When Have You Given Back?
Recently, on a beautiful Saturday morning when many golfers were still hitting the ball, I found myself going into a grocery store buying donuts that would be given later that morning to individuals interested in attending a free estate-planning seminar. The day before, I was in Staples purchasing name tags, binders and copying presentations for the next day's presentation. The night before the Staples visit, I was on the phone with my fellow university alumni friends discussing a future alumni event in my area in which I would be involved.
After a long workweek that including a weekend special event, I chaired a church parish meeting and had breakfast with an individual that wanted me to be their mentor. Later that day, I enjoyed coffee with individuals whom would be introduced by me at an upcoming Kiwanis meeting. While all of this was going on, I was trying to determine if I should again help coach my grandson's baseball travel team. It seems I cannot say no to a request to become a volunteer.
All of us have received extensive education and training in our profession. We are experts in our field. I am a mechanical zero but can bore you to death talking about the theory of the donor pyramid. In our profession, the majority of us work very hard each day to provide positive results for the organizations we serve. Many individuals work 50-plus hours a week plus nights and weekends. Each fiscal year seems to run together as you have no time to celebrate achieving a fiscal-year goal.
One thing is for sure. We have to be accountable in our profession. That is why we have chief financial officers. They constantly question, probe and inquire as to when we will receive the next gift. While work is extremely important, I believe all of us can still give more to the society we serve in a volunteer role. Please ask yourself: When was the last time you gave back to the profession?
Duke has extensive experience as a nonprofit practitioner, author, lecturer and consultant. He has been a contributing author to NonProfit PRO for the last 11 years. He has been a long-standing member of the Association of Fundraising Professionals where he was previously named the AFP Indiana Chapter Fundraising Executive of the Year and has held the CFRE designation for many years.
He received his doctorate degree from West Virginia University with an emphasis in education administration, master's degree from Marshall University with an emphasis in public administration and a bachelor's degree from West Virginia University with an emphasis in marketing/management. He has also completed post graduate work at the University of Louisville.
He is currently executive director of development for The Salvation Army Indiana Division in Indianapolis, Indiana. Contact Duke at firstname.lastname@example.org or 317-224-1029.