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Josh Whelan

Vice President and Sr. Consultant

Josh Whelan is Vice President and a Senior Consultant with Petrus Development. He lives in Oxford, Mississippi with his wife Mary Kate and kids Jack, Mamie, and Francis. When he's not working with clients, Josh loves to read, exercise, tailgate at Ole Miss games, and spend time with his kids.

Josh graduated from University of Mississippi and is a huge Ole Miss fan. He also loves the Washington Football Team and hopes to travel to the Holy Land someday.

Fundraising Specialties

Major Gifts, Feasibility Studies, Capital Campaigns

[email protected]


How has your career evolved since its beginning? 

“I started in the traditional Higher Ed fundraising shop at Ole Miss with the intention to get experience and stay within higher ed to become an executive in the strategic apex of a university.  I fell in love with development and had opportunities to work in the healthcare section, faith based non profit world, the Catholic fundraising world at FOCUS, and now as a part of the Petrus team.”

What are some career highlights? 

“The achievement or highlight I am most proud of is the number of development professionals I've had the opportunity to work within a team to mentor and lead.  I still have friends and former colleagues from those experiences that have gone on to successful careers and being able to play a part in that is rewarding.  I've also had the opportunity to be a part of 3 major campaigns (higher ed, faith based and FOCUS) and have learned different elements and best practices from each.”

What mistakes and valuable lessons have you learned from? 

“The feelings like you have to have all your ducks in a row and a detailed plan before you can "start".  It's difficult to raise money.....and there's no way to do that behind a desk.  The best advice a mentor has given me was to go and start building relationships....the plan and details around it can be built along the way. It's not all about you, as a development professional, to go raise money.  It's about working as a team towards a common goal.  That includes your supervisor/ leader, key volunteers, etc.  Having confidence to go out and raise money is great, but having a broader perspective on the whole process was something I learned as I went and wish I would have grasped that from the beginning.”

Favorite thing about development? 

“My favorite part of working with Petrus is the opportunity to work with a team to set goals and achieve what is necessary for the ministry to thrive.  That usually involves working with development professionals, training staffs, and walking together as a team towards our goals.  I also thoroughly enjoy meeting new people that are passionate about the Catholic faith and its future, building great relationships with them, and working towards a very hopeful future of our Faith. I love our work at Petrus because we have the opportunity to impact the future of the Faith so directly. The better- off Catholic organizations are in generating funding, the better off the Church will be in the future.  I believe there's a direct correlation between resources and impact with evangelization....let's work together to build the future!”

Hear more about Josh's story here.

The Petrus Development Show: Episode 62

Josh Whelan: To the Next Level


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