Simone Joyaux

In Memory of Fundraising Legend, Simone Joyaux

by Daryl Upsall FCIOF pain, 4th May 2021

Yesterday, the fundraising world was in shock at the terrible surprise death of Simone Joyaux ACFRE, Adv Dip, FAFP, of one of the most amazing, inspiring, powerful forces of nature that I have ever come across in my many decades in the sector.

I have served on AFP committees and working groups with Simone (aka Sim One) and at conferences around the world with her. I loved Simone’s outspoken nature, her frankness and frequent use of Anglo-Saxon to fully express her never held back opinions. She did not accept fools gladly and always challenged pre-conceived ideas, especially when presented by so called “leaders” in the sector. Let’s not pretend that Simone was there to make us comfortable or happy professionally.

Simone, with her Certificate in Philanthropic Psychology, inspired colleagues around the world through her many conference apparencies (never with PowerPoint) trainings and excellent books. My personal favourite book and conference session is “Firing Lousy Board Members: And Helping the Others Succeed”

To many colleagues, and especially women, she was a true inspiration as to how and why to take a sledgehammer not any glass ceiling. Canadian fundraising leader, Tania Little, describes Simone as a her SHero.

I send big hugs to Simone’s life partner, Tom Ahern. Your relationship was also an inspiration. Miryam and I have been sharing the beautiful memories of us four having lunch together in the Mussolini built Art Deco hotel and spa where we were all speaking at the Festival del Fundraising. Happy days.

The sector misses a sHero.

We can only imagine that wherever Simone is now, she will already be angry and giving the leadership hell about their poor governance system. She is still kicking ass!

#success #leadership #leaders #governance # #inspiration #motivation #nonprofitleadership #nonprofitfundraising #nonprofits #ngos #charities #afpglobal

Please see below links to other sector tributes to Simone Joyaux:

Caring Bridge – Where you can write your memories of Simone and see Tom Ahern’s messages

The Agitator


Association of Fundraising Professionals (AFP)

Critical Fundraising