We see your event through a fresh set of eyes

GFS Events offers innovative ideas and fundraising solutions that help your nonprofit achieve a fundraising goal that you thought was out of reach.

Our Team

Smart, witty, detailed-oriented, and mission-focused, our team meets the mark every time. We are honest and transparent with our clients. We respect the beliefs of our diverse clientele and we care deeply about the work we do. Learn more about us below (and check out our podcast!)

Gazala Uradnik 

she/her

 Founder

I started GFS Events in 2012 because I knew that nonprofits needed help through my own board and volunteer work. I am an entrepreneur by nature and starting my own businesses was a natural progression of my goals and skills. I really listen to my clients to understand their needs. So many nonprofits need assistance with creating and executing a successful fundraising event. You can have a committed set of volunteers but you also need expertise, organization and knowledge of fundraising principles to really knock it out of the park.

I love fundraising. I love working with nonprofits and helping them to reach their goals. I have been able to double and sometimes triple the fundraising goals for my nonprofit clients. It makes what I do every day a privilege and not just a job.

SUPER POWER: Super calm under pressure

Director of Business Development and Special Events

Alex is committed to bringing the fun in fundraising for all GFS clients. Her passion for event planning is intertwined with her love of being able to be a part of so many amazing charitable organizations. Alex’s goal is to collaborate with organizations and bring them peace of mind during the planning process.  Being able to put on a successful event while bringing a community closer together is her goal. She is excited to be spearheading the Southern California initiative of bringing GFS Events’ nonprofit event planning expertise to organizations in California.

When she’s not at work you can catch her at a Padre’s game, exploring the outdoors, or at Salt & Straw.

SUPERPOWER: Super efficient 

Alex Springberg

she/her

Kavitha Peters

she/her

Senior Fundraising and Events Producer

Kavitha Peters developed her passion for fundraising and event planning while serving on a local nonprofit board over the last four years. She has managed the planning and execution of a variety of fundraising programs including auction events, corporate sponsorships, and fun runs. What she enjoys most about working with nonprofits is building relationships and community involvement.

She is especially passionate about advocating for children. Kavitha holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Chemistry from the University of Richmond and completed her graduate studies at the University of Florida. She lives in Sammamish with her husband and two children. In her free time, she enjoys running, hiking and exploring all the Pacific Northwest has to offer.

SUPERPOWER: Super analytical   

Fundraising & Special Events Producer

Laura enjoys working with nonprofits because they help the community grow in positive ways. With her giving spirit and grateful attitude, Laura ties her love for serving the community with her knack for event planning. She loves channeling her creative skills, work ethic, and organizational skills to help nonprofits reach their goals. She especially loves meeting with clients, hearing their vision, and bringing that vision to fruition. To Laura, the most rewarding part of planning non-profit events is that moment on event day where through the fast-paced energy on the day of, she gets to take a moment and cherish people from all walks of life uniting under one roof towards a common goal. 

Laura has a Bachelor of Arts in Hospitality, Restaurant, Tourism Management from University of Nebraska. In her free time, she enjoys taking her Golden Retriever on hikes and watching sports with her husband. She loves her St. Louis Blues and Nebraska Huskers!

 

SUPERPOWER: Super creative

Laura Drazdys

she/her

Kerry Shanahan

she/her

Fundraising & Special Events Producer

Kerry has a passion for engaging and working with charitable organizations and helping to create events that will support the local community. Her love for events was initially inspired by her time working for an environmental non-profit, after which she continued to integrate sustainable practices into her event planning. She is a team player that loves a challenge and always aims to go above and beyond for every event. 

Kerry has a Bachelor of Arts in Media Studies and Production. In her free time, she enjoys cooking, listening to new podcasts, and spending time hiking and exploring the outdoors.

SUPERPOWER: Super organized

Fundraising & Special Events Producer

Tatum champions the vital role nonprofit organizations occupy in building strong communities that positively impact people’s lives. She brings over ten years of fundraising experience supporting nonprofits throughout the Pacific Northwest. As a team member of GFS Events, Tatum is dedicated to supporting clients in all aspects of event planning from inception to completion with the goal of developing memorable events, streamlining processes, and creating long lasting partnerships along the way. Ultimately, she’s focused on seamlessly delivering excellence in fundraising events. When not working, you can find Tatum enjoying nature’s abundance with family, friends and her adventurous dog, Daisy.

SUPERPOWER: Intuition

Tatum Mackay

she/her

Colleen O’Connor

she/her

Assistant Fundraising & Event Producer

Colleen has an unbridled enthusiasm for promoting positive change in her community. Her desire to help has led her to work and volunteer in multiple nonprofit sectors. From organic farming to youth development to domestic violence awareness, Colleen is inspired to use her problem-solving skills and upbeat attitude to adapt and meet the needs of all types of nonprofits.

Colleen has a Bachelor of Science in Geography from Portland State University. In her free time, she enjoys karaoke with friends, trying new restaurants, and going on road trips. 

SUPERPOWER: Super outgoing

Assistant Fundraising & Event Producer

Amy found her passion for event planning through working for a local sports team and volunteering for multiple non-profit events. During this time, she has learned how much an event can change a person’s life and is committed to helping and making a difference. 

Amy is motivated to use her organizational, multitasking, and communication skills to meet clients’ needs. 

Amy has a Bachelor of Arts in Sociology from UW Seattle. In her free time, she enjoys Salsa dancing, reading, and finding new recipes to bake. 

SUPERPOWER: Super empathetic

Amy Lopez

she/her

Our Mission

Our mission is to raise more money for nonprofit organizations by creating, managing and executing successful fundraising events.

Equity Statement

GFS Events is a minority, woman-owned business with a passion for providing nonprofits with the support they need to raise vital funding. As a small event and consulting firm, we strive to act as an agent of change for nonprofits that serve underrepresented communities.

In our commitment to racial equity, we have offered pro-bono services to the local NAACP chapter in the effort to raise both awareness and funding to the Black Lives Matter Movement. By attending diversity panels and conversations, our team has learned how to make events more inclusive for those that are differently-abled. GFS Events is proud to partner with people of all racial and cultural backgrounds, sexual orientation, mental and physical abilities, and religious practices.

GFS Events was recently certified by the WA State Office of Minority and Woman Owned Businesses as a Minority and Woman Owned Business.

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Nice Things  PEOPLE SAY ABOUT US

Deciding to work with GFS Events was one of the best decisions I have made as a non-profit leader!

"They helped us plan and organize our first major fundraiser and we raised nearly 30 times more than we’ve ever raised. You read that right 30 TIMES. The excellence with which they coordinated everything raised awareness about our organization and we made valuable connections that resulted in additional funding, support and collaboration. The team is knowledgeable and professional. Make the investment, you won’t be disappointed."

-Cortaiga Collins

Executive Director, Foundations for Strengthening Families

GFS made event planning and execution seamless and easy for our organization.

"They are detail oriented, organized, and thorough in their processes. They also worked extra hard to ensure we received what we expected from our vendors. We loved working with GFS, and look forward to our next collaboration."

-Michelle Hammer

Events and Engagement Coordinator, Executive Director of Planned Parenthood Great Northwest, Hawai'i, Alaska, Indiana, Kentucky

This is a STELLAR team of seasoned event planners.

I've worked with GFS at 20 or more events in the last 5 years and I am impressed by them each and every time. They lead super organized and detailed planning meetings.  On event day they are prepared and ready to rock on behalf of their clients.  Speaking as an auctioneer/emcee, I feel fully supported in doing my job excellently when GFS is the event planning team.

-Sasha Cousineau

Auctioneer/Emcee

Gazala and her team provide valuable insight

“I worked with an organization that typically brought in a fundraising assistant each year and instead, we decided to hire GFS events and I absolutely believe it was the best choice. Not only did they provide a skilled auction coordinator to help us plan and execute our second virtual event, as importantly, Gazala and her team provided valuable expertise in guiding us with options and decisions to consider throughout the process. I highly recommend GFS!”

-Elizabeth Richmond

Development Director
The Jewish Day School of Metropolitan Seattle

If you're looking for a team to help you plan your next event, look no further than GFS!

GFS went above and beyond helping us plan and execute Community for Youth's annual fundraising gala, and to say that they were absolutely crucial is an understatement. The entire team is truly committed to their clients, and it really shows from the first day of planning, to the day of the event, and through the event closing period after the night is over! They will do it all, and they will do it with kindness, flexibility, and genuine investment in your organization's mission and what you hope to accomplish through your event. THANK YOU!

-Ellen Throneberry

Development & Communications Manager, Community for Youth

Thank you, GFS!

This spring, Seattle Country Day School set out to run a fundraising event with a truncated timeline and a great number of tasks, ranging from auction item procurement, to video creation, to the use of an online event platform. We greatly appreciated the group’s organizational skills, technological expertise, contacts, and events savvy, and together, we created a successful event in under four months. Thank you, GFS!

Delia Ward

Director of Communications

Such a huge help!

"Couldn't have made a better decision in hiring GFS Events!  The commitment they showed made us feel like we had our own dedicated part-time employee!"

-Kevin Hoppes

Executive Director, Epilepsy Foundation

We highly recommend GFS!

"WPSR was fortunate to have GFS support us for our major annual fundraiser and we couldn't have been more fortunate to have their deep experience and expertise throughout the process. The entire team are incredibly skilled and professional. They made a huge workload feel manageable, and made a nerve-wracking fundraising undertaking feel doable and even fun at times!"

-Max Savishinsky

Executive Director, Washington Physicians for Social Responsibility

The whole team is incredibly easy and fun to work with and they make our job so much smoother.

"My company, 6162 Productions has collaborated with GFS Events' clients on multiple projects over the years. They're incredible partners who lend their expertise in logistics, creativity, and strategy to each project. The whole team is incredibly easy and fun to work with and they make our job so much smoother."

-Michael Sharon

Producer, 6162 Productions

It has been a pleasure to work with Kavitha, Gazala, and team for the last two years.

"The GFS team is caring, open, highly organized, and professional. I trust their advice and ability to manage multiple aspects of events (live, remote, hybrid, etc.). It has been a pleasure to work with Kavitha, Gazala, and team for the last two years."

-Helen Banks Routon

Director of Development and Community Relations, KidVantage

If you're looking for an event partner to help create, manage, and execute the event you've always wanted, hire GFS Events today!

"Organized, dynamic, and highly professional event visionaries!
That's how I would describe the talented team at GFS Events.

As a benefit auctioneer, I've been working with Gazala and GFS Events for several years. They always exceed expectations! GFS gets to know the client and their mission, helping them tell their best story, which in turn delivers maximum fundraising results.

If you're looking for an event partner to help create, manage, and execute the event you've always wanted, hire GFS Events today!"

-Matt Lorch

Auctioneer

Gazala and her team always stayed super calm

"I worked as a photographer for one the fundraising event managed by GFS Events. Gazala and her team always stayed super calm and in control, dealing with every last minutes details, wile keeping everything moving very smoothly. Which made my job easier!"

-Pierre Frevol

Photographer, Folrev Photography

Thank you, GFS!

"This spring, Seattle Country Day School set out to run a fundraising event with a truncated timeline and a great number of tasks, ranging from auction item procurement, to video creation, to the use of an online event platform. We greatly appreciated the group’s organizational skills, technological expertise, contacts, and events savvy, and together, we created a successful event in under four months. Thank you, GFS!"

-Delia Ward

We're pretty social!

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