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May 6 Session Details

8:00 - 9:15 a.m.     Keynote

Fundraising Success Anywhere, Robert Swanson

9:30 - 10:30 a.m.   Breakout  Sessions 

How to Create a Killer Thank You LetterGail Perry

  • You wrote a dynamite year-end appeal, and the gifts are starting to flow in. Now it’s time to write a drop-dead thank you letter! Join us to learn how to write a letter that will:
    • Assure your nervous donor that she made a wise investment.
    • Make your donor so very happy that she gave to your cause.
    • Make your donor feel like she did the right thing.
    • Bring joy to her heart – and to her life. And to her own holiday season.

          Your thank you letter is the first step toward retaining this donor. Join us to learn how to NAIL our donor thank you's!

Change is Evident. Keeping Up is Not. A Lesson in Digital Communications, Matt Vainer

  • Our world is evolving through technology. The internet and social networking sites have taken us by storm; however, has anyone ever asked the question: What is it doing for me? How have these new forms of communication changed shifted the dynamics within the younger generations and built a sociological gap between older generations, and how can we move forward for the good of the future? If you find yourself always trying to keep up and never quite understanding why, you’re not alone. Take a look at where we are and where we should be going.

Things I Wish They Told Me Before I Agreed To Do A Capital Campaign! Tom Borrego

Writing Without Fear, Monica Tiffany

Working with Your Community FoundationShelly Prichard

  • With more than 800 community foundations in the U.S., there is bound to be one near you. While all community foundations are different, there many similarities. Join this conversation to learn about donor-advised funds, unrestricted funds controlled by the foundation, and much more. We will also discuss what a robust resource a community foundation can be for your fund-raising and non-profit management efforts. Community foundations aren’t your competition; they can be your partner.

Get Grants! Lisa Dodson

  • This session provides an introduction to strategies and tips for writing polished grant proposals.  Topics covered include understanding grant guidelines,  organizing the grant writing process, crafting parts of the grant proposal, and what you must know about budgets.

10:45 - 11:45 a.m. Breakout Sessions

Capturing Donor Motivators in Your Annual AppealCindy Elifrits Peterson

  • Hone your ability to personalize Purpose, Audience, Content, and Call to Action into every donor interaction using what motivates donors most.

Triggered CommunicationsMerritt Neil

The Significance of a Development Assessment and ReportEd Shafer & Tanja Heinen

  • Time is money. How do you know where to focus and what will give you the best ROI? What tools will you need to succeed in fundraising? Enter the development assessment and report. An assessment gives you the power to move forward with confidence. And the report guides nonprofit boards, CEO’s, executive leaders, development directors, staff, and committees. The value you will gain outweighs the investment of time and money. You will emerge from an assessment with amazing insight about what’s working well, what needs fixing, where you are losing or gaining ground with donors, and the best part – it outlines steps to consider to map your organization’s future goals and success!

Revamping your Annual CampaignKatie Hatfield Gunzelman

  • Need to breathe some life into your annual giving campaign? How about a more personalized approach? Walk away from this session with a revamped framework and timeline for annual giving solicitations that will inspire a more positive culture of giving and boost your bottom line.

When You Have Done Everything Else, Try Planned GivingPaul Strawhecker

  • Learn how to integrate a planned giving program with your development program and feel comfortable doing it without being a legal expert or planned giving guru.

The Power of the Purse, Women and Philanthropy, Emma DeVos, Jona Schmidt, Jill Ruhd

  • The momentum has shifted and women now play the dominant role in philanthropy. This is especially true in the realm of planned giving, as much of the current transfer of wealth is landing in women's hands. This session will explore the research and successful fundraising programs targeting women. Learn how you can tap into this trend and unleash the power of the purse.

Noon - 1:15 p.m.   Keynote

Mastering the Soft Skills of Major Gift Fundraising: What They Don't Teach You in Fundraising 101, Gail Perry

  • Major gift fundraising really CAN be fun and interesting.  What are the unwritten rules with donors? Join Gail Perry, CFRE, MBA, for a frank discussion about subtle issues we don’t usually talk about. How do you deal with the wealthy? How do you overcome the intimidation factor? How to build trust? How important are good manners?
  • Learn Gail Perry's "soft sell" approach to fundraising that lets the donor lead the way. Learn how to create a relationship with a donor that's organic, natural and fun.  We’ll discuss how listening skills, small talk, and social skills can take your relationship with your donor from transactional to actually transformational.

1:30 - 2:30 p.m.     Breakout Sessions

Face-to-Face Fundraising Conversations that Open the Door to an Ask, Gail Perry

  • Fundraising conversations can be nerve-wracking. How do you really build a donor’s interest? How do you inspire your donor to say ”how can I help?”  And what’s the best way to bring up the subject of a gift? Learn Gail Perry’s secrets to seamless and natural conversations with donors about their potential gift. You’ll discover – and practice – 5 interactive conversations that can light a fire with your donors, and inspire them to offer more support than ever. Learn how to build up to an easy, donor-centered ask where the donor is ready and happy to help your cause.

Why Should We Conduct a Feasibilty Study? Matt Vuorela

Identifying Next Generation Donors: Leveraging Social Media, Alexei Safronov

  • The nature of prospect research is changing. With technological advances such as artificial intelligence, social media, and digital centralization, the prospect research industry is facing new challenges and opportunities. Along with the advancement of technology comes changing donor demographics.
  • In this presentation we will discuss how to fully understand your top tier donors with a more holistic view of your donor profile through the use of new databases and technology. Through social media avenues such as Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, and Instagram we are able to find new ways to connect and learn about the next generation of potential donors. In understanding how our Millennials and GenXer’s use social media we will be able to put our finger on the pulse of future philanthropy.
  • Combining these new databases with the building blocks of charitable giving, wealth data, and ultra-high net worth flags, we are able to create a comprehensive view of your donor prospects and how to understand them more fully.

Planned Giving When That Is Not All That You Do, Mike Lamb

  • This session will provide highly practical information to help empower donors to leverage the power of their estates toward making legacy gifts that are satisfying to them and transformational to the programs they support. With minimal focus on the technical aspects of planned giving, we will emphasize: Why planned giving is important to donors and charitable beneficiaries, Identifying planned giving prospects, Donor motivation, Solutions to common donor objections, Making the planned giving “ask,” Planned giving marketing tools, Planned gift documentation and stewardship

Board's Role in FundraisingJudy Frick and Betsy Redler

Managing Attention Starved Mid-Level DonorsAndy Suther and Ryan Strawhecker

  • America is facing a crisis in the world of philanthropy- although individual giving throughout the US has been increasing, studies have shown that the number of households giving has been dropping, and the ultra-wealthy have been carrying all the weight. This shift has left the lower and mid-level tiered donors behind, and organizations are struggling to figure out what to do with those donors who aren’t quite at a major giving level but remain important to an organization’s goal. During this presentation, Ryan Strawhecker and Andy Suther will show just how dramatic of a change has already occurred, and how organizations can prepare to cultivate and steward these vital relationships.

3:15 - 4: 15 p.m.    Breakout Sessions

Defining your Personal Mission, Cindy Miles

  • With the work that we do out in the community, so often we are being pulled in many directions and being asked to do more than we can do.  This session will help you identify what you value most and guide you through developing a personal mission statement that can lead you to saying "yes" to what is most important to you and 'no" to those things that aren't.  

Coaching Your Fundraising Team to ExcellenceCherian Koshy

  • As the leader of a team, you want to bring out the best in each individual and create a workplace where people bring their best daily. When your team is made up of people with an array of personalities, motivators, work experience, and education, how do you coach them to be their best? As importantly, how do you, as a manager, create and support a high-performing team? Using the workplace personality profiles as a backbone, this session will help established and aspiring leaders understand how to coach their teams to excellence.

Lessons from a Volunteer FundraiserBonnie Bing Honeyman

  •  Not always fun, but somebody has to do it!

Telling the Untold Story of Unrestricted ImpactLynne Wester

The 4 Rs of Major Gift Fundraising and StewardshipEmma DeVos, Jona Schmidt, Jill Ruhd

  • Raising major gifts takes time, effort, and the right attitude. Fundraisers are often rushed into a major ask, only to receive a ‘no’ or a smaller than expected gift. This session will help you remember and get the most out of the 4 Rs of major gift fundraising: research, relationship building, request, and recognition.

Thank You to Our Major Sponsors

  • Don and Lora Barry