Amy brought so much value and guidance to our long range planning process. She was incredibly supportive and insightful in helping us build out our process, engaging with staff members and volunteer leaders for input, and ultimately led a leadership retreat that helped us develop the framework for our plan. Our long range planning process and the ultimate plan itself were made better by Amy’s involvement and expertise.

Michael Bergmann, Executive Director, PILI
I frequently refer RRF grantees to Amy when they are looking for someone to help build organizational capacity, plan for the future, or maximize opportunities for growth. She has a great way of connecting with nonprofit leaders and helping them navigate realistic paths through complex situations. Amy’s unique mix of skills, perspective, and creative thinking has helped many nonprofits move forward.
Mary O’Donnell, Senior Program Officer, The Retirement Research Foundation (RRF)
My Board and I worked with Amy over several months to craft a comprehensive strategic plan for Lawyers Lend-A-Hand to Youth. She was a great critical friend to us and the organization – exerting the right mix of questions, feedback, constructive criticism, and best-practice advice.
Genita Robinson, Executive Director, Lawyers Lend-A-Hand to Youth
Amy Wishnick is an amazing resource. Her strategic planning, leadership training and board development services are superb. Amy has a keen understanding of the realities faced by today’s non-profits and brings her facilitation skills to the table in a way that brings the big picture together with the important details and nuances of her client organizations. Amy was critical in the success of my transitioning to a new city leading a new organization. I would highly recommend Amy as an expert in leadership transitions and the aforementioned areas.
Dara Munson, CEO, Chicago Child Care Society
I’ve engaged Amy with two very different organizations — one at the board level, and one working with staff. Her great experience gives her deep perspective on the challenges facing non-profit organizations today. She’s a fantastic listener, perceptive about people and exceptionally diplomatic – she knows how to frame difficult conversations in a positive way. She’s candid but tactful, and gets right to the heart of the issue while still creating space for a process where everyone feels heard. I trust her and value her good counsel.
Catherine Brown, Chief Operating Officer, Chicago Public Library Foundation
Amy Wishnick was outstanding. She provided our organization with vital guidance during a board development process and helped us all navigate a leadership transition. Her clear information, framed as best practices in the field, helped build consensus around change. She was also a wonderful mentor and sounding board to me personally, giving me advice and reassuring me throughout the project.  I would work with Amy again without hesitation, and would recommend her to any group seeking a consultant to help with board projects and other large strategy or policy implementation programs.
Heather Hartley, Executive Director, Audience Architects
Talk about finding the right person at the right time! Our organization is a worldwide membership organization that is turning 100 this year. We had not really done any review of our organizational structure and governance, and with a change in management the new team agreed we needed to do this, and we luckily found Amy Wishnick. Amy’s qualifications are impeccable, and her experience was valuable as we went through a very rigorous review and overhaul. What was most impressive to me was that Amy took the time to understand our organization, with all its quirks. She wasn’t pushing into a pre-packaged idea of what a non-profit should look like, but instead helped us learn and grow into what we needed to become. What could have been a divisive and difficult process, as we overhauled the governance and hired our first Executive Director, instead was a celebration of what our organization can become, and what we mean to our members. Amy’s wisdom and gentle coaching inspired confidence in our volunteer leadership to think big and act decisively.
We were so thrilled with the process and the outcome that we extended Amy’s contract so that she could help us develop our very first Strategic Plan.
We recommend Amy Wishnick most highly with no reservations.
Sherwin Little, Executive Director, American Classical League
Amy expertly facilitated our Strategic Planning session, not only providing a helpful structure for discussing our organization’s goals and objectives but also asking the right questions to get to the heart of the issues we wanted to address. Amy prepared us well for the session, encouraging us to brainstorm key issues on our own beforehand so that we could hit the ground running when we met. during our meeting Amy guided us towards clearly defining our strengths and opportunities as well as identifying our biggest challenges. With direction from Amy, our group was able to not only analyze our present situation but also successfully define our goals and objectives to ensure our success and sustainability as an organization.
LaShunda Gonzalez, Choice Neighborhoods Director, Preservation of Affordable Housing, Inc.
Amy is one of those rare consultants who is a fountain of knowledge and yet begins her work with a tabula rasa. She comes to engage, to learn, to dignify the work of her clients. She starts from their perspective and their world view to build a strategic plan.
Jose E. Lopez, Executive Director, Puerto Rican Cultural Center
Amy served as an Executive Coach for the Chinese American Service League’s Founder/President and the Executive Director as they transitioned into retirement after 35 years of service. Amy also served as the Transition Committee’s Resource Manager and Consultant as the organization transitioned into new leadership. The guidance and counsel that Amy provided the Committee was invaluable. Amy carefully and intuitively advised the Committee on process, challenges and obstacles as the Committee struggled through a Search Firm solicitation, a CEO search and the onboarding of a new CEO for the organization. Amy’s responsiveness to questions, thoughtfulness to issues and resourcefulness to a challenging search was impressive. Meanwhile, she guided the outgoing leadership with sensitivity and care. Amy is a gem and a consummate professional. Her ability to listen, strategize and guide in a natural and seamless manner provides success without drama, egos or conflict. As the Chair of the Transition Committee, former Chair of the Board and a leading voice in a complex community, I am honored and grateful to have had Amy Wishnick as a guiding hand in the succession of the Chinese American Service League in Chicago.
Ernest Wong, fASLA, Principal, site design group ltd. Past President, Board of Directors, Chinese American Service League
Amy was a calm, guiding force that helped bring clarity and refinement to the Board as we tried to determine the organization’s priorities. An excellent listener and blue-sky thinker, Amy truly captured everyone’s varying points of view and helped us focus. She was exactly what we needed!
Lynndah Easterwood Lahey, Executive Director, Escorted Transportation Services Northwest
As the new staff leader for a strategic planning process that was well underway when I came to the task, Amy’s guidance, counsel, and extensive experience were very helpful. Her steady direction aided in creating a planning process and structure that led to a solid, achievable Strategic Plan that all Board members and staff leadership could fully endorse.
Les Inch, PhD, Vice President, Performance, Planning, and Policy, SGA Youth & Family Services
We have enjoyed working with Amy Wishnick as she is personable, competent, and readily builds trust. We invited Amy to develop a program for non-revenue generating staff and were pleased with the results, so asked her back to consult on issues of change in the workplace. Amy brought her friendly presence and diverse employment background to the table and initiated conversation among employees from all levels of our organization. She skillfully facilitated group discussion highlighting the positive accomplishments of our organization – while recognizing our need to voice opinions about aspects that needed attention. In the end, Amy broke important ground for us as an organization by allowing us to talk freely about change in the workplace – how it happens and that without change, there isn’t growth. Working with Amy was a positive experience, and she is also a delight to be around. We look forward to partnering with her again in the future.
Carol Nelson-Cheng, Vice President, Foundation Operations & Advancement Services, Childrens Memorial Foundation
On behalf of the Executive Board, I want to express our appreciation for the excellent job you did on the comprehensive assessment of our synagogue management and operations. We could never have undertaken such a project internally. Your expertise and objective, “outsider” status inspired trust, gave you access to information and insights that might not have been shared with our own professionals or lay leaders, and lent necessary credibility to the resulting report. Finally, I want you to know that as the congregation’s main point person on this project, I felt a true partnership in our working relationship. Your ability to listen and process information helped us identify the core matters, and your open-mindedness and willingness to engage in back and forth dialogue helped us work through tough issues and ensured that the project was tailored to address our unique needs.
Betsy Lassar, President, Congregation Solel
Amy was a consultant for our nonprofit at a pivotal point in our organization when we became a stand-alone 501(c)(3). She guided our very apprehensive board and staff through a careful review of our strengths and weaknesses – all the while encouraging and supporting us. The result was a document and vision that laid out a path for growth, development and even serenity! – that we continue to use to this day. I happy to say that our organization flourished in no small part due to her careful and supportive collaboration with us.
Barbara Sittler, Executive Director, Senior Connections NFP
You did an outstanding job planning and facilitating our weekend board retreat. You helped develop an agenda that addressed our unique organizational needs as well as our specific goals for the retreat. Your flexibility and intuitiveness about when to deviate from the planned structure were exceptional and contributed to the success of the retreat. With your help we were able to articulate our priorities and craft a stronger mission statement.
Kay Berkson, Founder and Past Board Chair, Changing Worlds
Amy was hired by our board of directors to assist with hiring an executive director for the non-profit agency that we support. We (the board) had not been in a position to conduct an executive search, so we needed professional guidance on development of an end-to-end process. Amy diligently worked with the board to identify qualified candidates, conduct interviews and evaluate the candidates until we found the perfect fit. Her advice during the process was invaluable. She kept the board focused on the primary objective of the search – finding the right candidate for the organization, which we did. Amy was encouraging when we were discouraged and celebrated with us when we made our final decision.

Amy also worked with us to assess board development and to begin the process of growing the board. Amy facilitated board discussions to identify our current and future needs. Based on her invaluable assistance we have successfully identified several highly qualified candidates and have on-boarded new members.

I appreciate Amy’s professionalism, discretion, non-profit expertise and passion for the work that she does. She helped make an extremely stressful situation easier to work through. I enthusiastically recommend Amy Wishnick and Wishnick and Associates as a non-profit consultant.

Nancy Bonner, AVP, Business Process Consultant at Zurich North America
Amy Wishnick was matched as a mentor to me when I was a student in the Spertus Institute Certificate in Jewish Leadership Program particularly because of some of the challenges in Jewish leadership that I wanted to explore with a mentor. Amy was able to listen to those challenges and to provide me with concrete ideas, strategies, and steps to take for navigating an impending, big change in my professional career as a senior Jewish educator. Amy helped me think through in detail strategies for exactly how I could navigate the change as well as how to help my staff navigate it. Amy’s advice and questions to consider were empowering. Thank you, Amy!
Lynne Lieberman, Senior Director, Lorraine & Jack N. Friedman Commission for Jewish Education of the Palm Beaches
Amy has acted as a sounding board when I’m making decisions so that I’m not working in a vacuum. Having no partners and being too small to have an HR department, it is helpful for me to have someone with a lot of real-world experience and good insight to talk to. When I veer too far toward just being a nice guy, Amy steers me back toward being a good employer — not always the same thing!
Ted Lowitz, President, Talisman Tiles
Amy brings a great deal to the table with her strategic planning process. She excels at guiding teams to express ideas and constructively discuss various approaches to execution. She has a very rational approach that is flexible yet structured enough to drive positive outcomes. In general, Amy is personable, engaging and upbeat; a great facilitator and addition to any team. I thoroughly enjoyed working with her on the strategic plan for the Chicago Artists’ Coalition and look forward to another opportunity to work with her. She is an A++ individual.
Juli Bark, Chief Marketing Officer at GE Healthcare

The American Classical League will celebrate its 100th anniversary in 2019. In 2017 we voted for significant changes in our constitution, and subsequently our first Board of Governors met in 2018 and adopted a mission statement, a statement of core values, and a three-year Strategic Plan. Amy Wishnick served as our guide in this work, from the process of self-evaluation and discernment through the initial steps of implementation, and she was exactly the individual we needed. She brought not only professional knowledge and insight, but also the ability to listen to our membership and to understand both the issues that needed attention and the wide array of strengths already in place. The members of the various task forces involved worked very hard because Amy instilled confidence in the process and thus in its outcome. This labor turned into a pleasure, and our consultant has become a friend to our organization and to many of us as individuals.

Mary Pendergraft, Professor of Classical Languages, Wake Forest College; President, American Classical League