Bridging Philanthropic Practice and Research

I am a former nonprofit executive now serving the sector as an academic researcher, instructor, and curriculum designer. Before completing my Ph.D. In Philanthropic Studies, I worked in the nonprofit sector for 20 years, fundraising for health, education, and social service organizations. That experience informs my current work as a visiting researcher at the Institute for Nonprofit Administration and Research at Louisiana State University and a research consultant for the Center on Philanthropy and Social Impact at the American College of Financial Services.

My research focuses on understanding how social contexts influence behavior and decision-making by donors, fundraisers, and philanthropic advisors. Recent projects have involved research on women’s charitable giving and the intersection of their social identities and philanthropic behavior, nonprofit message framing, philanthropic education, and the professions of fundraising and philanthropic advising.

My work has been published in Nonprofit and Voluntary Sector Quarterly (NVSQ), International Journal of Voluntary and Nonprofit Sector Marketing, Journal of Nonprofit Education and Leadership (JNEL), and The Chronicle of Philanthropy. In addition, I have authored chapters in three textbooks, Teaching Philanthropy (2020), Achieving Excellence in Fundraising (5th edition, 2022), and Nonprofit Public Relations: A Critical Approach (forthcoming), as well as chapters in two editions of Giving USA: The Annual Report on Philanthropy. My co-authored research has been featured in Forbes and The Chronicle of Philanthropy.

I have taught undergraduate, graduate, and professional development courses in philanthropy and fundraising since 2013. Currently, I teach for the Master of Science in Nonprofit Administration program at Louisiana State University Shreveport and Masters in Philanthropic Studies program at the Indiana University Lilly Family School of Philanthropy. I was recognized with a teaching award from The Lilly Family School of Philanthropy in 2019.

I am a member of the Association of Fundraising Professionals (AFP), the International Society for Third Sector Research (ISTR), Society for the Psychological Study of Social Issues (SPSSI), and the Association for Research on Nonprofit Organizations and Voluntary Action (ARNOVA), where I was presented with an Emerging Scholar Award in 2019.

I hold a Ph.D. in Philanthropic Studies from the Indiana University Lilly Family School of Philanthropy, an M.S. in Social Service Administration from the University of Chicago, and a B.S. in Communications from the University of Tennessee at Knoxville. I earned my Certified Fund Raising Executive (CFRE) designation in 2008 and the Chartered Advisor in Philanthropy® (CAP®) designation in 2020. In addition, I hold graduate certificates in college teaching and fundraising management from Indiana University.