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

 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 brings a marketing and event background to the team as well as her passion for working with charitable organizations. Being able to put on a successful event while bringing a community closer together is her goal. She initially discovered her love of events when she worked as a philanthropic event organizer while attending the University of Arizona. Alex holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Consumer Science & Retailing.

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

SUPERPOWER: Super efficient 

Alex Springberg

Sarah Janssen

Senior Fundraising and Events Producer & Lead Designer

Sarah loves working in the nonprofit world because she believes nonprofits are meeting, with great intention, the needs of people and animals in our communities. Her eye for design, knack for organization, and heart for service are what draw her to the event industry and fundraising.

Sarah has a Bachelor of Science degree in Marketing. During her free time, you can find her playing piano, diving into a new DIY project, or cuddling with her bunnies: Mimosa and Coco and cat Dasha.

SUPERPOWER: Super creative

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   

Kavitha Peters

Christy Martin

Fundraising & Events Producer

Christy is an experienced community event manager with a background in luxury hospitality.  She has lead events that run the gamut from formal galas to family festivals to drone shows, and thrives on the opportunity to get creative and provide WOW moments.

Christy loves working with nonprofits, as it gives her a feeling of accomplishment and purpose to add her expertise and enthusiasm to the success of a greater mission.  It is her goal that everyone she interacts with walks away feeling like a VIP. 

Christy, her husband, and their dog Henry are new to Seattle and are looking forward to exploring the beautiful PNW.  In her downtime, she can be found catching up on pop culture, watching Bravo, and listening to Taylor Swift

SUPERPOWER: Super Fun

Fundraising & Special Events Assistant

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

Kerry Shanahan

Colleen O’Connor

Fundraising and Events 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

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.

Tune-in to our podcast and learn our team’s superpowers, odd quirks, how we dealt with a man brandishing an axe at an event, and more!

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Nice Things  PEOPLE SAY ABOUT US

They more than tripled the amount they had raised the previous year!

"I worked with the GFS Events Team on the Taste of the Valley auction for the Snoqualmie Valley Preservation Alliance recently. I was so impressed! They more than TRIPLED the amount they had raised the previous year because of GFS's excellent connections and organization of volunteers. Those are results to brag about! In addition, I heard people throughout the evening, including the auctioneer, say that this was one of the best events they had ever attended."

-Jenni Butz

Owner, Wordspark

GFS Events helped us coordinate a large fundraising event, and it was flawless!

"Being brand new to the nonprofit fundraising world, I wouldn’t have known where to even begin without their support. Everyone we worked with at GFS Events was a true professional, listened to what we wanted, and helped us find creative solutions that worked within our budget. They were highly organized and skilled at moving our planning forward in a way that never felt rushed or overwhelming. They really shined on event day, where everything ran like a well-oiled machine."

-Katy Herko

Philanthropy Manager

Highly recommend GFS for fundraising and events.

“2020 was a difficult year for fundraising, we could not have done it without GFS. We transitioned our regular 2000 person walk & run to a virtual fundraiser. Not only did GFS help us beat our fundraising goal, they ended up working about 2-3 months longer than originally expected. I HIGHLY recommend GFS for fundraising and events. They have helped us with our event for multiple years now. Great work again!”

-Brad Near

Vice President, Seattle Animal Shelter Foundation

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

Proud to have exceeded our fundraising goal by $40,000!

“We had the pleasure of working with Sarah at GFS to spearhead our Spring Salon Fundraiser (virtual program) for our non-profit, Key to Change. Her design sense and branding for our event was on point and made our entire presentation look professional and engaging. The fundraising platform GFS recommended, Auctria, was easy to use for our donors and the way Sarah designed everything made it all over the top. We were proud to have exceeded our fundraising goal by $40,000! GFS’ fees were certainly money well spent. Would highly recommend!”

Ashley Glovier

Executive Assistance
Key to Change

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

GFS Events is a joy to work with.

"Sarah was my point person for the Easter Seals 75th Anniversary gala last night (June 16th). It could not have gone better. Sarah and her team made sure I had everything I needed. It makes my job as the event emcee SO much less stressful. Can't wait to work with GFS again!"

-Mark Wright

Emcee

If you are looking for hands-on planning in the Seattle area, look no further!

"I worked with GFS as an MC & DJ to put together entertainment for a Fundraiser in Spring of 2022. I found them to be great to work with, resourceful, very approachable & on the task. Looking forward to co-create more memorable events. If you are looking for hands-on planning in the Seattle area, look no further!"

-DJ Prashant

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, Eastside Baby Corner

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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