Breakout Sessions

afp_button.jpgTurning Your Board Into A Fundraising Machine
Presented by Joan Garry, Joan Garry Consulting

Session DescriptionYes, it can be done. In this session, you will learn practical and actionable steps you can take to ignite your board to become the visible and vocal ambassadors you need and your clients/community deserve.


For nearly a decade, Joan Garry served as the Executive Director of GLAAD, one of the largest gay rights organizations in the country, where she launched several successful media campaigns, including GLAAD’s successful campaign to lobby the New York Times to include same-sex wedding announcements in its Style section. She later acted as the co-chair of Barack Obama’s LGBT Finance Committee during his 2008 presidential campaign.

Joan now works with nonprofit leaders, assisting with crisis management, executive coaching and the building of strong management teams to support the work of the CEO. She also teaches nonprofit media strategy as a professor at the Annenberg School for Communications at the University of Pennsylvania and is a blogger for The Huffington Post.

Joan’s nonprofit work began after 14 years in executive positions in corporate entertainment, including her role as a member of the management team that launched MTV in 1981.

Maximizing the Lifetime Value of Your Donors for Fundraising Success
Presented by Jay Love, Bloomerang 

Session Description:  Within your donor database lies untold lifetime value. Unfortunately, many nonprofits fail to properly nurture and steward their donors, and are content with high acquisition and high churn. Why let this enormous asset go underutilized? In this session, we will cover the tenets of effective database management, no matter what program or vendor you use. We will show examples of best practice in data management, communication segmenting, engagement tracking and reporting in order to help your team work smarter, not harder. 


Jay B. Love is a Co-Founder and current Chief Relationship Officer at Bloomerang. He has served in this sector for 33 years and is considered the most well-known senior statesman whose advice is sought constantly. Prior to Bloomerang, he was the CEO and Co-Founder of eTapestry for 11 years, which at the time was the leading SaaS technology company serving the charity sector. Jay and his team grew the company to more than 10,000 nonprofit clients, charting a decade of record growth. Prior to starting eTapestry, Jay served 14 years as President and CEO of Master Software Corporation. MSC provided a widely used family of database products for the non-profit sector called Fund-Master. He is a graduate of Butler University with a B.S. in Business Administration.

Over the years, he has given more than 2,500 speeches around the world for the charity sector and is often the voice of new technology for fundraisers. He is past Chairman of the AFP Ethics Committee. He was the Founding Chairman of NPower Indiana, Founding Member of TechPoint Foundation and Founding Member of the AFP Business Member Council. He is still an active board member of Conner Prairie Interactive History Park, The Butler University Innovation Fund, The United Methodist Foundation of Indiana, TechPoint Foundation for Youth, and The Fundraising Effectiveness Project. He and his wife Christie served as Co-Chairs for the Indianapolis YMCA 2011 Capital Campaign and are the proud parents of three children as well as five grandchildren.

Developing Major Gift Strategies
Presented by Laura Aikens, CCS Fundraising 

Session Description: There are many factors in a major gift request that are beyond our control, so we must control every factor that we can. Developing a major gift strategy for each key prospect will allow you to identify the most capable and ready prospects and determine the best approach. Being armed with a strategy, you will increase chances of success to secure the largest gift possible and open the door to your next request. This session will illuminate best practices in major gifts fundraising. Learn how to incorporate a major gifts program into your existing fundraising strategy or how to make the most of your current program.

Laura_Aikens_2018.jpg Laura Aikens has more than 14 years of development experience working with local, regional, and national nonprofit organizations. Throughout her professional career, Laura has demonstrated a talent for mobilizing stakeholders and key constituencies. Her areas of expertise include strategic planning, data analysis, major gift program development, annual fund operations, and leadership engagement. She is especially skilled at raising funds in resource-poor environments and has helped numerous organizations achieve their highest fundraising levels in years. Since her time as CCS, she has partnered with organizations to raise a combined total exceeding $500 million. CCS is a strategic fundraising firm that partners with nonprofits for transformational change. The firm plans, manages, and implements programs that achieve fundraising goals and mission impact.

Sharing Fire: A Philanthropic Approach to Leadership for Fundraising Professionals
Presented by Marc Hardy, Nonprofit Professional Development at Mendoza College of Business at the University of Notre Dame

Description:  Some people may not attribute success as a fundraiser to his or her leadership style. And yet fundraisers are always leading people. Especially donors. In fact, they need to be especially good living with a sense of gratitude and instilling that attitude in others. In order to inspire people to give back, fundraisers need to live the example, but not in monetary terms. The Greek story behind the origin of the word “philanthropy” had nothing to do with more. It was an act that was defined by giving people the tools to create a better life. And let’s face it, that why we raise money in the first place, to help others improve their lives. So join Dr. Hardy as he shares his stories and journeys about the power of “Sharing Fire” in your professional and personal life.


Marc Hardy, Ph.D., is the Director of Nonprofit Certificate Education at the University of Notre Dame.  His doctorate and masters in Philanthropic Studies is from the Lilly Family School of Philanthropy at Indiana University. He has taught nonprofit leadership and management at Indiana University, Butler University and the University of Notre Dame. In 2007 he was voted the “Outstanding Associate Faculty of the Year” at the School of Public and Environmental Affairs at Indiana University, Indianapolis.

He has led several nonprofit organizations and was the Executive Director of a private operating foundation, the Fourth Freedom Forum, for seven years. Marc has served as a board member of several nonprofit organizations, including a term as President of the National Speakers Association of Indiana. An actor, director and playwright, he is the Past President of the Indiana Theatre Association. He is a co-author of two books, “Only the Best on Customer Service,” and “Only the Best on Leadership” as well as several articles on management and leadership.

Dr. Hardy presents programs on leadership, strategic planning, board development and grant proposal writing. Voted one of the top three speakers in the country during the “World Championship of Public Speaking,” he has spoken to more than four hundred groups in the U.S., Canada, Costa Rica, Puerto Rico, Mexico and the Caribbean. He has given over one hundred radio and television interviews, hosted his own morning radio show, and co-hosted a live public television interview show on WNIT-TV. “Sharing Fire” ( promotes the idea that as leaders we have all been recipients of good and that we have a responsibility to re-gift the good we have been given to those we lead.

Diversity in Giving: Moving to Inclusion
Presented by Angela Logan, Nonprofit Professional Development, Mendoza College of Business at the University of Notre Dame

Session Description: ATS and US Census data indicate the known realities: the US population is changing. Fundraising and sustainable development practices have been slow to grow into the new reality that includes a different perspective on demographic differences and how they impact efforts to raise financial resources. While the population has changed, our development approaches and practices have stayed the same. Buzzwords such as stewardship, generosity, and philanthropy hold different meanings for different constituencies and audiences. Although it is purported that we live in a “post-racial society,” donors, development officers, and leaders know differently. Join Angela Logan, Ph.D., the St. Andre Bessette Director of Nonprofit Professional Development at the Mendoza College of Business at the University of Notre Dame, to explore the practical steps necessary for inclusion. As we examine donor differences, we are called to set aside our own biases, privilege, and limitations, to grow into a new world of philanthropy. The love of humankind requires a deeper understanding of how our training, theology and experience shapes the practical initiatives we embrace for raising resources. This is not your parents’ philanthropy. This spirited session will be packed with practice how-to tips, resources, and data for those aspiring to a more inclusive community of giving.

Angela_Logan_Headshot.jpg Angela R. Logan, Ph.D., has served as the St. Andre Bessette Director of Nonprofit Professional Development (NPD) in the Mendoza College of Business at the University of Notre Dame since Fall 2017. In this role, she leads the team that manages both the Master of Nonprofit Administration degree program and the Nonprofit Certificate programs. As a Concurrent Professional Specialist in the College’s Department of Management and Organization, she also teaches the MNA Field Project course, which serves as the capstone course for the degree program. Angela joined the College in the summer of 2013 as the Associate Director for Planning and Development for Nonprofit Professional Development. In 2015, she became the Associate Director for Operations for NPD. Angela has over 20 years of experience in higher education and philanthropy, with a particular focus in the areas of education and diversity. Over the course of her career, she has served as the Program Officer for Education at The Harvest Foundation (Martinsville, VA), the Director of the Bonner Scholars Program at Oberlin College (Oberlin, OH), and the Director of Multicultural Affairs and the Admissions Counselor/Coordinator of Multicultural Admissions at Defiance College (Defiance, OH).

Dr. Logan’s research focuses on the intersection of gender, race, and philanthropic leadership. A trained facilitator of Anti-Racism Study Circles, she also provides training on leadership, conflict resolution, stress and time management, and cultural sensitivity, both nationally and internationally, including to the IBM Research Global Internship Program in Beijing, China, and at the Young African Leadership Initiative Regional Leadership Centers in Nairobi, Kenya and Accra, Ghana. She has a movie credit to her name, appearing in the documentary The Business of Good: Young Africa Rising. She is a Life Member of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Incorporated, President of the South Bend Area (IN) Chapter of The Links, Incorporated and a sustaining member of the Charity League, an affiliate of the Association of Junior Leagues International. She is also an active member of South Bend City Church, serving as a liturgist. She is a Woman of God, a Daughter, a Sista-Girlfriend, an Auntie, and a Lover of Good Dinner Parties, Pretty Purses, and Football. She has taken courses through the Duke University Nonprofit Management Program, The Grantmaking School at Grand Valley State University, and The Fund Raising School at Indiana University. Angela holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Communication from the University of Toledo, a Master of Business and Organizational Leadership degree from Defiance College, and is the first African American woman to earn a Ph.D. in Philanthropic Studies from the Indiana University Lilly Family School of Philanthropy.

Budgeting for Results
Presented by Adam Schwelnus, Kruggel Lawton CPAs

Session Description: Outcome-based budgeting can often help organizations better allocate and prioritize limited resources to achieve priority outcomes. Learn the advantages and challenges of implementing this system and determine whether or not outcome-based budgeting makes sense for your organization.

Adam_S_Headshot.png Adam Schwelnus is involved at the supervisory level at Kruggel Lawton’s CFO services practice. He joined Kruggel Lawton in 2006 as a staff accountant and over the years was promoted to a management role, primarily focused on audit work. From 2013-2017 he went on to serve as vice president/CFO for Logan Community Resources, Inc, one of Indiana’s leading providers of services to people with intellectual and developmental disabilities. His diverse experience in both public and private accounting uniquely positions him to anticipate client needs and provide tested solutions.

Digital Platforms are Ripping You Off
Presented by Alex Sejdinaj, GiveGrove

Session Description: It is important to be digital in this day and age. No organization wants to be left behind. There are so many solutions out there, how do you know which is best for you? We will cover how tech platforms should be serving nonprofits.

Alex_Sejdinaj_headshot.jpg A South Bend native, Alex Sejdinaj attended Indiana University: Bloomington and obtained a B.S. in Recording Arts. He moved to Nashville, Tennessee, where he wound up managing a recording studio for two years. On the recommendation of a friend, Alex taught himself how to code and enrolled in a bootcamp to master web development. He returned to South Bend, working in Business Intelligence for the University of Notre Dame. Upon learning that there were 20+ tech startups in the area, Alex decided to jump into the mix himself by co-founding South Bend Code School, GiveGrove, and Code Works.

Stand By Your Brand: The Cornerstone of Effective Fundraising
Presented by Thom Villing, Villing & Company

Session Description:  A great mission isn't enough to build the case for supporting your organization's fundraising efforts. Donors, volunteers and other stakeholders need to know and understand your brand. The WHAT and HOW of your case statement isn't enough. They need to understand the WHY. This session will probe the issues that will help differentiate your brand and enhance your fundraising effectiveness.

Thom_Villing.jpg A graduate of the University of Dayton with degrees in English and Communications, Thom Villing has provided creative and strategic marketing services to international, national, regional and local organizations including Ralston Purina, McDonald’s, the University of Notre Dame, Elkhart Brass and many more.  A frequent writer of professional articles on marketing issues, Thom is particularly passionate about branding and has made multiple presentations on various aspects on the subject. He has also served on numerous non-profit and other boards of directors including the Ronald McDonald House Charities, the South Bend Regional Sports Commission, Family & Children’s Center Foundation, St. Vincent de Paul Society, South Bend Regional Chamber of Commerce and others.

Ingredients for an Effective Nonprofit Board
Presented by Margene Zink, Kruggel Lawton CPAs

Session Description: Developing strong and effective board leadership goes far beyond the list of recommended practices and narrow definitions of governance that are discussed in blogs, webinars, and even the questions on the IRS Form 990. An initiative this important requires strong and strategic leadership that invites and challenges board members and nonprofit staff to work together to position their organizations for success and greater mission impact. Learn what it takes to make a great nonprofit board of directors.

Margene_Headshot.png Margene Zink is experienced in audit, review, and compilation engagements. As a partner at Kruggel Lawton CPAs, she focuses on serving nonprofit organizations. A native of Illinois, Margene is an avid basketball player and a huge fan of Chicago’s professional hockey team, the Blackhawks.

Fundraising: Moving from Transactional to Transformational
Presented by Matthew Lentsch, MPA, CFRE

Session Description: The more money your organization can raised, means the more you can advance your mission. This session will discuss the art, science, and professionalism of fundraising, and why every nonprofit should integrate fundraising into their mission. Participants will learn why they should move away from transactional fundraising (events and retail) and shift to transformational (relationship-centered). You will want your board members and volunteers to attend this session so that they can understand how to help you and your organization build strong relationships to fulfill your mission. 


Matt Lentsch is a seasoned strategist, a fundraising and marketing professional, community leader, governmental campaign director, elected official and strategist. Matt is a fundraising and marketing professional with over 30 years of Professional experience. He holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from Asbury University, a Master’s degree from Indiana University (MPA); and additional certification as a Certified Fund Raising Executive (CFRE). He is a member of the Association of Fundraising Professionals (AFP) and Elkhart Indiana Rotary Club. He is also a member of the Mishawaka Planning Commission and an elected member of the Penn Township Board.

He is currently the Executive Director of the Oaklawn Foundation where he has developed and successfully implemented comprehensive fund development strategies that effectively promote Oaklawn. While at Oaklawn he has raised hundreds of thousands of dollars annually and led a 4 million dollar capital campaign for 3 new buildings and endowment. In addition to Oaklawn, Matt has dedicated his career working as an Executive Director, and/or Development Professional in non-profit organizations including: The Salvation Army, Camp Fire Boys and Girls, The American Cancer Society, St. Joseph Medical Center, Greencroft Retirement Communities. 

He also provides leadership, strategic direction, management and coordination in all fundraising and community engagement activities.


Best Practices for a Not-For-Profit Website
Presented by Adam Kizer and Aaron Charles, Villing & Company

Session Description: In today’s world, an organization’s digital presence increasingly represents the first interaction a prospect will have with their brand. This makes that first impression vitally important. Non-profits need to be all-the-more attentive to their online presence because it not only defines their mission and services but can also profoundly impact fundraising efforts.


Aaron Charles focuses on creating quality content for Villing & Company and its clients. He has experience coordinating content marketing campaigns that utilize blog, social media and email marketing. Aaron is a graduate of Bethel College in Mishawaka with a degree in communications.


With over 15 years of experience in the industry, Adam Kizer is a developer focusing on website and application development. Before joining Villing & Company, Adam worked as a freelance developer while earning his degree in computer science from Indiana University.
As the Internet has grown and evolved, so has Adam’s skill set which includes comprehensive experience in development, optimization, SEO, hosting, security and more. When not building websites, he is probably busy watching a Cubs game in hopes of flying the “W.”