Programming overview

As the world of advancement continues to evolve, collaboration within our offices and amongst our colleagues has never been more important. As we look to advance our institutions, we must look beyond our functional areas to come together and embrace opportunities and face the challenges of our profession.

To better facilitate these partnerships, the CASE VI Conference programming track will look beyond the traditional, alumni, advancement and communications tracks. By bringing these traditional disciplines together, along with others, conference attendees will return to their institutions filled with fresh, innovative ideas, and be inspired to face what lies ahead, together as a united team.

Program tracks

  • Advancement Fundamentals-this track will focus on the basic functions of the profession. For example, a session might focus on how to start a student alumni association. In general, this track will highlight issues facing those with up to five years experience in advancement. 
  • Critical Issues-this track takes a more comprehensive look at the important topics facing the profession. For example, a session might focus on the communication strategy needed to imbed an annual fund campaign into an existing alumni relations event. Think how the various units within advancement cross over and work together to achieve institutional priorities. 
  • Key Decision Makers-this track is for the vice president or executive director who makes top-level decisions within advancement. For example, a session may focus on staff recruitment and retention.
  • Professional Development-this track is for all advancement professionals who want to expand and polish their professional skill-set. For example, a session might focus on dining etiquette when meeting with a prospective donor.
  • Community College/Independent Schools-This one-day track will feature programming geared directly to topics associated with community colleges and independent schools.
2018 conference schedule
Sunday, January 28, 2018, 1:30-2:30 p.m.

Track: Advancement Fundamentals
Expanding the Vision: Creating Opportunities Through Academic Partners

As leaders in development, we seek to create lasting opportunities to connect alumni and donor passions with the mission and vision of our institution. More than one entire unit, our institutions are comprised of scores of various departments and leaders, divisions and programs, led by people who share our passion for furthering the institution's mission through their specific area. As we think creatively about how to engage individuals or groups of donors, one great resource for innovation is already on campus: the people we serve alongside as staff, faculty, and administrators. This session will explore the possibilities for advancing the institution through matching campus driven need with donor driven interest and engaging the support and buy in of our academic partners in the process.

Presented by: David Hutchison, Executive Director of Advancement & Alumni Programs, Central Methodist University

Track: Advancement Fundamentals
More Heads are Better Than One: Integrating Advancement and Marketing Communication

Maximizing relationships with key stakeholders isn't limited to one functional area or another. It takes strategic thinking about how to get the right messages to the right people to yield results that make a difference in fundraising and alumni engagement. At Mizzou School of Health Professions, the advancement, alumni relations and communications staff share a joint strategic plan for engaging all our target audiences from prospective students (future alumni) to high capacity donors and everyone in between.This session will share the planning and collaboration process used to break down silos and create a true team approach to engaging alumni and donors.

Presented by: Megan Silvey, Director of Marketing & Strategic Communication, University of Missouri

Track: Critical Issues
Community Collaboration: The Launch of a Community Brand

Joining forces, Missouri Western State University partnered with communication directors from the city, public schools, chamber of commerce, convention and visitors bureau and the local hospital to create and implement a community brand that could be shared among major community influencers. This session will focus on the process of bringing this project together, how it was implemented, and the ongoing collaboration that has come about as a result of the initiative. Prior to the session, see how this joint effort came about by visiting the brand's website at, and come prepared to hear how it all came together.

Presented by: Jomel Nichols, Director, Public Relations and Marketing, Missouri Western State University

Track: Critical Issues
Have a Beer on Us!

Three donors walk into a bar...because we invited them and made their $25 gift matter. This is not a joke! Come learn how MSU Denver has reinvented engagement and donor acquisition by placing a premium on donor experience. All you need is creativity, strategic partners and a campus community to turn your beer money into scholarships!

Presented by: Jamie Hurst, Director of Alumni Relations and Annual Giving, Metropolitan State University of Denver; Brandi Rideout, Associate Director of Alumni Relations, Metropolitan State University of Denver; Breanna Milnes, Associate Director of Annual Giving, Metropolitan State University of Denver

Track: Critical Issues
Making a Compelling Case: The Basis of Every Transformational Ask

Competition for major donors' attention is fierce. We vie with homeless shelters, disaster relief and beloved churches for our donors' attention. Our case must be equally compelling, but sometimes it can be challenging to translate academic initiatives into urgent funding opportunities. We will share every step, and fresh insights, to create a compelling case and vibrant asks, with special attention to two key aspects: partnering with campus leaders and truly co creating with top donors.

Presented by: Nancy Jackson, Assistant Vice President, Strategic Development, KU Endowment Association; Jenna Goodman, Senior Development Director & Team Lead, College of Liberal Arts & Sciences, KU Endowment

Track: Professional Development
Leading Up, Down and All Around

Regardless of your position on the organization chart, you are a leader. Leadership is not a job but a way of thinking and communicating your values and abilities to those around you. There are a myriad of ways for you to exercise leadership so as to advance your organization and to advance in your career. It is helpful to understand the complex set of relationships that exist for you within your organization and beyond the workplace so that you can effectively and successfully engage with those around you. This session will examine these roles and relationships. Through presentation, discussion and exercises you will come to better understand how to see and seize your opportunities to lead up, down and all around.

Presented by: Martin Leifeld, Vice Chancellor for University Advancement, University of Missouri, St. Louis

Track: Advancement Fundamentals
Professional Attire Etiquette and Building a Branded Wardrobe

Advancement professionals know the way you present yourself is almost as important as what you say. If you've ever had trouble deciding what to wear to an event, this session is for you! We'll cover everything from what to wear in various professional settings - from presidential dinners to alumni gatherings, and everything in between. With the input of some of your favorite stores, we'll help you decipher confusing dress code descriptions (what is country club casual?), feature examples of how to brand your work wardrobe (a bonus for those who want to break out of the 'khakis and polo shirt' mindset), and discuss how to effectively communicate dress codes to your donors when planning events.

Presented by: Cassie Mathes, Director of University Relations and Marketing, Missouri Southern State University; Kevin Greim, Associate Vice President for University Development, Missouri Southern State University

Sunday, January 28, 2018, 2:45-3:45 p.m.

Track: Advancement Fundamentals
Cohesive Marketing Within Your Organization

Most university marketing is segmented - athletics, advancement and academics each fall into a separate box. Higher education marketing needs to be handled as any other corporation would handle their marketing, by looking at the big picture and developing strategies for all media. We believe each department, event and campaign needs to serve the overall positioning of the college while achieving segmented goals. Our overall plan looks at social media, video and web along with print pieces cohesively. We keep our target market and objectives in the forefront of all decisions and try to engage with each department to fit their objectives into the mission branding of the college.

Presented by: Amy Nell, Creative Director, Benedictine College

Track: Advancement Fundamentals
Development Fundamentals Time Management and Organizational Tactics

This session will focus on improved time management skills for development professionals both professionally and personally. Topics include scheduling your work to get the most out of your day, strategic weekly plan for donor contact and stewardship, contact reports and planning. Other areas of emphasis include organization for success, goal setting, prioritizing and implementation of strategies. This session will cover topics that are important to the success of every development professional.

Presented by: Michelle Custer, Advancement Officer, University of Missouri

Track: Advancement Fundamentals
Not Going for "The Ask" for Fear of the Word NO!

The purpose of this session is to identify why "The Ask" is so vital to Development success and will touch on the art of the ask. This session will discuss how to prevent not going for the ask during a presentation to a donor.

Presented by: Aimee Thompson, Director of Development, Allen Community College

Track: Critical Issues
Engaging Young Alumni Through Giving

Best practices. We've all heard about them; we all use them. But, are our best practices of the past the best practices of the future? What happens when the happy circumstances of an expanded homecoming week, the creation of a giving day, and an energetic group of GOLD alumni mix? Learn how this confluence of events helped to engage a new generation of alumni and how this new generation of alumni blew the dust off of the way things were always done.

Presented by: Colleen Kowich, Director of Alumni Relations, Missouri Western State University; Rachel Graves, Development Officer, Missouri Western State University

Track: Critical Issues
Improving Board Engagement

Working with alumni and volunteer boards can be both rewarding and challenging at the same time. Our institutions are full of board volunteers who can be our strongest advocates and most generous supporters if their experiences are positive and meaningful. Attend this session to learn some tips an building better boards and getting the most out of your loyal volunteers.

Presented by: Lee Denker, Executive Director of UNO Alumni Engagement, University of Nebraska Foundation

Track: Critical Issues
Talent Management, Strategy for Campaign Success

Statistics show that major gift teams with strategic talent management programs raise more funds and experience lower turnover. People are the key. Advancement offices know that the recruitment of fundraisers is paramount to campaign success. But our efforts cannot stop with just recruitment. Talent management is a critical strategy for campaign success. This session will focus on the key components of a comprehensive talent management program from the viewpoint of a vice chancellor, supported with examples from a talent management program director. In this session, you will find out how to: 1. Align your talent management program to achieve campaign goals; 2. Make the investment and achieve buy in; 3. Incorporate the three R's, Recruitment, recognition, and retention and the role of best practices in metrics, promotions, and the use of incentives; 4. Implement learning and development initiatives and; 5. Take your talent management program to the next level.

Presented by: Tom Hiles, Vice Chancellor for University Advancement, University of Missouri; Deb Snellen, Director of Organizational and Professional Development, University of Missouri

Track: Key Decision Makers
Transparency in Leadership: The Changing Role of the Vice President/Chief Development Officer

In addition to serving as the head of development, alumni relations and (at times) communications, the vice president/chief development officer is often the conversation and strategy facilitator among the governing board, the president, members of the cabinet and other key internal and external constituencies. As a primary liaison to a variety of key stakeholders, the vice president is increasingly placed in situations where they must facilitate conversations and dialogue among important constituencies and players in order to help move the institution forward and for their advancement team to be most effective in their development and engagement work. This scenario requires the vice president to value discretion and to be politically savvy, while also knowing when information needs to be shared to avoid missteps. As the role of the vice president continues to morph into that of campus organizer and strategist, leading an advancement team with transparency becomes more challenging. This session will focus on the successes and mistakes of one individual who has served in this role at three different institutions and has evolved their management style in response to campus cultures, the style of the presidents they have worked for, and the needs of their advancement teams.

Presented by: Wayne Webster, Vice President for Advancement, The College of Wooster

Track: Professional Development
Management Mastermind

In development, we often promote the best, most productive fundraisers to be managers. Yet, rarely do we train fundraisers to be great managers or hire fundraisers with the right skills to become great managers. A recent issue of Currents featured an article on this exact struggle called "Are You Managing?" Fundraising is competitive, autonomous and individualized, while the best management calls for advocacy of your direct reports (over yourself), engaged coaching, radical ownership of the team's goals and results, and clarity on the team's strengths and areas to improve.

Presented by: Jenna Goodman, Senior Development Director, Team Lead, College of Liberal Arts & Sciences, KU Endowment; Nancy Jackson, Assistant Vice President for Strategic Development, KU Endowment

Monday, January 29, 2018, 9-10 a.m.

Track: Advancement Fundamentals
Eventing Excellence, Keep Your Audiences Engaged and Wanting More

A large part of engaging alumni, donors and the university community requires inviting them to events to get them excited about the college and exceed their expectations. Every part matters. How do you communicate the event? How do you make them feel special during the event? What information do they need to know at the event? How do you keep the momentum going afterward? This session will share how the University of Nebraska re engaged a college community and earned buy in from audiences. Leave with tips to add to your event toolbox and new ideas and insight for creating an atmosphere to benefit your audience and your college.

Presented by: Sheri Irwin Gish, Executive Director of Communications, Marketing and External Relations, University of Nebraska Lincoln; Laura Niles, Director of External Relations, University of Nebraska Lincoln

Track: Advancement Fundamentals
Transformational Gifts: What Inspires Such Commitments and How Do You Honor Such Generosity?

In this session, presenters will share the steps needed to build relationships with individuals who can make leadership and transformational gifts. Attendees will learn about strategies used to engage these benefactors and key opportunities for stewarding those individuals who make lead gifts. Moreover, attendees will learn about the strategies taken to identify such prospects.

Presented by: Margaret Williams, Director of Prospect Research, University of South Dakota; Dzenan Berberovic, Executive Director of Principal Giving, University of South Dakota

Track: Critical Issues
Advancement Leaders Speak

We surveyed over 1,000 fundraisers to ask new questions about annual giving best practices, digital engagement, major and planned giving work to uncover the top trends for fundraisers. Join this session to find out things like who's using new technologies, what the key barriers are for attracting new donors and what VPs plan to do with their budgets in coming years. We'll also talk about the top trends in campaigns, from crowdfunding to giving day to comprehensive capital campaigns.

Presented by: Brian Gawor, Vice President for Research, Ruffalo Noel Levitz

Track: Critical Issues
Joint Efforts in Marijuana Legalization

This session discusses CSU Pueblo's successful efforts to form partnerships with both county and state governmental agencies to establish the Institute of Cannabis Research (ICR). The session will outline the institute's successful first year, including the public relations strategy necessary to be seen as a pro research institution, rather than a pro recreational marijuana institution.

Presented by: Cora Zaletel, Executive Director, External Affairs, Colorado State University Pueblo; Timothy Mottet, President, Colorado State University, Pueblo

Track: Critical Issues
Now You See Me: Balancing Confidentiality and Transparency in Advancement

All advancement professionals are placed in a position of knowing more than the general population at an institution. We know about relationships and family connections, gift histories, pledge write offs, political leanings and often family secrets. As leaders in advancement we walk a fine line of transparency and confidentiality and as a result, we often lean toward confidentiality to protect ourselves and the institution. This leaning toward confidentiality can limit our effectiveness in relating to and leading our teams unless we invest in building those relationships. The first half of this session will highlight techniques used to balance this tension, while the second half will be open for discussion on strategies for maintaining transparency with team members and good relationships with institutional colleagues.

Presented by: Joshua Jacobs, Vice President for Advancement and Alumni Relations, Central Methodist University

Track: Critical Issues
Where Are We Now: Digital Giving and Engagement

Giving days. Crowdfunding. Peer to peer fundraising...Words that were foreign to most of us five years ago are now ubiquitous and becoming central components of many advancement teams' strategic plans. Why? Because the writing is on the wall: an increasing number of today's donors and virtually all of tomorrow's donors and prospective donors live online, on social media and on mobile devices. If we don't meet them in those channels and engage them in a manner that they enjoy and want to repeat, educational fundraising will suffer for decades to come. Indeed, the prospective first time donors of today are the major donors of tomorrow. The stakes for acquiring and retaining these donors have never been higher, and the competition for donors' time and attention has never been stiffer. This presentation will take stock of where we are and what we've learned over the last five years, as an increasing number of institutions have significantly expanded their digital fundraising and engagement efforts with a variety of new approaches and models. The presenters will share a case study on Missouri State University's innovative digital fundraising efforts, painted against a backdrop of data drawn from the digital fundraising efforts of 500 educational institutions (both K 12 and higher ed) and encompassing more than $150 million in online giving by more than 1.5 million donors. The presenters will explore implications for fundraisers as well as their colleagues in advancement services, web/IT and alumni relations.

Presented by: Melanie Earl Replogle, Director of Annual Funds, Missouri State University; Kestrel Linder, Co Founder and CEO, GiveCampus

Track: Key Decision Makers
If You Get the Culture Right, the Rest is Easy...

We believe that philanthropy is not about money, but about leaving the world a better place than when we found it. We will share with you how we have doubled philanthropy with the same staff, using office culture and values to drive us. This session is intended to transform the way participants understand philanthropy. Presenting a shift from transnational philanthropy to relational philanthropy, presenters will stress the importance of relationships, office culture, and leading with joy. We will also examine changes we have made in our office staffing structure, the measures of success we have redefined, and adjustments as to how we approach benefactors. Not only has this allowed us to greatly exceed our fundraising goal, but we have experienced a higher retention of staff and professional satisfaction.

Presented by: Scott Arthur, Vice Chancellor for Advancement, University of Colorado; Jim Hodge, Associate Vice Chancellor for Advancement, University of Colorado

Track: Professional Development
Solving the Puzzle: Connecting the Odd-Shaped Pieces of Project Management

As advancement professionals, we rely on others to accomplish big goals. We spend a considerable amount of our work energy on interpersonal relationships, and it's our co workers that help us put the puzzle together. The first half of this session will share how the presenter has learned to piece together projects to ensure they are completed on time while simultaneously maintaining a comprehensive communication plan. The second half will be open for discussion on strategies used to maintain good relationships with the individuals that contribute to our projects and how to complete projects through cooperation and planning.

Presented by: Jackie Jackson, Director of Annual Giving and Operations, Central Methodist University

Track: Advancement Fundamentals
Building Lifelong Connections: Alumni and Student Engagement

While your alumni already know you want their treasure, you also want them to know we seek the much more than that. In this session you will hear how the presenter focuses on student and alumni engagement opportunities that promote alumni talent and increase their commitment as volunteers in meaningful ways. Come prepared to learn about and discuss programs that benefit your students, constituents and institution.

Presented by: Stephanie Mauzy, Director of Alumni Relations, St. Louis College of Pharmacy

Monday, January 29, 2018, 10:45-11:45 a.m.

Track: Advancement Fundamentals
How to Avoid the Need for a Last Second Shot: Best Practices in Campaigns

We create urgency for our supporters all of the time, it is a great motivator, but we never want the true success or failure of a campaign to hinge on a last second solicitation. Most of us know the general phases of a successful campaign (readiness, quiet, public and celebration), but are we willing to ask the difficult questions, listen to the answers and make the adjustments at each phase that increases success? The first half of this session will explore some questions each advancement team should ask as they approach, enter and exit each phase. The second half of this session will welcome discussion on best strategies to address how to address the answers we receive when we do ask those questions.

Presented by: Josh Jacobs, Vice President for Advancement and Alumni Relations, Central Methodist University

Track: Advancement Fundamentals
Raising Principal Gifts

With a majority of philanthropic dollars coming from a relatively small number of donors, the strength of your principal giving program is a key element in maximizing support for the long term health and vitality of your organization. Whether you are just starting to focus on principal gifts or have a fully dedicated program, this session will provide insights and ideas to increase fundraising results and build relationships with your highest capacity donors. The session will include an overview of the role and importance of principal gifts, tips on where to begin for those just starting a program, the roles that development and alumni relations take to support a robust program and a look at key elements to build principal donor relationships.

Presented by: Jim Howard, Director of Principal Gifts, Grinnell College

Track: Advancement Fundamentals
Video Survival Guide for Higher Education

Every school has amazing stories, but how do you organize, discover and draw them out on camera in a way that connects deeply with your audience and encourages them to act? Reliant Studios and Nebraska Methodist College demystify the process of profiling your target audience and using story driven video to drive recruitment and alumni giving. Together for the first time, we are bringing a step by step process to colleges and universities to help them organize, discover, draw their stories out on camera and then use their videos in a way that will bring results. The session includes: Laying the Groundwork (why video, getting buy in, building and creating personas); Story Finding; Interview Techniques to Draw a Story Out on Camera; Using Your Video.

Presented by: Mike Sukraw, Chief Executive Officer, Reliant Studios; Kristin Sukraw, MA, LMHP, President & Executive Producer, Reliant Studios; Landon Knauss, Graphic Designer, Nebraska Methodist College

Track: Critical Issues
Data Driven Annual Giving

They say all fundraising begins and ends with data, but this premise is never truer than in the context of an annual giving program. In the midst of all the data available for measurement and analysis, what matters most to yield dollars and donors? From predictive modeling to strategic segmentation, volunteer support and management related to reunions and days of giving, and donor behavior across direct marketing channels, we discuss best practices in reporting and analyzing your donors' data to help you develop actionable insights that work. Jenne Vanderbout, Assistant Vice President for Alumni and Development at University of Central Missouri, will join us to explain how these strategies have helped UCM drive annual giving results and build a more robust pipeline for major gifts.

Presented by: Synthia Reader Bialkowski, Strategic Leader, Advancement, EAB | Royall & Company; Jenne Vanderbout, Assistant Vice President of Alumni and Development, University of Central Missouri

Track: Critical Issues
Foundation and Alumni Association Alignment: Strategies for Success

For more than a year, the University of South Dakota, along with external consultants, evaluated the opportunities and threats associated with the alignment of foundation and alumni association activity. The decision to strategically align the USD Alumni Association with the USD Foundation was announced to alumni and friends during the summer of 2016. Following the public announcement, university leadership, key volunteers, and staff committed to a data driven strategic planning process that focused on asking the university's constituents for feedback, listening to that advice and developing programming to meet and exceed refreshed alumni engagement expectations. The data gathering process included interviews and focus groups with staff, current board members of both the USD Foundation and the USD Alumni Association, campus partners, current students, and alumni of the university. An online survey was sent to nearly 20,000 of USD's 70,000 alumni and yielded a 10 percent response rate. That feedback was then paired with research from the Educational Advisory Board and other reputable organizations, offering best practices and evidence based reasoning to inform the plan. The data gathering phase highlighted three goals for constituent engagement at USD: 1) provide value, 2) increase engagement, and 3) build the pipeline. Objectives for each area were drafted and execution began in January of 2017.

Presented by: Michelle Green, Vice President of Constituent Engagement, University of South Dakota Foundation; Whitney Alexander, Director of Annual Giving, University of South Dakota Foundation; Stephanie Austin, Associate Director of Communications, University of South Dakota Foundation; Alissa Matt, Associate Director of Alumni Engagement

Track: Critical Issues
How to Get Your Donors to Respond to Your Marketing

Is your marketing producing results? Discover the best ways to engage your donors and encourage them to respond based on research from Crescendo's latest marketing study. Learn the most appealing key words and phrases to use when marketing planned and blended gifts. Understand what messages engage your donors based on age and other demographic factors. Discover the winning ways to present charitable bequests, beneficiary designation gifts, life income options and more.

Presented by: Sandra Henningsen, Assistant Vice President, Crescendo

Track: Critical Issues
Measuring the ROI on Events

Are your events moving the needle for alumni and donor support? Aside from measuring attendance, how do you determine if an event was successful? In an effort to answer these questions, the University of Missouri has implemented two tools to evaluate the effectiveness of alumni and donor events. While an event is fresh in the minds of our alumni, The Mizzou Alumni Association uses a five question survey to determine the NPS (net promoter score) for each event. The survey, which is emailed within 24 hours of the event, uses five basic questions to gauge alumni satisfaction. The results have helped the Association determine which events have strengthened their overall brand while identifying areas for improvement. Utilizing information in our database, the Office of Donor Relations developed a report that provides metrics to evaluate a donor's engagement and philanthropic support both before and after attending an event. Learn more about these two tools and how the University of Missouri is using them to ensure events better engage and connect alumni and donors with the university.

Presented by: Carin Huffman Grinch, Director of Donor Relations, University of Missouri

Track: Key Decision Makers
Who Are You and What Do You Do for Me? Motivating Staff by Harnessing the "Inner Why"

In our pursuit of maximizing philanthropy for our respective institutions, we often focus on the dollar goal and internally communicate our financial progress to date. These are important benchmarks for institutional leadership, but do these numbers translate as inspirational messages to motivate team members? This session will focus on identifying matters of greatest significance to your staff (why do they work here?), ensuring that your internal messaging continually strengthens enthusiasm for the organization's mission. An environment that recognizes the "inner why" and harnesses that passion creates a joyful culture where employees feel valued and link their daily effort to outcomes rather than dollars.

Presented by: Troy Lindloff, Associate Chair, Strategic Campaign Administration, Mayo Clinic

Track: Professional Development
Turn and Face the Strange: The Role of Leadership in Change Management Initiatives

Every advancement shop is faced with undertaking a large scale organizational change that will impact staff. Sometimes those changes take place in the back office (think software implementations), while others are a bit more public (mergers, office renovations, etc.). Some change initiatives are undertaken because of an executive mandate, and others are embarked upon more collectively. In any scenario, a large scale organizational change initiative will have an impact on employees and can feel like a distraction from the focus of our work in advancement. In this session, attendees will learn about strategies, tools and resources that can be used by leadership and change management staff to create buy in for organization wide change initiatives.

Presented by: Clare Buttry, Senior Director of Annual Giving, University of Colorado Boulder

Monday, January 29, 2018, 1:45-2:45 p.m.

Track: Advancement Fundamentals
Building an Effective and Sustainable Crowdfunding Program

Whether focusing on gift revenue or alumni participation, crowdfunding engages audiences in a different way than traditional solicitation. Maximize crowdfunding value by developing partnerships that will help you avoid common pain points and generate quality projects primed for success. In this session, we will expose key internal and external relationships that can streamline effective projects, things to consider as your crowdfunding program grows and tips for building a sustainable application pipeline and growth. We will deliver creative approaches that can be put to use immediately, project curation ideas and participants will receive examples of how to keep project creators engaged during the course of a campaign in a way that minimizes staff supervision and maximizes results.

Presented by: Doug Patmore, Assistant Director of Annual Giving, Digital Fundraising, Colorado State University; Mia Fill, Crowdfunding Program Coordinator, University of Colorado Boulder

Track: Advancement Fundamentals
Purpose Driven Events

We've all been there. You're sitting in a meeting, going over the details for an upcoming annual alumni gathering when that nagging little question pops into the back of your mind: why are we doing this? As colleges and universities look to stretch scarce resources and shift funds from non essential to essential programs, the need for purpose driven programs and events has become more important than ever, as we seek to fully live out our credo of being good stewards of our institutions (i.e. our donor's) resources. Events can be a high impact way of engaging new donors, showcasing your university and its programs and communicating important stories about donor impact. In short, events can be transformational. But they won't just happen to be transformational; it takes intentionality. In this interactive session, we explore best practices on refining event strategies for more strategic engagement, identifying and engaging affinity and interest groups for specific events, using data to discern the who and what of your event schedule, how to minimize cost without cutting impact and developing a framework to determine what should and shouldn't go into an event, to make sure that events are meeting goals and not just goals for meeting. We'll finish with time for dialogue and Q&A.

Presented by: David Hutchison, Executive Director of Advancement & Alumni Programs, Central Methodist University; Megan Freese, Assistant Director of Alumni Engagement, Central Methodist University

Track: Advancement Fundamentals
Using Scholarship to Enhance Student Philanthropy, Engagement and Morale

Saint Louis University recently combined two student advancement groups; the Student Alumni Ambassadors and the Class Legacy Program. After merging the organizations, it was necessary to find that special something to unite the organization and make their mark on campus. The creation of the Students Helping Students Scholarship was just that! This session will focus on using a student-focused scholarship to strengthen a student advancement organization as well as increase student philanthropy awareness around campus.

Presented by: Maggie Dermody, Reunion Giving Coordinator, Saint Louis University; Kari Hinkle, Program Director for Alumni and Student Engagement, Saint Louis University

Track: Critical Issues
Alumni Engagement: Where's Your App for That?

Mobile applications have become a ubiquitous part of our society. Your students are already using mobile apps, and if you're not leveraging them to engage with your alumni, you should be. This session will examine the growth of mobile apps for alumni relations with respect to the following issues: development and implementation, ongoing support and maintenance, and future enhancements. We'll review real world uses and best practices to utilize mobile apps to connect and communicate with alumni through mobile friendly content, push notifications, geofences and more. Alumni relations, yes, there are apps for that!

Presented by: Chase Carter, Director of Communications and Marketing, Oklahoma State University

Track: Critical Issues
Branding in Higher Education: The Importance of Positioning Your Institution

An institution's brand must be understood both internally and externally. That is, in order for a college to thrive, its essence must be clearly communicated to employees, prospects and donors. During this session, we will examine College of the Ozarks and how our brand, "Hard Work U", has garnered national attention and consequently earned the attention of donors nationwide. Some key topics discussed will include: The importance of mission and vision (and internal buy in), publicity, appeal and campaign tie in to mission and donor stories connected to the college's brand.

Presented by: Natalie Rasnick, Dean of Development, College of the Ozarks; Sue Head, Vice President for Cultural Affairs and Dean of Character Education, College of the Ozarks

Track: Critical Issues
CASE Alumni Engagement Metrics Project

In 2016 the CASE Commission on Alumni Relations initiated a project to create industry wide reporting standards and management guidelines for measuring alumni engagement and impact. Led by an 11 member global task force, the project is an attempt to develop a baseline framework for alumni metrics which will bring together all institutions in a comprehensive manner, which will be easy to implement. These baseline metrics will serve as the foundation for bench marking, assessing return on investment, impact and outcomes, developing correlates and ultimately developing a system of predictive modeling for alumni engagement. Join CASE Alumni Commissioner Lee Denker as he discusses the project, reviews the task force work to date and solicits your feedback on the framework.

Presented by: Lee Denker, Executive Director of UNO Alumni Engagement, University of Nebraska Foundation

Track: Critical Issues
Value in Collaboration with Campus Partners

In today's environment, with resources stretched to the maximum and more demand on constituent time and attention, the value in collaborating with your campus partners to increase effectiveness is now more essential than ever. When you are in the relationship business, collaboration with campus partners helps to produce the best ideas for serving common constituents more easily and effectively. From developing creative ways to engage more alumni in athletic, cultural and academic events to finding new ways in leveraging combined efforts in support of student recruitment, diversity and inclusion, career services, communications and legislative advocacy, collaboration is powerful. By working together, campus partners can share talented resources and infrastructure. They can be more effective in heading off problems and reducing expenses while sharing experiences that will expand their reach and connection with constituents, whether they are alumni, faculty, students, legislators or other audiences. Collaboration is not always easy, but you can leverage your differences and stretch beyond your comfort zones to produce better programs and initiatives. Attendees at this session will learn about experiences Emporia State University Alumni Association and Kansas State University Alumni Association have had not only in collaborating with campus partners within their own universities but with each other.

Presented by: Amy Button Renz, President and CEO, Kansas State University Alumni Association; Tyler Curtis, Asst. Vice President for Outreach and Engagement, University Advancement, Emporia State University

Track: Key Decision Makers
Encouraging Character: Team Building and Management Today

All leaders, good and bad, proclaim the importance of a "team", but truly great leaders exemplify it. This session will explore qualities of effective leadership by focusing on specific traits for constructing a team, instilling a sense of character, and maximizing institutional performance, while positioning individual team members for personal growth and career success. By providing strong guidance and leadership today, managers can help shape future leaders for tomorrow.

Presented by: James Digan, Board Member, Zweig Foundation

Monday, January 29, 2018, 3:15-4:15 p.m.

Track: Advancement Fundamentals
Effective Use of Communications Tools and Technology: Roundtables Discussions

In communicating with the diverse audiences in our world of higher education (students, faculty, staff, alumni, donors, members, non members, in state, out state, international, corporations, communities, legislators, etc.) there is no silver bullet or one best way for reaching and engaging our worldwide audience. In many instances, you have to use multiple tools and messages to reach your constituents. This session will provide a quick overview on communications tools and technology in use today and share a few research data points and comparisons on how alumni are utilizing various communications tools and technologies by age groups. The overview will touch on planning and leveraging the use of multiple tools and technologies to reach your audiences and as measuring their effectiveness. Attendees will then break into groups to take a deeper dive into communication tools and technology.

Presented by: Sami Zoss, Engagement Coordinator, University of South Dakota; Linda Cook, Assistant Vice President of Communications, Kansas State University

Track: Advancement Fundamentals
How to Optimize Your Phonathon

The days of calling everyone with the same tired script are over. The phonathon has transformed into a true multichannel donor engagement engine, supporting everything from the annual fund to crowdfunding, giving days and prospect research. This session will offer real world examples of how phone programs transformed and improved productivity and results. We'll also offer important strategies for improving your efficiency, totals, and stewardship of donors. Diving deep into the results of $1.1 billion in successful phone solicitation, you'll hear about the next generation of this still vibrant channel.

Presented by: Brian Gawor, Vice President for Research, Ruffalo Noel Levitz

Track: Advancement Fundamentals
The Giving Day Panel: What You Need for a Successful Giving Day

How do you coordinate a giving day campaign to get maximum reach with your campus community? How do you repeat Giving Day year over year and meet or exceed last year's success? Panelists from Central Methodist University, Colorado State University and Cornell College will discuss what has worked well (and what hasn't) to help you prepare for your next giving day.

Presented by: Thea M. Rounsaville, Assistant Director of Annual Giving, Student and Young Alumni Philanthropy, Colorado State University; Jackie S. Jackson, Director of Annual Giving and Operations, Central Methodist University; RJ Holmes Leopold, Senior Director of Alumni Engagement and Leadership Annual Giving, Cornell College; Morgan Brittain, Assistant Director of Alumni Engagement, Cornell College

Track: Critical Issues
Beyond Fundraising, Prospecting for Alumni Engagement

Most prospect researchers are focused on finding the wealthiest prospects for development staff. But what about the constituents for the rest of the advancement operation like alumni relations and annual fund? In this dynamic session, the team from University of Central Missouri will share their strategic plan to engage with their constituent base on several levels from alumni awards to chapter leadership, and the important role that prospect research and management plays in identifying, qualifying and strategically moving those prospect relationships along.

Presented by: Marissa Todd, Director of Prospect Management and Research, University of Central Missouri; Jenne Vanderbout, Assistant Vice President Alumni and Development, University of Central Missouri

Track: Critical Issues
Breaking in a New President

When your university undergoes a leadership transition at the highest level, there are a number of questions that advancement leaders must ask themselves. Leading the list might be: what do we do with major donors during the transition? What information will the new president need? How will this impact our current fundraising priorities? How do we introduce the new president to our constituents? How will this impact my current job status and my level of interaction with the board? Having just gone through this situation, the presenter will share what he knew had to be done, what he did, what things he was absolutely wrong about, and what he learned. This session will help you work through your own questions and assist in establishing the framework of a plan for your situation and institution.

Presented by: Jake Heuser, Vice President for Advancement, Bradley University

Track: Critical Issues
Emerging Trends in Advancement

Join Case VI leadership for a discussion about emerging trends in the advancement industry. This panel discussion will feature three Case VI volunteers who currently serve or have recently concluded terms of service as CASE Commissioners. Jody Donaldson currently serves on the Commission on Alumni, Brian Hastings recently completed his term on the Commission of Philanthropy, and Renee Rockford currently serves on the Commission on Communications and Marketing. The discussion will be moderated by current CASE Trustee, Andrew Careaga. Come learn about the work the CASE Commissions are doing and ask your questions about the industry.

Presented by: Andrew Careaga, Executive Director of Marketing and Communications, Missiouri University of Science and Technology; Renee Rockford, Assistant Head of School for Advancement &External Affairs, Colorado Academy; Brian Hastings, President and CEO, University of Nebraska Foundation; Jody Donaldson, Scholarship & Alumni Officer, Kirkwood Community College

Track: Critical Issues
Team Huddle: Centralizing Your Departments

Do you have colleagues across your campus who do similar work but do not report into the same team? If you raised your hand this session is for you! Learn how Colorado State University centralized their events department and the steps UC Davis took to consolidate multiple donor relations teams and how each of these initiatives resulted in a more strategic approach to donor and alumni engagement. This session will cover how to know if it's time to make this move and provide a playbook to go through the process. Score big for the home team!

Presented by: Matthew Helmer, Executive Director, CSU Events & Community Engagement, Colorado State University; Angela M. Joens, Assistant Vice Chancellor of Development Outreach, UC Davis

Track: Key Decision Makers
How to Execute Big Ideas: You Have a Big Idea. Now What?

This session will demonstrate how to take an over arching idea and bring it to fruition. We will discuss how to inspire key constituents with competing agendas to collaborate, how to funnel granular fundraising priorities into themes that motivate benefactors and how to transcend silos and discover more visionary philanthropy. We will focus on the themes of benefactor centric philanthropy, managing faculty partner expectations, how to conduct a productive visioning session and the how, what and why of executing on big ideas.

Presented by: Scott Arthur, Vice Chancellor for Advancement, University of Colorado; Jim Hodge, Associate Vice Chancellor for Advancement, University of Colorado

Track: Professional Development
Why Teamwork Works at Work and Beyond

Many people believe if they work in a silo and keep their nose to the grindstone, the work will get done. But the truth is, there are people out there who can help us and this partnership can lead to better results. The benefits to advancement professionals working with others as a team, in your office and within the college, with the greater university and in the community, are limitless.The presenter will share scenarios which lead to expanded partnerships and provide actual examples that demonstrate greater collaboration, better efficiency, stronger support, more risk taking and more.

Presented by: Sheri Irwin Gish, Executive Director of Communications, Marketing and External Relations, University of Nebraska Lincoln

Tuesday, January 30, 2018, 9:30-10:30 a.m.

Track: Advancement Fundamentals
Philanthropic Student Programming

There are four fundamental components to a sound philanthropic student giving program, education, affinity, philanthropy and stewardship. When all four are operating together, a successful student philosophy around student engagement can be identified and attained. Attendees will gain a better understanding of these four components and will see how a student giving program has grown from nothing into a well established program that is successfully partnering students and development to educate and solicit gifts from students.

Presented by: Maggie Linn Addison, Director of Annual Giving, University of Denver; Amanda Grogan, Associate Director of Annual Giving, University of Colorado

Track: Critical Issues
Alumni Associations: Paid vs. Automatic Memberships?

As alumni offices continue to explore how to grow and engage its membership base, one of the first questions considered is what type of membership model should we have? Having recently transitioned from a paid to an automatic membership model, the University of Nebraska Medical Center Alumni Association will share its experience with this change. This session will review the rational and process for making this change and the results of the transition.

Presented by: Kat Hamilton, Strategic Engagement Coordinator, University of Nebraska Medical Center

Track: Critical Issues
Donor Appreciation - Experiences They Will Never Forget

Most donors can buy those gift premiums and other trinkets for themselves. Give them something they can't buy: access, information, and experiences that only your organization can offer. In this session, we will explore how volunteers, staff, students and clients can engage contributor for long term, meaningful engagement with your cause.

Presented by: Angela Joens, Assistant Vice Chancellor of Development Outreach, University of California, Davis; Matthew Helmer, Executive Director, CSU Events & Community Engagement, Colorado State University

Track: Key Decision Makers
Identify and Retain Your Top Gift Officers: Key Trends Backed by a Decade of Data

Fundraisers are the heart of a campaign. The industry spends billions to employ them every year, yet they typically last less than three years at any one institution. A detailed analysis of the last 10 years of gift officer performance in university advancement conducted by Reeher, LLC illustrates how institutions can create stronger advancement programs while maximizing existing gift officer talent. John Morris, Sr. Vice President of Development at Kansas State University Foundation, and Andy Reeher will share insights from the analysis, as well as how John and his team have integrated an intentional approach to officer management, a donor lifecycle strategy and a unique team structure to help attendees Identify high performing officers much earlier in their tenures, anticipate where officers need attention and get impressive ROI from advancement programs.

Presented by: John Morris, Senior Vice President of Development, Kansas State University Foundation; Andy Reeher, Founder & CEO, Reeher LLC

Track: Professional Development
Can I Stay Here? How to Have a Career Conversation with Your Supervisor

When was the last time you sat down with your supervisor and talked about your career? The truth is that careers don’t just happen to people. People chart their own career, driven by choices they make and following a career roadmap. By thinking about where your career is now, where you want to go, how to get there, and what support you need along the way, you will be prepared to have a career conversation with your boss. Often called a “Stay” interview, these discussions can lead to greater job satisfaction and retention. Come to this session to find out how to leverage your performance conversations into a “Stay” interview. You will learn how to talk about your strengths and development needs and how to create an Individual Development Plan to guide your career development. We will also talk about how to make your resume more effective since even internal moves often require one. You will leave with a template and sample questions to prepare for your first “Stay” interview.

Presented by: Deb Snellen, Director of Organizational and Professional Development, University of Missouri Advancement

Tuesday, January 30, 2018, 10:45-11:45 a.m.

Track: Critical Issues
Budgeting Legacy: A Sesquicentennial of Affordability

Event planning is difficult. No plan is perfect and there's never enough money. Planning historic anniversaries amps up the pressure when big gifts, lasting impressions and so much more rides on a few, very-important events. Peru State College staff found solutions to these problems and more as they planned a yearlong sesquicentennial anniversary with limited funds, time and staff. In 2011, Peru State College first sewed the seeds of plans for its sesquicentennial in 2017. Long range plans like history book writing, painting commissions and reunions were combined with more recent event planning, speaker invitations and advertising to craft a legacy worthy of the thousands of faculty, staff and alumni that have walked the hills of old Peru. Six years of planning did spark some great ideas and wonderful art, but it didn't create millions of dollars. Advancement, marketing and communication staff at Peru State sought moderate gifts, local sponsors and worked within existing budgets to prepare for a yearlong anniversary celebration. Join Peru State staff as they present their efforts to budget a legacy and plan an affordable sesquicentennial to remember.

Presented by: Jason Hogue, Director of Communications and Marketing, Peru State College; Deborah Solie, Director of Alumni Relations and Annual Giving, Peru State College

Track: Critical Issues
The Year of the Planned Gift

Everyone talks about campaigns and special projects- but what if you don't have either? There's no better time to focus on planned giving. Whether your team are pros or novices, there is always room for improvement in this realm. This session will cover creating a culture of planned giving and cooperation at your institution and outline ways that planned giving can be incorporated into every gift conversation.

Presented by: Clayton Melinkovich, Associate Director of Planned Giving, University of Wyoming Foundation

Track: Advancement Fundamentals
Organizing a #GivingTuesday Campaign for Maximum Results

How do you coordinate a giving day campaign to get maximum reach with your campus community? Representatives from Colorado State University and #GivingTuesday will discuss how CSU leveraged a robust communications program to create a successful #GivingTuesday campaign to help end campus hunger at CSU. Hear how the campaign team communicated with donors before, during and after #GivingTuesday to maximize the impact of the day. During this session, a member of the #GivingTuesday team will interview Colorado State University's Campaign Leader. Attendees will learn how the CSU campaign is planned and executed successfully year over year and leave with tips, tricks and tools you can use during your next giving day.

Presented by: Thea Rounsaville, Assistant Director of Annual Giving, Colorado State University; Heather Fields, Higher Ed Outreach Specialist, GivingTuesday

Track: Advancement Fundamentals
Regional Campaigns

As part of its Leading Together campaign, Washington University in St. Louis has conducted more than 20 regional campaigns that have collectively secured over $500 million. Members of the Regional Development Programs team will present on the planning and execution of regional campaigns and the impact they have on development efforts across the university. Leading Together was launched in St. Louis in spring 2009 and ever since, university leaders, campaign volunteers and scores of development officers have been crisscrossing the country to launch regional campaigns. Presenters will discuss their experience in managing regional campaigns, including items such as regional campaign committees, kick off events with local flare, regional challenge gifts, campaign gift tables, and donor visits with high level administrators and volunteers. They also will explain how regional campaigns are a great opportunity to partner with colleagues in other development offices across campus.

Presented by: Todd Gagyi, Senior Regional Director of Development, Washington University; Sunny Bellows, Director of Regional Development Programs, Washington University; Cheryl Harp, Senior Regional Director of Development, Washington University

Track: Critical Issues
Presidential Transitions, Retirements, and Inaugurations

Leadership transitions have become more prevalent at colleges and universities in today's higher education climate. Hastings College, in Nebraska, has seen four presidential transitions within the last 10 years. This session will give an overview for preparing, celebrating, communicating, introducing and inaugurating a new president. Make sure you are prepared and take full advantage of this important time at your institution.

Presented by: Matt Fong, Associate Vice President of Alumni Relations, Hastings College; Hauli Sabatka, Executive Director for Advancement, Hastings Catholic Schools

Track: Critical Issues
Taking the Next Step in Stewardship, Fund Stewardship

Stewardship is not a new concept in the world of advancement. Impact reports, donor gifts, thank you cards, and a host of other practices have been put into place at each of our institutions as a way to recognize our generous donors. But what if we looked beyond stewarding only the donor and took stewardship to the next level? This session will look at the role of fund stewardship at the University of Nebraska Foundation and the impact it has made since being brought on board in 2015. Attendees will gain a better understanding of the role of fund stewardship and the impact it can have in an organization of any size. The session will provide an overview of the challenges and opportunities that exist with such a role, review the steps that have already been taken to improve fund stewardship and take a look at the road map of where the role is headed. Attendees will also have the opportunity to share the stewardship work they are doing and discuss how it could be used in a fund stewardship role.

Presented by: Aaron Rouse, Assistant Director of Fund Stewardship, University of Nebraska Foundation

Track: Professional Development
Communicating a Brand

Over the last two years, the marketing and communications department at Missouri S&T has spearheaded a brand refresh for the campus of Missouri S&T. Our path to accomplish this has been three fold, Unify, simplify, and amplify. This session will dive into each of these components and explore how the institution determined key messaging to unify the campus and constituents, simplified and improved the way it communicated and how it informed, inspired and empowered campus stakeholders to become brand ambassadors and amplify its message.

Presented by: Jake Otto, Art Director, Missouri S&T

Track: Advancement Fundamentals
Introductory Planned Giving

Session Description: Everyone involved in fundraising should have a working knowledge of planned giving. Yes, cash is always king, but a good advancement officer knows he or she is really working for an administration they will never know. This is where planned gifts come in. We're going to cut through the technical talk so you can become familiar and comfortable with gifting techniques viewed by many as too complicated or too sophisticated for most development officers to discuss.

Presented by: Jim Miller, Vice President, The Miller Group Worldwide; Mark Versen, Director of Development for the College of Engineering, North Dakota State University