Auction Talk

The Desert Welcomes Benefit Auctioneer, Karen Sorbo: Coaxing is Her Calling

By: Andrea Carter
The Coachella Valley has recently gained a stellar – and quite stunning – asset, as one of the nation’s most sought-after benefit auctioneers has recently decided to make the desert her new home.
At first glance, you may be surprised to learn that Karen Sorbo – who has been recognized as one of the top benefit auctioneers in the country – came from the humble roots of a Minnesota farm girl. Her vivacious energy and passion for her career in fundraising shine through from the moment you meet her.
“I believe there are two important days in your life: the day you were born, and the day you discovered why,” said Sorbo. “I truly believe that I was born to make a difference.”
For over 27 years, she has engaged audiences with her commanding stage presence and precise fundraising techniques – raising over $700 million conducting over 2,800 auctions since graduating from both the Missouri Auctioneer School and World Wide College of Auctioneering.
While Sorbo is recruited by fundraising event planners around the world, local charities have the advantage of bringing Sorbo on board to help raise funds at the many galas and black tie affairs right here in the Coachella Valley without the need for factoring in travel expenses – which many nonprofits have had to do because there haven’t been professional benefit auctioneers in this market.
“I have the most fun job in the world, and it is a gift to be able to help charities exceed their fundraising goals,” continued Sorbo. “I had one organization that was stuck on about $100,000 for several years. I was brought in and raised $225,000 for them,” continued Sorbo. “It was a thrill and an honor to be a part of that milestone where they were able to really break through that ceiling in their fundraising efforts.”
If you’re interested in speaking with Karen about your upcoming fundraising events, learn more at; email her at or call 612-868-4929.

To Top