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Freedom in Faith - An Interview with Frank Cummings on the Petrus Development Show

In this episode, Andrew interviews Frank Cummings, Director of Development - Arts and Sciences for the Kansas State University Foundation.  Frank shares how he found a career in development that brings him joy, and how he especially enjoys the surprises that come as donor relationships grow.  Andrew and Frank also discuss how faith can play a role in development even if you’re raising funds for a secular organization.  

Show Notes

Background

After graduating from high school, Frank either wanted to be an Army Ranger or a Catholic priest.  He went to seminary for 4 years, but he eventually left the seminary and went to business school at Benedictine College.  After earning his MBA, Frank became a financial advisor because he wanted to serve people and help them be successful with their money, yet Frank didn’t find this career path to be as fulfilling as he hoped.  After trying a few other options, Frank found himself entering a career...

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Swimming with the Piranhas - An Interview with Matt Bond on the Petrus Development Show

In this episode, Andrew visits with Matt Bond, former director of development at the St. John Catholic Student Center at Oklahoma State University.  (Matt changed positions between when this podcast was recorded and when it was published!)  Andrew and Matt chat about Matt’s introduction to becoming a fundraising professional, his work on St. John’s $25 million capital campaign, and his strategies for growing an organization’s donor list.    

Show Notes

Background

Matt served as the director of development at the St. John Catholic Center for over 5 years, and during his tenure there, he led a successful $25+ million capital campaign to build a new student center for the campus.  Matt is currently the executive director for the Santa Fe Family Life Center, and he is also a co-host for Holy Donors, another Petrus podcast.  (Check out Holy Donors here!)

 

Introduction to Fundraising

When Matt was serving as a youth minister...

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2021 Trends in Philanthropy

 


By Mary Walker, Petrus Blog Contributor


 

Latest Information on Giving Trends

Giving USA 2022: The Annual Report on Philanthropy for the Year 2021 was released in June.  The Indiana University Lilly Family School of Philanthropy researched and wrote the report. 

The following are highlights that I thought would interest Petrus clients and blog readers. The opinions expressed below are my own. If you would like more detail, summary information is available for free here. You can subscribe to the ENTIRE report here.

 

 

  • Strong Giving Trend in 2020 Continued in 2021

 

In 2020, the year that we adjusted our fundraising programs and expectations due to COVID, more money was given than in any previous year studied--and about 5% more than in 2019. See last year’s blog post for my analysis of why 2020 was a time of great generosity.

When adjusted for inflation, the amount given in 2021 was essentially flat. So, the bad news is that...

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Understanding Donor-Advised Funds - An Interview with Dennis Gerber on the Petrus Development Show

In this episode, Andrew welcomes Dennis Gerber, president of the Knights of Columbus Charitable Fund, to the podcast.  Andrew and Dennis discuss donor-advised funds and current trends in fundraising.  They chat about Dennis’s work at the Knights of Columbus Charitable (KCCF), and Dennis outlines how Catholic donors can benefit from a fund that aligns with their Catholic values.  

Show Notes

Background

Ever since Dennis was a young child, he had a passion for asking for money to help those in need.  Dennis was a bold fundraiser in his youth.  When he was seven, he walked his street asking neighbors for money for the poor; and when he was a college senior, he raised money to rebuild his frat house.  His success raising money for his fraternity led to a post-college development job with his fraternity’s national office, and that position kicked off Dennis's career as a professional fundraiser.   

Catholic Fundraising

After...

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Three Quick Tips to Improve Your Donor Visits


By Mary Walker, Petrus Blog Contributor


Donor meetings can be intimidating to both new and experienced development professionals, but they also have the potential to be such fruitful blessings to our ministry.  In my years of fundraising, I've developed a series of steps that helps me prepare and plan before my donor meetings.

Prayer

In a previous life, I spent 11 years in technical sales for a large computer company. Before I made an important call or presentation, I would say the prayer to the Holy Spirit. I memorized this prayer in second grade—long before I understood the words. The prayer is very “all purpose.” I used it before tests in high school and college, difficult conversations, and sales calls. The prayer doesn’t ask for a specific outcome, but requests God’s inspiration for the work I was about to do. 

In the corporate world, my prayer was a private endeavor, with me grabbing a bit of silence away from coworkers, often in the...

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Trust Me, I Work for a Nonprofit - An Interview with Justin DeMoss on the Petrus Development Show

In this episode, Andrew visits with Justin DeMoss of Your Philanthropic Advisor, a seasoned fundraising professional, entrepreneur, and adjunct professor at Oklahoma City University.  During this conversation, Andrew and Justin discuss the need for nonprofit organizations to be innovative and build trust with their donors and their community. They also discuss strategies for creating an organizational culture that embraces innovation and takes risks.


Show Notes

Background

Justin entered the world of nonprofit fundraising when he was a FOCUS missionary  raising support for his annual salary. 

 

Education

While studying to receive his M.A in Philanthropy and Development, Justin learned the value of mentorship and networking.  He also studied ways that the nonprofit sector could learn from the sales and marketing techniques and the innovation of for-profit businesses. 

 

Innovation and Change

Justin highlights the urgent need for nonprofit...

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Sacred Starters - An Interview with Bill Woolsey on the Petrus Development Show

In this episode, Andrew sits down with Bill Woolsey, Founder and President of FiveTwo Network. They discussed the qualities of a good founder, mistakes that founders typically make and what it means to be a sacred starter. If you have started or are thinking about launching a new ministry or company, you definitely want to check this out.


Show Notes:

Bill has been a pastor since 1987, and he and his wife currently call the Land of Uplift in the Texas hill country home. He was always the evangelism guy and realized that the older the community, the older the members, the harder it is to break in and plant a new church. 

In 2009, he founded FiveTwo Network to support church planters and entrepreneurs of the church. 

In 2015, he left his pastoral placements and went full-time with FiveTwo. 

FiveTwo was named for the story of Jesus feeding the five hundred when a single young man gave what he had to further the mission of Christ. And that everybody who starts something...

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Monthly Giving Made Easy - An Interview with Erica Waasdorp on the Petrus Development Show

In this episode, Andrew visits with Erica Waasdorp, author of Monthly Giving: The Sleeping Giant and Monthly Giving Made Easy, as well as President and Founder of A Direct Solution. She has been in the monthly giving game for close to 30 years and has tons of expertise in this area. Together they discussed the question about subscriptions versus monthly gifts, six easy steps for launching a program and strategies for how to keep your donors giving for a long, long time.

 


Show Notes

Erica is originally from the Netherlands, speaks 5 languages and is the author of two books, Monthly Giving: The Sleeping Giant and Monthly Giving Made Easy.

 

Background

She is President and Founder of A Direct Solution. Erica started her career in Readers Digest, married an American and moved to United States in 1993. After they moved, she worked for a big animal organization and took on their monthly giving program. 

She later started A Direct Solution and had the idea for her...

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Staying True to Mission - An Interview with Ryan Carney on the Petrus Development Show

In this episode, Andrew visits with Ryan Carney, Chief Advancement Officer of Society of St. Vincent de Paul. They discuss Ryan's journey with development and the challenges that he has experienced and conquered throughout his years with non-profits. They also discuss the work they are doing at St. Vincent de Paul and how he helped one local chapter back from a pretty bad case of mission creep. If you have ever dealt with mission creep or if you are struggling to identify your organizations true mission, you'll want to take notes. 


Show Notes:

Background

He fell into development by accident. He had been able to attend an event where a presentation by Catholic Charities took place and that is where the introduction to non-profits and development took route. He graduated from the Chaifetz School of Business at Saint Louis University.

After graduation, he found himself working to Enterprise where he was able to Rent a car to the current executive...

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Donor-Centered Language


By Mary Hernandez, Petrus Blog Contributor


Your year-end appeal is about to get to the final proofing stage, and thankfully, there is still time to edit with a critical eye and include your donors as a key player in your messaging. 

 

Your appeal likely includes these elements:

  • Transformative faith experiences of one or more students
  • A recap of the number and kind of students involved this year
  • A summary of a particularly successful ministry outreach event or retreat 

 

These glory stories and positive growth statistics are important and good to share with the reader, and they will undoubtedly lift their spirits and be a cause for hope. Yet, it is essential to remember that appeals are about you [the donor] and us [the ministry]. Making the donor visible in your ministry’s story is critical to a successful appeal and strengthening donor engagement.  

 

I want to share some practical and real-life appeal examples with...

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