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NRAEF Boosts Fundraising Efforts with New Hires

CHICAGO - Mike Konstant and Linda Crouchelli have been hired by the National Restaurant Association to strengthen its fundraising efforts, according to the locally based NRAEF.

Konstant is director of strategic partnerships for all fundraising activities while Crouchelli is director of fundraising and special events.

"We are thrilled to have both Mike and Linda join our team," stated Mary A. Adolf, president and chief operating officer of the NRAEF. "With their combined fundraising expertise, we are confident that we will be able to work with more companies throughout this great industry and provide the industry with even more solutions to recruitment and retention challenges."

In his new role, Konstant will be the key liaison for non-event sponsorships and donors to the scholarship fund. Crouchelli will be responsible for overseeing the NRAEF's event series, including: the Pebble Beach Leadership Classic, the Michael E. Hurst Student Forum, the Salute to Excellence Awards Gala, the Spirit Awards Breakfast, and the National ProStart Student Invitational.

Konstant and Crouchelli will report to John Bluemke, Sr., vice president revenue development, and they will share the responsibility of developing and implementing strategic fundraising initiatives including the annual and planned giving programs.

Konstant comes to the NRAEF most recently as an independent consultant, having spent the last year working in sales and operations management for an events management company in Chicago. Prior to this, Konstant spent six years in the field headquarters in Chicago for the National Association of Manufacturers, where he generated and supported the new membership acquisition and retention of Fortune 500 manufacturers, resulting in record revenue growth.

Konstant received his Masters in Business Administration from the University of Michigan and his Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration - Marketing from the University of Illinois at Urbana.

Crouchelli comes to the NRAEF having served as the director of special events for the Greater Chicago Food Depository for the past ten years. With the Food Depository, Crouchelli annually managed $1.5 million in fundraising event initiatives, including the Commercial Real Estate Awards Dinner, the Bag Hunger Auction, and the Food Industry Awards Dinner. Prior to her position with the Food Depository, Crouchelli held positions with both the National Multiple Sclerosis Society and the Lakeside Group.

Crouchelli is a Chicago native and has received her Bachelor of Science degree in Advertising from the University of Illinois at Urbana. She is also a member of the Association of Fundraising Professionals.

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