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The Development Debrief

English, Finance, 10 seasons, 154 episodes, 3 days, 10 hours, 18 minutes
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148. Elizabeth Keppel: 5 Ways to Take Your Team to the Next Level

This week we talk about management and leadership. Elizabeth has developed training materials to help managers at all levels increase the performance and retention of their teams. Elizabeth Keppel is the Senior Director of Annual Giving & Digital Strategy at Johns Hopkins University, where she leads a comprehensive, university-wide annual giving program. Prior to joining the Hopkins team in 2020, Elizabeth served in several roles at the University of Florida, most recently as the director of development for annual giving and strategic initiatives. In that role, she led UF’s leadership annual giving program which served as the organization's talent pipeline for major gift fundraisers. At the outset of her fundraising career, she worked as an assistant director on the advancement team at her alma mater, the College of William & Mary in Virginia. Elizabeth has a Bachelor of Arts and a Master of Education in Higher Education Administration from William & Mary and a Project Management Professional (PMP) Certification. --- Support this podcast:
4/22/202437 minutes, 23 seconds
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147. Heather Kopec: Advancing, not replacing the human brain

This week we hear from Heather who just relocated to Houston, Texas for a new role as Executive Director, Annual Giving at Rice University. She talks to us about how we can get started using AI in our work and she suggests a few places to start. She equates learning new systems like training for a marathon--start small. A few places to start include but are not limited to: Google Gemini, Microsoft co-pilot, learning how to write prompts, developing an awareness of bias within what AI creates, and large language models. --- Support this podcast:
4/15/202431 minutes, 21 seconds
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146. Mark Koenig: How do we work alongside AI?

This week, we continue to drill down into the burning questions about AI and how it will change our work. What comes up again and again with Mark is, how do we work alongside this? Listen to discover the answer to that overarching question.  Mark Koenig is the vice president for technology and chief innovation officer for the OSU Foundation. In this role, he serves as the Foundation’s technology strategist, including oversight of relationship insights, pipeline development, analytics, data and CRM operations, and technology services. Mr. Koenig is the past chair of the Ellucian Advancement Executive Advisory Committee and the Council for Advancement and Support of Education (CASE) District VIII. In 2019, he received the Distinguished Service Award from CASE District VIII recognizing his many years of service to the organization and in 2018, he received the Ellucian ‘EllumiNation’ Community Award recognizing his dedication to infusing innovation throughout the advancement profession. Mr. Koenig earned his bachelor’s in history and economics from the University of Houston and a master's in adult education and organizational capacity from OSU. --- Support this podcast:
4/8/202433 minutes, 26 seconds
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145. Deb Lin: CFR 101

This week, Deb shares her perspective as a corporate and foundation relations professional. In the second episode on this topic, we compare it to individual giving and learn more about how the space is unique. Deborah Lin is the Director of Corporate, Foundation, & Association Relations at Stanford Medicine, leading the team closing and facilitating organizational philanthropic support to the School of Medicine and Stanford Healthcare. She has built over a decade of experience in academic research fundraising and programmatic strategy and operations. Before Stanford University, Deborah was the Associate Director of Corporate Relations at UCLA Engineering, spearheading engagement and partnerships for the school with industries such as tech, aerospace, and energy. She was a founding team member of Partnership UCLA, a department that engages alumni in helping student career development, creating and launching campus-wide programs supporting thousands of students' professional and academic development. In addition to academia, she has also worked in the media and tech industries. Before UCLA, Deborah worked in the Television and Film industry for companies such as Disney ABC Studios and 20th Century Fox, managing global marketing partnerships, production, talent management, and television comedy development. --- Support this podcast:
4/1/202433 minutes, 53 seconds
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144. Andrew Gossen: It is No Longer Abstract

This week we get some AI forecasting from Andrew Gossen. He reflects on how much technology has developed over the past six years, and shares predictions about ways our work will change and evolve. Andrew outlines the risks and rewards of keeping up with artificial intelligence and how we should think about the use of human time verses machine time. Andrew Gossen is the executive director for communications, marketing, and participation in Cornell University's Division of Alumni Affairs and Development. He joined Cornell in 2010 to integrate emerging digital technologies – among them social media and crowdfunding – into the division's strategic plan. Previously, Gossen spent eight years at the Alumni Association of Princeton University in a number of diverse roles. His focus is using digital technologies and approaches to engagement to build audiences and mobilize them on behalf of a range of causes and organizations. In addition to speaking frequently on this topic to domestic and international audiences, he has served CASE Commission on Alumni Relations, co-chaired the CASE Joint Commission Task Force on Social Media, and received a CASE Crystal Apple Award for Teaching Excellence in 2018. Gossen holds a bachelor's degree from Princeton and a doctorate in social anthropology from Harvard University. --- Support this podcast:
3/25/202448 minutes, 25 seconds
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143. Stephanie Cook: Building a non-natural constituency base

This week, I get the opportunity to talk with Stephanie Cook about her career journey and most recent experiences with the National Audubon Society. We talk about how her broad higher education experience prepared her to work in a more niche area with a non-natural constituency base.   Stephanie Cook brings over 20 years of experience to her work as a fundraising executive for the National Audubon Society—leading operations, donor services, and fundraising teams on behalf of the international conservation NGO. Prior to joining Audubon, she led NYC-based regional advancement teams for Syracuse University and Villanova University, where she led teams of development professionals charged with building relationships with and securing philanthropic support from alumni, parents, and friends. Her early career included service as a major gift officer for Columbia University and the Wildlife Conservation Society as well as in support of the fundraising efforts on behalf of the Central Park Conservancy. She is a native of Madison, Wisconsin and holds a BFA from the University of Kentucky in acting/theatre and an MS from Columbia University in fundraising and non-profit management. --- Support this podcast:
3/18/202440 minutes, 12 seconds
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142. Jennifer Zaslow: Working Through Difficult Conversations

Hello and welcome to Season 13! This season is different because ½ of the 8 episodes are going to be focused on AI. However, there are a few episodes that aren’t focused on AI including today’s. While understanding AI is important, we also need the EQ that occurs in between skilling up and one of those huge skills is navigating difficult conversations. As Jennifer says, contact and context before content! This episode is the pep talk you perhaps didn’t even know you needed. Jennifer empowers us to tackle our challenges head on, eliminate negative self talk,  and take care of ourselves throughout the process. We go through three real life examples and Jennifer talks through how she would handle them. These examples were submitted by real life listeners with their real life challenges. Jennifer Zaslow is an Executive Coach who believes that harnessing your full potential begins with finding your voice. She began her professional life in New York as an aspiring opera singer, an experience that led to a twenty year career as a leader and senior fundraiser in the non-profit sector.  Today, as Partner at Clear Path Executive Coaching, Jennifer’s signature mix of intuition, directness and humor enables her to work successfully with clients ranging from CEO’s to young leaders, helping individuals to reach their full potential, and organizations to achieve their strategic goals.   Jennifer has worked with leaders and teams from a wide variety of sectors, including higher ed (Harvard, Yale, Columbia, Cornell, University of Pennsylvania), arts and culture (The Metropolitan Museum of Art, The New York Public Library, The Metropolitan Opera, New York City Ballet, BAM, The High Line), sports/media/entertainment (The NFL, Sundance Institute, BuzzFeed, WNYC, KCRW) and tech/startups (Google, CHIEF, Angi, and TodayTix).   Prior to coaching, Jennifer held the chief development officer role at three New York City cultural institutions: Manhattan Theatre Club, New York City Opera, and The New York Public Library.  There, she successfully completed a $500 million capital campaign during the 2008 recession and grew the Library’s endowment to over $1 billion.    Jennifer holds a B.A. cum laude from Wesleyan University and a CPCC coaching certification from CTI. She is certified in the Myers Briggs Type Indicator, is a Gallup Clifton Strengths Coach and is a recipient of Harvard Law School’s PON certificate in Mediation and Conflict Resolution. She is also Director of the Floria Lasky Institute for Arts Leadership, sponsored by The Jerome Robbins Foundation.  She lives and practices in New York City. Resources: 1. Getting to Yes by Roger Fisher and William Ury 2. Difficult Conversations by Douglas Stone, Bruce Patton, and Sheila Heen 3. Crucial Conversations by Kerry Patterson, Joseph Grenny, Ron McMillan, Al Switzler, Emily Gregory 4. How to Work with Anyone (even difficult people) by Amy Gallo --- Support this podcast:
3/11/202456 minutes, 51 seconds
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141. Looking forward and looking back

This is a two-part episode but the two parts are inextricably linked. The first is looking back at the past six months—and the second is looking forward and creating visions of an ideal future.   Part 1 is a six month update on my time in New Haven and at Yale! Part 2 is a 5-step process at creating a vision board, a tradition of mine... --- Support this podcast:
1/16/202413 minutes, 34 seconds
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140. Chad Paris: The Making of Parisleaf

First and foremost, Happy Birthday to today's guest, Chad Paris! Ever wondered how a campaign is born? How firms get started? What matters most with communications? Chad Paris tells us about his firm, Parisleaf and how it has grown into an international brand and digital partner working with a wide array of non-profits. With over 15 years of experience in brand, digital, and fundraising, Chad is the CEO of Parisleaf, a branding agency that helps nonprofits fund progress through branding their major fundraising campaigns. His passion is in making connections - between humans, or between seemingly disparate pieces of a puzzle. Chad has dedicated his career to brands that are changing the world. As CEO, he supports the firm's ultimate ambition - to help their partners raise $25B by the end of the decade. --- Support this podcast:
1/9/202446 minutes, 8 seconds
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139. Elizabeth Hines: Investing in Generations

Liz comes from a family of story tellers. This week we learn about how she found her voice as a communications specialist, a trustee, and so much more. Liz tells us how her education impacted her and lead her to write about her great uncle and philanthropist, A.G. Gaston. His investment is his family and ultimately her- is an inspiring story. Liz sights “movement moments” and her mentors along the way. Throughout her career, Ms. Hines has dedicated herself to helping non-profits grow, in part by serving on the boards of a wide variety of organizations, including: The Third Wave Fund, The Women’s Media Center Advisory Board, LIFT (Legal Information for Families Today), People’s Production House and The Independent Media Institute. In 2018, Hines was named a fellow of the New World Foundation, where she oversaw the organization’s research on the state of local media, investigating opportunities to support local journalism and journalists in the face of widespread media corporatization.  Ms. Hines holds a B.A. from Yale University and conducted her graduate studies at Harvard University. She lives in New York with her partner and their three children. --- Support this podcast:
12/19/202342 minutes, 41 seconds
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138. Brandon Baker: From 10M to 1B

This weeks episode explores what is looks like to work for a younger institution and realize exciting potential, the way that our guest combined a variety of skills for his current role, and the critical aspect of leadership along the way. Brandon Baker is the associate senior vice president for University Advancement at the University of Southern California (USC) where he works across campus on principal and transformational gift opportunities. Baker has experience in launching and leading campaigns and prior to joining USC, Brandon spearheaded the $400 million Tomorrow Demands Today Campaign at the RAND Corporation. Baker previously served as assistant dean of external affairs at the UCLA Samueli School of Engineering. He and his team were responsible for a $250 million goal as part of the school's campaign, a component of UCLA's $4.2 billion effort. He has more than sixteen years of experience in both public and private higher education institutions. He also served as a development director at Villanova University and Columbia University Graduate Business School. Baker holds an M.A. in higher education administration from New York University and a B.S. in biology from The University of Tennessee Southern. --- Support this podcast:
12/5/202342 minutes, 4 seconds
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137. Anna Schlia: Providing a Framework

This week, my guest and I explore the concept of academic research in the field of fundraising. We dig into donor motivation and ways in which scholarly research can help provide framework and clarity of thinking. Frontline fundraiser, researcher of donor inclinations, and status quo breaker, Anna Schlia is an expert in philanthropy research, principal and major gifts, program building, and executive leadership coaching. Relentlessly inquisitive about nonprofit institutions and the donors who support them, Anna is an emerging philanthropy scholar. She is pursuing a Ph.D. at the University of Rochester studying philanthropy for higher education. --- Support this podcast:
10/17/202333 minutes, 20 seconds
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136. Anna Dugan: Next Generation Fundraising

This week, I talk with Anna Dugan about her work with next generation donors at Carnegie Hall. Since I knew her there, she has moved on to work at Johns Hopkins Medicine. Anna talks about building a pipeline program, answers why younger donors want more metrics and data, and explains why creating a feeling with events must always go back to the mission.   Anna Dugan is a frontline fundraiser with a passion for helping people actualize their philanthropic goals. She is currently Senior Associate Director of Development at the Fund for Johns Hopkins Medicine, working with a variety of specialties, including Alzheimer’s Disease, Geriatric Psychiatry, Community Psychiatry, Acquired Brain Injury, and DEIB initiatives. Prior to joining Johns Hopkins, she spent seven years at Carnegie Hall in a variety of roles, including individual giving fundraising, stewardship, and events. She attended Columbia University, The Juilliard School, and Manhattan School of Music and performed for many years as a professional musician. Follow along for more on linkedin and instagram @devdebrief --- Support this podcast:
10/3/202324 minutes, 1 second
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135. Matt Abrahams: Think Faster, Talk Smarter

Hello! Today you are in for a treat. The following episode will explore themes of being put on the spot, networking, and sparking connections. Listen to learn how to start and stop event conversations, make a cogent pitch, and understand a tough audience. Matt Abrahams is a leading expert in the field of communication. As a Lecturer in Organizational Behavior at Stanford University’s Graduate School of Business, he teaches popular classes in strategic communication and effective virtual presenting and has received the school’s Alumni Teaching Award. Matt also teaches public speaking and co-teaches Improvisational Speaking in the Stanford Continuing Studies Program. When he isn’t teaching, Matt is a highly sought-after keynote speaker and communications consultant and coach. He has helped numerous presenters prepare for high-stakes talks, including IPO road shows, Nobel Prize award presentations, and appearances at TED and the World Economic Forum. His online talks garner millions of views and he hosts the popular, award-winning podcast Think Fast, Talk Smart, The Podcast. His book Speaking Up without Freaking Out: 50 Techniques for Confident and Compelling Presenting has helped a wide audience manage speaking anxiety and present more confidently and authentically. To relax and rejuvenate, Matt enjoys hiking with his wife, talking and watching sports with his kids, hanging out with his friends, and being continually humbled at the karate dojo. --- Support this podcast:
9/19/202341 minutes, 59 seconds
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134. My First Team Retreat

Welcome to Season 12. In today's solo episode, I talk about the process I took to plan our team retreat. Special thanks to Lisa Alvarez-Calderon for guiding me through the planning and execution. Planning tips: 1. Set your intention- what is the goal? 2. Space 3. Timing 4. Outside inspiration- mentor, volunteer, or donor can share their expertise! 5. Order of information 6. Follow up plan --- Support this podcast:
9/5/202325 minutes, 30 seconds
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133. Wendy Sealey: Live Audience, FRDNY, AFP 2023

This episode is the last conversation of Season 11. The episode took place in NYC with a live audience of over 1,000 people. AFP-NYC puts on a fundraising day for fundraisers every year-- we were lucky enough to be the morning keynote. Enjoy the live format featuring Wendy Sealey and thank you AFP-NYC! Wendy Sealey has over 20 years of non-profit management and fundraising experience, overseeing teams in the areas of leadership gifts, campaign fundraising, annual fundraising, and special events. Currently, she currently oversees a $30 million fundraising program as Vice President for Development at the Guttmacher Institute, a leading research and policy organization committed to advancing sexual and reproductive health and rights (SRHR) worldwide. Wendy is a sought-after fundraising coach, advisor, and speaker who has worked with a variety of nonprofits in New York City. Prior to joining the Guttmacher Institute, Wendy raised funds for the ACLU's Centennial Campaign, East Harlem Tutorial Program’s capital campaign, Bank Street College of Education’s strategic initiative campaign, and the Astraea Lesbian Foundation’s multi-million-dollar grant-making program. --- Support this podcast:
7/5/202342 minutes, 5 seconds
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132. Emily Kernan: The joys of Annual Giving

Emily and I talk about preparing for fiscal year end, annual giving trends and changes, and her passion for leadership. Emily Kernan is the Executive Director of The Penn Fund at the University of Pennsylvania, where she oversees all annual giving efforts primarily engaging undergraduate alumni. She previously led the annual fund team at Rice University and started her career in development at Lafayette College. Emily has remained committed to annual giving throughout her professional life because she loves building relationships with donors and volunteers at every level as well as collaborating with almost every other team across development in some way. She is a volunteer herself as a member of the Board of Trustees for the Philadelphia Ballet and the outgoing Chair of the Annual Giving Directors Consortium (AGDC). Emily holds a BA in English from Binghamton University (SUNY) and an MS in Nonprofit Leadership from Penn's School of Social Policy and Practice. Her instructional experience includes presenting for AGN, CASE, and the Association of Fundraising Professionals (AFP), teaching about annual giving at Rice's Center for Philanthropy and Nonprofit Leadership, and being a course assistant for a class on human-centered design through Penn's School of Social Policy and Practice. She lives in Philadelphia with her two cats—Alvin and Simon. --- Support this podcast:
6/28/202336 minutes, 56 seconds
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131. The Wells Collective: You Can Only See From Where You Sit

The Wells Collective was born out of both necessity and the right amount of mimosas. After six Black women, who worked individually as public and private school educators, researchers, educational administrators, and psychologists, gathered together for a bubbly brunch, the kinetic energy that manifested itself at their table confirmed that by coming together, they could have a greater impact in promoting inclusion in their communities. These women rallied together to identify ways in which they could leverage their individual talents to develop a unique framework that would equip organizations with the tools  to be successful as change agents and architects for liberation. I was lucky enough to hear them speak at a conference last March at Mohonk Mountain House. I knew immediately, that I wanted to share their message on the Debrief. If you want to work with them or learn more, please reach out! Kalea Selmon, Areas of Expertise: Restorative practices, teacher coaching, social-emotional wellness, assessing school culture for inclusion and anti-racist practices. Kalea hails from the Washington DC area. She is a proud alumna of Howard University where she earned her Bachelor of Science in Psychology. After undergrad, she began her career teaching and facilitating a youth employment program. Kalea returned to school attending Johns Hopkins University where she earned a Master of Science in Counseling. Later, she transitioned into Independent Schools where she served as a school counselor and then a Director of Diversity and Inclusion where she focused on developing equity programming, providing professional development, curating curriculum, and hiring and retention of diverse staff. Jenifer Moore, Areas of Expertise: Anti-racist & anti-bias curriculum, teacher coaching, assessing school culture for inclusion and anti-racist practices. Jenifer is the Director of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion at the Key School in Annapolis, MD. Previously, she has served as the Head of School and Director of Curriculum and Instruction at Sela Public Charter School. Jenifer has served children of Washington, DC since 2003 as a teacher, tutor, and school leader. She earned a Master’s degree from Trinity Washington, DC in Educational Administration and a Bachelor’s degree from Howard University. Akailah Jenkins McIntyre, Areas of Expertise: Anti-racist & anti-bias practices, employee and teacher coaching, assessing organizational culture for inclusion and anti-racist practices, public speaking. Akailah is a native of Charleston, SC who began her career in education at Vanderbilt University. She went on to contribute to multiple education research projects at the institution, resulting in two published works. In this time, she discovered that her areas of interest were racial justice in education, and exploring Black girl joy and freedom in educational spaces. She earned both her Bachelor’s degree, and Master’s Degree from the institution. She now serves as Chief of Staff at a nonprofit. Dr. Shari Baker, Areas of Expertise: Anti-racist & anti-bias curriculum, teacher coaching, assessing school culture for inclusion and anti-racist practices Shari began her career in education at Duke University. While there, she joined a women’s scholarship group, the Baldwin Scholars, in which she continues to be an active member. Dr. Baker obtained her social studies teaching certificate and went on to teach social studies in Prince George’s County Public Schools for a decade. She has also had extensive training on cultural responsive/sustaining pedagogy and restorative justice in schools. Dr. Baker also has experience implementing and measuring DEI initiatives at both large and small independent schools, notably including her most recent position as Director of Diversity & Inclusion at one of the largest independent high schools in the Washington, DC metropolitan area. --- Support this podcast:
6/21/202343 minutes, 29 seconds
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130. Marcela Hahn: Women in Development

This week, I speak with Marcela Hahn about her role as president of the Board of Directors of Women in Development (WiD). We explore the importance of community and tradition. Marcela Hahn is the Vice President, Development at Bank Street College of Education. For eight years, Marcela Hahn served as the AVP for Strategic Partnerships at CARE, a leading humanitarian organization. In this role she focused on corporate and foundation partnerships. Prior to CARE Marcela was the fundraising lead for Americans for UNFPA, Grand Street Settlement, and Project Reach Youth.  Marcela served as a Peace Corps volunteer and employee for four years in Senegal; she received an MPA from New York University and a B.A. from Cornell University. Marcela is the president of the Board of Directors of Women in Development (WID), NY. She lives with her family and two cats in Brooklyn and loves to hike, x-country ski and read mysteries in her free time. --- Support this podcast:
6/14/202327 minutes, 32 seconds
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129. Andy Rathmann-Noonan: Expand Your Mission

This week, we learn from Andy Rathmann-Noonan from the perspective of a non-profit CEO. Andy talks to us about changes his organization made to expand their mission and therefore grown their fundraising needs and goals. Andy is the President of the National Science and Technology Medals Foundation. Over the last ten years, he has been responsible for various leadership and oversight responsibilities, including management of staff and programming, development and fundraising efforts, and ensuring that the Foundation’s mission is evident in all of its work. Andy has a deep personal connection to the foundation and its broader effort to build a more diverse, inclusive, and equitable future in STEMM. He recognizes his privilege and his responsibility as an ally to empower, enable, and serve his team, its mission, and the communities that can be positively affected by the NSTMF’s efforts. Andy earned a bachelor’s degree from Trinity College (Hartford, CT) in 2009. He resides in Silver Spring, MD, with his better half Julia, their son Nolan, and their dog Lulu.  --- Support this podcast:
6/7/202331 minutes, 5 seconds
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128. Christine Pina: Engendering Pride in People

So far I am loving being back in Connecticut. Let’s learn more about Connecticut and this amazing guest’s career. This week, we hear from Christine Pina, Chief Advancement Officer at Miss Porter’s School. Christine and I talk about admissions, graduate work for fundraisers, building a community with pride, and how to educate your communities early about fundraising (especially at an all-girl's school). Christine Pina is the Chief Advancement Officer, Miss Porter’s School where she is a member of the school’s senior leadership team.  She is responsible for all fundraising and alumni engagement activities and she has more than 25 years of experience in education administration. See some data about giving to women and girl's here: --- Support this podcast:
5/31/202339 minutes, 24 seconds
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127. Mike Hoffman: The Power of Proximity

If you follow me on instagram @devdebrief, you saw that I went out to Annapolis in March. There, I met the US Navy development team and learned about their approach to fundraising. Mike Hoffman is an amazing leader who is growing programs, posting new positions, and argues teams are best built in person. Mike joined the U.S. Naval Academy Foundation in March 2013 and currently serves on the Foundation’s senior leadership team as the Vice President, Development. Mike began his tenure at Navy as a Major Gifts Officer and grew into a series of roles with increasing responsibility before taking the VP position last year. As the Naval Academy Foundation builds out a team in anticipation of their next campaign, Mike will lead a staff of 15 on the Development team, which includes the Regional Development program, which is comprised of the organization’s major gifts and high-end leadership annual giving initiatives, and the Planned Giving program. In his role, he also works closely with the Foundation’s EVP, Board of Directors and other organizational leaders to play a central role in campaign planning and execution. Additionally, Mike manages a portfolio of top donors across the country with a focus on principal gifts. Since 2004, Mike has worked in education at both the independent school and higher education levels, with most of that experience in development positions. Prior to joining the Foundation, Mike was at Johns Hopkins University in their Regional and International Programs development office. Mike graduated from Loyola University Maryland with a Bachelor of Arts in political science. He lives in Annapolis with his wife and three children.   --- Support this podcast:
5/24/202337 minutes, 54 seconds
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126. Making Moves with Christopher Haight

About one year ago, Christopher Haight started the process of moving from Director of Development, Discovery Team at Cornell University to now Associate Dean for Development at Stanford University. Today, I will start at Yale University as Director of Parent Gifts. In this episode, I explain my journey and move to New Haven, Connecticut. Hopefully our stories will inspire you to take the leap you've been dreaming about! --- Support this podcast:
5/15/202333 minutes, 30 seconds
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125. Paul Sullivan: You Just Ask

Hello All, this is the final episode of Season 10! I am closing with this conversation because it offers a fresh perspective on wealth both as a writer and as a donor. Paul Sullivan has had and continues to have an exciting career that we can all learn from. Sit back, relax, and listen to Paul reflect on his journey to date and what money has had to do with it! Paul is the founder of The Company of Dads, the first platform dedicated to creating a community for Lead Dads. Its mission is to help Lead Dads feel less isolated and more confident that they have made the correct choice to take on the bulk of the parenting and family duties - or at the very least not embrace stereotypes around who does what at home. As a Lead Dad himself, Paul understands intimately the joys, frustrations, isolation and reticence around talking about being a Lead Dad. It’s a role that is growing in numbers but is far from normalized. Before starting The Company of Dads in 2021, Paul wrote the Wealth Matters column in The New York Times for 13 years. He also created the Money Game column in GOLF Magazine. As a journalist for 25 years, his articles also appeared in Fortune, Money, Conde Nast Portfolio, The International Herald Tribune, Barron’s, The Boston Globe, and Food & Wine. From 2000 to 2006, he was a reporter, editor and columnist at the Financial Times. He got his start as a reporter at Bloomberg and Institutional Investor. He is the author of two books Clutch: Why Some People Excel Under Pressure and Others Don’t and The Thin Green Line: The Money Secrets of The Super Wealthy. Paul has been interviewed on podcasts, radio and television programs across America, including NPR, Marketplace, CNN, and Fox News. He has also given key-note talks to audiences from 50 to 500 people in the United States, Mexico and Chile. Paul lives in New Canaan, Connecticut, with his wife and their three daughters and three dogs. He received degrees in history from Trinity College and the University of Chicago. When not running The Company of Dads or being a Lead Dad, he is an obsessive golfer. --- Support this podcast:
3/22/202341 minutes, 52 seconds
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124. Jan Abernathy: Building Your Personal Brand

Last week, I went with several of my colleagues to the NYSAIS advancement conference at Mohonk Mountain House. NYSAIS stands for the New York State Association of Independent Schools. At the conference, I had the opportunity to speak about building your personal brand for career success with today’s guest, Jan Abernathy. Before we did our talk, we recorded it to share with all of you! Jan Abernathy is the Chief Communications Officer at The Browning School, a K-12 boys’ school in New York City. Formerly the director of marketing and communications at The Elisabeth Morrow School in Englewood, NJ. At Browning, she is a member of the Health & Safety Team, responsible for managing COVID response, and co-chaired the school’s successful search for its new director of equitable practice and social impact. She is president of New York City Independent Schools Communications Professionals, a professional association of over 100 members from schools throughout the tri-state area, and the co-founder of Black Advancement Networking Group, which works to gain further representation and greater professional growth of Black professionals in advancement roles in independent schools. Jan is chair of CASE-NAIS 2022, the most prominent international advancement conference in the independent school sector. A journalist by training, she has written for NAIS’ Independent School Magazine on crisis communications (Winter 2019) and the “Black at” movement (Winter 2021). She is a trustee of Grace Church School, a K-12 school in New York City, and was on the board of Stevens Cooperative School in Hoboken, NJ, for 13 years, spending six years as chair. Her consulting firm, Jan Abernathy Strategic Communications, provides communications and DEI counsel for educational institutions and non-profits. --- Support this podcast:
3/15/202335 minutes, 16 seconds
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123. Taylor Wood: Vanderbilt's Regional Hubs

The tale is as old as time- do you have regional major gift teams based in the cities they manage, or on campus? Vanderbilt University is rolling out a new initiative they are calling Vanderbilt Regional Hubs. Through these hubs, prospective students, current students, parents, alumni and friends will connect with Vanderbilt through professional opportunities and custom programming. This week, we will learn about how the program has been launched from the leader himself, Taylor.  Taylor Wood joined Vanderbilt’s Development and Alumni Relations team in November 2018 to manage fundraising for the School of Medicine, including Basic Sciences, and the School of Nursing. In October of 2022, his portfolio has expanded to include oversight of development for the School of Engineering and DAR’s new regional development initiative. He previously served in development leadership at the Syracuse University School of Architecture, one of the top architecture programs in the country, as well as the College of Design at the University of Kentucky. Wood is a native Kentuckian and earned his bachelor’s degree in English at the University of Kentucky and master’s degrees in business administration and sports administration at Ohio University. **Special shout out to Becca Jensen for suggesting this episode and making this episode possible. --- Support this podcast:
3/8/202334 minutes, 12 seconds
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122. Lisa Alvarez-Calderón: The Golden Ingredient to Recruiting, Talent, Retention

In this week’s episode, we talk talent, recruiting, and, retention. Lisa Alvarez-Calderón is the founder of Shine Consulting, dedicated to advising leaders on people strategy, global organization effectiveness, leadership development and building high performing, inclusive cultures. Lisa is an executive coach who helps people connect, share and accomplish big things so we can thrive and shine. Lisa is a dynamic leader with extensive global human resources experience working across diverse sectors and geographies. Lisa was Chief Human Resources Officer of the Bill & Melinda Gates foundation, where she worked closely with the foundation’s executive leadership team through the COVID-19 pandemic. Lisa lived in Chile serving as HRVP for BHP in the mining sector and Academic Director for the University of Chile ́s Center for Organizational Engineering. She developed her career in the pharmaceutical sector as HRVP for Johnson & Johnson in the United States and Asia, including living in Singapore and leading HR across 14 countries; and with Bristol-Myers Squibb as HRVP for Research & Development, and HR and talent roles in Latin America and US commercial operations. Lisa began her career as a leadership trainee with CIGNA and spent the first decade of her career as an HR business partner and talent management specialist in the insurance industry. Lisa serves on the Board of Trustees of Trinity College and on several Advisory Boards including Enspira, a strategic human resources consulting firm; Untapped Potential, a social enterprise dedicated to attracting professionally trained women caregivers (i.e., Moms) back into the workforce; and The Company of Dads, a community platform for Lead Dads and an advocate for more open and productive work environments for parents. Lisa is an active member of the International Women’s Forum, a global network of accomplished women dedicated to advancing women’s leadership and championing equality worldwide. Lisa is known for building trust and connecting with people to help them perform, learn and grow. She brings passion, courage, authenticity, integrity, asense of adventure and joy to all she does. Lisa knows that If it’s not energizing, it is probably not worth doing. Lisa received an MBA with Distinction from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania. She graduated Phi Beta Kappa with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science from Trinity College in Hartford, Connecticut. Lisa and her husband have raised two grown sons and divide their time between Seattle, Washington and Chincoteague, Virginia. --- Support this podcast:
3/1/202345 minutes, 15 seconds
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121. Eric Almonte: A True Partnership

This week, my guest Eric and I talk about Reunion and Annual Giving, portfolio optimization, engaging the next generation of donors, and what to say when people ask you why a wealthy institution needs their support. Ultimately, the team at Princeton is building what they call, a true partnership with their donors. Eric R. Almonte serves as Assistant Vice President for Capital Giving at Princeton University, Princeton, NJ. In this role, he supervises an extremely dedicated and professional staff including; three frontline fundraising teams and the support staff for Leadership Gifts, International Development and the Office of Gift Planning. The Capital Giving team focuses on fundraising to increase access and affordability opportunities, endowed professorships, and research funding to intensify innovation, curiosity and intellectual risk taking at Princeton University. --- Support this podcast:
2/22/202339 minutes, 18 seconds
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119. JD Beebe: The Origin Story of ThankView

If you are listening to this—it is likely you either have access to ThankView through your organization or have at least seen their unicorn logo. If you don’t know what I’m talking about, it’s the cloud-based platform that lets you easily create and send personalized videos to raise awareness, promote events, update stakeholders, and thank those who matter most. Today, we will talk with JD Beebe, ThankView’s  co-founder and CEO. JD tells us how and why he became an entrepreneur and shares the story of how ThankView was originally created to make completing his wedding thank you notes more enjoyable. ThankView now works with over 1,000 annual partners, including The Boys & Girls Club, Boston University, Cornell, Pepperdine, Miami University and Colorado State University. In November of 2021, ThankView merged with EverTrue, the top-rated data, software, and services solution for fundraisers. He now serves as President of EverTrue ( Before founding ThankView, JD founded New Antisocial, a digital marketing agency, and Beebe's Buttcamp, a fitness studio that was named "One of the 9 Best New Studios in NYC" by He and his team built everything with no outside investment and have successfully generated millions of dollars while staying cash positive. New Antisocial worked with top global brands including Intel and Spartan Race as well as fledgling startups. Prior to founding New Antisocial, JD was Creative Director for Noise, a digital advertising company in NYC. His work has appeared on CNN, NBC, AdAge, Fast Company, MTV and has won accolades including the Platinum Cannes Lion and top One Show awards. --- Support this podcast:
2/8/202328 minutes, 15 seconds
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117. Katy Herbert Kotlarczyk: Checking The Boxes

Hello! I want to close out this season with a heart-warming episode. Today’s guest, Katy, tells us about how she went for her dream job-- and got it. We talk about her rise to Vice Chancellor for Advancement and how this affected her career, family, motherhood, and leadership. She gives great tips for working professionals who are parents, and leaves you feeling inspired. As Vice Chancellor for Advancement for the University of Colorado Boulder, Katy Herbert Kotlarczyk (cut-lar-chick) oversees all campus efforts related to private fundraising, philanthropic outreach, and alumni engagement. Under her direction, the CU Boulder Advancement team identifies and partners with constituents who contribute their time and talent to advance the university’s mission. With CU Advancement since 2010, Katy previously served as Assistant Vice President for Central Advancement and led CU’s gift planning and annual giving efforts. Prior to her time at CU, Katy led fundraising for a scholarship program at Georgetown University that supported first-generation, low-income, and diverse undergraduate students. She also served as a director of Orr Group, a fundraising and strategy consultancy for nonprofit organizations. A life-long learner, Katy is currently pursuing her Doctor of Education degree in leadership in educational equity, with a focus on higher education. She completed her MBA at DePaul University. She has both an undergraduate and master’s degree from Stanford University, where she served as captain of the women’s gymnastics team. When she’s not working, Katy serves as a Boulder County court-appointed special advocate for youth struggling with truancy. She and her husband enjoy exploring Colorado with their three children. --- Support this podcast:
12/6/202237 minutes, 47 seconds
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116. Maddie Hansen: What is the impact?

Today’s episode is nostalgic I sit down with an old friend and fellow fundraiser, Maddie Hansen. We share a few memories from our time singing together in our College a cappella group and analyze what skills we learned there that we can apply to fundraising. We then learn from Maddie about her grateful patient fundraising and how she has built an authentic voice and path finding meaning in her work. Madeleine Hansen is a Senior Associate Director of Development for Penn Medicine’s Abramson Cancer Center. In this role, Maddie works closely with physicians, scientists, and grateful patients to support diverse research and patient care programs for women’s cancers. This includes Penn’s Breast Cancer Program, 2-PREVENT Translation Center of Excellence (TCE), Ovarian Cancer Research Center (OCRC), and Gynecologic Oncology Clinical Research Unit. Maddie also serves as a point person for fundraising for diversity, health equity, and inclusion (DEI) within the Division of Hematology Oncology. Maddie is a graduate of Trinity College in Hartford Connecticut where she received her BA in American Studies. --- Support this podcast:
11/29/202230 minutes, 52 seconds
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115. Adam Doyno: Who is "Frontline"?

Happy Thanksgiving! I am grateful for all of you this week. Thank you for listening, sharing, and supporting the Development Debrief! This week, Adam Doyno and I debate about the meaning of the term "frontline fundraiser". Should we continue to use it? Or is this a problematic term? We polled all of you on the @devdebrief instagram and learned that 63% of you identify as a frontline fundraiser, 29% of you do not, and 7% of you don't know. We asked you if the term was necessary and 46% of you said yes, 33% of you said no, and 21% of you weren't sure. Take a listen, and talk about it with your teams. We would love to hear your thoughts.  Please see Adam's article that inspired the conversation here: Adam M. Doyno, a Certified Fund-Raising Executive, is the Founding Executive Director of the CUNY SPH Foundation and Inaugural Director of Development for the CUNY Graduate School of Public Health and Health Policy. Since 2018, he has been an essential catalyst in the graduate school’s achievement in becoming an independent, accredited, top-ranked public health authority in New York City and the nation. In his role, he is the architect of the school’s fundraising operations and drives forward development activities that support CUNY SPH students, the 500,000+ students and continuous learners within the CUNY system, and New York City broadly. Active in the fundraising community, Adam serves on the Board of Directors for the Association of Fundraising Professionals-NYC Chapter as co-Vice President of Member Engagement. He also serves on the Board of Directors for the 125th Street Business Improvement District in Harlem. In 2021 he was honored by NYNMedia Nonprofit as part of their annual 40 Under 40 Class. Adam earned a BA from Hofstra University and an MPA from CW Post, Long Island University. He lives on Long Island with his wife and two young children. --- Support this podcast:
11/22/202232 minutes, 2 seconds
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114. Shanna Hocking: One Bold Move A Day

What if I told you, you can’t plan your life, but you can make small moves each day to ensure a strong, healthy, and authentic path? What if I told you that letting go is actually the way to realize your dreams? This is not my message, but it’s one that I believe in and it’s delivered by today’s guest. This episode is close to my heart as it marks the launch of my dear friend, Shanna Hocking’s book, One Bold Move A Day. Shanna has been working tirelessly on this book and it shows as it has gained early praise from Adam Grant and several other influential leaders. This conversation gives a sneak peek into the book and shares the story of Shanna’s writing process as well as more about her career story. We talk momentum building, dreams realized, and lifestyle decisions. Connect to continue the conversation on instagram @devdebrief  --- Support this podcast:
11/15/202232 minutes, 26 seconds
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113. Connor Adams: Leadership From a Fresh Perspective

This week I talk with Connor Adams, Senior Director of Development- College of Engineering and School of Architecture at University of Miami about returning to his alma mater in a leadership position. Connor is re-imagining a team that supports two Deans. We talk about how he manages his goals and plans to build his team, ways he has stewarded donors, and his view on zoom vs. in-person relationship building.  As an experienced University and education fundraiser, Connor is passionate about the power of education as a key pillar of growth, success, and life, particularly its ability to serve as an agent for social change and the creation of collaborative communities. After earning his Masters degree in Student Affairs Administration from Lewis & Clark College in Portland, OR, and Bachelors of Science in Education from the University of Miami, Connor began his career at the Portland State University. From there, he moved to New Mexico to be a Director of Development at the University of New Mexico Foundation, then later on to the land grant institution of New Mexico State University. As of early 2022, Connor began as the Senior Director of Development for the College of Engineering at his alma mater, University of Miami and was recently promoted to oversee the School of Architecture in addition to Engineering. Connor professionally describes himself as trusted advisor, change maker, relationship manager and impact consultant. On a non professional side he is a father, husband, golfer, and a coffee aficionado. Follow @devdebrief to learn more behind the episode!  --- Support this podcast:
11/8/202228 minutes, 23 seconds
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109. Leah Heister Burton: Circle in a World of Squares

I hope everyone had a great holiday weekend. I am excited for the fall season as we close out the summer and season 8. This week, I chat with Leah Burton, the Deputy Director and Chief Advancement Officer at the Guggenheim. It has been a little while since we have had an arts and culture leader here. We talk about their pandemic response, handling times of crisis, plans for the future, and learn about Leah’s background and personal journey near the end of the conversation. I used a quote from Leah to title the episode—a circle in a world of squares. This is talking about the museum itself, but I also like the idea of being different and thinking out of the proverbial box. Leah joined the Guggenheim in September 2019. Burton oversees the planning, management, and execution of the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum and Foundation’s strategic engagement with current and prospective donors regionally, nationally, and internationally. Burton comes to the Guggenheim from CCS Fundraising, a strategic consulting firm where, as Vice President, she advised nonprofit clients in the art and culture, higher education, healthcare, and social services sectors. She has worked as a consultant for the Guggenheim since 2016. for ALSAC/St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital in New York, where she oversaw fundraising initiatives for the greater New York and New Jersey area in support of the hospital. She previously was the Director of Development for St. Mary’s Healthcare System for Children, where she managed a prospect portfolio, developed strategies for donor solicitation and cultivation, and prepared the organization for campaign readiness. She serves as an adjunct faculty member at Columbia University in the Master of Nonprofit Management program, where she teaches fundraising fundamentals. She graduated from Knox College and received her Master of Science in Nonprofit Management with a focus in fundraising from Columbia University. A member of the Columbia University School of Professional Studies Alumni Council, Burton is also a board member of the Association of Fundraising Professionals, New York City, and received the National Young Professional of the Year Award from AFP. This is the final episode of season 8. I will be taking a short break and would love to hear from you in the interim. Check out my linkedin page or the instagram @devdebrief. I would love to hear how you are exploring being a circle in a world of squares, and what thoughts and ideas this episode brought up for you. --- Support this podcast:
9/6/202239 minutes, 35 seconds
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108. Gauri Manglik: Building Instrumentl

For those of you interested in tech, grants, or entrepreneurship, I hope you enjoy this week’s conversation with Gauri Manglik. Gauri has dedicated her career to building intuitive and delightful user experiences. Seeing the opportunity to force multiply the nonprofit sector's ability to create impact through software led her to her work at Instrumentl. As CEO and a co-founder, she has led Instrumentl to serve over 2,000 nonprofits today, making it a favorite tool among grant seekers for bringing grant prospecting, tracking, and management to one place. Before Instrumentl, Gauri was CEO and co-founder of Fondu, an online community for sharing bite-sized restaurant reviews. After Fondu was acquired by Airbnb, Gauri led their mobile and special projects teams. DEBRIEFPOD50 will let you save $50 off your first month or year of Instrumentl. You can sign up for your 14-day free Instrumentl account here: --- Support this podcast:
8/29/202222 minutes, 59 seconds
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107. Michael and Megan: There is Hope

I want to start this episode by thanking Jim Livengood for making this episode happen. Jim, who is the Assistant Director of Development at the Wilmer Eye Institute at Johns Hopkins Medicine, reached out to me and said that our community must hear from Michael and Megan. Michael Hibler is Executive Director of Development for the Sidney Kimmel Comprehensive Cancer Center at Johns Hopkins and Megan Ward is Director of Development for the Sidney Kimmel Comprehensive Cancer Center at Johns Hopkins. Jim said, “Some of my colleagues recommended seeing if it might be possible to have both Michael and Megan come speak with you as “co-guests.” They work very closely together, and you might get a better feel for how their partnership captures the higher-level big picture stuff and maybe some of the more in-the-trenches aspects of this type of work.” Thank you, Jim- because this episode is dynamic and authentic in a way that can’t be planned or staged. We talk about the true meaning of being mission driven, Understanding the complex nature of the healthcare center, goal setting, retention, hiring tips, team building, and so much more! --- Support this podcast:
8/22/202241 minutes, 8 seconds
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106. Debbie Rosenberg Bush: CFR Career Journey

Debbie has focused her career on fundraising from corporations and foundations. This week, she tells us how she has made career decisions through relationship building and networking, which confirms my hunch that work in CFR is not so different from working with individuals.  Debbie Rosenberg Bush is director of corporate and foundation relations at Columbia University School of General Studies, which she joined in March 2022 as the first person to hold this newly created position at the School. She previously served in a similar role for nine years at Columbia’s Mailman School of Public Health.  Prior to Columbia, Debbie was senior director of development for the Cancer Support Community, director of corporate and foundation relations at Gilda’s Club Worldwide, director of foundation support at the American Museum of Natural History, and director of development at the New York Academy of Sciences.  Before her career in development, she worked at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center as director of publications and was an editor at Random House, The Sciences, and Consumer Reports.  Debbie has a Bachelor of Science from Yale University and is active in the governance of the Yale Club of New York City. She was also on the board of Women in Development New York. --- Support this podcast:
8/15/202233 minutes, 26 seconds
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105. Orr Group: Mega Gifts, Crypto, ESG, oh my!

Mega Gifts, Crypto, ESG oh my! Today CJ and Steve Orr—a father/son duo talk with us about some meaty topics. They run a full service fundraising consulting firm but come to the work with roots in finance. We talk about how important it is to be conversant on a baseline level with donors when it comes to the market, currency, and financial planning. Trust me when I say, if I can do it, so can you. Thank you for tuning in! If you would like to hear more from the Orr group, check out the knowledge center. Have a great week! --- Support this podcast:
8/8/202233 minutes, 47 seconds
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101. Demystifying The Ask

This episode recounts my experience attending AFP’s NYC chapter of Fundraising Day on 6/17. I talk through the questions I was asked on a panel with Adam Doyno, Leigh Reid, and Stan Smith titled "Making The Ask and Demystifying the Process". I share how I do individual giving outreach, work to get a meeting, prepare for a meeting, and important rituals for the day of the ask. At the end, I share a few "pro tips" that have served me over the past 1,000+ visits I have conducted.  Ultimately, this session will either be a refresher, or provide some new ideas for you as you prepare for/continue solicitations and building relationships. Please connect with me by liking the LinkedIn page, following the instagram account @devdebrief, rating and reviewing the podcast on Apple or Spotify, or sharing your favorite episode with a friend.  --- Support this podcast:
6/22/202221 minutes, 32 seconds
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100. Amplify, Sunset, and Create

Let's Celebrate 100!! We've made it so far. Over the past 100 episodes, we have had over 60,000 downloads. Our listeners are 90% in the US with the most popular states being New York, California, Pennsylvania, Illinois, and Massachusetts. However, people are listening to the Debrief in all 50 states and over 60 countries! In this episode I reflect on what inspired this podcast as well as why it is so important to me. I also feature a conversation with my Dad, Fred Van Sickle-- Vice President of Alumni Affairs and Development at Cornell University. We talk for about 20 minutes about what we would like to amplify, sunset, and continue to create in our respective institutions. I close with some hopes and visions for the Development Debrief in the future.  More to come on my brand new website: please also follow us on instagram @devdebrief Special thank you to all of the amazing guests who gave their time to this project. I am grateful for the connections and support and will continue delivering fresh content your way!  --- Support this podcast:
6/15/202228 minutes, 45 seconds
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99. Rich Goode: Pro Tips in Planned Giving

Well, we couldn’t have 100 episodes without having one dedicated to planned giving! So here we are at Episode 99. Rich Goode tells us about how he manages a planned giving portfolio and how he prioritizes his time. I really agree with a lot of his tips and hope you enjoy!  Rich Goode has two degrees from the University of Notre Dame, a bachelor of arts and a law degree.  After practicing in downtown Chicago, Rich left the practice of law in 1995 to devote his energies to fundraising in the area of planning giving.   Rich worked at the Archdiocese of Chicago and Lurie Children's Foundation before joining the team at DePaul University in 2017.  Rich was the president of the Chicago Council on Planned Giving from 2005-2007.  Rich has spoken on planned giving topics and published articles, including in the Journal of Gift Planning. See you next week for an extra special Episode 100! Please connect with us on instagram @devdebrief --- Support this podcast:
6/8/202232 minutes, 19 seconds
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98. Amy Eisenstein: Capital Campaign Toolkit

This week, we hear about the Capital Campaign Toolkit from Amy Eisenstein. Amy created a support system for non profit leaders to empower themselves within their campaign work. Amy talks about why her business model has always been online, and how she supports her clients. Amy Eisenstein, ACFRE, has been a development professional and fundraising consultant for more than 20 years. She is also the CEO of the Capital Campaign Toolkit. Recognized as a leading expert in her field, she helps small and large nonprofits alike raise millions of dollars through major gift and capital campaigns. Amy received her Master’s Degree in Public Administration and Nonprofit Management from the Wagner Graduate School at NYU and her Bachelor’s Degree from Douglass College at Rutgers University. --- Support this podcast:
6/1/202225 minutes, 33 seconds
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97. Thom Lockerby: Independent School miniseries

Join us tomorrow—May 26th at 3pm ET for a webinar on the future of Major Gifts. Here is there registration link: Welcome to the final episode of our Independent School miniseries. We wrap up with some big questions such as, how does culture inform the strategy? And how do leadership transitions impact teams? Especially during the pandemic. This week's guest, Thomas P. Lockerby is the Secretary of the Academy at Phillips Andover. He leads the alumni engagement, development, and communications initiatives for the school.  Thom has spent his entire career working in and consulting with charities, focusing on major and planned gift fund raising as well as organizational leadership. Prior to joining Andover, Thom was the Vice President for Development at Boston College and directed its $1.5 billion comprehensive campaign. Previously, Thom served as Director of Gift Planning at Dartmouth College, Relationship Manager at Kaspick & Company, Vice President at PG Calc Incorporated, and Director of Development Relations at Harvard Business School. Thom serves on the Board of William James College, an independent graduate school of psychology based in Newton, MA. He is also a former Board Chair of Polaris, a leading organization fighting to eradicate human trafficking in the United States and abroad; a former Board Chair of the Partnership for Philanthropic Planning; and past President of the Planned Giving Group of New England. Thom is a graduate of Harvard College. --- Support this podcast:
5/25/202232 minutes, 9 seconds
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96. Jennifer Kaplan Burns: Independent School miniseries

This week, we hear from Jennifer Kaplan Burns, Assistant Head of School, Advancement and External Affairs at Solebury School in New Hope, Pennsylvania. Jenn provides our first parent perspective within the world of independent school fundraising. She tells us about the history of Solebury and about her current campaign which is breaking historic records! Prior to her current position at Solebury, Jenn was the Director of Advancement at Wilmington Montessori School. She also spent nine years as the Director of Philanthropy at the Nature Conservancy.  Jenn is a graduate of the College of the Holy Cross. She is also a dedicated CASE volunteer having served as the committee co-chair for CASE District II for five years. This is episode 3 of a four-episode miniseries in partnership with CASE. The Council for Advancement and Support of Education is the global nonprofit association dedicated to educational advancement professionals who share the goal of championing education to transform lives and society. Now let’s get started. Please connect with the debrief on instagram @devdebrief. I would love to hear from you. Next week will be our final episode spotlights at Independent School Advancement leader. See you then! --- Support this podcast:
5/18/202231 minutes, 14 seconds
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95. Harold Brown: Independent School miniseries

This week, Harold Brown, Director of Advancement at Cranbrook Schools, talks to us about the multiple elite institutions he has served and what he has learned along the way. Harold previously served as the Director of Development at Salisbury School, a boys college preparatory boarding school for 325 students in Salisbury, CT. Before joining Salisbury, Harold served for 25 years in various roles in the Office of Institutional Advancement at Phillips Exeter Academy in Exeter, NH. As Executive Director of Alumni Relations and International Gifts, Harold led a program serving more than 21,000 alumni and 5,000 parents, strengthening ties to the school and one another. Before dedicating his career to the world of education, Harold was in the financial sector, where he held various positions including Vice President at Connecticut Bank and Trusts, and the Bank of New England, both in Hartford, CT. This is episode 2 of a four-episode mini-series in partnership with CASE. The Council for Advancement and Support of Education is the global nonprofit association dedicated to educational advancement professionals who share the goal of championing education to transform lives and society.  Follow and learn more on instagram @devdebrief  --- Support this podcast:
5/11/202231 minutes
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94. Emily Stone: Independent School miniseries

Hello listeners! I am thrilled to announce a four-episode mini-series in partnership with CASE. The Council for Advancement and Support of Education is the global nonprofit association dedicated to educational advancement professionals—in alumni relations, communications, development, marketing, and advancement services—who share the goal of championing education to transform lives and society. The next four episodes will feature Independent school advancement leaders. I couldn’t be more excited to kick off with Emily Stone, Director of Development at the Spence School. Emily works at an all-girls independent school just blocks from the one where I work. I have known her for a while through our alma mater’s alumni network. You will hear Emily talk about how important those networks are and her career trajectory. She has worked in alumnae relations, and can keenly analyze the differences between working with alums and parents. Emily is high energy and filled with good ideas. Follow us on instagram @devdebrief or connect on LinkedIn for more information.  --- Support this podcast:
5/4/202238 minutes, 33 seconds
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93. Colin Stewart: Work Smarter, Not Harder

This week I talk with Colin Stewart, the former EVP, Strategic Partnerships & Philanthropy, and current member of the advisory board at Arjuna Solutions. I learned several new terms from Colin such as the "non-profit starvation cycle", and donor’s "giving elasticity". Arjuna inspires non-profits to work smarter not harder. Colin talks about the algorithm Arjuna uses to determine annual giving asks for large databases and how to look at donors as long term supporters from the annual giving lens.  Arjuna Solutions uses behavioral economic modeling and AI services to help leading nonprofits lift their direct response fundraising by an average of 12%. Arjuna’s simple-to-adopt services improve giving over a donor’s lifetime without the nonprofit having to change fundraising practices or staffing. To learn more about how you can sustainably increase your nonprofit’s fundraising, please visit Next week will mark the beginning of a 4-week mini series in collaboration with CASE. We will hear from four leaders in the Independent school space. Follow us @devdebrief (instagram) or on LinkedIn to learn more about what is to come!  --- Support this podcast:
4/27/202233 minutes, 54 seconds
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92. Margaret Kaufmann, Jonah Nigh, Alex Tapnio: Be a Pathmaker, not a Gatekeeper

The Final episode of our Impact and Innovation season is extra long. It may be because I’m just not ready to end these amazing conversations we’ve been having over the past 8 weeks. The good news is, we will have a Webinar next week on March 29th at 11am (ET) to recap these episodes and dig even deeper.  You can learn more via this registration link: This week's conversation is with several leaders within the New School Office of Development and Alumni Engagement. This conversation grapples with some hard questions and focus on three main themes; hiring diverse applicants, handling micro aggressions on the front line, and building affinity groups and cohort fundraising. Jonah Nigh, Meg Kaufmann, and Alex Tapnio are incredibly inspiring as they talk about their work advancing the New School with a diverse team and brilliant set of perspectives. Connect on instagram @devdebrief --- Support this podcast:
3/23/202240 minutes, 9 seconds
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90. Ashutosh Nandeshwar: Artificial Intelligence For Good

Dr. Ashutosh Nandeshwar is the Assistant Vice President, Relationship Management and Data Sciences at the University of Southern California. He also is a Data Scientist. Consultant. Speaker. And Process Innovation leader. We talk about Ashu’s recommendations for portfolio management as expectations have changed since the pandemic. We discuss the pros and cons of activity comparison amongst gift officers as well as how Ashu thinks AI can advance our industry. This is a wonderful conversation about data from the research perspective. Author of Tableau Data Visualization Cookbook, Ashutosh R. Nandeshwar is one of the few analytics professionals in the higher education industry who have developed analytical solutions for all stages of the student life cycle (from recruitment to giving). He enjoys speaking and ranting about data professionals' chase of "interesting" things (example: He received PhD/MS from West Virginia University and BEng from Nagpur University all in industrial engineering. Learn more about Ashu's work here: --- Support this podcast:
3/9/202233 minutes, 19 seconds
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89. Karl Clauss: Leading Alma Mater and Campaign Momentum

This week we revisit the on-going conversation about working for one’s alma mater and building momentum for campaigns. Karl Clauss, the Vice President for Advancement at Colgate University and I talked about what it has been like for him to return and lead the Development team at his alma mater, and the exciting new plans they have for their upcoming campaign. Karl is currently partnering with President Casey, Colgate faculty, and board leadership to engage alumni and parents and secure the resources that will make their newest campaign- The Third-Century Plan a reality. As of this week, we have surpassed 50,000 downloads on this podcast. Thank you for listening, sharing, and contributing to this vital community. Thank you as well for celebrating with us on social media. If you don’t already follow, you can find a page on LinkedIn called The Development Debrief and our Instagram page is @devdebrief. --- Support this podcast:
3/2/202232 minutes, 50 seconds
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86. Matt Hutter: Creating Sustained Culture Change

This week, we hear from Matt Hutter, Assistant Vice President of Development for Duke Science and Technology at Duke University. He is a strategic initiatives fundraiser who is an expert in raising money for the sciences. Roles like his are primarily found in large research universities and drive large scale giving. We talk about how these kinds of gifts make ripples not just through their dollars, but the culture change they create. Matt breaks down strategic initiatives and transformational gifts for us in a very approachable way. Please connect on instagram @devdebrief  --- Support this podcast:
2/9/202235 minutes, 17 seconds
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84. Stephanie Posen: Recruiting and Training Front Line Fundraisers

I can’t believe this episode will wrap up two years of the Development Debrief! I talk with Stephanie Posen about how she has recruited, trained, and grown a team of front line officers doing leadership gift work. She has worked with her team to build a great culture of work in a remote environment. Stephanie Posen is the Director of Leadership Giving at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center (MSK). Stephanie manages the mid-level giving program which includes donors and prospects giving $1,000- $250,000. The Leadership Giving team serves as a pipeline for the rest of the department- both for revenue and donors, as well as developing talent and strong gift officers. Stephanie's professional career has been focused on Education and Academic Medicine with prior experience working at New York University (NYU) and Weill Cornell Medicine (WCM). In previous roles, Stephanie has worked in International Major Gifts, Leadership Annual Giving and Campaign Events. Stephanie holds a Master of Business Administration from NYU's Stern School Business and a Bachelor of Arts from Cornell University in History and French Literature. I will be taking a break in January before returning with more episodes in February. Please share this podcast with your networks and follow us on social media @devdebrief and on Linkedin. Thank you for listening to the last episode of 2021. Warm wishes for 2022 and the great work I know we will all do!  --- Support this podcast:
12/30/202136 minutes, 11 seconds
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(BONUS EPISODE) Exciting Opportunities at my Alma Mater!

I talk with Dave Kayiatos, Assistant Director Leadership Giving (and fellow alum of Trinity College in Hartford, Connecticut) who received both a BA and an MA in history at Trinity, in 2002 and 2006 respectively. We discuss the value of working at your alma mater and how exciting it is to be working at Trinity today! This conversation prompts me to share some great opportunities at Trinity. Trinity is moving toward the public phase of a $500 million dollar comprehensive campaign, and they are growing the advancement team. Frontline fundraisers – this is an opportunity to join a strong, collaborative team. Trinity is also looking for an inaugural director of digital media, as well as other communications positions. If annual giving is where you shine, some great leadership roles are available there, too.  If you are thinking about your next move and want to have great impact, Trinity may be the place for you. To learn more, reach out to Vice President Michael Casey at [email protected].  --- Support this podcast:
12/23/202114 minutes, 18 seconds
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82. Rich Berlin: Could DREAM be in your future?

Today I interview Rich Berlin, Co-CEO of DREAM. I ask him about his origin story at the organization, leadership structure, board management, and his views on fundraising. There are lots of things that make DREAM stand out in New York City and an impactful place to work. This episode is special because DREAM is currently searching for their next Chief Advancement Officer.  Originally founded in 1991 as Harlem RBI, DREAM has grown to annually serve more than 2,000 youth across East Harlem and the South Bronx through a network of PreK-12, extended-day, extended-year DREAM Charter Schools and community sports-based youth development programs. DREAM’s Grow the Whole Child model embodies a commitment to rigorous academics, social-emotional learning, deep family and community engagement, and health and wellness, creating lifelong learners who are equipped to fulfill their vision of success in and out of the classroom. The Chief Advancement Officer will develop and lead DREAM's experienced seven-person Advancement team to drive an ambitious fundraising strategy, raising over $20 million annually and spearheading a $50 million capital campaign that will lead DREAM into its next phase of growth. DREAM’s unique position within the education and nonprofit spaces—combined with   its best-in-class Board and donor base—make this an incredibly exciting opportunity for someone with a strong track record of impact as DREAM continues to deepen its roots in New York City. To learn more about DREAM, and to apply, visit You can also refer someone you know for a $1,000 reward! --- Support this podcast:
12/16/202131 minutes, 9 seconds
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61. Lisa Greer: Do We Need A Philanthropy Revolution?

Hello friends! Today I share with you the Final episode of season 3. Although this is the last episode for a little while, there are still two more ways for you to engage with the Debrief before Season 4. Tomorrow, at 5pm eastern, I will go live on Instagram @devdebrief with Lisa Greer to talk about her book and answer any questions you have from this episode. If you can’t join us there, I highly recommend you sign up via Eventbrite for our first ever zoom event on May 20th. Lisa Zola Greer is a philanthropist, entrepreneur, convener, and the author of the bestseller "Philanthropy Revolution". Over the last decade, the Greer home in Beverly Hills has been home to nearly 200 charitable salons and events connecting nonprofits with donors and the community. Email me your questions for Lisa on the live here: [email protected] Join our instagram live via handle: @devdebrief Join our community event on May 20th here: --- Support this podcast:
5/13/202135 minutes, 57 seconds
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53. Chris Clarke: Engineering and Campaign Strategy

This week I speak with William Christopher "Chris" Clarke, the Associate Vice President for Campaigns at Duke University. I ask Chris about his fundraising experience at engineering schools. Chris explains how engineering fundraising is unique and how it fits into the larger picture of a research University. Later, we talk about Chris’s professional training in singing and performance. All of Chris's experiences, have prepared him to execute his current role in campaign planning. Chris emphasizes that above all, there is an underlying core importance of curiosity in our profession. --- Support this podcast:
3/18/202130 minutes, 29 seconds
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52. Alison Traub and Chris Cox: A Comparative Discussion of UK vs. US Fundraising

The week I sit down with Alison Traub (Executive Director of Development and Alumni Relations at University of Cambridge) and Chris Cox (Vice Principal at The University of Edinburgh). Our guests talk candidly about the cultural differences between fundraising in the US vs. the UK. Alison and Chris are perfectly positioned to discuss this given their respective backgrounds. We talk structure, academics, growth over the past ten years, due diligence, admissions and more! Please connect on instagram @devdebrief or on our LinkedIn page if you want to learn more about the podcast. --- Support this podcast:
3/11/202137 minutes
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51. Robert Khederian: Selling to the Carriage Trade

I had the absolute pleasure of spotlighting a great friend for this episode. I compare the similarities between working with high end donors and working in real estate. If you like New York City, real estate, or have an interest in social media, you will enjoy this episode. I am exploring an idea here- how do other industries relate to our development work? Robert is a real estate broker at Compass who is first in class. He talks to us about his field and then we learn about his Instagram handle and how he has developed a following. --- Support this podcast:
3/4/202130 minutes, 15 seconds
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50. Esther Choy: Interpreting First Generation Wealth

I am so lucky to have storytelling expert and communicator Esther Choy as our guest this week. She talks with us about her newest study called "Transforming Partnerships with Major Donors-- Aligning the key values of first generation wealth creators and fundraisers in the age of “Winner Takes All”" We talk about the dichotomy of abundance and deprivation among the privileged, the disproportionate amount of newly created wealth, desired ways to communicate and identify these donors, and 4 key pillars Esther created to better understand people who have created first generation wealth. Esther Choy is the President and Chief Story Facilitator at Leadership Story Lab, where she works with clients to help them communicate their own authentic stories. Esther is the author of the book "Let the Story Do the Work: The Art of Storytelling for Business Success" and her work can be seen regularly on,, and An alumna of Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University as well as Texas A&M, Esther holds both an MBA and an MS in Higher Education. Esther lives in Chicago with her husband and two daughters. Find the report here: --- Support this podcast:
2/25/202135 minutes, 42 seconds
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49. Braylon Edwards: Football and Philanthropy

How do athletes go from multi-million dollar contracts to making a difference? What happens in retirement for athlete’s whose identity has been focused on their sport? What motivates athletes to give and why is it unusual to see major giving in higher ed from pros? This week's guest, Braylon Edwards addresses these questions in an unscripted conversation about his philanthropy and leadership. Braylon was a wide receiver for the University of Michigan, which led to him being the third overall pick in the 2005 NFL draft. He retired from the NFL in 2014 and returned to Michigan to finish his degree. Since then he continues to be a sports commentator and published his first book, “Doing It My Way”, which chronicled his outspoken life as a Michigan Wolverine. Braylon’s philanthropy has focused on athletic scholarships at the University of Michigan and in Cleveland. Most recently, Braylon has become an advisor for nonprofits on mental health initiatives, and with the U of M Alumni Association, U of M African American Giving Initiative, and the U of M Depression Center. --- Support this podcast:
2/18/202126 minutes, 44 seconds
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48. Blake Davis: Networking with Natural Curiosity

Today’s guest Blake Davis (Assistant Vice President for Development at Southern Methodist University, located in Dallas, TX), started networking from a young age. He opens with telling the story of his early networking in college and then we move on to talking about navigating hierarchy through networking and get as granular as talking about effective cold emails for outreach. Blake tells us, ultimately, good networking looks like good portfolio management. Blake uses the word pure a few times as he talks about making connections- listen for his examples, they are powerful. Key takeaways: 1. Network internally 2. Create support groups 3. Network role play 4. Be YOU! Please connect on instagram @devdebrief or email me [email protected], I would love to hear from you! --- Support this podcast:
2/11/202135 minutes, 35 seconds
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47. Karen Isble: From Prospect Researcher to Vice President

I am so glad you are here! Please follow me on LinkedIn or Instagram @devdebrief. There, you can get updates on the podcast and learn more about our guests. I hope you will find me any enjoy this week’s podcast. Today’s episode features Karen Isble, the Vice President for Advancement at Kalamazoo College. We talk about her recent arrival to the role (last fall) and her journey getting there. Karen’s career has been steeped in an expertise in prospect management and operations and she talks about how the skills for that part of the work apply to leadership and an ever important full-picture strategy. Karen identifies inflection points in her career that were pivotal to her growth. Did you know Karen dreamed of being an Opera singer? She tells us how she pivoted from the performing arts into administration and then ultimately development. --- Support this podcast:
2/4/202133 minutes, 59 seconds
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46. John Toolan: How to Prepare for an Authentic Interview

Are you working up the courage to start interviewing or in the throes of a job search right now? Keep listening to hear John Toolan (Vice President of BRYANT GROUP executive search) give the inside scoop on preparing for a strong interview. He even suggests that if you aren’t looking you should still be practicing and thinking about your own professional narrative. Learn: Fatal mistakes to avoid The STAR technique Top 5 tips for online interviewing The Rule of 7 And how to be memorable as a candidate --- Support this podcast:
1/28/202128 minutes, 18 seconds
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45. Patty Hill Callahan: Pressing The Reset Button

Welcome to Season 3. Our first episode of the season is called "Pressing The Reset Button". A term that Patty Hill Callahan used when she told me she was taking time off from work and leaving her role as Vice President of Medical & Health Sciences Advancement at The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center. The first ten minutes of this episode is reflecting on Patty’s career to date. It didn’t feel right to have Patty on and not ask her important questions about the work she has done in our field. The next twenty minutes are dedicated to the difficult decision she made to step away from her professional life and focus on her personal one. Patty talks about authentic leadership, personal growth and following her gut. She shows without telling that it doesn’t matter what people think of you if your decision was the right one for you and your family. --- Support this podcast:
1/21/202129 minutes, 43 seconds
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Season 3 Trailer: Tell Me Something Good

As I sit here in my studio apartment looking ahead to the next three months of winter I know it will be a slog. I am reading more books, and working more than ever on the Development Debrief. On the episode I share: 1. A poem called "2020" and talk about the projected vibes for Season 3. 2. An instagram live event that will be taking place tonight (1/14 at 8pm). You can find my collaboration with Shanna Hocking on my account @devdebrief. 3. How much I am looking forward to a positive and inspirational Season 3! --- Support this podcast:
1/14/20214 minutes, 22 seconds
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44. Anniversary Episode: What We Know After 2020

Fred Van Sickle (my Dad) and I sat down together to reflect on 2020. The first year of the Development Debrief was perhaps one of the most exciting, scary, and intense, in our field and our lives. My Dad, who works in development at Cornell University asks me questions about the podcast process and then I ask him what he has learned as a leader in the field. Thank you to the wonderful guests this year and the amazing debrief who community for being part of this podcast! Enjoy the holiday and don't worry- season 3 will be coming in late January. Please follow on instagram @devdebrief or get into touch via email [email protected] --- Support this podcast:
12/16/202026 minutes, 27 seconds
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43. Jonah Nigh: Museum Musings

This week I speak with Jonah Nigh (Chief Development Officer, The Jewish Museum) about his transition to a leadership position right after the initial COVID hit. We compare and contrast his experience in higher ed with fundraising in the arts, the dangerous future of free content, the retention of members in the museum space, and using membership as pool for prospecting. Jonah does a great job talking us through his work and what makes his institution special. --- Support this podcast:
12/9/202032 minutes, 11 seconds
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42. Julie Lucas: Independent Schools Empower Students

This week we have our first episode focusing on Independent School fundraising. I have always been curious about this slice of the pie in our sector. What is it like managing parents and alums? How do these small communities work together? What is the culture like? I ask these questions of Julie Lucas, Chief Advancement Officer at Darlington School. Darlington School is a co-ed, independent boarding and day school in Rome, Ga., for students in pre-K through high school. Special thank you to Carson Raymond who recommended Julie as a guest! --- Support this podcast:
12/2/202029 minutes, 41 seconds
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41. Brent Grinna: Thanksgiving Special!

Happy Thanksgiving! Thank YOU for tuning into this podcast and supporting the Debrief. This week’s episode features Brent Grinna, Founder and CEO of Evertrue. The theme of our conversation is gratitude and we talk about it from several different angles. Brent shares his personal story of going to Brown on scholarship, how that bleeds into his origin story for his company Evertrue, and several other touching stories and ideas he has come across along the way. Check out his podcast: The episode we reference is here: **Correction: Brent is a proud Brown alum --- Support this podcast:
11/25/202032 minutes, 19 seconds
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40. Brian Chapman: The Value of Gifts

Today’s episode features a brilliant and creative mind. A colleague who is always thinking outside of the box and questioning the status quo. This week, I pick the brain of Brian Chapman (Deputy Vice President for Analytics and Business Strategy in the Office of Alumni and Development at Columbia University). The conversation is not specific to higher ed and can be applied to all roles in the field. Brian and I would meet on a semi regular basis (before we went remote) and I would ask him questions over coffee or lunch like I do today. A few examples we unpack today.... is a larger gift a better gift? How do we assign value to gift impact? How should fundraisers be evaluated? Why have we trained donors to follow certain patterns? --- Support this podcast:
11/18/202036 minutes, 1 second
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39. Nina Diefenbach and Whitney Donhauser: Broadening Audience with Closed Doors

This week’s episode is a true testament to the power of networking and relationships within the field. Suzanne Hilser-Wiles, a previous guest, recommended that I invite Nina McNeely Diefenbach (Senior Vice President and Deputy Director for Advancement, Barnes Foundation) and Whitney W. Donhauser (President and Ronay Menschel Director, Museum of the City of New York) to do an episode together about arts and culture. You can feel the friendship between Nina and Whitney as they share their views and experiences. The two worked together at the Met and you’ll notice the episode starts when we are getting acquainted. I couldn’t help but keep their admiration for one another within the episode. Nina and Whitney talk about their respective institution’s struggles and successes since March. They emphasize collaboration and the power of digital media. --- Support this podcast:
11/11/202035 minutes, 13 seconds
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38. Andy Zepp: Environmental Fundraising

This week we talk about land conversation. I to pick the brain of Andy Zepp, the Executive Director of the Finger Lakes Land Trust. Andy is has a calming force as he talks about his plans for the land trust and his perspective on fundraising. We highlight the differences and similarities between higher ed and cause based fundraising. --- Support this podcast:
11/4/202038 minutes, 4 seconds
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37. Howard Stevenson: Examine the Root

Veronica Martini (my boss at Columbia)invited Howard Stevenson (one of her mentor's) to speak at our team retreat this past summer. We have recorded the conversation as a live Debrief Episode. Howard talks about his experience as a donor and fundraiser as the Sarofim-Rock Baker Foundation Professor Emeritus at Harvard University. His main message is to talk about philanthropy as the solution to root problems through various institutions. Connect: Insta- @devdebrief email- [email protected] --- Support this podcast:
10/28/202030 minutes, 56 seconds
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36. Suzanne Hilser-Wiles: Know Better, Do Better

Suzanne Hilser- Wiles, (President at GG + A) helps us understand diversity, equity, and inclusion challenges in our field from a consultant's expert perspective. She then shares her own challenges as a woman in a historically male-dominated field. She offers stories, data, and insight to back up her thoughtful ideas and viewpoints. Hopefully this conversation will help you think about some real changes you can make in your own organization. This one is a real treat! Connect with me- instagram: @devdebrief email: [email protected] --- Support this podcast:
10/21/202034 minutes, 50 seconds
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35. George Development Group: High Impact Philanthropy

This week we hear from our very first married couple. Our guests, Meg and Phil George (co-founders of George Development Group) have built a full service consulting firm together and talk with us about their process and approach. Their core competency is the implementation of major gift programs and we have fun learning more about that and hearing their predictions for the next generation of philanthropy. Connect with me on IG: @devdebrief or email: [email protected] --- Support this podcast:
10/14/202030 minutes, 40 seconds
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34. Kathi Warren: Commitment to Culture

Kathi Warren (Vice President for Development and Alumni Relations at Rice University) and I talk accountability, approachability, and the importance of team culture. Kathi explains how her STEM background sets her apart and opens up about being one of the few African American leaders in the industry. Listen to learn more! Connect on @devdebrief or email me at [email protected] --- Support this podcast:
10/7/202032 minutes, 41 seconds
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(BONUS EPISODE) Kathryn Van Sickle: Virtual Visits

On this special episode of the debrief I will share some of my personal experiences with virtual visits. I walk through how I am securing meetings and share how I prepare, execute, and close meetings virtually. We can do this if we support one another and embrace the change! Shoutout to my Columbia teammates who are my closest collaborators who helped inspire this episode! I am hoping this will start a conversation, please add your thoughts on @devdebrief or email [email protected] --- Support this podcast:
9/30/202012 minutes, 5 seconds
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33. Matt Lachs: CFR and a Childhood Dream

Matt Lachs (Development Officer at Vaughn College of Aeronautics and Technology) has realized a childhood dream. Being in development was something he always wanted and it hasn’t let him down yet. He oozes enthusiasm and as he talks about his career and the change philanthropy can make both within society and on the most personal levels. Matt talks about his experience in Corporate and Foundation Relations, especially within the context of Covid. He also talks about his experiences working at UPenn and why he loves development so much. --- Support this podcast:
9/30/202020 minutes, 18 seconds
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32. Tamara Rogers: Reflections on a Billion Dollar Career

Today I speak with Tamara Rogers, the former Vice President for Alumni affairs and development at Harvard University. In the first half of the conversation I asked her to talk about her career- candidly and with reflection from her first job to her last. In the second half, She shares her thoughts on management, mentorship, and campaigns. Tamara lead The Harvard Campaign whose public phase was 2013-2018, and with an announced goal of $6.5B, and it concluded at over $9.6B --- Support this podcast:
9/23/202030 minutes, 34 seconds
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31. Ben Porter: Unpacking Principal Gifts

When you hear principal gift- what do you think? I tend to think of named buildings, billionaires, and hushed conversations behind closed doors. Today, I was lucky to snag the brilliant and bold Ben Porter (Associate Dean of Advancement for Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management) to de-mystify principal gifts for this week’s podcast. Ben gives us the inside scoop on his book The Principal Gifts Checklist. We unpack principal gifts together from the definition to the inner workings of 8 and 9 figure gifts. We talk about problem solving, the similarities and differences with major gifts, and the universal imperative of trust. You can purchase his book here: --- Support this podcast:
9/16/202035 minutes, 43 seconds
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30. Brooke Schostak And Bonnie Taylor: The Future of Furlough

Fundraising in a field based on connections. We need to make connections with our donors and within our institutions. The same is true for the field. As fundraising professionals, how can we give back and help our colleagues who have been either laid off or furloughed during this uncertain time? How will we build and grow the talent pipeline for our field? Featured are Brooke Schostak and Bonnie Taylor who talk about their experiences looking for work and share ideas for ways we can help! Please share more ideas on instagram @devdebrief --- Support this podcast:
9/9/202029 minutes, 52 seconds
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Season 2 Trailer

This is the trailer for Season 2. The first official episode will be out on 9/9/2020. Join us for more conversations about development as our field continues to change and grow. Music by Susan Van Sickle. --- Support this podcast:
9/2/20203 minutes, 35 seconds
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Season 1 Recap: The Power of Change

After 28 weekly episodes, I am ending Season 1 and taking the rest of the summer to plan for Season 2. The last 7 months of this podcast have been a fabulous journey. I will share my experience recording and my key takeaways from the season. Enjoy the rest of the summer and I look forward to continuing our conversation about creative fundraising and finding joy in our work. As Oprah says, "the power of change is through perspective" and I know we will come across more things that make us think differently in Season 2. It is a privilege to share this field with you! Until next time and please be in touch! Insta: @devdebrief Email: [email protected] LinkedIn: The Development Debrief --- Support this podcast:
7/19/20206 minutes, 13 seconds
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29. Dan Shephard: Tips for Preparing for FY21

Happy FY21! This year comes at us with a new set of challenges and opportunities. We are tasked with continuing to rethink our donor relationships and building new ones. At the beginning of this season, I interviewed consultant, Craig Smith. Craig is a business partner of today’s guest- Dan Shephard (Principal of The Shephard Group). The two work together on sharing and teaching The Four Decisions. In today’s episode, I will talk with Dan about his creation of The Four Decisions, and how we can use it for this fiscal year. We talk about how to get our of our own way with donor work, and suggest working with a one-sheet to organize your donor strategy. To be in touch please reach out at [email protected] or @devdebrief --- Support this podcast:
7/12/202029 minutes, 26 seconds
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28. Abigail Smitka: The Graveyard Shift

Happy 4th of July! In honor of the holiday weekend, I have decided to feature Abigail Smitka (Regional Director, Major Gifts at Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study at Harvard University)a close friend, confidant, and peer mentor. July is always an opportunity to get grounded and reconnect with our motivations and goals. Abbie has always helped me get grounded—starting with my very first development job, working the graveyard shift at reunion weekend. This episode is informal as we recount stories and share lessons learned. Our stories are organized into three overarching values we learned over a three year period. Our hope is that this episode will remind you of why you love your work and that it will draw you closer to the ones who have supported you the most. --- Support this podcast:
7/5/202028 minutes, 7 seconds
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27. Kevin Hallock: Higher Ed Econ 101

As an academic, Kevin Hallock (Dean and Professor of Strategy and Business Economics at the Cornell SC Johnson College of Business) has the ability to make complicated concepts relatable to students. Today’s podcast allows us to be Kevin’s students as we hear him talk about the financial structure of higher ed, why tuition continues to rise, and he explains the uses for endowment. I plan to use some of his answers as responses in conversations with donors as they grapple with higher ed’s financial challenges. IF you're curious about why schools aren't using their endowment right now, or understanding why they are having financial challenges-- keep listening! --- Support this podcast:
6/28/202031 minutes, 4 seconds
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26. Thomas Moore And Britani Griffin: Progress and Hope for Black Development Officers

Today I talk with two of my peers in our field Thomas Moore, Director of Individual Giving at New York Road Runners and Britani Griffin, Associate Development Director at the Be The Match Foundation. They are rising stars, currently in leadership roles at their institutions. They share their optimism for the future and gratitude for the national conversation and acknowledgement across colors of racial injustice in our country. To learn more check out: --- Support this podcast:
6/14/202030 minutes, 20 seconds
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25. Birgit Smith Burton: Understanding Racism in Fundraising

By now, most if not all of us have gotten an email from our institutions and leadership denouncing the heinous crimes we have seen take place in our country against people of color. But the question is, now what? My conversation with Birgit Smith Burton, (Executive Director of Foundation Relations, Georgia Institute of Technology)only scratches the surface of an issue Birgit has been working on for decades. I want to start this episode with a disclaimer: Of course there is precedent of conversations with people of color in development, I am not a pioneer—but we all must embrace our personal role in making continuous, systemic, and long-lasting change in the face of racism. It is our responsibility to take the time to listen to what our black colleagues experience on a daily basis. This episode aims to explore the question of what is next, and to inspire our listeners to make their own plan for change. Birgit's recommended reading: --- Support this podcast:
6/7/202030 minutes, 9 seconds
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24. Dennis Barden: The Demand Will Increase

What changes will remain from Covid-19 for Higher Ed development? Dennis Barden (Senior Partner at WittKiefer) and I talk about his predictions regarding June 30th changes, permanent online shifts, and the ethical nature of making a move during quarantine. The good news is, Dennis says the demand for good fundraisers will only increase as we enter a new "Golden Age of Philanthropy"….listen to learn more! Dennis is a recognized thought leader in higher education search and contributes regularly to such publications as The Chronicle of Higher Education and CASE Currents. --- Support this podcast:
5/31/202032 minutes, 38 seconds
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23. Michele Schiele: Complicated Projects and Institutional Change

Have you ever wondered how schools pull off large naming gifts or big institutional change? Michele Schiele (Senior Associate Vice President for Development, Stanford University)has been part of several historic development moments and challenging projects throughout her career. She shares with us what goes into this work and how best to lead it. Michele let’s us know that strong female mentors were key, and she has always kept a portfolio. Big scale institutional changes are Michele’s specialty. Afterwards, stay tuned for a special bonus episode with Michele! --- Support this podcast:
5/24/202029 minutes, 28 seconds
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(BONUS EPISODE) Michele Schiele: Brilliant Minds and Highly Successful People

Brilliant minds are fascinating and complex. One of the greatest gifts of our profession is the opportunity to work with highly successful donors and incredibly talented faculty and staff. I have always felt inspired by these individuals. However, working with them is not always easy. In this short bonus episode, Michele Schiele (Senior Associate Vice President for Development at Stanford University) shares her views and even has a name for these individuals. She calls them stallions. Listen further to know why she calls them that, and how best to work with them! --- Support this podcast:
5/24/202014 minutes, 8 seconds
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22. Phil Wilkerson: Find Your Fuel

What is your purpose? How do you re-energize? In today’s episode, Phil Wilkerson, Industry Advisor at George Mason University, shares a bit about his own work, gives us some advice he gives his students, and then we get philosophical as he talks about the deeper meaning of life and what brings us all here. Phil practices what he preaches. He networked with me via LinkedIn and we connected virtually over the past few months. He reached out to talk about our podcasts and higher ed work during this remote time. This episode will leave you feeling strong and inspired! --- Support this podcast:
5/17/202022 minutes, 42 seconds
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21. Leslie Nelson-Bernier: A Mother's Mark

Welcome to our special Mother's Day Episode! Whether your mother is with you in person, virtually, or in your heart, we are all marked by our mothers in some way. This conversation helps me realize, our mother’s don’t only help us grow, we push them to grow and better themselves too. Our guest for this episode talks about her experience of being a mother as a grateful patient, as well juggling a powerful career with parenthood. Leslie Nelson-Berner (President of the UNC Health Foundation and Associate Dean for Development of the UNC School of Medicine) shares the inspiration she feels from her children to do good in people's lives through her development career. Leslie is passionate about her work and she exudes joy as she shares her story with us. --- Support this podcast:
5/10/202029 minutes, 38 seconds
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20. Tara Gans: A Donor Unscripted

This conversation is an interview, just like my other past episode have been. However, it can also serve as a template to think about your donor meetings moving forward. If you are interested in my thoughts on virtual visits, and take-a-ways from Tara’s comments as donor, keep listening after her remarks and I will share my reflections. Thank you for tuning in and for continuing to do such important work during this unprecedented time. Tara says it herself, our work is important and cannot stop now! --- Support this podcast:
5/3/202028 minutes, 16 seconds
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19. Fritz Schroeder: Longevity and Leadership

This conversation was recorded pre-covid and I have waited to share it because it didn’t feel as relevant when were all scrambling to transition to remote work several weeks ago. Now, I realize it’s more relevant than ever. Fritz Schroeder (VP for Development and Alumni Relations at Johns Hopkins University)and I start with an unscripted conversation about financial aid and the historic 1.8 Billion gift from Michael Bloomberg. Then, we talk about leadership, in all of it's forms. --- Support this podcast:
4/26/202032 minutes, 10 seconds
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18. Shanna Hocking: Let's Get Motivated

Talking with Shanna Hocking, Associate Vice President, Individual Giving at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, on this episode led to a major moment of clarity for me in my own work. We talk about the importance of a personal brand as a professional, and how we can grow and dream about the future while physically sheltering in place. Shortly after we stopped recording, I used her advice and brainstormed a short term and long term strategy for my regional portfolio. This was so motivating for me. My hope is that you will have a similar experience. Check out her website at and enter DEVDEBRIEF for a 10% discount! --- Support this podcast:
4/19/202025 minutes, 42 seconds
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17. Dan Peterson: Maximum Flexibility

Hindsight is such a bittersweet gift we have. How can we look back on our choices and learn from them? Did we do it right? Did we make a huge mistake? The nature of COVID-19 with it’s waves and regional timeline, gives us the opportunity to hear from a university leader who is 2-3 weeks ahead of those of us living on the east coast. Dan Peterson, Vice President for Development for University Advancement and President of the UW Foundation, shares what has worked and what his team has learned over the past 6-8 weeks of working remotely. Dan’s perspective gives me hope as he acknowledges the pain and loss, but is able to see the positive growth we can bring forward into the next fiscal year and beyond. Special thanks to Ben Renberg! --- Support this podcast:
4/12/202029 minutes, 19 seconds
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16. Michelle Vaeth: Play your Position

How do we handle crisis communications during COVID-19? You are about to hear the alumni relations perspective from Michelle Vaeth, Associate Vice President for Alumni Affairs at Cornell University. Drawing on her long previous Procter and Gamble experience, Michelle shares mantras that help her during crisis, defines the difference between regular communication and crisis communication, offers best practices and she reminds us to always do the right thing. She is dynamic and reassuring about the planning and strategy we CAN control for our external and internal outreach during COVID-19. --- Support this podcast:
4/5/202030 minutes, 52 seconds
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15. Martin Leifeld: Faith in Fundraising

You might be asking yourself, what does faith have to do with it? I am pushing the New York atheist envelope and daring to say that faith is a critical element of life right now as we grapple with the new realities of COVID-19. We are being stripped to the basics and forced to rethink what matters most. This episode is the Debrief’s version of Chicken Soup for the Soul. We talk about morning rituals to set you up for success, and Martin's book, "Five Minute's for Fundraising." My uplifting conversation with Martin might ask you to think about what matters to you and how that impacts everything from personal to professional. --- Support this podcast:
3/29/202027 minutes, 11 seconds
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14. Veronica Martini: Front Line Online

Today I have the pleasure of featuring my very own boss, Veronica Martini. Our discussions is focused around how our team is responding to COVID-19. To remind everyone, our team consists of central major gift officers and executive assistants who travel domestically and internationally. We are no longer able to do the primary work function that our team was designed to do. Our colleague Suzanne Atlshuler said in a recent call, “we aren’t trying to work harder, we are trying to work smarter.” This episode will explore just that as we share how the first week of working from home has been for us. --- Support this podcast:
3/22/202031 minutes, 19 seconds
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13. Jeff Richard: Timing is Everything

People say timing is everything. In this episode, We talk about timing and choosing the right job based on the team, and institution. Jeff Richard tells us that choosing where to commit your time as a fundraising professional is about more than just what you are passionate about. Where is the institution in it’s life phase? How can you make a difference within that context? I was expecting Jeff to tell us how different all of his roles have been. On the contrary, Jeff tells us just how similar they are. He suggests that more than the cause, the timing, and the team are the most important. --- Support this podcast:
3/15/202032 minutes, 22 seconds
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12. Ryan Davis: Surround yourself with Strength

When I started telling my closest friends and family I wanted to do a podcast, I got advice, support, and great leads. Michael Cantor, (whose opinion matters a lot to me) lit up and said, you HAVE To have Ryan Davis on the debrief!!! He knows Ryan as a donor and volunteer at his alma mater, The University of Michigan. He told me that Ryan can engage and make the most non-social person comfortable. She is disarming and makes connections easily. Now, talk about devlife powerhouse! She is forward thinking, ambitious, and agile. A mother of four, she relies on her upbringing as an athlete to get it all done. Ryan talks about her career transitions, her sense of responsibility to sit at the table as black woman in a predominantly white field, and her hunger for building sustainable donor pipelines for the future. This episode is dedicated to Julie, Michael, and their son, Robbie Cantor. --- Support this podcast:
3/8/202029 minutes, 57 seconds
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11. Rachael Gazdick: Scholarship in Action

This episode is the prequel to the moment when our students open their acceptance letters. In higher ed, that is where the journey begins. However, for me- this conversation puts a magnifying glass over the "what" and the "why" for raising financial aid dollars. We do not talk explicitly about development, but rather dig into stories that demonstrate the immense amount of work Rachael’s team at New York Edge does and the countless obstacles the students overcome before they even step foot on a college campus. Buckle up for a conversation about education equity, scholarship in action, and the incredible support New York Edge provides to help their students lead vibrant lives. --- Support this podcast:
3/1/202030 minutes, 8 seconds
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10. Chase Palmer: A Father's Focus

Do you wonder what it’s like to work remotely? What is your colleague who works from home actually doing? This episode is a conversation in three parts. First, I talk with Chase about how he started a remote role at Stanford and how he makes it work for him. As a father of four and professional with a heavy travel role, he talks about why he decided to work remotely and what the pros and cons are of his choice. Second, we talk about fundraising for a school within a large University and the pitch for funding within a wealthy institution. Last but perhaps most important, Chase talks about some complicated gifts he has worked on and he reminds us to not give up on prospects who might seem uninterested and he tells us why his “devlife” is rewarding. --- Support this podcast:
2/23/202029 minutes, 22 seconds
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9. John and Scott: Giving from the Heart

Welcome to our special Valentine’s Day episode. We are going to talk about hearts today. And no- I don’t mean the bruised and vulnerable hearts of those of us dating in New York City. I mean Babies Hearts. Our guests, John Minio and Scott Roskind are the co-chairs of the Babies Heart Fund. The Babies Heart Fund is devoted to supporting vital research initiatives that will allow all children suffering from heart disease to grow up to be heart-healthy, strong adults. Babies Heart Fund is pivotal to the innovative research being conducted by Columbia University Irving Medical Center physicians and surgeons to benefit pediatric cardiology patients across the globe. --- Support this podcast:
2/16/202024 minutes, 46 seconds
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8. Susan Feagin: She Opened The Door

The name of and spirit of today’s episode is inspired by a special initiative at Columbia University that is taking place today, February 9th 2020. She Opened the Door began at Columbia with a historic conference in New York City in 2018. This could not be a more perfect back drop for our interview with Susan Feagin. The woman, the myth, the legend is one of the first female IVY league VPs, an extraordinary leader in the field, and more personally, my father’s mentor. Susan has opened the door for all of us in the hundreds of ways she has lead our field. --- Support this podcast:
2/9/202033 minutes, 43 seconds
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7. Steve Poskanzer: The President Prepares

In this week’s episode, Steve Poskanzer, the President of Carleton College talks about his perspective on development and explains where their current campaign fits into his priorities. A true legal brain, he explains how this informs his preparation for making asks and I was surprised to learn of his strategy. Steve underscores the kindness of the Midwestern community, the value of a liberal arts degree and shares two pieces of advice he learned from his mentor Hugo Sonnenschein- the former President of University of Chicago. --- Support this podcast:
2/2/202030 minutes, 51 seconds
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6. Fred Van Sickle: If you don't ask, you don't get

Have you ever wanted to ask your Chief Development Officer what she thinks about the field, her own professional journey, or her biggest insecurities? From the bosses perspective, have you ever wanted to know what your direct report was really thinking? Have you wondered what motivates them and how they view their role in the organization? On this episode, my Dad and I ask each other these questions and we encourage you to do the same. --- Support this podcast:
1/26/202030 minutes, 26 seconds
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5. Dawn Nadeau: A Donor Unscripted

Dawn and I have an open and honest conversation about her work with the global donor community, Women Moving Millions, her own philanthropy, and how she would apply her seasoned marketing and sales tactics to managing a development portfolio. A graduate of Wellesley College, she has focused her business work on helping brands and companies spark innovation and develop new products and strategies to engage customers. From the Chairman's Office of Goldman Sachs to Kickstarter success, she understands the challenge of getting things done, regardless of scale. --- Support this podcast:
1/19/202022 minutes, 4 seconds
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4. Rhea Turteltaub: The Transparent Trustee

Rhea and I share the story of how we met and became mentor/mentee. We talk about the culture differences in east vs west coast fundraising, working for public vs. private institutions, as well as the importance of being transparent with your bosses and mentors. Rhea talks about how to grow within a large institution and the importance of putting your well-being first- in the service of producing you best work. --- Support this podcast:
1/12/202030 minutes, 46 seconds
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3. Craig Smith: Owning the Conversation

Craig and I talked about the program he co-founded called The Four Decisions and the Two-Part Conversation. Craig explains how we can own the conversation through deep listening and good questioning. Discovering “what you don’t know” about your donors is especially important as Craig underscores that 75-90% of people’s wealth is in their assets, not in their cash. More important than any of these skills though, is to be sincere and be yourself as you champion the institution you work for. --- Support this podcast:
1/5/202027 minutes, 57 seconds
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2. Chris Haight: Raising the bar for yourself

I spoke with Chris about his career progression from research analyst to Director of Development. He shared the importance of internal relationships and personal metrics as tools to raising his first million and rising through the ranks at Cornell's New York City office. --- Support this podcast:
12/21/201936 minutes, 27 seconds
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1. Introducing The Development Debrief with Kathryn Van Sickle

This is the introduction for the stories-based podcast that interviews donors, professionals, and thought leaders in the field of fundraising. --- Support this podcast:
12/15/20196 minutes, 18 seconds