Kia Croom has built an impressive career in nonprofit fundraising and digital marketing over the past two decades. Her passion for nonprofits began while volunteering at H.O.P.E. Through Divine Intervention, Inc. (HTDI, Inc.), a homeless services agency in Atlanta. At the time, she was working as a local news writer and reporter while completing her bachelor's degree in journalism. Although Kia initially dreamed of becoming a broadcast news anchor, her path took a turn after she volunteered to write her first-ever successful six-figure grant proposal for the shelter.
Following this achievement, HTDI, Inc. offered Kia her first full-time fundraising job as a development director. She continued to advance her career by taking on roles of increasing responsibility in nonprofits serving people and communities of color across the nation. To date, she has raised nearly half a billion dollars in support of these causes.
After 22 years in the industry, Kia founded Kia Croom Fundraising & Philanthropy, a full-scale fundraising firm that exclusively serves organizations and institutions addressing structural inequities affecting Black and Brown people and communities. Kia's motivation for launching her firm was clear:
"I created a Black-woman-owned fundraising firm in a space dominated by white men and women. I believe the fundraising sector needs a diverse firm that can effectively speak to the needs of Black and Brown people—one that focuses on community voice and inclusion and advocates for racial justice for these communities. It's time," she said.
Kia holds a bachelor's degree in Communication Arts from Clark Atlanta University, where she is a proud HBCU alumnus. She earned her Master of Science in Public Administration from Kennesaw State University. As a dedicated lifelong learner, she has also obtained certificates in Fund Development from the University of Richmond, Corporate Social Responsibility from Pepperdine University, Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion from Cornell University, and Fundraising & Digital Marketing from Northwestern University.
Born and raised in Oakland, California, Kia is a proud mother to Xavier, a college-bound high school senior. In her spare time, she enjoys publishing new episodes of the Black Fundraiser's Podcast, which celebrates, inspires, and equips Black and Brown nonprofit professionals to become nonprofit executives.