Featured business person: Lisa Capps

02/14/2012 5:00 AM

02/16/2012 6:43 AM

Lisa Capps,

Director of development, Make-A-Wish Foundation of Kansas

Capps got to know several nonprofits up close before joining their ranks as a fundraiser herself.

That education came while organizing a series of concerts for the Downing Foundation, which donated the proceeds to a different nonprofit each year.

"It was terribly interesting," Capps said of bringing Chicago, Joe Cocker, and Earth, Wind and Fire to town. "I learned a lot about marketing and fundraising – and working with bands."

Capps, 49, grew up in Wichita, graduated from Heights High School and earned a degree in communications from the University of Kansas. She worked in advertising and marketing before moving to the Downing Foundation.

From 2009 until earlier this year, she was a development director for the Wichita State University Alumni Association.

At Make-A-Wish, she will work with groups that raise money for the organization, which grants the wishes of children with life-threatening illnesses. But she will primarily focus on major gift solicitation from individuals and organizations.

"I was just so impressed by what they do as I was going through the interview process," she said of Make-A-Wish. "It’s just such a heartfelt, heartwarming type of job. You’re making a difference for so many people.”

Capps is the mother of two daughters – Claire, a freshman at KU, and Lauren, a senior at Andover Central – and enjoys running.

"I’ve done one half-marathon, but mostly I just run for the love of running," she said. "And then, of course, I love KU basketball."

Joe Stumpe

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