Johnny Cooper

Johnny has spent his career as a nonprofit leader focused on fundraising and organizational leadership, serving most recently as Chief of Philanthropy for Lions Club International Foundation (LCIF), the charitable arm of the International Association of Lions Clubs, the world’s largest volunteer humanitarian service organization with 1.4 million members.

In this role, he oversaw LCIF’s global development, operations, marketing, and communication. He spearheaded a $300M comprehensive campaign, facilitated a vast structure of nearly 48,000 volunteer fundraisers across 205 countries, and provided strategic guidance and resources to 750 districts in 250 regions. Mr. Cooper has led international teams as large as 67 across four continents and advocated for humanitarian aid at the World Health Organization and among Ministers of Health, Finance, and Technology in countries throughout East and Southern Africa, Europe, South Asia, and Latin America.

Johnny has represented organizations across the charitable sector, including higher education, global health, mental health, LGBTQ+ rights and services, disaster relief, and services for the Armed Forces. He served as Director of Corporate and Foundation Relations at the University of San Francisco and Director of Corporate Partnerships for Orbis International, an international blindness prevention organization where he led the international launch of Orbis' Flying Eye Hospital in 2016, the world's only ophthalmic teaching hospital aboard a cargo jet.

As Director of Business Development for Global Health Corps, he focused on health equity and health systems strengthening in the developing world; served as Senior Development Officer of Corporate and Foundation Partnerships for the American Red Cross, raising more than $77 million with his team for response and recovery in the wake of Superstorm Sandy; and led national development efforts as Director of Development for The Trevor Project, a crisis intervention and suicide prevention organization for LGBTQ+ young people. He has and continues to provide development and leadership counsel to nonprofit organizations, both professionally and pro bono. His longest client relationship and favorite charitable organization is, dating back to 2010.

Before joining the nonprofit sector as a professional, he served as a board member for Youth First Texas, an LGBTQ+ youth services organization in North Texas, now a program of the Resource Center of Dallas.

Johnny’s career in development is dedicated to impacting the lives of others, and his experience is underscored by his commitment to academic and professional achievement. Johnny has been a member of the Association of Fundraising Professionals for more than 10 years and a Certified Fund Raising Executive (CFRE) since 2013.

Johnny Cooper resides in Chicago, Illinois, with his husband, John, their newborn son, Jack, and a German Shorthaired Pointer, named Baron.

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