving the toughest issues facing California communities, focusing on fundraising, external relations, and organizational development. Amber’s specific areas of expertise include capital campaigns, individual fundraising, constituent/donor relations, strategic planning and executive/board development.
Before forming Sheikh/Impact, Amber was the Managing Senior Associate at Thurlow/Associates, where she provided strategic counsel and assistance to nonprofit clients working in health, human services, social justice, and other fields. Prior to her nine year tenure at Thurlow/Associates, Amber managed individual donor portfolios, foundation and government relations for Marymount California University. She also served on the fund development teams of two prominent homeless service agencies — Downtown Women’s Center and Children Today.
Earlier in her career, Amber worked in Sacramento with the California State Assembly. Her international experience includes work with a United Nations women’s microfinance Non-Government Organization in Delhi, India, and with Women’s Edge Coalition.
Amber is also very active in her community. Amber was appointed to the Harbor Area Planning Commission by Mayor Eric Garcetti, as well as serving on the Mayor’s Harbor-area Homelessness Organizing Committee. She also helped form and continues to coordinate the Council District 15 Working Group on Homelessness. Amber serves as a board member of Social Venture Partners LA and the Los Angeles County Bicycle Coalition. And, she sits on the advisory council of Maternal Mental Health Now and the Assistance League of San Pedro South Bay.
In 2019 Amber was chosen as LA City Council District 15’s Woman of the Year for her work on homelessness and gender equity. She is also the 2019 recipient of the San Pedro Chamber of Commerce Leadership Award for her work championing solutions to end homelessness in South Los Angeles. In 2021, Amber was selected as an LA Impact Maker to Watch.
Amber is a Certified Fundraising Executive (CFRE) and holds a bachelor’s degree in international relations from the University of California, Davis, with minors in women’s studies and Middle East/South Asia studies
Kelly Lynn Fitzgerald is the managing director at Sheikh/Impact, where she provides a broad spectrum of counsel and assistance to clients in areas including, but not limited to, publications, institutional fundraising, major donor relations, and public grant solicitation.
Before joining Sheikh/Impact, Kelly was with Thurlow/Associates for nine years, providing strategic fund development counsel to nonprofit agencies. Prior to that, she served as a program associate with the United Way of Greater Los Angeles, where she coordinated the annual planning and allocation process for approximately $8 million in emergency housing and assistance from federal and state sources, annually. While at United Way, Kelly also monitored the fiscal and programmatic performance of grantees and ensured compliance with all applicable federal and state regulations.
Kelly holds a master of public policy degree from the University of Southern California, as well as a bachelor’s degree in public policy and management from the same institution. She is passionate about improving the quality of life for children and families in her community. Kelly is an active member of Lakewood Little League’s board of directors and is also involved with her son’s school as a Parent Teacher Association member.
Jessica Beckerman is a senior associate at Sheikh/Impact, where she provides support to clients in areas including but not limited to strategic planning, grant solicitation, prospect research, communications and marketing.
Jessica was an associate at Thurlow/Associates for four years, where she provided fund development counsel and leveraged her expertise in communications and publications. Before joining Thurlow/Associates, Jessica worked for Children’s Tumor Foundation, which raises funds for neurofibromatosis research. During her time there, she managed the NF Walk program, significantly increasing participation and visibility, and more than tripling annual funding. Prior to that, she worked in editorial at the publishing house Simon & Schuster in New York, working with numerous renowned authors to craft and polish written materials for impact.
Jessica holds a bachelor’s degree in literature from American University. She is originally from Wellesley, Massachusetts.
Will Simcoe is an associate at Sheikh/Impact, where he provides support to clients in areas including but not limited to institutional and public funding solicitation, prospect research, impact analysis and communications.
Before joining Sheikh/Impact, Will provided fund development consulting to nonprofit clients in the education, health and human services sectors. Will previously designed curricula for the Heller School for Social Policy and Management and ran a private tutoring company. Will has extensive experience finding technological solutions for nonprofits: He helped create a database and data visualization dashboard for Entrepreneurship for All to aid in their expansion; while working at Thabyay Education Foundation, he developed a comprehensive online eLearning platform — a platform that continues to help hundreds of social workers in Myanmar, Laos and Thailand each year.
Will holds an MBA in social impact and a master’s degree in sustainable international development from the Heller School for Social Policy and Management, as well as a bachelor’s degree in ecotourism from Westminster College. An avid cyclist, Will serves as a board member at the Bicycle Kitchen, a nonprofit bicycle repair education organization in Los Angeles.
Claudio Vazquez provides administrative support to Sheikh/Impact and provides office management and technical support for the firm's daily operations. He is bilingual in English and Spanish and is an experienced translator. He is also an accomplished photographer whose work has been exhibited in galleries in North and South America.
Victoria Thurlow provides assistance and counsel to Sheikh/Impact, as needed. Victoria has extensive experience as a leader in fund development and communications. After working directly with respected organizations in the social sector, she founded Thurlow/Associates. Through her decades as principal of Thurlow/Associates, Victoria used her unique expertise to help nonprofits throughout the region achieve lasting impact.
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