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The Collective

Cloudbreak Collective convenes independent fundraising consultants so they can provide streamlined, collaborative services for our nonprofit clients.

We are a team of fundraisers, writers, consultants, and researchers dedicated to equipping nonprofit organizations with the outsourced expertise they need to better achieve their missions. We work as a collective, or a group of independent consultants who have common goals and work together under one brand to make collaboration easier for everyone. 

When you work with us, one person will be your main point of contact, but you may interact with several of us on pieces of your project. By collaborating, we ensure that we can complete the work you need without interruptions and that we bring a range of voices and expertise to the work.

Interested in joining the Collective? Read more here. 

Cloudbreak Founder Brittany Kirk, also hosts quarterly virtual open houses for people who are interested in learning how to become independent consultants. Email for dates and links!

Core Team

Brittany Kirk

Brittany Kirk
President & Grants Practice Director

Fundraising Strategy, Grant Strategy, Grant and Appeal Writing, Strategic Planning, Financial Management, Budgeting, Program Evaluation, Cases for Support, Project and Team Management

Julie Bianchi

Julie Bianchi, CFRE
Campaign Practice Director

Fundraising Strategy, Planning, and Implementation for Capital Campaigns, Annual Campaigns, and Major Gifts; Crafting Grants and Cases for Support.

Angelica Barakat

Angelica Barakat
Associate Consultant & Business Manager

Client Business and Operations Administration, Fundraising Research and Project Management

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Emily Gifford
Associate Consultant & Grants Practice Manager

Grants Support,  Fundraising Research, Grants Project Management, Contract Management and Compliance, Organizational Structure and Workflow Implementation

The Collective

Leslie Stroud-Romero

Leslie Stroud-Romero
Laser Nonprofit Solutions

Grant and Appeal Writing, Grants Coaching, Project Management, Fundraising Strategy and Planning

Matthew Brouwer

Matthew Brouwer
Matthew Brouwer Grant Services

Grant and Appeal Writing, Annual Fund Development Planning and Execution

Yvette Sumner

Yvette Sumner
YH Sumner Consulting

Grant and Appeal Writing and Coaching 

Sandra Tucker

Sandra Tucker
Independent Consultant

Grant and Appeal Writing, Project Management, Fundraising Strategy and Planning

Emily Thome

Emily H. Thome
Independent Consultant

Grant and Appeal Writing

Joseph DiChiaro III

Joseph DiChiaro III
Joseph DiChiaro Consulting

Fundraising Strategy and Execution, Donor Cultivation and Stewardship, Grant and Appeal Writing

Mariah Hickey

Mariah Hickey, MID, MBA, CFRE
MH Insights & Consulting

Fundraising Strategy, Board and Committee Development, Major Gifts, Crafting Key Messages and Cases for Support, Capital Campaign Planning and Implementation

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Jacqueline Erwin
Independent Consultant

Grant and Appeal Writing, Project Management, Crafting Key Messages and Cases for Support, Organizational Storytelling


Cloudbreak sometimes subcontracts pieces of projects to other businesses who specialize in very specific aspects of fundraising work, such as:

  • Individual donor prospect qualification

  • Grant prospect research

  • Graphic design for appeals

  • Nonprofit CPA expertise

If we include a subcontractor on a cost proposal to you, we will provide details on their expertise, fully  manage their work, and bill you for their time.

Interested in becoming a Cloudbreak specialist? Read more here. 

Our Values


You read that right. We believe that grantwriting and fundraising do not have to be stressful and high-pressure. We work with our clients to create systems that calm the chaos of deadlines, word counts, appeals, and prospect lists to arrive at a simple and strategic approach to meeting your revenue targets.


You and the community you serve are the experts in the work you do. We intentionally stay behind the scenes, elevating your voices in appeals and proposals, ensuring you are equipped to reach out to donors and funders, and working hard to accurately and authentically convey the perspectives of your community.

Built on Relationships

All fundraising – including grantwriting—is built around relationships. We approach fundraising as writers, advisors, and project managers who complement effective relationship building. While we won’t build relationships with funders and donors for you, we will coach you on how to do it, and we will ensure that you have sufficient capacity (i.e. systems and skills) to manage those relationships over the long term.


We make sure we know your revenue target and that we track towards it. If you do not have one, we will help you determine one. We will manage your projects at an efficient pace and will adapt to your work style as we do so. We will build dashboards with you and help communicate successes of fundraising and grantwriting beyond just dollars in the door.


We evaluate all fundraising opportunities and grant prospects through the lens of serving your mission. We work to ensure that any fundraising activity we lead or proposal we submit will further your work and serve your community. If an opportunity becomes a distraction, we are not afraid to reprioritize or change course.

Committed to Capacity-Building

We know you will not work with us forever. Everything we do is designed to ensure that we are adding value so that when you move on you have the tools, systems, and skills to proceed successfully without us.

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Find us in the following consultant directories!

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