About Me

About Me, Charmaine S. Torma

Hmmm, these “About Me” sections are just awkward. I understand that the reader wants to understand who is writing the blog, but it is just plain difficult to write an authentic “About Me.”

Charmaine, the Not-For-Profit Professional

It is frightening to type this, but I have spent my entire adult-life (20+ years) in the not-for-profit (NFP) world. I have worked with organizations of all types, sizes, and operating budgets. The large majority of these organizations have missions focused on educational equality. My role hasn’t been on the programmatic side, but in regards to securing the philanthropic income to fulfill the organization’s mission. It’s bizarre to think that I actually enjoy asking people to donate, but I really do enjoy it. I love the strategy behind it and I love teaching others to do it. More specifically, to do it well.

In 2015, I embarked on an exciting (and scary) adventure, guiding NFP organizations on how to successfully secure philanthropic investors. Very quickly, I learned that these organizations needed guidance on governance, as well as advancement (development, marketing, and communications). My services expanded to include consultative support in board governance, strategic planning, and all aspects of philanthropy.

You might be thinking, what kind of experience do I have in providing this type of support. This is totally valid, and prior to consulting, I served as the Vice President of College Relations at Holy Cross College in Notre Dame, Indiana while also serving as an adjunct development consultant for Catholic School Management, a firm providing comprehensive services in all areas of Catholic school life and operation (because a happy life is a busy one). I also worked for tiny organizations, medium-sized organizations, as well as the larger, higher educational institutions.

Why a Blog?

Working for NFP organizations is a true act of service and it takes a lot of energy and emotional strength. I want to use this blog to share my real-life experiences, as well as voice my thoughts, frustrations, and challenges. Honestly, I see this blog providing me with some therapeutic relief.

If you’re looking for a blog that is grammatically correct and doesn’t contain spelling errors, don’t even bother reading this blog. I guarantee my posts will contain many errors. Rather than focusing on perfection, I’ll be writing my posts as if I’m sitting down with close friends and having a candid conversation. I know that this style isn’t for everyone.

Charmaine, the Person

I joke that I am a boisterous yet spiteful Sri Lankan American Princess (SLAP). Honestly, I’m proud to be “brown” and love my culture. I am loyal and will stand up and support my friends. However, I don’t provide unlimited passes...if you purposely do harm and continue to do so, I have no use for you and I will call you out on it.

I have always had a difficult time taking care of my physical and emotional health, and constantly working to find that balance. Some days, I will share those struggles because my work performance is linked to my emotional and physical well-being.

AND, most importantly, I live for my community. My priority is my partner-in-life, my husband, Mark. Then, my children M and C. And of course our extended family (which includes pets) and my friends.

Be a Part of My Charitable Training Community (CTC)

I hope you will join my journey in life and be a member of my Charitable Training Community (CTC)