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Clean Slate? My View
When the clock ticks midnight on New Year’s Eve many of us make resolutions that will alter, on premise, the year ahead. To my comrades in Development, indulge me while I deviate slightly from that practice.

Fund-a-Need: Clarifying Goals and Opportunities
Having come from the nonprofit side of the fence, one thing that was of utmost importance to my NPO was the need for clarity in communications with our event attendees (some donors, others prospects), about where we were financially; where we could be with more resources; and how our guests fit into that opportunity equation.

Up above the clouds so high
I'm sure you've done it (I can't be the only one!). You race to the airport to make a flight, get safely through security, and then wait to make the walk down the jetway to your plane. When finally aboard you pack into your seat like a sardine with every form of entertainment at your fingertips--books, magazines, movies, and oh yes, work!

George Bailey doesn't live in Bedford Falls
I suspect you all know the fictional story of It's a Wonderful Life, right? Well, I'm here to tell you it's not fiction and the story doesn't just live on a movie reel. It is alive and well in Fillmore, California. And the title character's name is not George Bailey, but Mark Ortega. ...Let me explain.

(Non)-Buyer’s Remorse: I Need More Cowbell!
You know that shopping spree you went on? The one where you went in search of new tennis shoes and instead came home with a sack full of items you hadn’t planned on? Sometimes those moments are fun; sometimes filled with regret. Well, trust me on this, the same can be said in reverse when you let a great opportunity go by.

Hi Ho, Hi Ho, it's back to school I go!
Can you remember how you felt in those late summer days just prior to going back to school? …You know, that unique mix of anticipation, excitement and maybe even a little bit of angst?

Mission is on the menu: Want to increase giving? Consider Table Ambassadors!
Want to increase giving? Consider Table Ambassadors!

Five lessons from an apple picker
Eight years ago my husband planted a Honeycrisp apple tree in our front yard. And being Minnesotans we are very biased that all Honeycrisp apples—if not the ones from our very own front tree— are the best on the planet. Of course, we place a premium on the fruit that the tree produces because there is some amount of work in getting to the point of harvest. Between the watering, the tiny amount of spraying, and the occasional pruning of the branches, there is something very satisfying about getting to the place where we can pick our prized apples.

5 Cost Effective Tips for Event Promotion
It is better to have 200 informed, engaged and committed attendees at an event who are ready to spend money, than 400 people who are learning about your organization for the first time. Informed. Engaged. Committed. You get your guests to that place with a communications plan that interacts with them throughout the entire year. Once you have an informed and engaged audience, you can implement the following five cost-effective tips for event promotion:

Ch-ch-ch-changes
Changes can be exhilarating, exhausting, frightening—and life-boosting. Some are long in coming; others can happen in the blink of an eye without warning. How you handle a transition may depend on your circumstances, your demeanor, or both.

Today is National Auctioneers Day
Auctioneers have their own day? Oh yes!

In short, digital contributions are at the least a significant contributor to the immediate future of fundraising.

Every fundraiser has too much to do, too few people to accomplish it all, and too many great ideas that are languishing because of a lack of time to bring them to reality.

James Dean and the Oreo Smile
Between galas, a-thons, breakfasts, luncheons, special giving days, and donor recognition, many development pros and volunteers flame out if they don't take steps to stay engaged with their own mission. If you feel your fundraising batteries are running low, consider volunteering for the program you raise money for. I did and this experience got me fired up to get back to it.

Benefit Auction Institute Launches in Two Cities, Aims to Re-Imagine Benefit...
Benefit Auction Institute announces its launch, aiming to re-imagine the way nonprofits raise benefit auction funds.

From generational transfer of family wealth, to Generation X's ascension to leadership, the Chronicle of Philanthropy has identified key trends to watch for in 2015.

Christmas Angels
Can you imagine being homeless at the holidays? I share this story in the spirit of the season and to say a special thanks for all those who care for shelter guests, or raise funds to make that care possible.

AFP Research did an interesting study that should bolster you for the new year.

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