News and updates from PSI and the Conference on Philanthropy
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Announcing "Inside Philanthropy & Fundraising"

As the editorial reins are passed from Paul Hopkins to Michael Brown, Philanthropic Service For Institutions (PSI) is pleased to announce some exciting enhancements to our PSI newsletter. For nearly a decade, eDollar has been read by countless people interested in increasing their knowledge of, and abilities in, successful fundraising. Over time, the newsletter has been a valuable resource for many people throughout the North American Division and beyond. As we stand at the brink of a change in editorial leadership, we also find ourselves gazing at the opportunity to restructure our PSI newsletter to meet the ever-increasing and ever-changing needs of our audience. As our editorial focus changes, our name will also change from eDollar to Inside Philanthropy & Fundraising.

Inside Philanthropy & Fundraising will focus on a range of topics of interest to both beginning and seasoned development professionals, volunteers in local churches, academy fundraisers, board members, and burgeoning nonprofit organizations. Articles will continue to be written by staff and select contributing authors that have a pulse on the trends, best practices, and innovations in philanthropy and fundraising. Each issue will use a three-pronged approach of education, application, and celebration to encourage mission-based philanthropy throughout the Seventh-day Adventist Church.

As I begin crafting and choosing the articles that will appear in the inaugural edition of Inside Philanthropy & Fundraising, I will be thinking first and foremost about the information, tips, and case studies that will help you and your team put new ideas and rock-solid best practices to work in your nonprofit. I will be thinking about what you really need to know about social media and online fundraising. I will be thinking about the steps your board can take today to ensure effective governance within your organization. I will be thinking about what it takes to raise support amongst an increasingly diverse prospect base. In short, I will also be thinking about the least you should know in order to make sure your organization engages in truly effective philanthropy. Most importantly, I will be thinking about how to help your organization marshal a community of believers and supporters to bring hope and healing to a hurting world, in the name of Jesus Christ.

~ Michael Brown, Associate Director of PSI

Always Something New

The PSI website offers two new columns for your enjoyment and learning during 2016.  First, we have invited senior professionals to write columns for our “Advice from the Experts” site.  We’re pleased to have a number of notable figures writing for this column.  No doubt we can all learn—or re-learn—from their experiences and advice.
Also during 2016 the director’s messages will be titled “Fundraiser Nightmares and How to Wake up From Them.”  Fundraising is a noble profession.  It offers great opportunities for career excitement and chances to intervene positively in the lives of people.  It also presents significant challenges, not always disguised as opportunities!  This column presents problems which fundraisers might encounter, drawn from the vast experiences of the director.  The situations presented in the columns are drawn from real life, with only slight modification to keep the content objective and not situation-specific.    
We trust these two new items on PSI’s website will be enjoyable and instructive.  Feel free to write with ideas, comments, suggestions and even arguments!

~ Lilya Wagner, Director of PSI

Conference on Philanthropy Update & Survey

The Conference on Philanthropy, which had been scheduled to take place June 27-30 of 2017, has been changed to June 26-29 of 2018. The venue, Hyatt Regency Pier Sixty-Six in Fort Lauderdale Florida, will remain the same though.

The North American Division office will be relocating from Silver Spring, MD into its new offices in Columbia, Maryland in early 2017.  We had initially expected to be moved by late 2016. Because of this, we have decided to postpone our Conference to make sure that we can fully focus on the quality of conference that you have come to expect from us at these events.

We will have more information to pass along in the weeks and months to come, and remain excited by the thought of gathering together in sunny Florida.

In the meantime, PSI would like to gauge your interest in other training opportunities that we provide. Please respond to Mark Lindemann in an email by clicking here.  You can also call Mark at 301-680-6138. Everyone that answers each of the questions will be put into a drawing for a $25 Amazon gift card. It should only take a two minutes of your time. We would need these no later than April 1st.

(1.) Are You interested in attending training opportunities provided by PSI this summer?
(2.) If you are interested, would you prefer a four day The Fund Raising School (TFRS) Principals and Techniques for a certificate Or a three day class and no certificate?
(3.) Would you prefer this near Loma Linda, California or at the General Conference building in Silver Spring, Maryland?
(4.) Which of these time windows works best for you? If we had the class somewhere between the dates of July 1-15; July 25 - August 5; or August 29 – September 10?
(5.) provide your contact information

A Case for Database Development

Paul Hopkins, Social Media & Big Data, Director
The Seventh-day Adventist Church of North America has an opportunity to grow with its membership.

The suggestions offered within these pages are not an end-all to many of the issues and struggles we face as a church, but do cover three very important components that must be addressed going forward and that tie into an online database solution.

• How can we engage Seventh-day Adventists in meaningful ways?
• How can we further Church initiatives with a more reliable funding stream and volunteer core?
• How can we deeply understand our membership?

An aging membership base is looking for volunteer opportunities and meaningful ways to spend their discretionary income within the Church. This same group is gradually becoming overwhelmed by the sheer number of vehicles used by church ministries and institutions to convey needs.

At the same time, a growing number of Adventist youths see the Church as increasingly irrelevant in their day-to-day lives. The top-down mandate/management model is out of touch with how Gen-Xers and Millennials relate to the world. Both of these groups want a strong Church but need a voice in determining how they will help and in what manner.

As desperately as members want to connect with the institution, the Church continues to look for ways to connect with its membership, raise money, and understand the habits and interests of the greater body. We think that we know what our members want, but do we? And if not, what hope is there for sustainability?

Continue Reading


New to the PSI Library

Achieving Excellence in Fundraising

Achieving Excellence in Fundraising is the go-to reference for fundraising principles, concepts, and techniques. With comprehensive guidance toward the fundraising role, this book reflects the latest advances in fundraising knowledge. Coverage includes evolving technologies, the importance of high net worth donors, global fundraising perspectives, results analysis and performance evaluation, accountability, and credentialing, with contributions from noted experts in the field. Our very own Lilya Wagner, CFRE,  has written a chapter entitled "Global and Cross-Cultural Fundraising."

The Almanac of American Philanthropy
by Karl Zinsmeister

The Almanac of American Philanthropy in America is a giant undertaking. Every year more than $360 billion is voluntarily given by individuals, foundations, and businesses to a riot of good causes. Donation rates are two to 20 times higher in the U.S. than in comparable nations, and privately funded efforts to solve social problems, enrich culture, and strengthen society are among the most significant undertakings in the United States. Until now, though, there has been no definitive book on America's distinctive philanthropy. This authoritative, highly readable new reference fills that hole. In a single volume, it chronicles the greatest achievements of American private giving, profiles the most influential donors, collects the essential statistics, and summarizes the best ideas on charitable assistance that have been written or spoken.

Contact Mark Lindemann if you would like to check out one of these, or any of our great books.

Let Your Students Tell the Story

We are reminded that nobody can tell the story of need and meaningful gifts better than the students that benefit from the generosity of donors. It's a good reminder for all of us that we should be doing more of this at our own institutions. If you already are...kudos to you. If you aren't...start today.

Patients, students, ministry partners....we all have people that can tell our story better than we can.

Follow this link to see how Union College let Sameera tell others how their generosity helped her go to school.

Civitas Senior Living donates $100,000 to SWAU

By Ashley Rose/

Civitas Senior Living presented a $100,000 gift to Southwestern Adventist University for its new nursing and administration building on Thursday.  

SWAU Director of Marketing and Relations Darcy Force said Civitas is relocating to Johnson County next year, bringing about 20 new jobs to the area.

Civitas CEO Wayne Powell graduated from SWAU in 1993, and his son, Austen Powell, graduated in May.

“My wife [Misti Powell] and I are excited to have the opportunity to support the [SWAU] nursing building project,” Wayne Powell said. “Our son and I both graduated from SWAU and we currently have a daughter attending. We are very excited about [SWAU President Ken Shaw’s] leadership and vision for the university.”

Shaw said the “generous gift will make a substantial difference in how [SWAU] educate nursing students on campus.”

“It will positively influence our students for years to come as we will be able to provide state-of-the-art nursing skills labs and simulation labs,” Shaw said. “We are profoundly grateful for the leadership of Wayne and [Civitas Vice President of Cultural Development] Misti Powell at Civitas Senior Living and their support of our university.”

Read the Rest Here

Volunteers Celebrate 50 Years of Service

On Feb. 28, Florida Hospital Memorial Medical Center celebrated the Auxiliary’s 50th anniversary with brunch at Oceanside Country Club.   

Since February 28, 1966, the hospital’s auxiliary has provided more than 2.5 million hours of volunteer support and raised more than $4.8 million to benefit the hospital and community.   

More than 100 volunteers – both past and present – attended this special event.   

Norma MacDonald and Dottie Welcher were recognized for their extraordinary service; these two volunteers started with the Auxiliary in 1966 and still hold volunteer positions today.   

“We are so grateful for all of our volunteers for their continued commitment to our hospital and our mission to extend the healing ministry of Christ,” said Ed Noseworthy, Florida Hospital Memorial Medical Center CEO. “Over a span of 50 years, our dedicated volunteers have made such a phenomenal impact on our hospital and community. Their contributions are vast and we are eternally thankful for the gifts of their time and talents.”  

Hospital volunteers serve in more than 50 departments at Florida Hospital Memorial Medical Center in Daytona Beach, Florida Hospital Oceanside in Ormond Beach, the Pavilion at Port Orange, New Smyrna Health Park and various other outpatient locations.  

To learn about available volunteer opportunities, call (386) 231-3030 or visit

An Invitation To Give

- Jason Busch, Texas Conference

Why do people give? Many times they give simply because they are asked. When North Dallas Adventist Academy asked friends and supporters to give on September 17, they did just that! Gifts and donations from that one day have generated $65,000 for our school. Here’s how it happened.  

North Texas Giving Day is a one-day, online giving “event” in North Texas (held from 6:00 a.m. to midnight on September 17 this year). North Texas Giving Day is sponsored by several local foundations to promote charitable giving in the area and help nonprofit organizations raise millions of dollars in just one day. At the urging of our donors, NDAA decided to go all-in for Giving Day 2015. We agreed to push all summer and fall fundraising efforts toward September 17, 2015, including our annual staff and school board giving campaigns. 

The idea really took off when $35,000 in a matching challenge was presented. A group of donors offered to match every dollar donated to NDAA on Giving Day (up to $35,000)!  Even our second-grade class, who has learned about doubles, knew that doubling is a good thing! 

Read more here at the Southwestern Record

Kingsport Church Receives $100,000 Anonymous Gift

- Kim Barnwell, Georgia Cumberland News

The Kingsport Church in Tenn. is praising God because of an anonymous donation received in the amount of $100,000. This brings the church’s total amount raised to $220,000 of an estimated $300,000 needed to complete the church’s expansion project. 

Funds are needed to expand the church’s Fellowship Hall with additional Sabbath School classrooms and a kitchen expansion to accommodate the vastly growing congregation. These facilities will be used to support the current congregation and the church’s active evangelism in the community. 

Over 2015, the attendance at the Kingsport Church has grown by approximately 25% through transfers, professions of faith, baptisms, and growing families. The church is not typical. The members will be the first to express their love and devotion for their church, their pastoral family, and their church family. A recent Thanksgiving service focused on “Giving Thanks.” Twenty-five individuals gave a “Thankful Minute.” The overall message, everyone was most thankful for their church family and the love and community God has built. 

According to Dave Ryder, pastor of the Kingsport Church, “We are committed to spread the three angels message in the community and growing the kingdom of God.”



Help us, won't you? 

Do you know someone who is working in philanthropy outside of the Adventist system? We would love to connect!

Send an email to Mark Lindemann at with the person's name and contact information. Thank you!

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