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"Just Don't Let Me Look Like an Idiot, Lord" : Interview with Andrew Robison on the Petrus Development Show

In this episode, we flip the mic and interview the host, Andrew Robison. Andrew shares about his background, some of the successes and failures that he has experienced after 15 years in this business and that time that he was in a plane crash and nearly died (spoiler...he lived but missed his catering job the next day).


Show Notes:

  • Andrew grew up in Texas. After his sophomore year of college, he decided to take a year off of school. He spent a year and a half living and working in Colorado - summer camp, waiting tables, moved back to Texas in 2002 to finish his degree in History at Texas A&M University. 
  • Faith was important but attending Mass had stalled. Invitation to girl in CO reignited passion for church.
  • Attended Aggie Awakening and built community. Met Cheryl.
  • Worked at St Marys doing a lot of jobs under Greg Gorman.
  • Earned MA in Philanthropy and Development from St Marys University in Minnesota. Left to work at St Thomas More Newman Center at Ohio State.
  • Had major success with Matching Collection. Raised $125,000 in a weekend in gifts and monthly gifts.
  • Left in 2011 to work at the A&M College of Medicine. Andrew wanted to pursue work as a university president and “wanted to keep being Catholic”. Working for the College of Medicine allowed him to do both.
  • Work at A&M was not what he expected at first. Not a clear direction for development and unfulfilling goals.
  • Switched to Texas A&M Foundation in 2014 and work improved. Development efforts were more effective and he increased annual giving from $300,000 to $3,000,000 in just 2 years after joining TAMF.
  • Attending conferences has always been important to Andrew. He attended the Catholic Campus Ministry Association Development Institute every year when he was early in his career and continued attending the Petrus Leadership Conference throughout his career. At the Medical School, he attended and helped plan the AAMC Development Conference and felt like presenting was a way to continue to teach.
  • The 2020 Petrus Leadership Conference will be in Breckenridge, CO on June 7-10, 2020. Kerry Robinson will be the opening keynote speaker.
  • Traveling with a family and young children is tough but Andrew commits to be very involved when he is home and not spend all his time resting or working.
  • Personally, Andrew enjoys completing triathlons and has a goal to complete a half-Ironman in 2020. Andrew also enjoys snowboarding and reading (or listening to audiobooks). 

Favorite books include:

  • Watership Down by Richard Adams
  • Pillars of the Earth by Ken Follett
  • Lean Startup by Eric Reis
  • Good to Great by Jim Collins
  • So You Want to Start a Brewery by Tony Magee

Andrew also survived a plane crash and two rolled vehicles. He claims to be invincible.

Lightning Round:

  1. Historical causes like American Revolution, Battle of the Alamo or building of a cathedral in feudal England
  2. John D Rockefeller
  3. Yes.
  4. Authors like Eric Reis, Jim Collins, Kerry Robinson, Peter Theil. 
  5. Enjoy what you have when you have it. “This too shall pass..."
  6. Colleagues and friends like Greg Gorman, Dr Paul Ogden, Jamie Cappetta, Scott Hackl, Paul Goetz, Grace Del Nero, Debra Richmond, Keith Myers, David Pederson and more.
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