Workshop: Rethinking Giving Day Strategies

September 29 & 30, 2020


Giving days have become signature events for many school advancement programs in recent years. In addition to boosting alumni engagement and securing much-needed annual support, they’ve proven to be effective at creating excitement and highlighting the impact of philanthropy. As annual giving plans are being developed for the year ahead, finding the right way to incorporate a giving day into the constantly changing landscape will be an important undertaking for many educational institutions seeking to reignite their fundraising efforts and boost constituent engagement.

Join us on September 29th and 30th for a two-day interactive workshop that will provide you and your colleagues with a framework for planning and executing giving days in the current environment.

Participants will have an opportunity to:

  • Learn about the latest trends and most effective techniques for successful giving days
  • Participate in interactive exercises and focused small-group discussions
  • Network with peers to share ideas and experiences
  • Obtain workshop handouts and other materials
  • Earn CFRE credit
  • And more!

This event is ideal for annual giving, alumni relations, development, communications, and other advancement professionals at educational institutions who wish to learn more about the latest giving day trends and best practices.

  • AGN Members save an additional 20%
  • Receive further discounts when registering multiple attendees from one institution


(all times are EDT)

Day 1

12:45pm - Workshop Sign-In Begins

1:00pm - Welcome/Overview of the Day

1:15pm - Planning & Marketing Your Activities/Q&A

It may be just one day of giving, but it takes months of planning. A successful giving day necessitates a comprehensive marketing strategy that will raise awareness and generate excitement before and during the live event. Initiating a thoughtful planning process that is integrated with ongoing programs will ensure that each one of your institution's constituents and supporters is prepared to participate when the big day comes.

2:00pm - Small Group Breakouts

Participants will have the opportunity to share some of the biggest challenges they are facing as they plan upcoming giving days, and discuss strategies for overcoming them.

2:45pm - Break (30 minutes)

3:15pm - Engaging Donors, Volunteers, and Colleagues/Q&A

In addition to generating significant donors and dollars, giving days help encourage collaboration among schools, units, and departments while strengthening a culture of philanthropy on and off campus. They have also proven to be an effective way to create excitement among volunteers and raise sights for leadership donors who can participate through challenges.

4:00pm - Small Group Breakouts

Participants will be given a number of unique giving day scenarios to consider and then discuss ways to address them during the planning process.

4:45pm - Wrap-up/Homework Assignment

Day 2

12:45pm - Workshop Sign-In Begins

1:00pm - Welcome/Overview of the Day

1:15pm - Executing on Event Day/Q&A

When the big day arrives, your job will be to put all of your well-thought-out plans into motion. Keeping your team on task and motivated will go a long way to helping you create a buzz and raise lots of money—while making sure everybody has fun along the way!

2:00pm - Small Group Breakouts

Participants will share their ideas and plans for a donor challenge to be used during an upcoming giving day.

2:45pm - Break (30 minutes)

3:15pm - Following Up After the Event/Q&A

The work isn't over when your giving day comes to an end. Following up with donors and volunteers to report results, acknowledge their contributions, and describe the impact of the event's collective efforts will help to ensure that everyone's support continues for many years to come.

4:00pm - Small Group Breakouts

Participants will discuss how the current environment will impact their giving days, and which ideas gleaned from the workshop they plan to implement moving ahead.

4:45pm - Final Thoughts/Wrap-up


Howard Heevner | University of California, Berkeley

Howard Heevner is the Executive Director of Annual Programs at the University of California, Berkeley, where he oversees annual giving, leadership annual giving, milestone giving, next generation giving and parents philanthropy and engagement. During his more than 20-year career in advancement and annual giving, Howard has held leadership positions at UC Santa Cruz, Penn State University, and DePaul University. A member of the CASE District VIII board, he holds a bachelor's degree in journalism from the University of Iowa and a master's degree in higher education administration from Penn State.


Gloria Goosby | Furman University

Gloria Goosby recently joined the team at Furman University to lead institution-wide annual giving efforts. Gloria has more than 15 years of progressive experience in annual giving and constituent relations. She began her career as a phonathon coordinator at her alma mater, Georgia Southern University, and went on to lead annual giving efforts there for over 5 years. At Furman, Gloria is responsible for developing and executing the strategy to raise annual funds in support of the university’s operations. She holds a bachelor's degree in broadcasting from Georgia Southern University.


Emily Kernan | University of Pennsylvania

Emily Kernan is the Executive Director of The Penn Fund at the University of Pennsylvania, where she oversees all annual giving efforts targeted toward undergraduate alumni. Previously, she led the annual fund team at Rice University and held several positions in development at Lafayette College. Her instructional experience includes presenting for CASE and the Association of Fundraising Professionals (AFP), as well as teaching about annual giving at Rice's Center for Philanthropy and Nonprofit Leadership. A member of the Annual Giving Directors Consortium, Emily holds a BA in English from Binghamton University, while currently working toward an MS in Non-Profit Leadership at Penn's School of Policy and Practice.


Dan Allenby | Principal & Founder at Annual Giving Network

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.

For more information about this workshop, please contact us at 888.407.5064 or