Sessions and Speakers

Sessions and Speakers
Tom Ahern

2017 Keynote speaker announced!

Tom Ahern is one of the world's top experts on making donor communications more profitable. He specializes in applying the discoveries of psychology and neuroscience to the day-to-day business of attracting and retaining donors.

Tom Ahern's training is about just one thing — helping your nonprofit make more money from its investment in donor communications.

Tom has authored five books on donor communications and trains thousands of fundraisers internationally through conferences and webinars. He is an award-winning copywriter and journalist who works with Prof. Adrian Sargeant and psychologist Jen Shang at the Centre for Sustainable Philanthropy, Plymouth University (UK), the world's top fundraising think tank.

"Every donor communication sends a message. Unfortunately, it's often the wrong message

— Tom Ahern

Stay tuned for more information about the 2017 lineup of speakers and education sessions.

Education Session Tracks

Education Sessions are organized in the following tracks:

*The AFP DFW Philanthropy in Action planning committee is pleased to introduce a new track which is designed exclusively for Directors and C-level staff to better understand, discuss, and collaborate on key issues facing nonprofit leaders in 2016 and beyond. It will include discussions facilitated by high-level professionals on the economy, talent recruiting and management, leadership, and social entrepreneurship.

Click here for a list of all sessions including program descriptions, presenter bios, and learning objectives. These presentations (and handouts or presentation decks as provided) are copyrighted by the respective author(s). These materials are not to be distributed, copied, or duplicated without the author's express consent.

Annual Giving

Get the Party Started: Creating Events that Lead to Major Gifts
Experience Level: Entry
Presenter(s): Mack Campbell

Designing and Implementing a Successful DIY Tour Program and Ask Event: Creating a Snoopy Happy Dance for Your Organization
Experience Level: Mid
Presenter(s): Michelle Crim

Raising the Fundraising Bar: Engaging in Cultural Philanthropy
Experience Level: Advanced
Presenter(s): M. Ann Abbe, M.A., Dameon Madison

The Art of Special Events: Cultivation of High-Level Executives
Experience Level: Mid
Presenter(s): William Bryant, Angela Sanchez

Best Practices

Sold on Philanthropy
Experience Level: Entry
Presenter(s): D. Patrick Powell

Grantwriting 101
Experience Level: Advanced
Presenter(s): Heather Himes

Worth Discussing: Finding and Retaining Effective Development Staff in the Social Services
Experience Level: Advanced
Presenter(s): Barbara Clark-Galupi, Missy Gale

Fundraising with Soul: Women of Color in Philanthropy
Experience Level: Mid
Presenter(s): Lenita Dunlap, Shawn Wills

Board & Volunteer Leadership

How to Coach an Organization Through an Evolution
Experience Level: Entry
Presenter(s): Alice Ferris

Thinking Big; Achieving the Transformational Power of a Board and Staff
Experience Level: Entry
Presenter(s): Sally Rudd, Ben Casey

Philanthropy and the Board: A Practical Guide to Finding Fun in Fundraising
Experience Level: Mid
Presenter(s): Sheridan Joslin

Launch Now!-Building the Train While it's Going Down the Tracks
Experience Level: Mid
Presenter(s): TD Smyers, Leah King

Donor Relations

What's new in Relationship Fundraising? The latest research from Adrian Sargeant
Experience Level: Mid
Presenter(s): Rachel Muir

What Every Fundraiser Can Do To Stop Falling Donor Retention Rates
Experience Level: Entry
Presenter(s): Steven Shattuck

The Road to Success is Paved with Good Retention: Practical Tools to Measure, Benchmark, and Understand Your Organization's Donor Retention
Experience Level: Mid
Presenter(s): Kimberly McGinnis, Chase Robinson

When You Know Your Friends Have Become Family
Experience Level: Mid
Presenter(s): Missy Gale

Executive Leadership

Leading Change — C-Suite Perspectives on Shaping Culture & Effective Talent Management
Experience Level: Advanced
Presenter(s): Milton Key, Robert Heard, Kim Jefferies, Kirk Jewell, Suzie Upton

Leading Change — C-Suite Perspectives on Shaping Culture & Effective Talent Management
Experience Level: Advanced
Presenter(s): Milton Key, Robert Heard, Kim Jefferies, Kirk Jewell, Suzie Upton

Closing & Recognizing Million Dollar Donors
Experience Level: Advanced
Presenter(s): Melanie Schnoll-Begun

Elevating Your Management Style
Experience Level: Advanced
Presenter(s): Kevin Foyle

Gift Planning

Strategic Planning Using Blended Gifts
Experience Level: TBD
Presenter(s): Cathy Sheffield

Charitable Planning Under the New Administration: A General Tax & Estate Planning Update
Experience Level: TBD
Presenter(s): Jeffrey Myers

Charity is Family: The Importance of Legacy Societies
Experience Level: Entry
Presenter(s): R. Michael George, Elizabeth Murray

Tools for Your Toolbox: An Overview of Gift Planning Vehicles
Experience Level: Mid
Presenter(s): Joe Hancock

Major Gifts

Campaign Readiness and Preparation
Experience Level: Mid
Presenter(s): Gary Hawkins, Peter Kane

Why Should I Give to You? — Answering the Fundamental Question that Every Donor is Asking
Experience Level: Mid
Presenter(s): Tim Kachuriak

Asking for Major Gifts: Expecting the Unexpected
Experience Level: Mid
Presenter(s): Carolyn Appleton

Lessons to Learn for Young Professionals
Experience Level: Entry
Presenter(s): John Gilchrist, Karen Martin

Marketing & Communications

How Telling your Brand Story Increases your Giving Power
Experience Level: Mid
Presenter(s): Paul Dunne, Bryan Peterson

Loverizing: The Lucrative Difference a Few Well-Chosen Words Will Make
Experience Level: Entry
Presenter(s): Tom Ahern

Turning Likes Into Donors — The Definitive Guide to Facebook Advertising for Nonprofits
Experience Level: Entry
Presenter(s): Jeff Giddens

Making Virtual Reality a Reality for your Organization
Experience Level: Entry
Presenter(s): James Anderson

Research & Analytics

Donors Want Outcomes - Now What?
Experience Level: Entry
Presenter(s): Katherine Curtis, Lindsay Tooker

Data-Driven Fundraising: Using Data to Find Major Donors
Experience Level: Mid
Presenter(s): Carole Rylander, Bill Tedesco

Crazy Important! PCI and protecting your donor's data
Experience Level: Entry
Presenter(s): Gretchen Carter, Joshua Allen

Data to Design: Using Research to Drive the Creative Process
Experience Level: Entry
Presenter(s): Cheryl Sturm

Hotel Accommodations

Omni Mandalay

We are pleased to announce that once again, The Omni Mandalay is the official hotel for the DFW Conference with a special AFP Deluxe Guest Room Rate of $159 per night (plus taxes) for single / double occupancy. The Mandalay Suite rate is $189. Reservations can be made online or by calling 1-800-THE-OMNI and referring to the Association of Fundraising Professionals. The special room rate is only good until April 15, 2017.

2017 AFP DFW Philanthropy in Action Conference
Presented by Clarkson Davis

Clarkson Davis

More Conference Information


Speaker Proposals

Fact Sheet for Conference Speakers