Jeff Jowdy

Jeff Jowdy

Looking for Jeff? You’ll find him either on the lake, laughing with good friends, or helping nonprofits develop to their full potential.

Jeff believes that successful fundraising is built on a bedrock of relevant, consistent messaging; sound practices; the nurturing of relationships; and impeccable stewardship. And that organizations that adhere to those standards serve as beacons to others that aspire to them. The Bedrocks & Beacons blog will provide strategic information to help nonprofits be both.

Jeff has more than 25 years of nonprofit leadership experience and is a member of the NonProfit PRO Editorial Advisory Board.

Timeless Nonprofit Lessons in Leadership From a Timeless Fundraising Leader

Last week I made a quick trip to New York City for the memorial service for fundraising legend Jerry Panas. I am sure that Jerry was smiling down on the gathering at the Century Club. Seeing Felicity, Jerry and others was heartwarming. It was a pleasure meeting new friends and learning nonprofit lessons from a fundraising leader...

The Donor Retention Clock Is Ticking

Donor retention is vital. To us, it has been a core strategy and priority for nearly two decades. Too often, an organization approaches us and shares that they need help with donor acquisition. Then we discern that their priority should be donor retention...

Does Your Nonprofit Have an Annual Giving Program?

A dynamic annual giving program is important to building a pipeline of future donors—including major donors. It is also important at helping you to fulfill your worthy mission and in providing donors with an incredible giving experience...

Essentials for Fundraising Campaign Success

Without research, any fundraising project becomes shoot-from-the-hip and cookie-cutter. With research, you are able to really achieve your potential—and ensure fundraising campaign success. It comes as no surprise that we are huge advocates for conducting campaign feasibility and planning studies.

Remembering an Icon: Jerold Panas

The fundraising world carries a heavy heart. We have lost an icon. There was only one Jerold Panas, and there never will be another. His legacy will inspire professionals for generations to come...

Declare Independence from Poor Fundraising

It's time to declare our independence from poor fundraising. Americans—and others around the world—are remarkably generous. According to Giving USA, charitable gifts in the U.S. topped $400 billion for the first time last year...

Annual Giving Is Not an Event

An annual giving program is the foundation of a successful fundraising program and for establishing a culture of philanthropy. Even a small nonprofit should have an annual giving program, providing donors an opportunity each year to invest in your mission and endorse the difference you are making through their gift...

Nonprofit Board Members Must Ask Questions

The truth is that every member of the executive committee—all nonprofit board members—has a fiduciary responsibility to call for full disclosure to the board...

Behavior Reveals True Character

Barbara Bush leaves a void in the American political scene. She was a woman of class, and, when your husband and son became president, a woman of fortitude. She was fiercely loyal to her family, as she should be. Regardless of your political views, the true character of this woman is reflected in the deep affection that the Obama and Clinton families have for her...

A Great Nonprofit Leader Needs to Be Genuine and Transparent

One lasting and successful quality of a nonprofit leader—I believe any leader—is being genuine, transparent and having a strong moral compass. Being genuine means being authentic and real. What you see is what you get. This is a leader who doesn’t have a public persona, and then one that his or her staff and family must deal with...

Best Practices to Avoid ‘Cookie-Cutter’ Fundraising

Too often, we see campaign strategy and development plans that are cookie-cutter. There are proven best practices in fundraising, as well as new and innovative strategies in communication and technology. We have formats for various plans with many variables and update these continually after every client engagement and through concentrated work groups comprised of our team members on a regular basis...