Sonya Shields

Sonya Shields is the Executive Director and President of Cause Effective.  Cause Effective partners with nonprofit organizations to provide strategic guidance, training, and coaching in the areas of fundraising, communications, board governance, leadership development and strategic planning.  Cause Effective has a 40 year history in the nonprofit sector and has worked with over 7,000 nonprofit organizations.  

Sonya is an accomplished nonprofit executive with over 25 years experience at the executive level with local, national, and international organizations in the social justice and human rights space.

Sonya’s special sauce is her deep experience in development, marketing and communications, along with program and organizational development. She has raised over $40 million dollars to help strengthen mission-driven organizations – taking organizations to another level of visibility and engagement to diversify their funding base. She has served as the Director of Development for the National LGBTQ Task Force, NYC Anti-Violence Project, Astraea Foundation and Keep a Child Alive.  She held the position of Chief Officer for External Relations at Brooklyn Community Services and Chief Operating Officer at Getting Out Staying Out.

Sonya has worked as a consultant with many organizations and she is a sought-after speaker, coach, and trainer.  She has been invited to speak and conduct workshops for institutions like Nonprofit Staten Island, Columbia University, Nonprofit Quarterly, Nonprofit Westchester, Better Business Bureau, Westchester Fairfield County Community Foundation, Association of Fundraising Professionals, the Association of Black Foundation Executives and many more.

Sonya is the Chair of the DEI/Values Committee and Secretary of the Board of Directors for the American LGBTQ Museum and Board Member of the Association for Fundraising Professionals- New York. Sonya received a B.A. in Public Relations from Howard University in Washington, DC and lives in Brooklyn, New York.