Advancement Officers

Deans, directors and chairs work closely with directors of development and advancement officers. They collaborate on capital campaign strategies, annual giving activities, and identifying major gift prospects.

To augment your International Council of Fine Arts Deans membership, our Advancement Officers group is designed to create a network of advancement professionals working in the visual and performing arts, design, communication, and all industries in higher education. The Advancement Officers group will engage throughout the year to share challenges and successes, best practices, strategies, research, communication models, and trends that support fundraising. Click here to add your Advancement Officers. 

Your institution's advancement staff is invited to participate in this new network to support fundraising for the arts and creative areas in higher education.

Benefits of Advancement Associate participation include, but are not limited to: 

  • a network of colleagues who specifically work in the arts, design, and creative industries in higher education advancement for professional development, information sharing, peer review, exchange and mentorship — Advancement Officers Helping Advancement Officers
  • monthly online conversations for sharing information and best practices
  • an annual workshop virtually or at the ICFAD Annual Conference
  • ICFAD Advancement Officers membership directory for mentorship, consultancy and exchange
  • on-going communication through a listserv information exchange
  • opportunities for surveying colleagues related to capital campaigns, philanthropy, and stewardship
  • opportunities to advertise advancement searches in ICFAD's Career Center

Jim Langley, President of Langley Innovations, has pioneered a number of practices that have been emulated by hundreds of institutions of higher learning. The knowledge he acquired from conceiving and conducting three path-breaking campaigns at three major institutions, as well as the insight he has gleaned from decades of research on donor behavior, has been shared in five books, dozens of articles, hundreds of blog posts and scores of seminars, workshops and speeches. We can’t say enough about Jim Langley and the knowledge he shares with arts deans and their advancement officers. His experience is deep and presentation style is sincere, detailed, and warm. You won’t want to miss this presentation. Join us on November 30th at 4:00 p.m. Eastern time.

Here is the presentation shared at our October 2021 meeting: Public and Private Fundraising for the SDU Performing Arts Districts. San Diego State University (SDSU) launched a philanthropic campaign to supplement a state allocation to build a new Performing Arts District (PAD) on campus. The discussion was led by Elise Moersch, who shared images of the PAD, discussed marketing 'naming' opportunities and shared strategy on receiving a $6 million naming gift. Here is a document about the Donor Bench Opportunities.

Jim Langley, President of Langley Innovations, has pioneered a number of practices that have been emulated by hundreds of institutions of higher learning. The knowledge he acquired from conceiving and conducting three path-breaking campaigns at three major institutions, as well as the insight he has gleaned from decades of research on donor behavior, has been shared in five books, dozens of articles, hundreds of blog posts and scores of seminars, workshops and speeches.  As a result, his expertise and insight, particularly on how institutions can adapt best to changing and unchanging philanthropic realities, is highly sought after by Canadian and U.S. institutions and professional advancement organizations. View our June 2021 discussion, Is Fundraising Keeping Up With Philanthropic Behaviors? Here is a copy of the slide deck Jim shared in his presentation.

In February 2020, Penn State completed an ambitious fundraising campaign to support construction of a new University art museum that will be physically located and programmatically integrated with The Arboretum at Penn State. The Division of Development and Alumni Relations was charged with raising $13.9 million in 12 months to secure an overall project budget of $85 million. Here is a link to the April 2021 presentation, Case Study in Capital Campaigns for Fine Arts Facilities and Equipment.

Here is the presentation shared at our March 2021 meeting – Metrics: Motivating or Mindless? It’s hard to know if we’ve made progress if we don’t measure but if we measure the wrong things in the wrong way, we will halt if not reverse progress. In fact, misconceived and misapplied metrics are major contributors to low morale and high turnover in many advancement operations. In this session, Jim Langley showed us which metrics promote sustained success and enhance donor retention and which produce some short-term results yet trigger damaging long-term consequences. View his slideshow here

Our February 2021 meeting featured a presentation about the Johnny Carson Center for Emerging Media Arts at the Hixson-Lied College of Fine and Performing Arts at the University of Nebraska – Lincoln, and the $20 million gift from the Johnny Carson Foundation to establish it.

Here is the presentation shared at our January 2021 meetingHow to Ask for an Estate Gift without Anxiety or Fear by Dr. Russell James, J.D., Ph.D., CFP® who is a professor in the Department of Personal Financial Planning at Texas Tech University. He holds the CH Foundation Chair in Personal Financial Planning and directs the on-campus and online graduate program in Charitable Financial Planning. Here is text of the presentation with footnotes for those interested in the academic research and sources for the suggestions.

Here is the presentation shared at our
November 2020 meeting: Gratitude and Stewardship Strategies.

Here is a presentation shared at our
 October 2020 meeting: Scholarship Guidelines & Best Practices when targeting programs and scholarships for under-represented populations. Here is an example of a new advocate scholarship at UNLV. Also, here is a document about scholarship restrictions as authored by National Association of College and University Attorneys.

Here is the presentation shared at our September 2020 meeting: Reimagining a More Inclusive Advancement Office. Here is an article entitled No More Waiting to Push to Increase Diversity in Higher Ed, authored by our speaker. Robin Seymour shared information about Penn State University’s Educational Equity Matching Grant. Recommended reading: Diversity’s Promise for Higher Education: Making it Work by Daryl G. Smith.