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News from the Institute for Leaders in Development

  • 27 Sep 2022 10:55 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Rebecca Arno, COO, Barton Institute for Community Action [pictured right] led the morningPhoto of Rebecca who is smiling at the camera. She is wearing a blue striped blouse.  session, which provided an understanding of how the third sector came to be and how the history of charitable giving in the US created the environment we have today. 

    • Consider the Role of the Government in Forming/Balancing the Nonprofit Sector
      (1) Regulation of influence (laws allowing and prohibiting lobbying); (2) Taxation (early tax laws spurred the creation of major foundations); (3) Involvement in addressing social issues: Hoover’s “low-cost governance” vs. Roosevelt’s “New Deal"
    • Philanthropy isn’t just for the wealthy
      Early examples of mass philanthropy include campaigns to support the Red Cross and other public health campaigns
    • Narratives of philanthropy are diverse and inspiring, a few groups to know:
      Black Resilience of Colorado | Latino Community Foundation of Colorado
      Native Americans in Philanthropy
  • 22 Sep 2022 2:11 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Led by Tucker Wannamaker, CEO, THRIVE IMPACT | Using the book Leading Well from Within by Daniel Friedland, MD, Tucker brings authenticity, research, experience, and humor to a sometimes difficult do we handle and manage stress as nonprofit philanthropic leaders? 

    Key Takeaways

    • "If we want to lead well in the world, the first place we need to lead well is inside ourselves." --Daniel Friedland MD 
    • The Superpower of Our Generation: Unlocking Collective Wisdom. Uses a new model of leadership based in invitation and inquiry rather than command and control
    • People perform at their best and feel safety, belonging, and significance 
    • Best to stay in a creative space where research shows high-performance leadership is achieved through strategic focus, authenticity, strong relational skills, concern for the community, and self-awareness 
    • Practice mindfulness in a way that works and is impactful for you, ask positive/inquiry-based questions when you hit a roadblock or difficulty

    THRIVE IMPACT also hosts a podcast designed for nonprofit leaders. Check it out here.

  • 14 Sep 2022 2:54 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Resources to Share and Save | Ethics in Philanthropy 

    Last week, the Class of 2023 heard from local experts who shared best practices with the class and led them through case studies to practice their ethical decision making.

    Thanks to our session leaders:  Amy Stewart, Senior Director, Philanthropic Development, Children’s Hospital Colorado Foundation; Lindsey Hersey, Human Resources Director, Dumb Friends League; Josh Zmroczek, CFRE, Director of Development, University of Denver, Sturm College of Law; Erin Osborn, Director, Prospect Research, Children’s Hospital Colorado Foundation! 

    Key Takeaways

    •It's important to have conversations about ethics regularly and to update your policies to ensure that they are legally compliant but also in keeping with your mission and values. 

    •You will sometimes be put in a position where you are educating a donor, boss, or community member. Talk about the likelihood of this situation ahead of time so that you are prepared. Having strong policies and great resources at the ready will be helpful. 

    •The key ethical concern in DEI data collection is that it must be self-identified/self-disclosed.

    We are happy to share links for you to save and share. 

    AFP International
    AFP Code of Ethical Standards | AFP Donor Bill of Rights 

    Colorado Nonprofit Association 
    Colorado Nonprofit Association's Principles & Practices in Nonprofit Excellence

    ADRP - Association of Donor Relations Professionals 
    Ethics Statement

    APRA - The American Prospect Research Association
    APRA's DEI Data Guide | APRA DUE DILLIGENCE TOOLKITApra Ethics and Compliance Toolkit 

    AHP - Association of Healthcare philanthropy 
    AHP Professional Standards of Conduct

    AASP - Association of Advancement Services Professionals
    Statement of Ethics 

    Case - Council for Advancement and support of education
    Statement of ethics

    Independent Sector 
    Principles for good governance 

    NCN - National Council OF Nonprofits
    Ethics and accountability

  • 29 Jul 2022 3:51 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    We're pleased to introduce the talented fundraisers who will join us on a leadership journey that begins this fall and ending in the spring of 2023.

    Many thanks to our nominating committee for their outstanding work in identifying these community leaders and putting together a class that reflects the diversity of our state's nonprofit sector.

    Interesting facts about this year's class:

    • Average years in the nonprofit development field: 6 years
    • Participants come from across the state: 70% Denver metro, 5% Western Slope, 5% Southwest Colorado, 11% Boulder, 5% Northern Colorado
    • Class represents a range of size in fundraising shops: 11% large (11+ employees), 47% medium (6-10 employees), 41% small (1-5 employees)
    • Diversity: 24% of participants represent historically marginalized groups or populations

    Class Members

    Tia (Arnold) Hynes
    Partnership Fulfillment & Events Project Leader
    Denver Botanic Gardens, Denver

    Gabriela (Gaby) Garayar
    Development Manager, Western Slope
    Food Bank of the Rockies, Fruita

    Theresa Garcia
    Director of Development
    Florence Crittenton Services, Denver

    Marsha High III
    Associate Director of Development
    University of Colorado, Boulder Leeds School of Business, Boulder

    Jeremy Jones
    Associate Director of Development
    University of Colorado, Boulder

    Jenna Kamlet
    Associate Director of Development
    Make-A-Wish Colorado, Centennial

    Sarah Korn
    Development Director
    Cobalt, Denver

    Leslie (Boersma) LeFever
    Senior Manager, Special Events
    Children's Hospital Colorado Foundation, Aurora

    Samantha (Sam) Lincoln
    Senior Associate Director, Major Gifts
    Colorado School of Mines Foundation, Golden

    Jenny Martin
    Development Officer
    Denver Public Schools Foundation, Denver

    Cristi Meyer
    Corporate Engagement Manager
    United Way of Larimer County, Fort Collins

    Aimee Quadri-Chavez
    Development Specialist
    Hilltop Community Resources, Ridgway

    Nina Roumell
    Director of Development
    The GrowHaus, Denver

    Maggie St.Clair
    Major Gifts Manager
    Energy Outreach Colorado, Denver

  • 25 Jul 2022 4:00 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    What a gift it was to be together this May to celebrate the ILD Class of 2022. The fifteen graduates are extremely talented, motivated, and dedicated to their work. It was a joy to watch them grow together over the past year. In spite of ongoing uncertainty in the world, and the many personal and professional twists and turns that a year can bring, they found space to thrive. Well done, graduates!

    Faculty, mentors, steering committee members, community partners, friends, and supervisors or CEOs of participants, we are truly grateful to all of you. Each of you contributed in meaningful ways to our success this year.

    We are so happy to share highlights from graduation with you below. It was an honor to welcome back Sonya Garcia-Ullibari as our featured speaker. Sonya, a powerful example of leadership in our field, is a long-time friend of this community. She has previously served as a mentor and class guest speaker. Her words of wisdom, hope, and determination left us feeling energized, refreshed, and encouraged. Thank you, Sonya!

    (left to right) Top Row: Julia McConnaughey, Kelly Hercher, Garrett Royer, Candice Jones, Sarah Jeno, Leah Bobbey, Jessica Carbone, Dawn Rocky. Front Row: Andrea Tagtow, Julia Liao. Rachel Hutchens, and Andrew Castillo. Not pictured: Astrid Monar, Grace Howard, Sydney Weiss.

    We are happy to share words of encouragement and inspiration from Sonya Garcia-Ulibarri, President & CEO, Girls Inc.

    "I love fundraisers. You are miracle makers."

    Sonya is a champion of grassroots organizations and reminds us of the value and significance of each gift. "Remember, most funds are given by people just like you and I. We have to see everyone’s contributions."

    "While our work may be unrecognized, do not be discouraged. Take care of yourself. Stay centered by using a strengths-based approach to your work."

    "[Philanthropy is] a core component of building the world as we hope to see it now and in future generations."

  • 05 Nov 2021 4:19 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    The ILD Class of 2022 is back to learning in person, and they kicked off the year in a brand new way, with a two-day retreat that provided students with a background and foundation for integrating community-centered values, diversity, and ethics into their work as development professionals. During the retreat, students examined the historical relationship between tax law, the political climate, and the role or charity and nonprofits in society.

    Students were reminded that as we strive for inclusion and equity, a helpful exercise is to look around or review a project and ask yourself, "Who is not included?" or "What perspective is missing from this?"

    Empowered with information from the CliftonStrengths platform, students were encouraged to consider their own leadership strengths and the strengths of their teams through the lens of equity, inclusion, and access.

    Recommended Viewing: TED TALK- The Danger of a Single Story

    Here are a few comments from this year’s class about the retreat:

    • "I thought [History of Philanthropy] was a GREAT session. I really appreciated that the discussion included some of the uglier and less inclusive parts of the history. This is something we don't talk about much in the field but is really important for our work going forward."

    • "I thought [Clifton Strengths] brought a lot of extra value to the reading/assessment we took beforehand. The group discussions were helpful to really contextualize why the Clifton Strengths assessment is important."

    • "[Regarding Leading in Development with an Equity Lens] The power of storytelling through the lens of experience was beneficial."

    • "I thought the [Leading in Development with an Equity Lens] session was a great way to explore the real meanings of diversity, equity, and inclusion. I felt like we really dove in past using DEI as a buzzword."

    This first-ever retreat was a labor of love, sweat, and tears for Quill Phillips, ILD’s diversity, equity, and inclusion consulting partner; Curriculum Committee members DeAnn Acosta, Allison Krebs ’13, and Gloria Jara Price ’14; and our guest faculty members, Lynette Adams, Rebecca Arno, Martha Bahamón, and Dr. Ellen Winiarczyk  (University of Denver), Allison Krebs (University of Colorado Anschutz), and Kelly Purdy (Boys & Girls Clubs of America).

    Based on the class comments, it looks like this will be a new ILD tradition!  

    DON’T FORGET! As an ILD alum you are welcome to audit current classes with ILD participants. Click here to view upcoming classes and contact Sarah Stockton to reserve your spot.

  • 03 May 2021 12:25 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    What has been the most significant change to the way you raise funds since the COVID-19 pandemic begun?

    • We found ourselves pausing initially on fundraising while focusing at first (March-May) on government programs like the PPP loan and some performing arts-specific support. Then, we began to shift as our donors got more comfortable with their own lives and what the new reality was starting to look like. At that point we began having conversations that were fully authentic and based on our new reality which was that 1) we had a lot of folks wanting to move, dance and create who could no longer afford classes and 2) we needed more technical equipment to be able to stream and produce content online. In July we launched the first of three matching campaigns, each actually exceeding our initial goals, which taught us that many folks still had money and wanted to support. All those donor meetings were held over zoom, and that will probably be something we offer going forward since now we understand we can build a connection and make an ask over those platforms. - Hillary Harding, Development Director, Cleo Parker Robinson Dance
    • The fundamentals have stayed the same - focus on our mission, lean on and continue to foster relationships with donors, sharing honestly. The way in which we work has changed, though - video calls/chats, no events, no volunteer assistance or involvement. In some ways those things make the work easier, but in some ways it makes it less personal, so I find we have to work that much harder to make sure we're connecting with supporters. - Shannon Boltz, Chief Development Officer, SafeHouse Denver
    • The most significant change to fundraising since the start of the COVID-19 has been the transition to virtual fundraising events. Traditionally, we would host an 800-person breakfast and 800-person gala each year and both of those shifted to virtual programming. We also implemented the use of student and donor self-recorded videos as part of the events and on social media. - Michelle Maldonado, Director of Development, Denver Kids, Inc.

    What has been your biggest development-related learning or “ah-ha” moment during the pandemic?

    • Whenever something major happens, either as a society or just to an individual person, it’s an amazing reminder that we’re all human. I primarily work with corporate donors, grantmaking foundations, and private family foundations - so mostly, I haven’t been in people’s houses. Until now, when it happened virtually and all at once! I met people’s kids (and even more often they met mine), watched them move houses, and navigate the crazy uncertainty that COVID created. If anything, it strengthened the relationships that we already had and made us even more focused about the importance of the mission we’re all here to advance. Anonymous ILD Alum
    • It sounds silly, but it is that people WANT TO GIVE to support the folks we serve. Even when their own lives are chaotic, when they are facing financial uncertainty, or when they aren't able to get something in return (like an event) - people still want to support our mission. It is something I think I've lost sight of during the last few years, and it is nice to be reminded of that. - Shannon Boltz, Chief Development Officer, SafeHouse Denver
    • We have been in the middle of all of this and most important, we have stayed donor focused sending notes, gifts, tons of phone calls and voice mails making sure donors know we care about them and continuing to be a presence in their world. It has created incredible fundraising results. We know money won't solve everything, but it can help with a lot. And for me, after almost eight years at the College Fund, three long-nurtured relationships came to fruition with multiple seven-figure gifts. Another silver lining is I haven't had to get on a plane in over 12 months and the time at home has been a welcome rest from the hustle and bustle of airports. – Kimberly Urish, Sr. Major Gifts Officer, American Indian College Fund
    • Again, just as we saw in response to the financial crisis in 2008-2009, individuals have stepped up in big ways to support our work. We have been able to share in real time through social media, newsletters, phone calls and appeals with our community how our work is responding to pressing community needs. The pandemic has provided us space to just check in with our donors on a human level to ask how they are in all of this uncertainty. We have strengthened our relationships and the foundation of that was through increased communication with our supporters. Jeslin Shahrezaei, Director, Development & Communications, Mile High Youth Corps
    • This biggest "ah-ha" during the pandemic was that in-person meetings really aren't that necessary. While they are sometimes more productive or enjoyable, a virtual meeting will do just fine in many cases. - Michelle Maldonado, Director of Development, Denver Kids, Inc.

    Have you made any COVID-19 shifts in your work that you intend to carry forward even after we return to a more “normal” state? What new habits or practices do you think are here to stay?

    • I think the shift to more flexible work schedules/locations has been positive. There is very little "need" to actually be onsite for my team, so having that option will definitely carry forward. And I hope that video chats become fewer, but still an option, as they can be very helpful. - Shannon Boltz, Chief Development Officer, SafeHouse Denver
    • I do think some of the virtual meetings are here to stay, which isn’t all bad. I also hope this gives us opportunities to check in more frequently with donors who we may only see once a year in person! Anonymous ILD Alum

    Have there been any career-related “silver linings” related to the coronavirus? If so, please describe one.

    • The pandemic reminded me that I can do hard things. As a member of a small directors team and also a small development team I had to move fast and be creative last year. We accomplished a lot of great work, things that we didn't know how to do (running virtual large scale events!) and managed to come out on the other side. COVID-19 reminded me that I am able to meet new challenges in this work and provided me the space and grace to be inspired by the resiliency of our staff and the young people we serve in what was definitely the most challenging year in our history. Jeslin Shahrezaei, Director, Development & Communications, Mile High Youth Corps
    • Not related to the coronavirus, the other big movement of 2020 was around equity. The protests that rang out across the country in response to the murder of George Floyd (and others) created more momentum around these social justice issues than we'd seen in a long time. For us, as a Black dance/social justice organization, we heard from many donors who only supported us on the fringes that that was an "ah-ha" moment for them. A wakeup call that they could be and should be doing more. As a result, we saw the number of new or lapsed donors increase dramatically in 2020. - Hillary Harding, Development Director, Cleo Parker Robinson Dance
    • The American Indian College Fund had a very interesting year and a half. At the start of the pandemic, many said this pandemic would "decimate" Indian Country and send progress in these communities back generations. But soon, I remembered why I got into fundraising, as I had a front row seat to the most amazing generosity. Foundations and individuals reached out in record numbers to give to our emergency relief fund. We were well positioned as a national organization with hundreds of partners across Indian country and we have raised and disbursed $7.6M. As COVID continued, the word got out about how this pandemic disproportionately devastated Native communities, with Native people dying at twice the rate of white Americans.

      At the same time, last summer, people started talking about race like I have never seen before. We were in the middle of all of these pressure points. A donor commented that the Navajo Nation had the need for an international aid organization because the US government wasn't doing enough to help during crisis, and the donor gave us $10k to alleviate his anger. I had donors tell me that their donation was not a gift but a "reparations payment." Donors acknowledged their privilege and the wealth that came from it and gave back. Donors also couldn't spend money as they had in the past and were rapidly remembering how they cannot take it with them. Money that would have been spent on expensive vacations, dinners, concerts/theatre, etc., was given to charity. And many who didn't need stimulus payments donated them. As a result, in FY 2019/2020, we raised $47M on a $32M budget. This FY 2020/2021 looks like it will be the same. Kimberly Urish, Sr. Major Gifts Officer, American Indian College Fund

  • 18 Nov 2020 12:36 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    We'd like to extend a huge welcome to the Class of 2021! Class members include:

    Danielle Artis
    Development Officer
    World Wildlife Fund


    Ashley Barrow
    Development Director
    The Fund for a Healthier Colorado


    Alecia Blattler
    Manager, Major Gifts

    Mile High United Way

    Shawna English
    Director of Development
    Colorado Horse Rescue


    Tracey Flower
    Director of Development
    Access Opportunity


    Nathan Harlan
    Director of Development
    Mile High Early Learning


    Lela Johnston
    Manager of Development & Community Partnerships

    Rocky Mountain Prep (RMP)

    Angela King
    Executive Director of Institutional Advancement
    Red Rocks Community College

    Lauren Knudsen
    Community Development Director
    Home Builders Foundation


     Laura Mack
    Development Director
    Friends of Colorado Avalanche Information Center


    Blake Nauman
    Major Gift Officer
    Denver Rescue Mission


    Andrea Pacheco
    Individual Giving Officer
    Project Angel Heart


    Ruth Seiler
    Associate Director of Development
    Leeds School of Business, CU Boulder

    Kristina (Kacie) Thomas
    Corporate Partnerships Manager
    Children's Hospital Colorado Foundation


    Michael Tortoro
    Assistant Director of Development
    University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus

  • 02 Apr 2020 3:34 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Covid-19 Resources

    Deadline update from ILD: Applications for the Class of 2021 are due April 3, 2020. If you need an extension, we are happy to work with you. Please email us

    to get started.

    • AFP Colorado Chapter shares resources and webinars here.

    Through the links above, you can access articles, online resources, webinars, and social media groups to help you stay connected and informed during this time. ILD will share any deadline and schedule changes with our community as available. 

  • 03 Feb 2020 10:10 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    The ILD Class of 2020 kicked off the new year with a January 31 session on major gifts, led by Matt Wasserman, principal and founder of MPW Strategies, and Patrick Gaines, chief development officer at Boys & Girls Clubs of Metro Denver. The day ended with a bonus session on donor relations and stewardship led by Keri Kallaway, senior director, donor relations and gift services, at Children's Hospital Colorado Foundation.

    From the major gifts session, here are Wasserman's ten steps to stronger donor engagement:

    1. Prospect efficiently. Work with donors who will make major gifts!

    2. Utilize a consistent, effective process. Don't handle each donor opportunity differently. Do what has the highest probability of producing high close rates

    3. Use fundraising strategy that is compatible with how people behave. Your primary function is not to persuade and convince prospects. Don't use manipulative persuasion tactics.

    4. Gain conditional commitment to do business at the beginning of the fundraising process. Don't waste time with prospects that have no commitment to give.

    5. Determine the giving intentions of your prospects, including their capacity, the timing that works for them, and their decision-making process.

    6. Earn your donors' trust and respect. Be your most authentic self.

    7. Determine what your prospect wants and why. Move away from a sales presentation.

    8. Start closing at the beginning of the engagement process. Gain the conditional commitment outright.

    9. Try to eliminate the necessity to overcome objections. Have a thorough process that won't bring about objections.

    10. Strive for constant improvement in process. Look to always make changes to improve the process.

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Institute for Leaders in Development
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2197 S. University Blvd.
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