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  • Graduate, Leadership Detroit (Class XXX)

  • Association of Fundraising Professionals, Greater Detroit Chapter (Two-Term Board President) 

  • AFP Greater Detroit Chapter-National Philanthropy Day, Founding Committee and 30+ year involvement

  • Crain’s Detroit Business – Judge: Best Managed Non-Profit Contest (Since its Inception)

  • Network of Non-Profit Search Consultants (Former International Board Chair)

  • Michigan Association of Healthcare Philanthropy (Board Member)

  • Greater Detroit Non-Profit PR Network (First President)

  • Planned Giving Roundtable of Southeast Michigan (Member & Sponsor)


  • Council of Michigan Foundations (Member; Sponsor/Mentorship Program)

  • Common Ground (Former Board Chair)

  • Forgotten Harvest (Founding Board Member)

  • Social Enterprise Alliance of Michigan (Past Board Member)

  • Spaulding for Children (Past President)

  • Yad Ezra (Founding Board Member, First President)

  • Michigan Committee for World Food Day (Past Board Chair)

  • Bob Bauer’s Marathon for Meals (Co-Creator) Winner-Metro Music Award

  • Food Bank of Oakland County (Past Board Member)

  • Co.act Detroit-Moderator-Corporate Social Responsibility Series

  • Michigan Nonprofit Association-Member

  • Host-WDIV TV Public Affairs Program "Open Doors"

Additionally, Dembs has taught fundraising and marketing for non-profits at Wayne State University in Detroit and Oakland University in Rochester, MI, and is a regular presenter at conferences and seminars nationwide.

Gary Dembs ● President, Founder and Philanthropic Entrepreneur

The Non-Profit Personnel Network (NPPN) was founded in 1987 by Gary Dembs as a retained executive search firm, exclusively serving the national nonprofit sector. Dembs has been working with non-profit organizations for over 35 years. He founded the Non-Profit Personnel Network after a highly successful 21 year career in public relations and broadcasting. He has been a pioneer in combining effective organizational development, marketing, human resources, and fund development strategies for organizations and institutions nationwide.


Dembs is a mission-driven community activist who works to empower organizations to take an integrated approach on the staff and board levels to further the missions of the non-profits he consults with. His work is guided by his mission and core values of honesty, integrity and reliability.

A Detroit native, Dembs received his Bachelor of Science degree from Western Michigan University. In 2008 he was inducted into the WMU School of Communication Outstanding Alumni Academy in recognition of excellence in professional accomplishments and civic service. He was a former radio news and sports reporter in Grand Rapids and Kalamazoo, MI.  

Dembs has been involved with raising money since he was a teenager (see photo).  On the “fun” side of things he has been a rock & roll DJ, a published poet (Thimble Flood, Fingerprints on Silk, Approaching Woodward), a collage artist and has also been studying the JFK assassination since the 1970’s and has even met Caroline Kennedy (Oswald never fired a shot!).  He has met over 200 celebrities including three ex-presidents. He has completed both the Free Press and the Houston Marathon in the span of ten months. In 1985 he was able to secure a $10,000 donation to fight hunger in Detroit, directly from Bruce Springsteen.

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