Foundation Staff

Allison Rickels, CFRE

Allison is executive director/CEO of the FarmHouse Foundation, serving as the first and only woman CEO of a men’s fraternity educational foundation. She began this role in June 2007. In the Foundation’s 50-year history, Allison is only the second person to fill the position on a full-time basis. Allison has been part of the FarmHouse Foundation staff since July 2001, first as the director of annual fund and communications, and then as the senior director of the annual fund and assistant secretary to the Board of Trustees. For 10 years, she was the design editor for Pearls & Rubies, the Fraternity’s award-winning magazine.

A native of Cedar Rapids, Iowa, Allison graduated in May 2001 with a degree in public relations and minors in marketing and journalism from the University of Northern Iowa. She is a Certified Fund Raising Executive (CFRE), a designation only 6,000 fundraising professionals internationally hold. In August 2013, the North-American Interfraternity Conference Foundation (NICF) honored Allison with the prestigious William D. Jenkins Outstanding Professional Award. The award recognizes outstanding professional achievement and exemplary service in fundraising and philanthropy in the fraternity and sorority movement and craft. In November 2014, Allison and the Foundation Staff was honored with the “Excellence in Fundraising” Award by the Association of Fundraising Professionals (AFP) Mid-America Chapter at the National Philanthropy Day Celebration.

Today, Allison serves as Vice President for the NICF Board of Directors. She is also on the Board of Directors and the Executive Committee for the University of Northern Iowa Alumni Association. Allison is a member of the AFP MidAmerica Chapter, served on their board of directors for six years, and is a facilitator for their annual Fundraising 101 Seminar. She is active with her sorority, Alpha Phi Fraternity, serving on its Quarterly Editorial Board and is President of the Greater Kansas City Alpha Phi Alumnae Chapter. In 2010, she received Alpha Phi’s esteemed national Ursa Major Award, for her role as the FarmHouse Foundation’s Executive Director. She served five years on the Fraternity Communications Association’s board of directors and in 2007 received their Marilyn Simpson Ford Award for service to the association. She is also a member of PEO, women’s philanthropic educational organization.

Allison’s husband, Nick, is Senior Product Engineer for Weld Racing, an after-market wheel manufacturing company. He proudly became an honorary member of FarmHouse at Conclave in August 2016. Allison, Nick, and their two daughters, Sydney (9½) and Delaney (6), live in Kansas City, Mo.

As the Executive Director of the FarmHouse Foundation, Allison advocates and implements the Foundation’s mission and strategic plan; plans and achieves the Foundation’s fundraising initiatives and goals to foster the development of engaged members and donors; maintains the administration of the Foundation; monitors and supervises fundraising by local Foundation Councils and housing campaigns; approves and authorizes distribution of all Foundation grants and scholarships; oversees the educational portion of chapter housing and the chapter housing loan program; and coordinates with FarmHouse Fraternity initiatives, mutual activities, and interest on behalf of the Foundation.