June 12, 2015
Association of Healthcare Philanthropy
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Focus on professional development

By Steven W. Churchill, MNA
President & CEO

“We now accept the fact that learning is a lifelong process of keeping abreast of change.”
– Peter Drucker

I recently came across this quote by management guru Peter Drucker and it resonated, especially at this time of transition in health care. Industries, including ours, are always changing and it is important for us to change, learn and stay current. At AHP, we promote lifelong learning so our members can adapt to changes in the profession and continue to grow and succeed.

Professional development is an ongoing process and we can never be done with it. No matter where you are in your career, there always is something new to learn. Seizing these opportunities and taking time for professional development are critical for your organizations and the communities you serve.

AHP offers a plethora of learning and education choices: a journal, e-newsletters, white papers, books, conferences, webinars, e-learning and online communities. To help you personalize your education and choose the opportunities that are right for you, we have created a professional pathway for competencies in health care philanthropy—from basic principles all the way through executive level skills. You can learn more at www.ahp.org/careers.

Although many of our education opportunities are virtual or self-directed, I do recommend setting aside the time and budget to attend in-person events. There is a heightened level of learning that happens at conferences: In addition to the regular education programming, you also have the chance to converse, collaborate and explore ideas with colleagues both during and after the sessions.

Certification is yet another way to expand your knowledge and grow professionally. It enables you to learn about all aspects of development, not just your areas of expertise. This holistic view can enhance your credibility and your career. AHP provides resources to help you prepare for CFRE certification and also offers our own designation of Fellow (FAHP), the top level of achievement in the field of health care resource development.

Professional development and continual learning are essential to successful organizations. I look forward to seeing you at AHP’s Annual International Conference this fall in Orlando, Fla. It’s a great place to gather new ideas, learn current best practice and keep up with the ever-evolving field of health care philanthropy.

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Staff Transitions
A lasting legacy

This week we say goodbye to two long-time AHP staff members—Chief Operating Officer Monika Schulz, CAE, and Chief Strategic Officer Kathy Renzetti, CAE—as they start new chapters in their careers.

With a 34-year combined legacy, both Monika and Kathy have been instrumental in the growth and success of AHP. They are respected by members and staff alike and they will be greatly missed.

Please join us in wishing them the very best of luck and much success in their future endeavors.

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Tips of the Trade
Creating a grateful patient major gifts program from scratch

The following article is based on an AHP webinar presented on April 15, 2015, by Thom Harmon, director of leadership gifts at Fox Chase Cancer Center in Philadelphia, Pa., an affiliate of the Temple University Health System and a National Cancer Institute Comprehensive Cancer Center.

There certainly is no shortage of articles and presentations about major gifts, physician engagement and grateful patients. Each topic is standard fare for those engaged in health care philanthropy. Thom Harmon’s April 2015 webinar adds value to these conversations by providing a case study on the steps a development office should take when attempting to combine these elements into a coherent and practical program.

For Harmon, physician engagement is the pivotal factor, which only can be achieved in the context of four principles:

  • Institutional buy-in. Executive leadership must buy in to the importance of the program up front. The same applies to the HIPAA compliance office, development directors and key physicians. Their support and involvement are crucial to establish credibility with the service line clinicians who will partner with development staff.

  • Data-driven metrics. To know what is working or needs improvement, it is important to decide what to measure, where to record data and how to use the information. For example, which physicians are partners in the program? Which potential donors are their patients? Were they referred to the development office by a physician or through wealth screening? In which service line were they a patient? What were the outcomes in terms of qualifications, initial visits, visits to ask and donations?

  • Starting small. Harmon recommends initially taking a pilot-program approach to get a grateful patient major gifts program established and accepted. He prefers to focus on one or two of the hospital’s service lines and a limited number of key physicians. A one-on-one approach facilitates educating clinicians about the importance and ethical legitimacy of philanthropic support. This can greatly ease the concerns physicians may have regarding privacy and the doctor-patient relationship, often turning skeptics into champions and allies.

  • Focus on service lines. Building trust with clinicians is vital. Major gift officers (MGOs) should focus on one or two service lines. The “embedded” MGO should become a subject-matter expert (or at least a very well-informed layperson) in each one and concentrate on becoming accepted as a member of the team. In turn, the MGO can provide clinicians with valuable information about the resources philanthropy can provide and how to request and access donated funds they need for their service line.

Says Harmon: “We try to convey to physicians that philanthropy isn’t just about money. Patients and their families find a lot of meaning in giving back to the organization. It’s a way for them to show how grateful they are. It’s a way of finding a sort of catharsis.”

The process works best when physicians communicate with development staff about patients or families they believe may be interested in making a major gift—usually defined as a five-figure, one-time donation or a similar multi-year pledge. Physicians are not expected to ask for donations. However, they may speak with or write to a patient to acknowledge interest in making a gift and to offer to introduce the patient to a colleague from the development staff (the embedded MGO).

Once the introduction is accepted, it’s up to the development officer to qualify the potential donor’s capacity and inclination to give, as well as to cultivate the relationship. If and when a gift (major or otherwise) is made, the physician’s help and involvement should be celebrated. Sharing the good news with others can encourage further participation in the major gifts effort.

Editor’s note: If you would like to learn more, a recording of this and many other AHP webinars are available for purchase from our archived webinar sessions. Also take a look at our upcoming AHP webinars.

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Educational Opportunities
Connect with colleagues and explore big ideas

Join an engaging and energizing community of health care development professionals at AHP Big Ideas, June 28-30 in Austin, Texas.

AHP members are open, helpful and incredibly creative. And Big Ideas is not your usual conference. It's more like an idea incubator — one that combines traditional education sessions with interactive idea labs and other opportunities for facilitated problem solving. It's the perfect place to explore new ideas, share resources and form important connections with your peers in health care philanthropy.

Learn more and register today.

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AHP Madison Institute Certificate Program

“My experience at Madison has given me the confidence to excel in our capital campaign. I have the tools I need not only in the materials presented but the contacts I have made the past two years at Madison” – Anna Methvin, director of the Neosho Memorial Regional Medical Center Foundation, Chanute, Kan.

Make this the summer you further yourself and your career. Take part in the only certificate program for health care professionals, the AHP Madison Institute, from July 11-16 in Madison, Wis.

You will spend five days working intensively with expert faculty and colleagues in one of seven fundraising tracks—including our popular courses on major gifts and planned giving. You will go back to your office with tools you can use immediately, a close professional network, 26 CFRE credits and a certificate of completion from AHP and the University of Wisconsin’s Graduate School of Business.

Learn more and register. Class sizes are limited for optimal learning, so secure your spot today!

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AHP International Conference Register now and save $200

Join us for the 2015 AHP International Conference, September 30-October 3 in Orlando, Fla.

Session highlight: Game changer

Come hear about the rapid twists and turns one public hospital foundation experienced on the road to receiving an unprecedented and transformational $75 million gift through its capital campaign.

Although there was nothing ordinary about the path this gift took toward completion, there were several key best practices and campaign strategies applied early on that contributed to ultimately realizing this gift. Gain particular insight on how private philanthropy and an independent public hospital foundation leveraged unprecedented change within a public hospital and a city.

Presenters: Molly Carter, capital campaign manager, San Francisco General Hospital Foundation; Sara Haynes, vice president development, San Francisco General Hospital Foundation; Amanda Heier, chief executive officer, San Francisco General Hospital Foundation; Julia McGuire, executive vice president, Campbell & Company.

Learn more about this year’s education program. Register by next Thursday, June 18, and save $200.

P.S. Submit your entry for the 2015 AHP Social Media Video Contest. The winner will be announced at the 2015 AHP International Conference and featured in AHP publications and on the AHP website.

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NEW webinar Trends in annual giving

June 17, 3:30-4:30 p.m. ET

Annual giving for health care organizations is changing rapidly, driven by donor preferences, competition and institutional expectations.

This webinar will present the most important annual giving trends today and what they mean for the typical program. It also will provide specific action steps to strengthen revenue, improve donor loyalty and use annual giving to grow a pipeline for major and planned gifts.

Presenter: Ann Thompson-Haas, FAHP, principal & lead consultant, Larkwood Consulting, LLC, Oakland, Calif.

2015 AHP Webinar Wednesdays

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Professional Development
2015 AHP Si Seymour Award Honor a philanthropic leader

Nominations due by June 26

Do you know an exceptional development professional whose contributions deserve to be recognized and celebrated? If so, we invite you to nominate a colleague for the 2015 AHP Harold J. (Si) Seymour Award, the highest honor in the field of health care development.

The AHP Si Seymour Award is presented each year to an AHP member who has shown outstanding leadership in philanthropy. It will be presented this fall at the AHP Annual International Conference in Orlando, Fla.

Start preparing your nomination now

Please take some time now to gather the information necessary to nominate an outstanding colleague. The deadline is coming up on June 26, 2015.

Review the award criteria and download the nomination form today.

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AHP Fellow exam Take it at AHP International Conference

Application deadline July 31

The AHP Fellow designation (FAHP) is the top level of achievement in the field of health care resource development and management. In order to qualify to sit for the FAHP exam, you must have earned your CFRE and have at least eight years of experience in raising and managing philanthropic funds for a health care organization.

The FAHP exam is offered each year at the AHP International Conference. The exam date for this year’s conference in Orlando, Fla., is September 30, 2015. The deadline to apply is July 31, 2015.

To learn more about the FAHP designation, visit the AHP website. To receive an application for the FAHP exam or to ask questions, please email ahp@ahp.org or call 703-532-6243.

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Member Resources
Performance measurement It just makes sense

Just like peanut butter and jelly, ketchup and mustard or salt and pepper go together, so do reporting and sharing health care philanthropy metrics.

AHP's Report on Giving survey and online database use peer-established definitions to ensure standardized reporting of key performance metrics like:

  • Total cash and production
  • Cost to raise a dollar
  • Return on investment

Participating in the survey strengthens the health care philanthropy industry by showing your commitment to transparency and accountability—and it gives you the data you need to show the effectiveness of your programs.

Participating shows your commitment to good industry practice and your willingness to share data to solve problems and increase philanthropy—and ultimately, to improve lives in your communities.

Complete the survey today

Look for the survey link in your email in-box. Complete the survey and get a free copy of the report, as well as a discount on the custom online database.

NEW this year

All AHP members will receive the Report on Giving survey link to participate on behalf of their organization. This means organizations with multiple staff on their membership rosters will have multiple staff receiving the survey link. Use the organization code on the survey instructions to complete the survey.


If you participate in the AHP Performance Benchmarking Service, then you do not need to complete the Report on Giving survey. By completing the benchmarking survey, your data will automatically be included in the Report on Giving.

To learn more about the various tools available and to determine what is best for your organization, visit the AHP website at www.ahp.org/reportongiving. Questions? Email ahp@ahp.org or call 703-532-6243.

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Member News
Welcome to new AHP members

Please join us in welcoming AHP’s most recent members. We encourage you to check the AHP website for the new member list and reach out to those in your area:

AHP’s newest individual, institutional and affiliate members.

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Foundation News
Scholarship update

Your gift to the AHP Foundation 2015 Annual Fund supports the people and institutions that make our profession so meaningful. It helps us do more for our communities.

Your dollars make a difference by providing scholarships to colleagues who might otherwise never have a chance to participate in professional development—a tool we all value as we strive to grow our programs.

Through your contributions to the 2014 Annual Fund campaign, the AHP Foundation was able to provide the following scholarships this year:

  • Linda Arnold
    Director of Development
    CHRISTUS Spohn Health System Foundation
    Corpus Christi, Texas

  • Cynthia Scott, CFRE
    Senior Development Officer
    Parkland Foundation
    Dallas, Texas

In addition, the Hospital Development & Education Fund (HDEF) of Canada provided scholarship assistance to three Canadian members from funds raised through the HDEF of Canada:

  • Veronica Carroll, MBA, CFRE
    Executive Director
    Delta Hospital Foundation
    Delta, British Columbia

  • Lisa Cottreau, CFRE
    Special Projects Officer
    Dartmouth General Hospital Foundation
    Dartmouth, Nova Scotia

  • Jason Downey
    Board Chair
    Saint John Regional Hospital Foundation
    Saint John, New Brunswick

We need your continued support to ensure we can fund scholarships for 2016. Please make your gift today. Thank you!

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Government Relations
Legislative and regulatory updates

United States

FASB proposes improvements to nonprofit financial statements

The Financial Accounting Standards Board issued a proposed Accounting Standards Update intended to improve the information provided in nonprofit financial statements and notes to financial statements. Stakeholders are encouraged to review and comment on the proposed ASU, Presentation of Financial Statements of Not-for-Profit Entities, by Aug. 20, 2015. Read more.


2015 Federal Budget: Items of interest to charities and nonprofits

The federal budget tabled on April 21 contained a number of items that benefit the charitable sector. Although it did not include the Stretch Tax Credit for Charitable Giving, the budget did contain measures that will encourage investment in charities. Imagine Canada has put together an excellent summary. Read more.

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Career Center
Find or post health care development jobs

The AHP Career Center is your source for finding and posting health care development jobs:

  • Job Seekers – Use the advanced search tools, sign up for job alerts and post your resume.

  • Recruiters – Post jobs quickly and easily and search the resume bank. Get extra visibility by featuring your job in the AHP E-Connect or in AHP Today.

Whether you are looking for a new job in health care philanthropy or the perfect candidate to fill a position in your development office, visit the AHP Career Center today.

AHP E-Connect featured job

Assistant VP of Development
National Jewish Health
Sherman Oaks, Calif.

Complete list of job postings.

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Calendar of Events
Upcoming AHP conferences

Register now for upcoming educational opportunities:

2015 AHP Big Ideas in Health Care Philanthropy
June 28-30, 2015
Austin, Texas

2015 AHP Madison Institute Certificate Program
July 11-16, 2015
Madison, Wis.

2015 AHP Annual International Conference – Register now and save $200!
September 30-October 3, 2015
Orlando, Fla.

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