Advancement Services Report

Provided as a service of Bentz Whaley Flessner

Friday, September 28, 2007

Open Market Philanthropy

MIT assistant professor, Ed Boyden, discusses the concept of open market philanthropy -- connecting dollars to ideas. Boyden suggests having a website that serves as a forum for announcing research projects. Individuals browse projects and donate as they see fit. The concept is similar to micro-lender, Kiva, but channels funds to researchers.

Full-text blog posting by Boyden available via Technology Review (published by MIT), 9.24.07.

Labels: ,

New Philanthropy Capital

Another example of senior figures in the securities industry shifting their focus to the charitable sector. James Garvin, former co-head of equity capital markets at UBS is now a director at New Philanthropy Capital, a research firm that applies the discipline of equity research to advise wealthy individuals and foundations on making effective charitable donations.

Full-text article by William Wright available via Financial News, 9.28.07.

Labels: ,

Conference Update

APRA-MD 12th Annual Conference
October 16, 2007, Annapolis, MD

Join Pamela Poland as she presents Prospect Management at the APRA-MD 12th Annual Conference.

Conference details


Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Community Foundations

Community foundations saw an increase in grants, assets, and donations in 2006. Two studies report on community foundation trends: Columbus Foundation and Council on Foundations.

Full-text article (includes synopsis of surveys) by Sue Hoye is available via Chronicle of Philanthropy, 9.20.2007.

Labels: , ,

The Brand of Clinton

Bill Clinton has become a leading brand in the giving industry. Having left the White House under something of a cloud, he has since transformed himself into one of the hottest brands in the booming business of giving away money.

This is a remarkable piece of rebranding, to say the least, for a man never blessed with spare cash to give. "I entered the White House with the lowest net worth of any president in the 20th century, and I left it $10m-12m in debt," Mr Clinton says. Speaking fees have helped of late, but only a bit. His genius has been to get other people to attach his name to their money-like a sort of philanthropic version of Donald Trump-to increase its impact.

Full-text article via The Economist, 9.20.07.


We Can't Rely on the Kindness of Billionaires

This article discusses generational wealth and philanthropic giving trends in regards to mega-gifts, family foundations, and Bill Clinton's book, "Giving".

Article by David Nasaw available via The Washington Post, 8.23.07.


Forbes 400 List Published

Forbes has just released its latest rich list - the Forbes 400 list reveals the 400 richest Americans.

"One billion dollars is no longer enough. The price of admission to this, the 25th anniversary edition of the Forbes 400, is $1.3 billion, up $300 million from last year. The collective net worth of the nation's mightiest plutocrats rose $290 billion to $1.54 trillion."

Read more of this Forbes Magazine special report.


Why do people give?

By Alan Clayton

At first glance this seems the simplest question of all. Why do people give?

The answer is rather important, perhaps even the be-all-and-end-all for anyone who wants to be any good at fundraising. Familiarity with the answer is crucial to appreciating the core benefits of our 'product', to understanding donor motivations, to appreciating the skilful combination of need plus solution that is so important for effective fundraising. Regardless of how and what you want to communicate, the individual donor's reason or reasons for giving should be firmly at the root of every communication we produce.

Read more of this article from the Resource Alliance website.


Monday, September 24, 2007

Tri State University To Change Its Name

The board of trustees at Tri-State University have approved a name change, effective June 1, 2009, to Trine University. This will honor a alumnus and supporter to the university, Ralph Trine, and his wife Sherri.

The couple gave an eight-figure gift to the university last year.

Read the press release here

Friday, September 21, 2007

Penetrating New Constituent Groups

Learn how to integrate high-tech and high-touch approaches to expand your fundraising base in this article published in the fall 2007 AHP Journal and co-authored by Bentz Whaley Flessner consultants Josh Birkholz and Chris Cannon.

Read the article.

Labels: , , ,

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Conference Update

APRA - Upstate New York Chapter
October 1, 2007, Rochester, NY

Josh Birkholz will present at this conference which focuses on emerging trends and technologies in Prospect Research. Josh will present Drawing Major Donors Out of a Hat: Creating a Comprehensive Prospecting Plan.


Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Inc. List Of 500 Fastest Growing Private Companies

Inc. the magazine for entrepreneurs, released their list of 500 Fastest Growing Private Companies. This is handy information to have for any research shop, just in case one of your prospects happens to be a principal in one of these companies.

Read the list here...


Good News For Researchers : NYT Now Offers Free Archives Back To 1987

The New York Times today released a statement stating that starting tomorrow, it will no longer offer it's "TimesSelect" service and will be offering it's archives of articles from 1987 forward free of charge.

This no doubt will help budget-strapped shops who want to look up news and information on their prospects, alumni, and friends.

A Letter to Readers About TimesSelect

Dear Readers:

Effective Sept. 19, we are ending TimesSelect. All of our online readers will now be able to read Times columnists, access our archives back to 1987 and enjoy many other TimesSelect features that have been added over the last two years – free.

If you are a paying TimesSelect subscriber, you will receive a prorated refund. We will send you an e-mail on Wednesday, Sept. 19 with full details.

Read More


Donors Seek Restrictions On Big Money Gifts

Recent disputes regarding the actual intent of donors for gifts given long ago has roiled such institutions as Princeton, Tulane, and Randolph College in Virginia. Now, donors are banding together to get advice on how best to place restrictions on gifts so they are used specifically and narrowly.

This article in the
Wall Street Journal by John Hechinger reports that a new Indianapolis-based Center for Excellence in Higher Education has been formed to advise donors on how best to restrict their gifts. We need to take heed of this movement, and not only be vigilant on the usage of the gifts, but also to be sure that the gifts are legally gifts, or if the restrictions on the gift negate the charitable intent.

Big-Money Donors Move to Curb Colleges' Discretion to Spend Gifts
By John Hechinger
September 18, 2007; Page B1

For generations, wealthy alumni have donated big money to their alma maters with near-religious devotion. But some blue-chip donors are no longer willing to give merely on faith.

In an initiative to be announced today, several philanthropists -- including Bernard Marcus, the billionaire founder of Home Depot Inc., and investor John Templeton, who made a fortune running mutual funds -- are launching a nonprofit that will advise donors on how to attach legally enforceable conditions to their gifts.

The new Indianapolis-based Center for Excellence in Higher Education aims to curb colleges' discretion in spending donors' contributions. The three foundations backing the center -- those founded by Messrs. Marcus and Templeton and the John William Pope Foundation -- have about $1.25 billion in assets and have made $585 million in gifts over the past five years.


Labels: , ,

New online fundraising resource

Check out fResource, available at fResource lets fundraisers and researchers around the globe share their knowledge about fundraising products, tools, and resources. According to Third Sector Daily, Mathew Ide, director of, said that is "the world's first prospect research community and it's the first time that fundraisers' prospect tools have been listed in one place. A lot of the information we have on the site is unknown to most fundraisers."

Labels: ,

Monday, September 17, 2007

Conference Update

APRA-WI Fall 2007 Meeting
September 28, 2007, Marquette University, Milwaukee, WI

Josh Birkholz is the featured speaker for the fall meeting of APRA-WI. He will speak on three topics during the day, including:

Do-It-Yourself Data Mining
Campaign Analytics
Emerging Trends and Technologies In Research


Executive Pay Rises 4.6%

The September 20, 2007 issue of the Chronicle of Philanthropy analyzes the results of the annual study of compensation paid to the leaders of the nation's biggest nonprofit groups.

Compensation growth for CEO's outpaced inflation, survey finds
By Noelle Barton and Peter Panepento

Compensation for the leaders of the nation's largest nonprofit organizations rose at more than twice the rate of inflation last year, even in the face of intensifying public and government scrutiny, according to The Chronicle's 15th annual survey of executive compensation and benefits.

Read more on the Chronicle of Philanthropy website.

Labels: ,

Saturday, September 15, 2007

10 Common Mistakes in Selecting Donor Databases (and How to Avoid Them)

I found this useful resource while doing some research online the other day. Cick here to view a presentation by Robert Weiner on the 10 common mistakes that can prevent you from selecting the right database and managing it effectively.


Friday, September 14, 2007

Kintera Connect Partner Program Continues to Gain Momentum

New partners join a growing program to extend applications from Kintera's open technology platform, Kintera Connect.

SAN DIEGO --(BUSINESS WIRE)--Kintera Inc. (NASDAQ:KNTA) today announced that technology providers in both the nonprofit and enterprise arenas continue to join the Kintera Connect Partner Program to develop and implement innovative solutions to help nonprofits bridge the gaps in their technology and business needs.

Recent additions to the Kintera Connect Partner Program include bswift, Masterworks, and CircleUp. Applications to be integrated with Kintera's platform include software and services for human resources and benefits technology, advanced data analytics, and social communication services.

Read more of this 9.13.07 article from Business Wire.


Thursday, September 13, 2007

Soon millions of Facebookers won't be incognito

Facebook, the popular social-networking site is making its listings available to anyone who searches the internet.

By Jon Swartz, USA TODAY

SAN FRANCISCO - Social network Facebook will soon make the listings - the name and photo - of its 40 million active members available to anyone who searches the Internet on Google, Yahoo and Microsoft. But in its pursuit of building a bigger audience, Facebook has set off privacy alarms among customers who don't necessarily want their listings to be an open book.

Read more of this 9.13.07 article from USA TODAY.


Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Expert do's and don'ts for dealing with data breaches

A data breach victim shares his advice for addressing leakage incidents.

By Matt Hines

Organizations that experience data breaches must move quickly to assuage the fears of their constituents and go beyond expectations to address the situations effectively, according to those most familiar with the incidents ...

First to the podium was David Escalante, director of computer policy and security at Boston College, which in March 2005 experienced a break in to a server containing sensitive alumni fund-raising information.

Read more of the 9.11.07 article from InfoWorld.

Labels: , ,

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Bonuses For Hedge Fund Managers Clipped

The credit crunch will affect the bonus structure of hedge fund managers. However, if you have prospects that run hedge funds, don't fret about their ability to give. The bonus increase will only be between 1 and 9 percent, as opposed to a projected bonus increase of up to 20 percent. This article from Investment News has more details.

By Aaron Siegel
September 11, 2007

Turmoil in the credit markets have taken a bite out of the bonuses for hedge fund managers this year, according to a report.

Cash bonuses paid out to hedge fund managers are seen increasing between 1% and 9% from the previous year, marking a "substantially lower" increase than predicted before the credit crunch, according to the 2008 Hedge Fund Compensation report, which was released yesterday by Glocap Search LLC, Institutional Investor News and Lipper HedgeWorld.

Read more


Bentz Whaley Flessner Occasional Paper - Advancement Services

Click here to access Bentz Whaley Flessner's Winter 2006 Occasional Paper regarding Advancement Services. Included are articles on "Re-Tooling Advancement/Development Services," "What is Data-Mining?," "Trends in Prospect Research," and "The View from Here: Campaign Planning as seen by Advancement Services."

Labels: ,

Auditors Question Donor's Arrangement With ASU

This report from Anne Ryman at The Arizona Republic illustrates that we as Advancement and Development Services Professionals need to be diligent in making sure our institutions follow common practices and standards so there would be no hint of impropriety. Even if the IRS rules that these donations are legal gifts, one has to agree that the arrangement could be viewed as unethical.

Donor's ASU deal questioned
Gifts bought art from his firm

Anne Ryman
The Arizona Republic
Sept. 9, 2007 12:00 AM

Auditors are raising questions about whether the Arizona State University Art Museum had an improper arrangement with a philanthropist for handling his donations.

The museum received $450,000 over seven years from the donor and, under an arrangement with him, used the money to buy art from the donor's company, a university audit found.

The arrangement, which was discontinued after the June audit, allowed Stephane Janssen to receive personal-income-tax deductions for charitable donations, Janssen said. In at least one case, the museum possibly paid more than fair market value for Janssen's artworks, the audit found. ASU officials question that view.

Read More


New Tool Helps Identify Executive Pay Issues: Business Community Gains Online Access to WorldatWork Executive Rewards Questionary

As CEO pay continues to be the most scrutinized area of executive compensation, WorldatWork has created a new tool that poses 225 questions boards of directors will need to address before they approve compensation plans.

Scottsdale, AZ (PRWEB) September 11, 2007 -- As CEO pay continues unabated as the most scrutinized area of executive compensation, WorldatWork has created a new tool that poses 225 questions boards of directors will need to address before they approve compensation plans. The WorldatWork Executive Rewards Questionary clearly identifies every essential factor for rewarding executives and directors.

Originally designed for its members, WorldatWork has recently made the tool available to the business community at large - CEOs, boards, compensation committees, HR practitioners and consultants. Currently available free of charge, the tool may be accessed on

Read more


Monday, September 10, 2007

Hedge funds post shock losses

This Financial Times article lists some of the big hedge fund managers who have not fared well recently. The article also talks about some managers who have done well, despite the recent stock market turmoil. This article will be an interesting read for researchers.

By James Mackintosh

Some of the grandest names in the hedge fund world suffered last month having failed to anticipate the turmoil in the markets and failing to produce the absolute returns they promise investors.

The list of badly-hit hedge funds in August reads like a Who's Who of the best-known on Wall Street, according to investors.

Read more of this 9/10/07 Financial Times article.


Finding that Millionaire Next Door

This article talks about the impact of custom data modeling to gain a more in-depth understanding of major-gift prospects.

By Natalie Ghidotti

Moving a donor from a small annual gift of $60 to a $650,000 endowment gift is not an easy task. But that's exactly what the Cleveland Institute of Music did after taking its prosepct research program to the next level.

Read more of this May 1, 2007 article from The NonProfit Times.


Thursday, September 6, 2007

Big Gifts, Tax Breaks and a Debate on Charity

An interesting article on philanthopy and the IRS.

By Stephanie Strom

Eli Broad, a billionaire businessman, has given away more than $650 million over the last five years, to Harvard and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology to establish a medical research institute, to the Los Angeles County Museum of Art and to programs to improve the administration of urban schools and public education.

The rich are giving more to charity than ever, but people like Mr. Broad are not the only ones footing the bill for such generosity. For every three dollars they give away, the federal government typically gives up a dollar or more in tax revenue, because of the charitable tax deduction and by not collecting estate taxes.

Read the full story from the 9/6/07 issue of the New York Times.

Additional Reading from the New York Times series on the "Age of Riches:"
Making Do, With $10 Million, August 5, 2007
The Richest of the Rich, Proud of a New Gilded Age, July 15, 2007


Wednesday, September 5, 2007

Firefox Web Browser Introduces Campus Edition

New! Firefox Campus Edition. This version of Firefox includes add-ons such as Zotero (plugin for research and notetaking), StumbleUpon (a popular bookmarking tool), and Foxytunes (controls iTunes from the browser).

By Jeffrey R. Young

It's the time of year to stock up on school supplies: spiral notebooks, folders embossed with college logos, and Web browser. Last week Mozilla, maker of the popular Firefox Web browser, released the Firefox Campus Edition for free download.

Read the full story from the 9/7/2007 issue of the Chronicle of Higher Education


Tuesday, September 4, 2007

Philanthropy and Fundraising Changing Through Use of the Internet

Read one fundraiser's perspective on how the internet has changed philanthropy and fundraising.

By Toni Goodale

Over the last decade, I have witnessed several changes in the fund-raising field. Some of these changes have been beneficial and, indeed, welcome developments. However, some of these new developments are arguably detrimental to successful fund-raising efforts. Let's explore some of these.

There have been several noticeable changes in fund raising for major gifts, the large gifts that constitute the majority of dollars for any campaign. First, fund raising for major gifts have become a more time consuming process: today, major gifts have not decreased in size, but they might take three or four visits to successfully solicit.

Read the full story, published on 9/2/2007, from the San Francisco Sentinel


Nonprofits Overcome Hiring Challenges; Johns Hopkins Study Shows Nonprofits Able to Fulfill Hiring Goals

There has been much talk about building tomorrow's nonprofit work force. Institutions face the challenge of attracting, retaining, and developing a skilled and committed work force. This new study challenges the popular assumption that nonprofits are losing out in the competitive market for personnel.

BALTIMORE, Sept. 1 (AScribe Newswire) -- In the face of concerns about a workforce crisis in the nonprofit sector, a recent survey by the Johns Hopkins Nonprofit Listening Post Project found that nonprofits have been surprisingly successful in recruiting professional and support staff despite significant challenges.

Nearly 85 percent of organizations reported recruiting for such positions in the preceding year, and well over 80 percent of these reported satisfaction with the qualifications and commitment of the candidates they attracted. In addition, a substantial majority also indicated satisfaction with the salary requirements of their recruits.

Read More

Additional reading: "Charity Leaders Report Difficulty in Finding Good Workers to Hire," 8/31/2007, The Chronicle of Philanthropy.


Sunday, September 2, 2007

Blackbaud's Acquisition Of eTapestry

On August 6, 2007, Blackbaud announced that it has acquired privately-owned eTapestry for approximately $24.8 million, plus an additional amount of up to $1.5 million under a two-year stock-based performance incentive arrangement. Read Paul Clolery's article regarding the questions that are being asked by users and the tech community.

By Paul Clolery

When a company spends $90 million in two years, it tends to get tongues wagging. And there has been no shortage of opinions in the nonprofit technology community regarding the impact of the $24.8 million acquisition of online donor management and advocacy tool eTapestry by software giant Blackbaud.

Read more from the 9/1/2007 edition of The NonProfit Times.