California Fundraising Auctioneer more than Doubles Horse RescueEvent’s Revenue

PRLog (Press Release) – Aug. 20, 2013 – NAPA, Calif.Napa Valley, CA – Elite Auctions and Fundraising Services more than doubles Sunrise Horse Rescue’s profit at their 4th annual Harvest of Hope Benefit Auction Event. Professional auctioneer, Mike Grigg presided over the live auction which brought in nearly $50,000 and the fund a need which brought in $21,000. The funds will go to benefit horses and the rescue operation in the Napa Valley area.

The event was held at the Blossom Creek Farm in Calistoga, CA where some of the rescued horses were present to interact with the over 180 attendees. There was a silent auction, live auction and fund a need which coupled with ticket sales raised in the area of $100,000.

Elite Auctions and Fundraising Services has record-breaking fundraising ideas and customized strategies that are key to nonprofit organizations’ success. They present seminars all over the state of California teaching their secrets to nonprofit fundraising success.

fundraising auctioneer, charity, horse rescue, elite auctions, mike grigg, benefit​Every year, countless horses go without enough food, shelter or love. Sunrise Horse Rescue is the only non-profit organization in Napa County dedicated to saving such horses and providing them with forever homes. Children and adults in the community gain life-skills by assisting in the rehabilitation of these horses and provide them with the loving attention they so deserve.​

Sunrise Horse Rescue was founded in November of 2007 as a 501(c)3 non-profit organization. We are located in the heart of the Napa Valley, in beautiful Saint Helena, California. ​​

Our Mission: to provide a sanctuary for rescued abused and neglected horses in Napa and Sonoma Counties as well as provide students of all ages with life enhancing skills derived from the care and rehabilitation of the horses.

Elite Auctions to attend Consulting for Benefit Auctioneers Workshop in Atlanta

Elite Auctions & Fundraising Services will be attending a workshop for benefit auctioneers in Atlanta, Georgia next week.  Elite Auctions strives to be the best benefit auctioneers/consultants on the west coast and is constantly educating and training themselves on the strategies that work in this tough economy and in our specific area.  Here is more information about the workshop:

Consulting for Benefit Auctioneers Workshop


How to Create a Highly Profitable Stream of Income For Your Benefit Auction Business with Consulting


Presented by Professional Auctioneer and Consultant


Kathy Kingston, CAI, BAS



Monday, August 5 and Tuesday August 6, 2013
Atlanta, Georgia


This Powerful 2-Day Workshop Will Give you the Consulting Skills Required to Build Massive Success and Propel Profits


Are you ready to gain the competitive advantage you desire that will move your benefit auction business light years ahead?


Would you to like to raise significantly more money, engage donors, motivate volunteers and delight your nonprofit clients so you are delightedly retained year after year?


“There has never been a better time to offer Consulting – nonprofits need and want your unique benefit auction expertise.”


Leverage one of the fastest growing segments of our auction profession today – BENEFIT AUCTIONS – a $16.2 Billion annual industry* with over 1.5 Million nonprofits in the United States.


The Benefit Auction Consultant Workshop will powerfully position you to raise significantly more money, engage donors, motivate volunteers and delight your nonprofit clients so you are retained year after year.


If you think that you can advance your benefit auction business by just auctioning fancy dinners and exotic trips, think again!


Now more than ever, nonprofits seek out benefit auctioneers who can relate to them, solve problems, produce fresh profit-making ideas and to raise more money. Build your confidence and harness these advanced benefit auction consulting competencies now.


Kathy’s personalized coaching will empower you to inspire nonprofit clients, donors and auction audiences to accelerate your career and to skyrocket auction fundraising and invigorate your bottom line.


The Benefit Auction Consultant Workshop will show you how to easily unlock opportunities and tap into the unlimited stream of income by adding consulting with your nonprofit clients.


If you are ready to propel your benefit auction business and your consulting skills, Kathy Kingston, CAI, BAS is excited to work with you personally to provide an innovative and highly interactive workshop on Benefit Auction Consulting.



To thrive in challenging times you must become more creative, learn innovative skills, network more and invest in yourself to compete in this new economy.


But there is GOOD NEWS! The Benefit Auction Business is BOOMING!



Are you ready to take your benefit auction business to the next level?



In this distinctly interactive workshop, and you will practice the specialized skills you need to add highly requested benefit auction consulting services and business to accelerate your profits and exponentially raise more money!

Consulting with non-profit organizations insures auction event success and higher revenues for the non-profit AND your auction company. As a Benefit Auction Consultant, you will empower non-profits to raise more far more funds, increase awareness and goodwill plus those turn auction bidders into loyal long-term donors. (…and that’s your unique power and expertise you bring to your nonprofit clients!)

Watch This! It will change the way you think about Nonprofit Fundraising

(This came from TED and Dan Pollotta)  Activist and fundraiser Dan Pallotta calls out the double standard that drives our broken relationship to charities. Too many nonprofits, he says, are rewarded for how little they spend — not for what they get done. Instead of equating frugality with morality, he asks us to start rewarding charities for their big goals and big accomplishments (even if that comes with big expenses). In this bold talk, he says: Let’s change the way we think about changing the world.

Elite Auctions Attends 64th International Auctioneers Conference and Show

Elite Auctions Attends 64th International Auctioneers Conference and Show

July 23, 2013 – Bakersfield/Los Angeles-based fundraising auctioneers/consultants, Mike Grigg, AARE and Connie Waddell, joined their fellow auctioneers from across the world at the National Auctioneers Association’s (NAA) 64th International Auctioneers Conference and Show at the J. W. Marriott in downtown Indianapolis, July 16 – 20, 2013.

Mike graduated from the prestigious “World Champion College of Auctioneers” and is a published author of the book: “Maximizing Your Charity Event’s Bottom Line.”  He has participated in many charity, benefit and fundraising auctions as an auctioneer and fundraising consultant.  He has a Bachelor’s degree in Business Marketing and graduated from the Fundraising Auction Academy.  Mike serves as Past President and current member for the California State Auctioneers Association (CSAA).

Mike has called hundreds of auctions in California cities like Los Angeles, Bakersfield, San Diego and San Francisco, to name a few, and knows what it takes to get the buyers to competitively bid and drive the prices up while delivering a clear message about each organizations’ cause.  His attention to detail and heart for each organization makes him one of the best in the business.  Mike has mastered the fund-a-need and has developed many revenue enhancers to help boost his clients’ proceeds to record breaking numbers.

Mike was the 2004 California State Auctioneers Association Rookie Bid Calling Champion and was crowned the 2009 California State Auctioneer Champion.  Mike began his career in the auction business in 2002 and believes that auctions are the purest form of price realization.  His recent accomplishments include a charity auction to benefit Solutions for Change which raised $1.7 million, a three-day prop, costume, and set piece auction for NBC Universal‘s hit show, Battlestar Galactica presented by Propworx where almost 1,000 lots were sold, and helping a private high school in Orange County triple their previous year’s fundraiser result.

Professional Memberships:

  • Past President & current member of the California State Auctioneers Association (CSAA)
  • Member of the National Auctioneers Association (NAA)
  • Past Board Member for Make-A-Wish Foundation of Central California (Evening of Wishes Gala)
  • Accredited Auctioneer of Real Estate (AARE) designated by the National Auctioneers Association

Connie Waddell is Co-Founder and CEO of Elite Auctions with specific responsibilities overseeing the general operations and marketing department. She has over 25 years experience in marketing.  Her success comes from utilizing her experience and skills to zero in on the exact objective of any marketing campaign and the precise market to target. She was recently awarded first place for brochure design by the California State Auctioneers Association.

She has been recognized throughout her career as an accomplished business professional with an entrepreneurial spirit, outgoing personality, and with excellent communication and leadership skills.

Ms. Waddell graduated from the Professional Ringmen’s Institute (PRI).  The Ringman (professional bid spotter) is a very important member of every live auction team whose contributions and responsibilities include an accurate interpretation of the bidder’s interest and effective communication of each bidder’s participation to her auctioneer.

While involved with several charitable organizations, two very dear to her heart are Autism Speaks and Kern Autism Network in an effort to aid her grandson, Adam, and other children on the autism spectrum.

Among dozens of educational seminars, highlights included: how to excel in any interview process with clients and companies; how to build a community of online buyers; how to transition from free to a fee with non-profit groups; and more.

Additionally, attendees took advantage of the opportunity to network with their fellow auctioneers from across the globe.

Along with industry-leading education, the annual Conference and Show also featured several exciting auction competitions.  This year, the NAA celebrated the 25th anniversary of the International Auctioneer Championship (IAC) competition, which crowns the world’s top male and female auctioneers. The annual conference also included the world’s largest auction tradeshow, which provided a large, engaged consumer base. In fact, more than 900 auction professionals attended the 2013 event, making it the largest Conference and Show since 2009.

To learn more about the Fundraising Auction business visit To view a schedule of events that were held at the 64th International Auctioneers Conference & Show, visit

# # #

About Elite Auctions & Fundraising Services:

Elite Auctions & Fundraising Services is the premier auction and consulting company in the state of California. We provide non-profit organizations with the tools and expertise to maximize their ability to knock fundraising auction and event revenue out of the park.





Fundraising Seminar in Los Angeles by Elite Auctions

Los Angeles Seminar: Skyrocket Your Fundraising Auction Revenue!!

When: Wednesday, July 10, 2013

  • Morning Session: 8:30 am – 12 noon

Where: Embassy Suites LAX North. 9801 Airport Blvd. Los Angeles, CA 90045

(Fill out Registration Form at the bottom of this page. Limited seating available.)


Seminar Content:

Which Auction Items Are Hot & Which Are Not

  • Items that are bringing in the highest yield & how to secure them
  • Items that are not performing well
  • Where to place auction items (Silent/Live)

How to Knock Your Auction Revenue Out of the Park

  • Why a professional auctioneer is best
  • Beware of volunteer auctioneers
  • Number one reason why people love auctions
  • Auction pace & why it’s important
  • Value of a Professional Ringman (Bid Spotter)

Cutting-Edge Fundraising Techniques

  • How to turn emotion into money
  • Revenue enhancers
  • How to execute the perfect Fund-A-Need
  • Auction Ice Breakers

Increase Your Results by 10%, 20% or More

  • Put power bidders in the seats
  • Training volunteers “The Ask”
  • Prepping your attendees to maximize bidding
  • Minding your donor database for maximum results
  • Setting your Board up for success

Run of Show

  • Develop a winning timeline
  • Plated dinner or buffet?
  • Learn to involve your guests in your mission
  • Schedule do’s and don’ts

Questions and Answers

  • Let us address your questions and concerns

For Attending You Will Receive:

  • Complete Benefit Auction Planning Checklist
  • Auction Committee Member’s Job Descriptions
  • List of “What’s Hot & What’s Not” Auction Items
  • Questions You Should Ask Before Planning Your Fundraising Event
  • Live and Silent Auction Bid Forms
  • The Book: “Maximizing Your Charity Event’s Bottom Line” – written by Award Winning Auctioneer Mike Grigg
  • 30 Minute FREE Telephone Consultation prior to your event

                        (Valued at over $500)

Who Should Attend?

  • Auction Chairpersons
  • Non-Profit Staff
  • Auction Planners
  • Board Members
  • Auction Committee Members
  • Volunteers
  • Anyone involved in a charity auction!


  • Register online: $67
  • Register at the door: $97
  • Additional Members: $20

Please fill out all information below and click ‘Submit’.  The registration fee is $67.  If you do not register online prior to the day of the seminar, the fee at the door will be $97.  You will be redirected to the Seminar Payment page to make your payment after entering all information below. 

If additional members from your organization will be attending the fee will be $20 per additional member.  Please list the names of each additional member in the ‘Additional Members box below.


Welcome Tracy Karbus… New Elite Auctions Fundraising Consultant

tracy bioWe would like to welcome Tracy Karbus our newest Fundraising Consultant to the Elite Auctions and Fundraising Service’s family…

In proving her reputation for creating possibilities, Tracy Karbus utilizes her 18+ years of corporate and non-profit experience working with businesses and individuals, helping them maximize with businesses and individuals, helping them maximize resources and leverage their time and philanthropic efforts.  In particular, she can relate to the challenges and opportunities of many non-profits as she spent the last 14 years in various roles within the non-profit sector.  From Regional Director, Board Member, volunteer, and event coordinator, she has a grasp around the various roles that make up a successful development team and the challenges associated with ‘the ask.’  She also understands the importance of creating community as a key component of any sustainable giving program and has been known to receive unprecedented funding commitments in communities known to be stringent with funding awards.

A big picture thinker with an eye on details, she maintains a relentless commitment to research and preparation as a fundraising consultant with Elite Auctions.  She enjoys partnering with development teams in crafting customized fundraising auction strategies to support the individual needs of each organization.

Certificate – Micro enterprise Skill-Building AEO Training Institute

Certificate – Excellence in Nonprofit Leadership and Management

A little more about Elite Auctions & Fundraising Services

logo6303921_mdElite Auctions and Fundraising Services serves as the premier fundraising auctioneer and consultant in the Southern California, Northern California and Central California areas.  We focus on areas like Bakersfield, Los Angeles (LA), Riverside, Orange County (New Port, Anaheim, Laguna Beach, etc.), San Diego (Oceanside, Carlsbad, Encinitas, Rancho Sante Fe, etc.).  We also serve Northern California areas like San Francisco, Sacramento, Monterey, Napa Valley, Fresno, etc.  Central California areas include Santa Barbara, Santa Maria, San Luis Obispo, Pismo Beach, etc.  We will travel to just about anywhere and are here to make California non-profits successful with their charity events. 

We have record-breaking fundraising ideas for school fundraisers, church fundraisers, giuliani and mike wordpresscharity events, 203k organizations, golf tournaments, and all non profit organizations.  We teach our clients how to fundraise and have ideas for fundraising that we implement into their events to maximize their revenue.  We are a highly trained, professional team of benefit auctioneers, consultants, ringmen, event planners, authors, teachers, and fundraising experts that exists to promote professionalism in the fundraising event and auction profession. 

If your non-profit organization, school or church needs an organization that can take your event to heights you never dreamed possible by implementing charity ideas for non profit fundraising then Elite Auctions and Fundraising Services is the team of professionals for you!  Thank you for visiting our website and please do not hesitate to contact us if you have any questions about our services.

Learn how to do the Basic Auctioneer Chant


Learn how to do the basic auctioneer chant from Mike Grigg with Elite Auctions.  Mike tells how the basic auction chant works and how to bid call.  Mike recommends that you attend a professional auction school if you really want to become a professional auctioneer. Visit for all of your fundraising auction needs.

Auction Hero

[youtube=]Auction Hero was created by Mike Grigg with Elite Auctions and Fundraising Services to help drive donation results prior to a fund a need or appeal.  It comes from the theory of “All they can say is no.”  The professional fundraising auctioneer will ask the crowd if there are any auction heroes in the audience that would like to go above and beyond the call of duty and ask the guests to give a gift that is meaningful to them above the highest pre set level of the fund a need.  Here is a video to demonstrate.

Checking In/Out Guests & Seating

When guests arrive at your event make the check in process simple by dividing them alphabetically by last name or company name in about five to seven different check in areas.  This will help cut down on long lines and crowd size.

I highly recommend collecting credit card numbers upfront at check in and assigning bidder numbers to each person/couple.  This will make check out much easier and more efficient.  If people are not willing to give credit card numbers upfront explain to them that their check out process may take a little longer.  You can even have VIP check out for those that submit credit cards upfront as an incentive.  Come up with a perk that VIP check out can offer your guests.  You could deliver their items to their tables or they could simply have a special checkout line.

reservedIn order to have the most successful fund-a-need, silent auction and live auction, assigning bidder numbers is a must.  It will help tremendously to have everyone identifiable by bidder number rather than name, and it will dramatically cut down on the amount of runners and people having to collect information throughout the event.  The fund-a-need alone can almost not be done with a big group if bidder numbers are not assigned to each person/couple.

“High rollers” or the guests that are known to be high donors should be strategically placed at the front of a room or near the auctioneer.  These guests will more than likely bid several times and it helps to keep the flow of the auction if the auctioneer can easily find them.  Let the auctioneer know where the high rollers will be sitting prior to the start of the auction, and don’t hesitate to introduce the auctioneer to the high rollers so he can build some rapport with them.