2018 USA Advancement Tour – Chicago

Learn from the best fundraisers and researchers

Chicago 20-24 AUGUST 2018 + Hawaii option 27-28 AUGUST 2018

Click here to download the program.


Sunday , 19 August

Reception at the recommended hotel: the Chicago Marriott Downtown 


Monday, 20 August

Whole day at University of Chicago: focus is on International House, Principal Gifts, telling the story, working with academic leaders and data analytics

  • Convene at International House, welcome and an introduction to the university  
  • Fundraising at International House  
  • Presentation on data/predictive analytics  
  • Quad Club for lunch: Greeting from Sharon Marine – the current head of fundraising.   
  • Becker-Friedman Institute Museum-   
  • Oriental Institute 
  • Principal gifts and working effectively with academic leaders – representative from Duchossois Family ($100 million gift).   
  • Presentation from Scott Ummel on ‘telling the story’ 
  • Presentation from John List – Head of economics depart and Science of Philanthropy 


Tuesday, 21 August

Chicago is home to several private schools including Latin School and Francis W. Parker School. Both schools have sophisticated advancement and engagement programs and have been engaged in comprehensive capital campaigns. 

We also plan to visit Anne and Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital and the Northwestern University Medical School, who have partnered in developing world-leading research programs focused on children’s health. 

  • Jose Ochoa, Executive Director, Chicago Arts – magnet school 
  • Joshua Hale, CEO, Big Shoulders Fund 
  • University of Illinois, Chicago: Main focus campaign planning – identifying priorities, goal setting, the role of the committee, the launch itself and now that it is launched, what will happen. 
  • Discussion of alumni engagement 
  • lunch followed by about 2 hours for discussion and presentation. “Tour” will take place from the windows overlooking the campus:  tell the story of development of campus. 
  • Chancellor to welcome group and share about his involvement in development. 
  • Process for how approached planning for the building and the financing of the buildings in the campaign


Wednesday, 21 August

The whole day will be spent at the hotel function room and host an interactive panel discussion 

  • Panel Discussion/interactive session led by Sharon Tiknis, Alford Group –Organizational and philanthropic culture.  
  • Larry Kuhn, Director Alumni Relations, Northwestern Medical School (largely major gifts program).   
  • Advancement Resources:  Grateful patients or something on the building donor relations 
  • Ruffalo Noel Levitz –Telephone campaigns, experience in Australia  


Thursday, 22 August

The Rotary International Foundation 

Chicago Architecture Foundation River Cruise (CAF)

The state of philanthropic research and its significance for the sector will be one focus for today with presentations and discussions with researchers from the Indiana University Lilly Family School of Philanthropy, the University of Notre Dame’s Center for the Science of Generosity and Grand Valley State University (on Donor Advised Funds). 

  • Loyola University:  Prominent catholic university 
  • Introduction/Meeting with President 
  • Presentation by current head of Advancement  
  • Seth Green: Founding Director, Baumhart Center for Social Enterprise and Responsibility Loyola University 
  • Lunch 
  • Evanston/North Side 
  • Rotary International:  Focus on local engagement with chapters, foundation giving, partnerships youth engagement, scholarships, raising money from members. 
  • Sophia Shaw: currently serves on the board of directors of the Art Institute of Chicago and the advisory board of the National Museum of Natural History (Smithsonian Institution), and is a past board president of the Arts Club of Chicago.

Friday, 24 August: Schools

We will start the day with a debriefing session facilitated by a fundraising expert from AskRIGHT. Participants will have the opportunity to reflect on the week’s sessions and share with one another what they’ve learnt and how they will use this in their role back in Australia and New Zealand.




Monday, 27 August and Tuesday, 28th August

  • University of Hawaii:  West Oahu Campus – new campus, current head of campus is former head of Center for Native Hawaiian Studies – focus on meeting needs of indigenous community 
  • Punahou School:  $100+ million campaign, extensive alumni relations program (international) 
  • Pierre Omidyar programs:  Hawaii Community Foundation, building social enterprises 
  • Potential:  Land trust