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THE Foundations Seminar


August 22-24, 2016

Hyatt Regency Indianapolis

Featured Speakers

Geoffrey BerwindOwner, Geoffrey Berwind & Associates, LLC
Shanon DoolittlePresident + Principal, Shanon Doolittle + Co.
Kelly Wesley Taylor, J.D.Partner, Trek Advancement LLC

THE Foundations Seminar is the premiere educational event for fraternal foundations.

Since the 1990s, THE Foundations Seminar has provided fraternal foundation professionals and volunteers with a forum to collaborate on issues unique to advancing their organization’s missions.

It’s an amazing opportunity to learn, collaborate, explore solutions to shared business problems and network with 300 industry professionals.

The 2016 Seminar offers 2 keynote speakers, 2 workshops and 35 educational sessions, with a focus on case and storytelling.

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August 22

  • 1:00 - 2:30 pm Opening Keynote

    Geoffrey Berwind
    The Power of Real-Life Storytelling

  • 2:45 - 3:45 pm Education Block I

    By Peer Group:
    — Foundation Executives
    — Board Members & Volunteers
    — Development & Major Giving
    — Annual Fundraising & Stewardship
    — Communications, Alumni & Programs

  • 4:00 - 5:00 pm Education Block II

    — NICF Member Meeting
    — First Time Attendee Rally
    — Creative Stewardship Can Do Wonders for Fundraising
    — Helping Donors Create Their Legacy
    — Transforming Curriculum into Case

  • 5:00 - 6:30 pm Welcome Reception

    Presented by our Alliance Partners

August 23

  • 8:00 - 9:00 am Breakfast & IBTN

    Breakfast & Industry By The Numbers, presented by Pennington & Company

  • 9:15 - 10:15 am Education Block III

    — The Art of Storytelling
    — Spending Policy in the Era of Low Investment Returns
    — Future of Philanthropy: Cultivating Collegiate Donors
    — Show Me Your Data: Program Assessment & Valuation
    — Restricted or Unrestriced? That is the Question

  • 10:30 - 11:30 am Education Block IV

    — The Art of Storytelling (Repeat Session)
    — Staff-Centered Fundraising: Managing the Fraternal Foundation
    — Understanding the Current Investment Climate
    — Panel: Foundations and Housing Campaigns
    — Top Ten Mistakes Chapters Make When Trying to Raise Major Money

  • 12:00 - 1:30 pm Lunch Keynote

    Shanon Doolittle


  • 2:00 - 3:00 pm Education Block V

    — Panel: Donor Psychology – Inside the Hearts & Minds
    — Lessons of a Restricted Mini-Campaign
    2:00 – 4:30 pm
    — Case Development Workshop
    — Volunteer Training Workshop

  • 3:30 - 4:30 pm Education Block VI

    — Interactive Conversation: Day of Giving Campaigns
    — Panel: Increasing Member and Donor Engagement
    — The Law, Grantmaking and Maximizing Educational Funding
    2:00 – 4:30 pm
    — Case Development Workshop
    — Volunteer Training Workshop

  • 5:30 pm Awards Reception

    Awards Reception & Silent Auction
    Indiana Roof Ballroom

  • 6:30 pm Awards Dinner

    Awards of Distinction Dinner
    Indiana Roof Ballroom

August 24

  • 8:00 - 9:30 am Awards Breakfast

    Breakfast & Award Winners Panel

  • 9:45 - 10:45 am Education Block VII

    — Stories of the American Heart Association
    — Panel: Best in Class Donor Retention Practices
    — Chapter Giving…Don’t Avoid It, Embrace It!
    — Transforming Your Foundation Through Major Gifts & Planned Giving
    — Creating a Habit of Giving with Collegians

  • 11:00 am - 12:00 pm Education Block VIII

    By Peer Group:
    — Foundation Executives
    — Board Members & Volunteers
    — Development & Major Giving
    — Annual Fundraising & Stewardship
    — Communications, Alumni Relations & Programs

  • 12:00 pm Depart
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Silent & Live Auctions at the Awards Reception & Dinner

View the Auction Mobile Bidding Site by Gesture

Join us Tuesday, August 23 at the Indiana Roof Ballroom for our Silent & Live Auctions during the Awards Reception & Dinner.

Event is black-tie optional. Open bar during the Reception.

The auctions support NICF programs, and will feature great items such as an Ultimate Indianapolis 500 Weekend, Apple iPad, Vera Bradley Gift Set and Michigan Lakehouse Getaway.

Submit item donations for the 2016 NICF Silent Auction

The Awards of Distinction Dinner celebrates our industry and honors outstanding work in the community.

Purchase tickets for the Awards Reception & Dinner*

*For guests / members not attending the Seminar. All seminar registrations include the Awards Reception & Dinner.

Topics Covered

Storytelling & Case for Support

  • The Power of Real-Life Storytelling
  • Case Development
  • Transforming Curriculum into Case


  • Messaging that Resonates
  • Stories of Gratitude
  • The Art of Storytelling


  • Day of Giving Campaigns
  • Housing & Restricted Campaigns
  • Major Gifts & Planned Giving

Alumni Relations

  • Member & Donor Engagement
  • Volunteer Training
  • Cultivating Collegians as Future Donors


  • Program Assessment & Valuation
  • Staff-Centered Management
  • Maximizing Educational Funding


  • Creative Stewardship Techniques
  • Donor Psychology
  • Best Practices in Donor Retention

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  • “I couldn’t do my job without attending NICF programs!”

    I couldn't do my job without the support and friendships that have been gained through attending programs provided by the NICF -- brown bags, THE Foundations Seminar, IGA, as well as the survey data, statistics and other resources made available to me as a member to help me set expectations for realistic goals.

  • “If you go to one conference this year, make it the Seminar.”

    The NICF provides a valuable forum for volunteers and professionals who work with fraternal foundations. The opportunity to network and connect with peers and to attend programs like the Seminar that are directly relevant to the work we do is critical to our success.

  • “We value the collaborative environment.”

    We value the collaborative environment of fraternal foundations. NICF facilitates that collaboration by aligning industry research efforts, benchmarking and programming to help the collective membership grow and improve.

Travel Information

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Hyatt Regency Indianapolis
1 South Capitol Avenue
Indianapolis, IN 46204

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Hotel Reservations

Reservations for the Hyatt Regency can be made online below. The rate is $145 per night. Rooms must be reserved by July 29 to receive this rate.

Cancellations must be made 48 hours in advance.


Airport Shuttle

The Go Green Express Shuttle provides nonstop service from the airport to downtown. Stop at the Convention Center, next door to the Hyatt.

(800) 589-6004

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The 2016 Foundations Seminar is better than ever. Register Now

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Frequently Asked Questions

What are options for parking at the hotel?

The Hyatt Regency in downtown Indianapolis offers a variety of parking options, including self-parking, valet parking, and overnight parking. 

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Can I register more than one person at a time?

Yes. Use the form to select the number of registrations you need for that registration type. You can only choose one registration type at a time. 

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Which payment methods do you accept?

We accept all major credit cards and check payments. Please send checks to 3901 West 86th Street, Suite 390, Indianapolis, Indiana 46268. 

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What if I need to cancel my registration?

We strongly encourage you to send someone else in your place if you are unable to attend the Seminar. However, we do allow cancellations if necessary.

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Follow @nicfoundation for more updates

Contact Us

Please send questions about the Seminar to Katie Kowalski, communications & programs manager, or any one of the planning committee members.

THE Foundations Seminar Planning Committee

Ben Satcher, Jr., Kappa Alpha Order Educational Foundation,
2016 Seminar Chair

Brad Garrison, Educational Foundation of Alpha Gamma Rho,
2017 Seminar Chair

Laura Cole, OmegaFi, Alliance Partner Liaison

Linda Daniel Johnson, Gamma Phi Beta

Jenny Pratt, Pi Beta Phi Foundation

Ryan Flickinger, Pi Kappa Alpha Foundation, NICF Board Liaison

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