Laurence Pagnoni

Laurence Pagnoni

Laurence is author of “The Nonprofit Fundraising Solution,” the first book on fundraising ever published by the American Management Association. He is Chairman of LAPA Fundraising serving nonprofits throughout the U.S. and Europe.

How to Review Fundraising Copy Fast

Do you spend a lot of time revising fundraising copy? Many CEOs have complained to me privately about this. I’m talking about drafts of grant proposals, letters of intent, donor appeal letters, fundraising reports, cases for support, newsletters, even donor emails—documents like that...

Ever Wonder? Is Proportionality Limiting Your Large Gifts?

Have you ever wondered why you’re not getting larger individual donations or funder awards? It is perplexing isn't it?  You did your research and you knew that the donor/funder made larger gifts, but they haven’t made them to your agency! This is frustrating. You wonder, "Was it how we asked? What happened?"...

Just One More Thing: The Essential Role of Curiosity in Fundraising

Cultivating curiosity is essential in fundraising, yet it is an underutilized approach and hardly ever discussed within our profession. Some people think it’s rude to ask too many questions—I get that; but surely we fundraisers should be asking more questions than we do...

Secure Donations of Appreciated Stock

The stock market is up. Asking for gifts of appreciated stock should be part of your year-end giving approach. Start by letting your donors know that giving appreciated stock they’ve held for more than a year is better than giving cash. If they donate stock that has increased in value since it was first purchased over a year ago—and if they itemize deductions—they can take a charitable deduction for the stock's fair market value on the day they give it to your organization...

A Nice Touch: Year-End Statements

You want to be seen as organized, thoughtful and helpful, right? Those qualities are a must in fundraising. Few other donor communication methods convey those qualities as much as sending a year-end statement to acknowledge a donor’s itemized giving over the past year...

Tuning Up Your Board

In my first executive director position, I forgot about the board. Chalk it up to inexperience, but I didn’t yet understand how the board could make me a more effective executive, or how they could boost our success. While I met all the technical requirements and complied with the usual responsibilities, in my heart I felt the board was mostly a nuisance...

Opinion: Nothing Has Yet Gone To Charity

President Donald J. Trump’s inaugural committee raised an unprecedented $107 million, and the committee pledged to give leftover funds to charity. That amount doubled former President Barack Obama's then-record inauguration donations in 2009, which totaled around $53 million...

The CEO Is the Chief Fundraiser: A Role That Should Never Be Delegated

Well, isn’t it obvious that the CEO is the nonprofit organization’s chief fundraiser? Not really. Not when you observe the behavior of nonprofit CEOs, as I have over the past four decades. I’ve observed that nonprofit CEOs often restrict their fundraising to the parts of the process they’re most familiar and comfortable with. If they know grants, they tend to focus on that. If they know individual donor solicitation, that’s what they focus on...

5 Best Practices for Ethical Online Fundraising

Online giving has added new and unique challenges to maintaining ethical practices, so it may be time to refresh your approach. As technology develops, so do many issues around privacy, communication and safety. How can we help protect donors’ rights in the online world?...

What Will Become of Federal Government Grants?

The Republican Party (GOP) is big on making “block grants” to the states. The term “block grant” refers to a grant program that provides federal assistance for broadly defined functions, such as community development or social services. Block grants allow the recipient more discretion than other grants in determining how to use the funds to meet a broader program goal...