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What Can We Learn From This Major Donor?

Over a century ago leading philanthropist John D. Rockefeller said, "Giving should be entered into in just the same way as investing. Giving is investing.”

Major donors view their gift as an investment and expect an ROI ( View 10 Things Major Donor Want). This takes time and intentional, strategic communication.

Regarding major gift fundraising, we can learn a lot from well-known Christian philanthropist David Weekley, President of the David Weekley Family Foundation. He says in his philanthropy he looks for three fundamental principles in an organization.

  1. High Leverage; they accomplish a lot with a little.

  2. Scalable; they have the propensity to grow to impact millions of people.

  3. Sustainable; over time their model utilizes some type of self-generating revenue.

The David Weekley Foundation website says their strongest partners display the following traits:

  • A unique and well-defined mission;

  • Excellent programs or services that clearly advance the mission;

  • A clear path to measure results;

  • A three to five-year strategic plan;

  • A business model and cost structure demonstrating that the organization will make a greater impact in a more efficient way as it grows;

  • Strong executive talent with a coachable spirit;

  • A strong and effective Board of Directors, or a desire to establish one, and;

  • A spiritual integration plan or willingness to create one (for our Christian partners).

These are all admirable traits and provide a great framework for any nonprofit seeking to develop and grow a major gifts program.

Remember, results take time and relationships matter.

Want to dive deeper? 


Developing a Major Gifts Fundraising Program is a crucial part of a successful nonprofit organization’s fundraising strategy. Join me on June 7th and 21st for a "Virtual" Major Gifts Program Intensive Workshop. This 2-day live, interactive workshop offers 6 hours of major gifts fundraising coaching from the comfort of your own home or office. Only 15 spots left! 

See the full agenda HERE.

Only $199 for both days for up to 3 team members at no additional charge.

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