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Development Seminar Series

Development Seminar 2017 – Elements of Successful Philanthropy

Building a Comprehensive and Sustainable Development Program


February 16-17, 2017

Robert E. Johnson Conference Center - South Conference Room

1501 N Congress Avenue, Austin, Texas 78701 (PDF MAP)


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Volunteer leadership (board members and advisors) and staff from nonprofit organizations interested in learning more about securing philanthropic support for their organization. The Friends of the THC Development Seminar Series is suited for large and small organizations from any discipline, with limited development staff. ​This Development Seminar highlights best practices and facilitates, dynamic group interactions to help attendees build and strengthen their fundraising "tool-kit," so they can more effectively and sustainably achieve their mission.

Full two-Day Registration: $400
Single-Day Registration (February 16th or 17th) : $215

Registration deadline is February 5. Limited space available—please register early. Light refreshments and boxed lunches will be provided on both days.



Thursday, February 16
9 a.m.–12 p.m.

“Development 101”

The world of nonprofit fundraising is highly competitive. With the call on donors’ dollars coming from multiple organizations, with a variety of missions, it is more important than ever for nonprofits to invest in building a strong development program that allows them to be sustainable and effective in delivering their mission for the long term. The “Development 101” session of this seminar will introduce attendees to trends in philanthropy today and to the larger development landscape. You will learn about the guiding principles of fundraising, how to fundraise by the rules, and how to build capacity within your organization for a strong and sustainable development program.

Topics: Making the Case—Why Raise Money? | Philanthropy—The Big Picture | Fundraising by the Rules | The Guiding Principles of Fundraising | Building Capacity for a Strong Development Program

1 p.m.–4 p.m.

“The Development Process – Individual Giving, Donor Management, and Ethics in Fundraising”

The second half of day one will focus on the importance and key elements of a development plan. Participants will learn about the process of acquiring/identifying, cultivating, and soliciting individual donors, and about making an effective ask. This segment will also focus on annual fund and major gift programs, best practices for a strong development program, and ethics in fundraising.

Topics: The Development Plan | The Development Process | Individual giving—Overview The Annual Fund | Cultivating Relationships for Major Gift Fundraising | Developing Best Practices | Ethics in Fundraising

Friday, February 17
9 a.m.–12 p.m.

“Foundations Fundraising and Effective Grantsmanship”

On day two, participants will get an in-depth view into the world of grants, foundations, and what makes a successful proposal package. This session will arm you with effective strategies for identifying the right foundation prospects and structuring strong and powerful grant requests with clear and effective program/project budgets. Participants will bring with them a cover letter and a grant request that they are working on to develop further at the end of this session.

Topics: Understanding Grants and Grantors | Foundation Fundraising | Developing the Ask—the Grant Proposal | Developing a Budget for the Grant Request | Real Projects—Real Proposals

1 p.m.–4 p.m.

““Development Research, Public Agency Grant Programs, and Funding Strategies for Large Projects”

No development program can be successful without the appropriate research resources—for foundations and well as individuals. This segment will focus on resources that are available to nonprofit boards and staff—both free and for a fee. Staff from the Regional Foundation Library, a part of the University of Texas at Austin’s Division of Diversity and Community Engagement, will demonstrate the Foundation Directory Online and how to use this resource to identify potential foundation funders. Participants will also learn about federal and state funding programs—finding the right sources, writing the grants, and managing reporting. The program will close out with an overview on funding large projects.

Topics: Development Research—Foundations and Individuals | Public Agency Grants Funding Large Projects

For full details, view the Development Seminar 2017 Agenda (PDF).

Please contact Reina Andrade (512-936-2189) for additional details.