Otis Fulton and Katrina VanHuss

Otis Fulton and Katrina VanHuss

Katrina VanHuss has been instilling passion in volunteer fundraisers since 1989 when she founded Turnkey. Otis joined in the fun in 2013 as Turnkey’s resident human behavior expert. One thing led to another, and now as a married couple, they almost never stop talking about fundraising, volunteerism and human decision-making, much to the chagrin of most dinner companions.

Through their work at Turnkey, the pair works with the likes of the American Lung Association, Best Buddies, Leukemia & Lymphoma Society and the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation, using human behavioral tendencies and recognition to create attachment and high fundraising in volunteers.

Katrina and Otis present regularly at clients’ national conferences, as well as at BBCon, NonProfit Pro P2P and Peer to Peer Forum, and are the co-authors of the 2017 book, Dollar Dash. They live in Richmond, Va.

Why Acquisition Should Be a Top Priority

Acquisition is a major topic. The data tells us that is exactly what we should be talking about. There is a troubling trend in American charitable giving that should be sobering to every nonprofit that depends on individual giving...

Peer-to-Peer Fundraising: Easy Money Is Not the Best Money

If you run a peer-to-peer event, you’ve heard or thought this: “If we just charge $35 to every person who shows up at our event, we’d make a lot of money.” The problem with this thinking is that it’s a price tag, and after people pay the price, they’re a lot less likely to fundraise. That’s not just what we think; it’s what the data tells us...

Peer-to-Peer Event Financial Reporting 101

How do you do financial reporting for your peer-to-peer event? Often when collaborating on strategy for events, we get into bookkeeping territory. A typical question sounds like this, “When determining costs of grassroots events, like a walk or a 5K, do you include staff, event costs, or both?”...

Facebook and Rage Donations

Anecdotal evidence says that rage donation does provide a catharsis for political frustration. We know, because we donated to the Wilner’s fundraiser when it was at about $4 million, and yes, we did feel somewhat better! A bigger issue that rage donations bring into focus is the use of Facebook as the fundraising platform of choice...

A Humanitarian Crisis: Separating Parents and Children

Turnkey’s clients include organizations like Church World Service and UNICEF, groups that address humanitarian crises around the world. We never expected to be confronted by a humanitarian crisis unfolding in our own home, on the southern border of the U.S. One created by our government...

Millennial DNA: 99+ Percent Human

Millennial studying is the navel-gazing of our time. We spend crazy time doing it. Don’t take our word for it, ask the Google machine. A Google search of “Millennials and charity” returns 210,000 hits, while searching “Millennials and nonprofits” gets you a whopping 434,000...

Is Your Nonprofit Apolitical? Think Again…

Understanding the moral foundations that resonate with both liberals and conservatives is essential. If you want to cast a wide net, take care to characterize your mission in ways that will appeal to both. Once you understand the five foundations, you’ve cracked the code...

Trump Buyer’s Remorse? Not Likely…

For this blog, I leave you with the idea that Trump supporters, having overtly displayed their attitudes on Facebook, in interviews, in conversation, with yard signs, are now in a position in which the odds of changing their minds are close to zero...

Right Message, Right Time Means Big ROI

We often get caught up trying to figure out how to motivate, “inspire” our supporters. It turns out that the thing we can do to inspire them most is to congratulate them for what they’ve already done...

Effective Altruism (It’s Complicated)

For some time now, we have been interested in a movement in the nonprofit industry known as “effective altruism.” We wrote about the topic here on NonProfit PRO in a blog way back in 2015. Effective altruism began as a research field which uses evidence-based data to maximize the effect of charitable giving to achieve the best outcomes possible...

Millennials: Don’t Bother Leaving a Message If Nobody’s Ever Home

My generation talks about Millennials like they are a different species. We think they are different at the DNA level. We study them and develop intricate ways to deal with them, with systems, processes, ropes, pulleys, whispers, shouting and… none of it works very well. And we need to figure out why—and soon...

Sizing Up Your Nonprofit Competition

Some nonprofit executives fear that the nonprofit pie is a zero-sum game. They fear that there is a limited number of charitable dollars available and that they are in nonprofit competition with other organizations for their share of the pie. We tend not to ascribe to this philosophy; our view is that the dollars in…

A Guilty White Man Speaks Out

One of the great pleasures in working with nonprofit clients is getting up every day and knowing that you are helping them do good on behalf of their constituencies. They advocate on behalf of people living with autism, cancers, ALS and cystic fibrosis. Some support people dealing with the hardships surrounding immigration, homelessness, depression or drug addiction...

Breaking the Nonprofit ‘Middle Child Syndrome’

Does your organization suffer from the “middle child syndrome?” Middle children often feel that they are neglected—that it doesn’t matter what they do, they are never going to be great. They sometimes can’t figure out how to be extraordinary. They can’t break out of the middle child syndrome...