Alumni, Advancement, & Marketing Conference

The needs of today's institutions of higher education are demanding more, with less. Meanwhile, public, media, and legislative audiences are demanding more and more information on college inputs and outcomes. And at the crossroad of these demands are the professionals leading the outreach efforts of each of KICA's member institutions.

This event becomes a consortium of barrier breakers, as these attendees are working between young graduates and established donors. Strategy and innovation are sought, and found, here. With a robust, track focused agenda, this 2017 event will take  place July 18th on the campus of Newman University in Wichita, Kansas and is sponsored in part by Two West, MStoner, and Club Colors. 

For information on becoming a sponsor, presenter, or participant in this event, contact Jesyca Hope, Director of Member Programs.

The event features 4 distinct workshop tracks. Three are for all levels of experience in Marketing, Alumni Affairs, and Advancement and Resource Development. The fourth is an all day experience for higher ed professionals JUST entering the fundraising world. 

IMPACT FROM THE START: Sales Techniques for the First-Time Advancement or Fundraising Professional

The 2017 Intensive is BY REQUEST. Many of your advancement and outreach teams have very new members - they're passionate about your school and your community - but they're very new to the concepts of professional fundraising. IMPACT FROM THE START will be taught by Troy Harrison, a professional sales coach who has worked with advancement professionals across the Midwest to help them tell the story that needs to be sold. This day will jump start the success of anyone by covering these 6 modules. 

Module 1: The Donor’s Journey: We will walk through the four steps of the Donor’s Journey from ice-cold prospect to committed donor, and define at each step what the donor wants, and how effective advancement can achieve both what the donor wants and what the institution wants. Donor’s Journey Exercises

Module 2: Dialing For Donors: One of the most challenging issues in fundraising is the initial approach – the cold call. How do you create an opportunity to have a conversation with a donor, or potential donor, without sounding like every other fundraising person with their hands out? In this module, we’ll show an approach that works. Dialing for Donors Exercises.

Module 3: IMPACT Questioning: No other skill in advancement is as important as the ability to ask questions that define needs. You must understand WHY your donor will contribute before asking – so those questions had better be good.

Module 4: Making Your Case: In this module, we’ll explain how to create an effective presentation that makes the case for your institution and your donor’s participation.

Module 5: Incorporating Stories for Greater Impact: The biggest challenge in advancement is presenting in a way that your donors become engaged and truly a part of your presentations. The “next level” comes with incorporating story into your presentations. In this module, we will explain and overview why story matters, how to tell a good story, and what needs to be in and what needs to be out.

Module 6: The Ask – Where it All Happens: This is the place where good donations go to die. An advancement person can do everything right up to this point and still not achieve the donation. That’s because even the most generous donors usually want to be ASKED to donate. In this module, we’ll show a simple, very friendly (to Donors and Advancement) path to asking, and receiving, donations. Use our approach and your donations will go up dramatically.

Presenter Bios

As a first generation college-student, Caylor has developed a passion for education with first-hand experience of how it can change the course of lives. After developing his first EDU website in1997 for his alma mater Anderson University, Caylor has worked with institutions of all sizes to increase the effectiveness of their marketing and communications, especially in the digital realm, while improving metrics in both enrollment and development.

Most of his client’s see enrollment growth after launching new websites: most recently Franklin College experienced a record-breaking 22% increase in matriculation. He has also served on the national cabinet of Anderson University’s $125 million dollar capital campaign advising on the use of digital and website media for the campaign’s success. His goal is to partner with his clients to help them thrive by providing marketing and communication expertise and solutions as they face the challenges of an ever-changing landscape.

Bart lives in Fishers, Indiana with his wife and four children and continues to stay ahead of the curve for the future of marketing to consult and deliver solutions in both print and digital for his clients.


Gary Toyn, Senior Researcher at Access Development

For more than 25 years, Gary has helped and consulted with hundreds of organizations that range in size from a few hundred constituents to over a million. While he has worked with blue-chip brands like Wyndham, Allstate, Key Club/Kiwanis International, University of Nebraska, Florida State, and Iowa State alumni associations, he specializes in helping smaller organizations overcome their unique challenges.

He has been a capital campaign manager, an associate director, and alumni director at universities in Utah. He is the author of a number of published works relating to inspiration and humanity. But of greatest importance, he is a husband, father and grandfather.

Chris Keeshan, M.S.

Chris Keeshan is Founder and President 0f Chris Keeshan Associates, Inc. and Bold Blonde, an executive coaching company. Her 26 years of fundraising and training experience offer clients confidence in reaching their fundraising goals, keen fundraising strategies, creative bold approaches to get in-the-door with prospects, and unsurpassed prospect research that turns a cold call into a warm call.

Chris’ undergraduate degrees in psychology and communication arts with a minor in business from Washburn University, Topeka, Kansas and her master’s in corporate and industrial communication from Lindenwood University, St. Charles, Missouri has served her fundraising career well. When you meet Chris have her share the story of getting a free ride scholarship to her graduate school of choice. The story personifies her personality—bold, creative, tenacious and passionate. In her free-time Chris teaches college courses in public relations, writes a newsletter, “Fundraising Rules,” reads lots and lots of books, collects Native American art and travels to Mexico to spend time with friends and family.


Eric Litweiller, MBA, Director of Fund Development for Friends University

Eric has worked in fund development for nearly seven years, with five of those either concentrating on – or dedicated to – planned giving. In addition to 30 months as Director of Planned Giving at Friends University, he has a newspaper column and radio program dedicated to financial stewardship.



2016 Conference Overview