Certified Grant Professional, Tracey Diefenbach, Brings More Federal and Youth Development Grant Writing Expertise to Assel Grant Services

No other grant services firm in the country has more GPCs on staff.

(KANSAS CITY, MO. August 12, 2018) – Assel Grant Services announces Tracey Diefenbach, a Certified Grant Professional (GPC), has joined the firm. She brings expertise in federal and youth development grant writing and will work with organizations in the St. Louis area and Illinois. Now, with six on staff, no other grant services firm in the country has more GPCs. Diefenbach’s addition to the team is in response to the steadily increasing trend for non-profits, school districts, and institutions of higher education organizations to outsource grant writing services. Diefenbach joins the five other Assel Grant Services team members, including Julie Assel, Tom Assel, Julie Alsup, Kari Cronbaugh-Auld and Hayley Waynick with GPCs through the Grant Professionals Certification Institute (GPCI)R. The GPCI resulted from an important discussion at the 2000 Grant Professionals Association (GPA) Annual Conference (formerly the American Association of Grant Professionals (AAGP) in Berkeley, California. It was there that conference membership passed a board resolution to create a committee charged with the task of determining the need for and feasibility of a grant certification. The Certification Committee established the GPCI after two years of discovery. In 2004, GPCI was incorporated as an independent 501(c)(3) non-profit corporation and offered its first exam in 2007.

“I am a strong GPC exam advocate and encourage grant professionals to earn this certification and further their education,” says Julie Assel, president and CEO of Assel Grant Services. “Grant writers are constantly demonstrating the value we bring to an organization seeking grant funding. Having the GPC certification reflects that value.”

The Assel Grant Services team’s strength isn’t only in its number of GPCs on staff, but also is reflected in its broad range of content experience and knowledge of local and national funding trends. “Each one of our staff has years of experience serving some of the most vulnerable children, families and individuals in our community and in our nation,” explains Assel. “Tracey is a recognized professional development leader in the greater St. Louis area where she is heavily involved in the local GPA chapter and serves as program committee chair.”

Diefenbach most recently was Big Brothers Big Sisters of Eastern Missouri’s director of grants. She secured $1.5 million annually and managed a portfolio of more than 65 government, foundation, and corporate grants. Prior to that, Diefenbach was grants manager for Covenant House Missouri where she secured $800,000 annually and developed and implemented the agency’s first comprehensive grants calendar that aligned key programs to funding opportunities and deadlines. Over Diefenbach’s 14-year career, she has secured more than $15.5 million in grant funding for St. Louis area nonprofits, writing complex federal, state and local government applications to Department of Education, Department of Health and Human Services, Department of Justice, MO Department of Economic Development, City of St. Louis, and more.

Assel says, “Tracey is a seasoned grant professional who brings even more youth development grant experience to our firm. Our clients will benefit from her knowledge of finding and writing grants, as well as her research, management, and follow up skills.”


Assel Grant Services is an industry-leading consulting firm based in Kansas City, Mo. specializing in grant research, proposal creation and application for nonprofits, school districts and institutions of higher education. The Assel Grant Services team is a highly efficient, expert group of experienced grant writers and researchers who specialize in private and public grant programs in areas as diverse as human services, arts, education, and healthcare research. Learn more about Assel Grant Services at https://asselgrantservices.com/.

GPC Competency 7: Knowledge of practices and services that raise the level of professionalism of grant developers.  Skill 2: Identify advantages of participating in professional organizations that offer grant developers growth opportunities and advance the profession.

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