Bridging Philanthropic Practice & Research

I’m a former fundraiser and nonprofit executive with 20 years of experience serving health, education, and social service organizations. I’ve led development teams in securing resources for new programs, capital projects, and endowments at national and community-based organizations. Today I use my fundraising background to inform my research, teaching, and practice.


As a fundraiser turned academic researcher, I prioritize applied philanthropic research that generates knowledge with direct and immediate implications for practice. My qualitative and mixed-methods research applies behavioral science to understand:

  • Women’s philanthropic giving, with an emphasis on how women’s multiple social roles and social identities influence their charitable decisions
  • How nonprofit organizations can best frame their messages to increase donation responses and the cultural nuances that influence those responses
  • Best practices in teaching philanthropy for varied audiences, including donors and advisors
  • How fundraisers and philanthropic advisors might better communicate with and help donors identify and achieve their philanthropic goals

I’m currently a Senior Research Fellow in Philanthropy at the American College of Financial Services. Previously I was a Fellow at the Women’s Philanthropy Institute (WPI) at Indiana University Lilly Family School of Philanthropy. My research has been published in Nonprofit and Voluntary Sector Quarterly, the International Journal of Voluntary and Nonprofit Sector Marketing, and the Journal of Nonprofit Education and Leadership. Additionally, I’ve authored chapters in two books, Teaching Philanthropy and Achieving Excellence in Fundraising (5th edition), as well as two editions of Giving USA: The Annual Report on Philanthropy. Articles on my co-authored research have appeared in Forbes and the Chronicle of Philanthropy.


I’ve developed and taught academic and professional development courses in philanthropy and nonprofit management since 2013 at three institutions: the University of Alaska, the Indiana University Lilly Family School of Philanthropy, and the American College of Financial Services. Currently, I teach as an adjunct faculty member at The Fund Raising School at the Lilly Family School of Philanthropy. I received a Graduate Certificate in College Teaching from Indiana University in 2018 and was presented with a teaching award from Indiana University Lilly Family School of Philanthropy in 2019.

Service to the Field

My memberships include the Association of Fundraising Professionals (AFP), the International Society for Third Sector Research (ISTR), and the Association for Research on Nonprofit Organizations and Voluntary Action (ARNOVA), where I served as secretary of the Pracademics Section and co-founded the Message Strategy Common Interest Group. I was recognized with the ARNOVA Emerging Scholar Award in 2019.