Sixth Annual Board Day, Donor-Centered Fundraising

Board Day is an annual conference that increases the effectiveness of nonprofit organizations by enhancing board governance.

Save the date for the seventh annual Board Day event on Friday, Sept. 28, 2018.

For this year's well attended event, we would like to give a special thank you to Penelope Burk, our guest speaker, for sharing her research findings and evidence-based strategies to help board members and staff work together while raising more money.

Burk, renowned author and researcher, wowed attendees with valuable information at two events. Donor-Centered Fundraising: How to Hold on to Your Donors and Raise More Money was held on Sept. 27. At least 250 development professionals, communications staff, executive directors, board members, and others attended the half-day event. The focus of the half-day session was to enhance donor loyalty based on research in Burk’s book, “Donor-Centered Fundraising.”

The sixth annual Board Day themed Donor-Centered Boards: Becoming a Powerhouse Fundraising Team was held on Sept. 28. At least 320 nonprofit board members, CEOs and senior development officers attended this daylong session. In this event, Burk shared tips, tools and research from her book “Donor-Centered Leadership" to help organizations effectively connect with donors. Both events were held at the Witte Museum’s Mays Family Center. 

Board Day 2017 is hosted by the Association of Fundraising Professionals (AFP) – San Antonio Chapter, Masters Leadership Program of Greater San Antonio Alumni Association, and the San Antonio Area Foundation. 

Meet our guest speaker

Penelope Burk

Penelope Burk

Author, trainer, presenter and president of Cygnus Applied Research, Inc.

Penelope Burk has over 40 years of experience in not-for-profit management, fundraising, and research. A native of Montreal, Canada, Penelope began her professional career in market research, public relations and fundraising, becoming known as a “turn-around specialist” who advocates innovative, solutions to improve revenue and institutional performance.

Penelope and her company, Cygnus Applied Research, Inc., are known for their leading-edge research with donors and their skill in helping clients adapt their fundraising operations to reflect donors’ changing needs and preferences.

Penelope’s innovative work, her advocacy for donors, and her passion for the philanthropic spirit led, in 2003, to the publication of her second book, “Donor-Centered Fundraising.” This best-selling text established her as the industry's foremost authority on fundraising research, training and strategic planning based on the principles of donor-centered fundraising. The book is the only statistically-based research ever published on the effect of meaningful communication on donor retention and gift value.

Last year, Penelope published “Donor-Centered Leadership”, which focuses on making more money by building and sustaining a high performance staff/volunteer team in fundraising. Informed by five years of research with 12,000 professional fundraisers, CEOs, board members and donors, “Donor-Centered Leadership” tackles one of the most frustrating and costly problems in fundraising (and in business) today -- the high turnover rate of staff. The book has been hailed as "timely, transformational and totally essential".

Penelope authors the industry-acclaimed Cygnus Donor Survey that investigates how donors are changing the ways in which they give and how fundraisers can raise more money in a rapidly changing marketplace.

Penelope Burk is a highly sought-after educator and public speaker whose training sessions and forums are widely acclaimed as unique, engaging and among the most effective in the third sector. She has written more than 60 seminars, training programs and dramatic plays, all written specifically for not-for-profit organizations.


Thank you to all our sponsors

Champion Sponsor


Advocate Sponsors


303 Pearl Parkway, Suite 114
San Antonio, TX 78215

The San Antonio Area Foundation helps donors achieve their charitable goals for the greater benefit of the community.

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