Workshop: Strengthening Leadership Annual Giving

Boston, MA — December 10th, 2019 (9am-5pm)


In almost any fundraising effort, the majority of the money raised will come from a few top donors. Annual funds are no exception. Building a strong leadership giving program for your annual fund will not only help to achieve fundraising success today, it will also help to create the foundation for future major gifts that will benefit your institution for years to come.

Join us on Tuesday, December 10th at the UMass Boston Campus Center in Boston, MA for a 1-day intensive workshop that will provide you and your colleagues with a framework for identifying, soliciting, and stewarding leadership annual gift donors and for building a strong pipeline of leadership annual support. 

Participants will have an opportunity to:

  • Learn from experts about the latest trends and best practices in leadership annual giving
  • Participate in focused, small-group strategy sessions
  • Network with peers to share ideas and experiences
  • Obtain workshop handouts and other materials
  • Receive a complimentary copy of Dan Allenby’s book, Ideas for Annual Giving
  • Earn up to 6 points of CFRE credit
  • And more!

This event is ideal for annual giving professionals, major gift officers, and other advancement staff, as well as volunteers and colleagues from outside of advancement who wish to be involved in securing leadership annual giving. Morning refreshments, a full buffet networking lunch, and ongoing snacks and beverages will be provided.

  • Save $100 when you register before November 30th!
  • AGN Members save an additional 20%
  • Receive further discounts when registering multiple attendees from one institution


AGN workshops bring together advancement professionals in a small group setting to learn about important topics and develop new skills. This event includes general sessions as well as interactive breakouts where participants can share challenges, exchange ideas, and discover best practices.

8:00am – Registration Begins / Morning Refreshments

9:00am – Welcome / Workshop Begins

9:30am – Identifying, Researching, and Managing Prospects

Strong leadership annual giving efforts begin with a healthy prospect development system that lays the foundation for ongoing discovery and qualification. Determining which prospects to focus on, and then assigning them to the right staff, can help teams maximize outreach. Having the right process in place for establishing, maintaining, and evaluating productivity will go a long way toward achieving your program goals.

10:30am – Meeting with Prospects and Donors

One-on-one meetings with donors (and prospective donors) are the single most effective way to cultivate meaningful relationships, collect information, and solicit gifts. Whether you’re a new gift officer preparing to make visits for the first time or an experienced fundraising professional looking to enhance your technique, understanding what you should do before, during, and after a visit will help ensure that it’s an enjoyable and fruitful experience for you and for your prospects.

11:30am – Making the Ask (Small Group Break-Out)

Personal solicitation is both an art and a science. It takes time and preparation to determine the right approach, understand how best to engage your prospects, and establish a compelling case for support. In this small group session, we’ll utilize role-playing exercises to practice how to make an ask, overcome objections, and close your next leadership gift.

12:30pm – Lunch

1:30pm – Collaborating with Key Stakeholders

Fundraising is a team sport, and the most successful programs build strong partnerships both internally and externally. Whether you are engaging faculty, volunteers, or colleagues, involving other stakeholders can help strengthen your culture of collaboration, improve your fundraising performance, and create a more meaningful experience for your donors.

2:30pm – Stewarding Leadership Donors

Creating a stewardship plan for your most generous donors is critical to both increasing and retaining their support. By utilizing a variety of methods for engagement—including events, gift societies, and volunteer opportunities—you will lay the foundation for greater giving. The more effective you are at recognizing and celebrating these donors, the more likely you are to retain them for years to come.

3:30pm – Setting Goals and Balancing Priorities (Small Group Break-Out)

With so many things to do (and so little time), it’s important to focus your front-line resources where they will have the biggest impact. Understanding how to set smart goals and make sense of competing priorities will help move you and your team closer to reaching your targets. This small group session will be an opportunity to discuss ways to stay focused, share time management strategies, and increase your overall productivity.

4:30pm – Bringing It All Together / Workshop Wrap-up


Elizabeth Keppel | University of Florida

Elizabeth's career has spanned direct marketing, frontline fundraising, volunteer and board management, and special campaigns. She is currently the Director of Development, Annual Giving at the University of Florida, where she oversees a university-wide leadership annual giving program. She has also worked in annual giving at the College of William & Mary. Elizabeth holds a B.A. in Government & Philosophy and an M.Ed. in Higher Education Administration from William & Mary. Connect with Elizabeth on LinkedIn


Laura Tepper | University of Pennsylvania Law School

Laura Tepper is the Executive Director of Development at the University of Pennsylvania Law School, where she oversees all annual, major, and planned giving efforts. Her 15-year career includes work in both annual giving and major gifts, and her expertise includes leadership gift strategy, volunteer management, reunion giving, direct appeals, and phonathons. She holds a B.A. in American Studies from Mount Holyoke College and a J.D. from Brooklyn Law School. Connect with Laura on LinkedIn


Dan Allenby | Principal & Founder of AGN

Dan is an author, speaker, and consultant who has worked with academic institutions for over two decades to train their advancement staff and volunteers. A recipient of the prestigious CASE “Crystal Apple” award for teaching excellence, Dan is an internationally-recognized expert on annual giving and alumni engagement. He chaired CASE’s Institute for Senior Annual Giving Professionals and its Annual Giving Workshop for five collective terms and served on the faculty for CASE’s Summer Institute in Educational Fundraising. His book—Ideas for Annual Giving—offers the latest designs for helping institutions increase annual giving and boost alumni participation. Previously, he served as the Assistant Vice President for Annual Giving at Boston University, and also led annual giving and member marketing efforts at Tufts University, Georgetown University, and the National Geographic Society. Dan received an MBA from Boston College and a BA from James Madison University, and a certificate in the Management of Communication Organizations from Tufts University. Connect with Dan on LinkedIn



AGN is pleased to host this event at the Alumni Lounge in the UMass Boston Campus Center. The oceanfront campus is minutes from downtown Boston and is nationally recognized as a student-centered urban public research university. The address of the Campus Center is 100 William T Morrissey Blvd, Boston, MA 02125.

Overnight Accommodations:

While the workshop is a single day event, out-of-town attendees may want to stay overnight in the area. The following hotel is located less than 10 minutes from the conference center:

Public and Private Transportation:

  • MBTA Subway/Commuter Rail: UMass Boston is located less than a mile from the JFK/UMass Station, which serves both the Red Line (subway) and multiple commuter rail lines. UMass Boston’s #2 shuttle runs every 15 minutes from JFK/UMass Station to the Campus Center.
  • Amtrak: The closest Amtrak station is South Station. (3.5 miles)
  • Uber and Lyft: Approximately $25 ride from Logan Airport (6.2 miles). There is a designated drop-off area at the back of the Campus Center.


  • The West Garage  is a short walk through a few buildings to the Campus Center. Signage will help guide you along the way. Alternatively, the #4 shuttle picks up at the garage and drops off at the Campus Center. The cost is $15.
  • The Bayside Parking lot is a short bus ride on the #3 shuttle from the parking lot to the Campus Center. The cost is $9. 
  • Handicapped parking is available in the lower part of the Campus Center Garage, which is accessible at the back side of the Campus Center. The cost is $15.

For more information about this workshop, please contact us at 888.407.5064 or [email protected].