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Allentown, Pennsylvania

Jim Friend

Over the past 25-years, Jim’s has focused his career on service to Catholic organizations through philanthropy and ministry. He began his career in parish ministry as a Youth Minister, Director of Religious Education and a Parish Administrator at St. Thomas of Villanova Parish in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia. After running his first successful parish capital campaign, Jim consulted for the Diocese of Camden where he oversaw a 2-year Diocesan Stewardship Initiative that was recognized by the International Catholic Stewardship Conference when the diocese received first-place for “Total Diocesan Effort.” Over the next couple of years, Jim conducted capital campaigns for numerous parishes around the Mid-Atlantic Region.

In 2006 Jim joined the Diocese of Allentown where he served as Secretary for Stewardship and Development. During his time Jim redesigned the Diocesan Appeal which resulted in nearly doubling the results from $2.6 Million to $4.9 Million. This effort was again recognized by the ICSC when the diocese received the award for “Total Annual Appeal Effort.”  Jim also directed the diocese’s Catholic school marketing and development program, and as a result, the Diocese of Allentown was the only diocese in the Mid-Atlantic to experience an increase in enrollment for two consecutive years.  Jim led many other initiatives in the diocese including diocesan strategic planning, increasing tax credits raised for Catholic school scholarships and the formation of diocese’s first Catholic Foundation.

In 2014, Jim was recruited by the Faith in the Future Foundation as the first Chief Development Officer where he provided oversight and direction for all fundraising for the 17 Archdiocesan High Schools and four schools of Special Education in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia. By creating new resources, training programs and setting new standards, Jim led the high school system to nearly double the fundraising results over four years from $13.1 Million to $25.1 Million. Jim led the Foundation’s first development program, increasing giving from $1.2 Million to $5 Million in his last year.

Jim has been a presenter for parishes, schools, dioceses, NCEA and ICSC on development, enrollment, stewardship, social media, board/committee training and much more. Jim graduated with a B.A. from West Chester University and earned a master’s degree in English and Publishing from Rosemont College.

Jim is currently an Aspirant in the Diaconate formation program in the Diocese of Allentown, and he remains active in his parish as a Eucharistic Minister, the men’s prayer group and Youth Ministry. Jim serves on the Development Committee for the National Federation of Catholic Youth Ministry. Jim, his wife Kristin and their three children live in the Lehigh Valley in Pennsylvania.