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Center for Professional Development


The Art and Science of Fundraising

For Business and Nonprofit Professionals

The Art and Science of Fundraising for Business and Nonprofit Professionals
Monday, December 4, 2017 and Tuesday, December 5, 2017
6:00 p.m. - 8:00 p.m.
This course offers 4 contact hours
University of Denver Campus
Exact location TBD
$99 Professionals
$89 DU affiliates (Faculty, Staff and Alumni)

Register here.

If you think of fundraising and cringe, you're not alone. Many people get anxious about asking other people, foundations or companies for money. But what if you looked at your fundraising role differently? And what if you understood your potential donor's hopes and dreams better? Then the entire process may be elevated, helping both sides to feel good about what they've done.

Join Deborah Armstrong, DU's Associate Vice Chancellor of Development, over two course sessions as she shares both the art and the science of fundraising, helping you to tap into a deeper, more meaningful process that will enable you to make the big ask. In the first session, Armstrong discusses the art of fundraising, starting with a history of philanthropy in this country. When you understand the motivations of people (or companies) who have given away their money, you better appreciate your role as a fundraiser. This isn't about arm-twisting; it's about helping someone to achieve a goal. Next, examine your own motivations in asking for money. What is driving you? When you understand your goals (and fears), you can make a better case for your cause. In the second session, Armstrong shares the science behind the art. An effective fundraising plan includes four steps: identification (find the donor who may be motivated to support your cause), cultivation (introduce the donor to your cause and help him or her to understand the impact they could make), ask for the gift, and close the gift. Learn how to achieve each of these steps in ways that make you feel good about the process.

Whether you work for a nonprofit, serve on a board, or are seeking funds for a startup, this course will help you to appreciate your role as a fundraiser as you achieve your goals.

Learning Objectives

Participants in this workshop will:

  • Analyze their own philanthropic motivations
  • Learn what makes other people feel good about giving away their money
  • Discover the four steps to fundraising success
Learn more about the speaker Deborah Armstrong

Deborah is responsible for advancing the philanthropic culture of the University of Denver by strategically driving the University of Denver's major gifts effort, including campus-wide major gift programs as well as college and unit-based development teams. She will play a key role in developing and enhancing relationships with major and principal gift prospects, discovering their philanthropic passions, and aligning them with the funding priorities that are emerging from the DU Impact 2025 strategic plan. Deborah will use her experience in a successful billion dollar campaign to help lead university efforts in preparing and executing DU's next capital campaign.

Deborah joined the Office of University Advancement in December 2016 after 15 years of leadership and fundraising service at Syracuse University. As former Vice President for Development at SU, she was responsible for expanding and implementing development best practices including unifying central and school-based staff in a "One Development" effort.  She also led the creation of a regional development and volunteer leadership program that laid the foundation for a successful $1 billion campaign in untapped markets.  In addition, during her tenure with Syracuse, Deborah completed a $17 million campaign for the Life Sciences Complex as Assistant Dean of Advancement for the College of Arts and Sciences, and she served for one year as interim director for alumni relations. Prior to joining Syracuse University in 2001, Deborah worked in the nonprofit sector for several youth organizations, including the Girl Scouts Illinois Crossroads Council and Big Brothers/Big Sisters.

Deborah holds a bachelor's degree in sociology from SUNY Oswego and a master's degree in philanthropy and development from Saint Mary's University of Minnesota. In her spare time, she enjoys long distance open water swimming and is also a pastel and watercolor artist. Deborah and her partner Mindy Lu live in Castle Rock along with their beloved Collies and Shelties: Zoey, Yuri, Tova and Blake.

This course is offered 4.0 contact hours

Register here.

For registration and information contact the Center for Professional Development at  or 303-871-4161

This program is approved for 4 contact hours. The University of Denver, Graduate School of Professional Psychology (GSPP) is approved by the American Psychological Association to sponsor continuing education for psychologists. GSPP maintains responsibility for this program and its content.