7D | Planned Serendipity: How to Surprise and Delight the Top of your Donor Pyramid

Thursday, Sept 22
2:40 - 3:40 PM

Suitable across all audiences

Experience Level
Midlevel (2-5 years), Experienced (5+ years)

Shop Size
Suitable for any size shop 

Your acknowledgement letters bring tears to your donors' eyes, your impact reports make them swell with pride, and your events draw crowds. But what are the highly personalized ways in which you can demonstrate that you know your donors as individuals? How do you use donor relations and individual engagement plans to strategically move and deepen the relationship? "Surprise and Delight" is a term coined by development consultant Susan Washburn to describe the little, unexpected ways to engage with your donors - leading to great dividends. Join us as we explore some of the innovative and ingenious ideas being implemented across the country to bring about "planned serendipity" with our largest and most dedicated donors.


Sarah E. Sims, CFRE
2016 ADRP International Conference Chair

Sarah Sims, CFRE recently accepted the position as Executive Director of Donor Relations at the University of Florida where she leads the donor relations and special events teams in creating a culture of gratitude, recognition, and engagement in conjunction with the institution's first $3B capital campaign. Sarah previously worked as the Director of Donor Engagement for Oklahoma State University Foundation, creating and implementing individual stewardship and engagement plans for OSU's top-tier donors. With more than ten years of experience in donor relations and frontline fundraising in a variety of higher education and non-profit settings, Sarah focuses on building strategic donor relationships while forwarding the mission of the organization. Sarah's volunteerism includes serving on the CASE IV Board of Directors and the ADRP Conference Planning Committee.