Call for Presentation Proposals for the 2019 Apra Metro DC Annual Conference

Apra Metro DC Annual Conference is the premiere event for prospect research professionals in the DC area. Apra members are full of interesting insights and industry knowledge. We invite you to share your knowledge at the 2019 Apra Metro DC Annual Conference with a presentation that showcases your strengths.

All submissions should address one of the topics in each domain of Apra's Body of Knowledge: Prospect Research, Data Analytics, Relationship Management, and Campaigns. We will also review submissions on Professional Development.

What we are looking for:

  • Original presentations that have not recently been used at other conferences.
  • Educational, actionable and engaging content that is formatted in a "how-to" style.
  • A title that clearly conveys the type of presentation you are proposing.
  • An abstract of no more than 300 words that addresses the topic of your presentation and two to three key takeaways the audience will enjoy.
  • Include who is in your target audience: small shops, large shops, general audience, etc.
  • Sessions will be allotted 60 minutes, so be prepared to be concise.
  • Abstracts should follow the following style guidelines: uses active voice, uses an AP style and is written in the third person.
Submission Deadline Extended to September 17, 2018!

Submit your proposal here.

Selected speakers will receive complimentary registration. In addition, limited funds are available for travel reimbursement.

We look forward to hearing from you!

APRA Metro DC announces three new board members!

The APRA Metro DC board is proud to announce that it has elected three new members:
  • Newsletter Chair: Elizabeth Dickinson, Newseum, Coordinator of Donor Relations
  • Programming Chair: Catherine Flaatten, Share Our Strength, Prospect Research Analyst
  • Social Media Chair: Ana Morgenstern, Newseum, Manager of Research and Prospect Development 
You can read more about them here!

The board would like to thank Katie Mire and Javier Rodriguez for lending us their wisdom, enthusiasm, and can-do attitudes.  Thanks for your service to the APRA DC family!  

Remembering Daniel Greeley

APRA Colleagues,

The prospect development community and APRA Metro DC family experienced a tremendous loss this week. One of our board members, Daniel Greeley, passed away at the age of 29. He was the prospect researcher at the Land Trust Alliance and was a member of the board of American University's DC Young Alumni Chapter. Daniel was a driving force in our chapter and inspired many to volunteer with APRA. He was passionate about prospect development, his trips to nearly 100 national parks, being an American University Eagle, all things politics, his joy (and struggles!) as a first-time homeowner, and his family and beloved dog, Cinnamon. We will greatly miss his friendship, encouragement, optimism, and determination.

Some of you might have known Daniel from his work as the chair of the Prospect Research Track of the Curriculum Planning Committee for this year’s Prospect Development. He was so looking forward to attending and presenting at his first Prospect Development this year. Daniel was the author of the recent “Data Mining Political Giving: How to Read, Understand, and Use Political Giving Records in Prospect Research” cover story in APRA Connections, and had previously served as MARC Volunteer Co-Chair. Daniel had served as an APRA Metro DC board member since 2012, most recently as our Newsletter Chair.

As the APRA Metro DC chapter prepares for its annual conference next Thursday, the chapter will be reminded of the noticeable void Daniel’s passing has left in our community. In honor of Daniel’s contributions and impact on our chapter, the APRA Metro DC board of directors will award the Daniel H. Greeley Memorial Scholarship at our conference.

For those who want a clearer sense of Daniel’s character and unyielding spirit, one of his co-workers wrote a beautiful tribute to him:

Additionally, his family established The Daniel Greeley Memorial Scholarship Fund at American University:


Lindsey Nadeau
President, APRA Metro DC

Ask a Manager: Unexplored Partnerships

This special edition of Ask a Manager has been answered by Chris Pipkins, Associate Vice President, Advancement Information Services at James Madison University. Chris will discuss the role of planned giving in a campaign and provide a case study for expanding researcher's efforts into planned giving at our 2016 Annual Conference in his session, "Expanding Research's Scope: Loyalty, Value and Planned Giving". To see the full conference program, click here.

Question: Where is there opportunity for prospect development professionals to better partner with key, under-served areas within advancement? Why do you think we've overlooked them?

Answer: The opportunities for prospect development professionals to partner are “large and contain multitudes” as Walt Whitman might have said if he were talking about our profession. Historically, Research offices have played a central role in building major gift cultures and operations at institutions relatively new to large comprehensive campaigns. We have been doing so predominantly
because Pareto’s 80/20 rule and Giving USA data historically tell us that it is the relationships we foster with individuals that lead to the greatest charitable outcome for our institutions.

Our profession has moved significantly from “research” (reactive profiles, capacity analysis, suspect identification) to “prospect development” (system tracking, system development, workflow and portfolio optimizations as well as prospect-by-prospect strategy development and pipeline management) and these have traditionally been the domain of individuals within the five-year pledge terms of major-gift giving.

 My sense is that with the rise of the $1B campaign over the last decade and with it the rise of eight- and nine-figure lead gifts, the nature of the prospect and leadership-gifts has brought about a change. I suspect that across many institutions these lead gifts extend beyond five years and contain multiple parts, including estate considerations.

I know as director of prospect research from 2000-2008, I overlooked corporate and foundation relations and planned giving because of a need to build major gift infrastructure, because our prospect management systems require Planned Giving and Corporate and Foundation Giving to be shoe-horned into the individual prospect tracking systems, and because, in the case of planned giving, the profession hadn’t fully considered that program’s place in a campaign.

For example, it was not until the 4th and most recent edition of CASE Reporting Standards & Management Guidelines, published in 2009, that estate giving was incorporated into the guidelines as part of campaign counting. I’ll discuss some of this history at the APRA DC Annual Conference.

Despite its exclusion from CASE standards throughout much of the 2000s, estate or testamentary giving has been baked into the campaign planning and in actual practice for most of that time, factoring in between 20% to 30% of a comprehensive goal and/or total. In the end, however, institutions are large and contain multitudes.

I’m not sure they’ve been overlooked so much as prioritized based on the needs of the institution on a situation-by-situation basis. Some institutions may have very young constituencies and a strong corporate culture in which case developing strong corporate prospect development practices have taken a higher level of attention than planned giving. Still others may have prioritized forecasting, trend analysis and data analytics to drive strategy to meet increased pressure on ROI.

One of the exciting things about the APRA DC conference this year is the DC chapter’s focus on these very themes. David and Lori Lawson, always engaging and insightful, address ROI and Impact. Josh Birkholz examines Analytics. Steve Knight and Agie Yatsko integrate the profession’s two core functions, identification and prospect management. The opportunity for research professionals abounds.

-Chris Pipkins, Associate Vice President, Advancement Information Services, James Madison University