How to Build and Implement an Extraordinary Major Gifts Program

How to Build and Implement an Extraordinary Major Gifts Program
How to Build and Implement an Extraordinary Major Gifts Program

Date(s): -
Location: San Antonio, TX
Certification Credits: 20 IACP

Schools are driven by the ever-increasing demand for more funding, yet are also aware of return on investment. Therefore, many focus their fundraising efforts on major gifts. This workshop explores the latest methodology for creating a fundraising program that produces generous returns, now and in the future.


Topics include how to systematically inspire and retain donors, create an efficient fundraising team, demystify planned giving, and cultivate major donor relationships. Participants will leave with a new understanding of how to immediately maximize opportunities and increase fundraising potential.


    • Learn about the major gift funnel and how to calculate the total value of a major gift.
    • Discover how to create an efficient fundraising team.
    • Train your staff and volunteers to become effective and dynamic solicitors.
    • Master and implement the “Five Rules of Engagement.”
    • Understand how to magnify prospects’ potential for making major gifts.

    Who Should Attend

    School Heads, Development Directors, Major Gift Officers, Board Chairs, and Development Committee members, along with other interested Trustees, will all benefit from this workshop.

    Herb Soles

    Herbert P. Soles, CFRE, IAP-L

    ISM Consultant


    Herb provides consulting services in the areas of development and fundraising. His expertise includes extensive knowledge of major gifts programs, endowment, and planned giving as a way to increase donors’ capacity to give at leadership levels.

    Current Role

    As a member of ISM’s Advancement Team, Herb:

    • Consults in the areas of major gift fundraising, capital campaigns, and staff development
    • Serves as one of the planning architects for ISM’s weeklong Advancement Academy
    • Acts as an instructor and mentor during Advancement Academy
    • Co-teaches ISM’s Summer Institute workshop on capital campaigns

    He holds the Leader Certification through ISM’s International Advancement Program (IAP−L) and is a Certified Fundraising Executive.

    Herb has coached advancement teams that have been recognized twice by the Council for the Advancement and Support of Education in the Achievement in Mobilizing Support Award competition. He has received seven other national awards for alumni participation, publication improvement, and fundraising management.

    Herb has presented at 21 national education conferences, including CASE, NAIS, and NAES.

    Prior Experience

    Herb served as Headmaster for Development at Norfolk Academy, VA, where he helped close a $40 million capital campaign for endowment and a new performing arts center. He also headed development programs at St. Stephen’s School ($10 million) and Flint Hill School ($2 million), both in VA. He collaborated on a $15 million campaign at St. Albans School, a day-boarding school in Washington, D.C.

    Herb also directed an advancement program that raised more than $31 million in gifts and pledges at Saint Andrew’s School in Boca Raton, FL, and helped complete a campaign for $65 million to be used for endowment and campus improvement at Norfolk Academy.

    A recipient of CASE’s Steuben Crystal Apple and CASE’s Robert Bell Crow Award, he served as Chair of the 37th CASE-NAIS national conference. He has been a member of the judging panel of the CASE Circle of Excellence Awards for Independent Schools, chairing it for six years. He also served 11 years on the faculty of the CASE Summer Institute for Independent School Advancement Professionals.

    Herb has participated on or been a member of the CASE Alumni Relations Commission, the Development Advisory Committee for the National Association of Independent Schools, and the Development Steering Committee of the Association of Independent Schools of Greater Washington. He is a former Program Chair and President of the Planned Giving Study Group of Greater Washington. In Helen Colson’s book, Philanthropy in Independent Schools, Herb authored the chapter on planned giving.


    Herb holds a bachelor’s degree in education from the University of Virginia, VA, and has done graduate work at Virginia Polytechnic Institute.

    Schedule to be announced soon

    Workshop Location
    Hyatt Regency San Antonio
    123 Losoya Street
    San Antonio, TX 78205 

    A group hotel reservation rate of $189 is available until October 5, 2020. Subject to availability. Please wait until the workshop status is 'confirmed' before making your travel and hotel arrangements.

    Make your hotel reservations by calling 210-222-1234 and letting then know you are with ISM or Independent School Management Summer Institute


    The closest airport is San Antonio International (SAT).

    How will ISM communicate workshop information with me?

    It is essential that your school approves the following email addresses from ISM:


    You will be receiving all communication—including your confirmation email and access to your workshop's Google Drive account—from these emails.

    What does my registration fee include?

    All workshop materials, breakfasts, lunch or dinner daily, and social hours are included.

    What is not included in my registration fee?

    Hotel accommodations and travel expenses, other meals not noted.

    What should I wear?

    Meetings rooms are generally cold, as temperature control in meeting spaces and large convention centers is difficult. Please bring a sweater, jacket, or sweatshirt.

    What should I bring?

    You’ll receive a letter from your workshop instructor letting you know what to bring. However, please bring a laptop or tablet for online access.

    Can my special dietary requirements be met?

    Absolutely. Just give the Workshops Department a call at 302-656-4944, and we'll make sure your needs are accommodated.

    Should I need medical or dental attention, where should I go?

    Should you need medical attention in a non-emergency, notify ISM staff and the hotel staff. The hotel can recommend what facilities are available, and may be able to supply transportation. In an emergency, call 911.

    COVID-19 (Novel Coronavirus) Update

    We take the health and safety of our school leaders seriously.

    ISM fully anticipates holding our upcoming events, including Summer Institute and Advancement Academy, successfully. That said, we're planning for every possibility. 

    In order to ensure the best experience, we want you to know that we take the health and safety of our participants seriously. ISM will proactively engage with our attendees with needed updates to minimize any disruption to their experience.

    You are welcome to reserve your seat and lock in Early Bird pricing for an upcoming Summer Institute workshop or Advancement Academy with a refundable $600 deposit. Once you’ve reserved your seat, please make sure your workshop is confirmed before making travel arrangements. Make your deposit by calling in to our workshops department at 302-656-4944 or emailing

    Should ISM cancel an event, we ensure a 100% money-back guarantee for all registrants—so you can buy with confidence. You can feel free to direct any questions to our contact form.

    Confirmation and Cancellation Policy

    We will correspond with you through email as soon as your workshop is confirmed, no later than two weeks prior to its start date. Occasionally, we may be forced to cancel an unconfirmed, scheduled workshop due to insufficient registration. So we ask that you do not make non-refundable travel arrangements until you receive notice that your workshop is confirmed. (ISM will not be responsible for any change/cancellation charges assessed by your airline or travel agent.)

    Tuition Payment and Cancellation Policy for In-Person, Group-based Programs

    Tuition must be paid in full 10 business days prior to the start date of the in-person, group-based program. An attendee with a balance due on the start date will be denied entrance to the program until the balance is paid in full.

    Cancellation requests must be made in writing by emailing, faxing to 302-656-0647, or mailing to: Professional Development Coordinator, ISM, 1316 N. Union St., Wilmington, DE, 19806.

    • Cancellations received more than 15 business days prior to the start date of the program will be fully refunded. Gold Dollars will also be fully refunded.
    • There will be no refunds for cancellations made less than 15 business days before the start of the program. For registrations paid for with membership Gold Dollars, the member school will receive a 50% refund of Gold Dollars.
    • Non-payment of tuition or no-show to the event does not constitute a cancellation. Full tuition will be due and payable.

    The Substitution Option and Wallet Option

    Should an attendee need to cancel less than 15 days prior to the start date of the workshop, the school has two options to avoid penalty. Schools may also exercise these options at anytime for cancellations. 

    1. The school may substitute another employee.
    2. The school may bank the funds for a future ISM registration. These funds must be applied to a professional development event within one year from the start date of the original workshop. After one year, the funds will be forfeited. To use banked funds, please call the Professional Development Coordinator at 302-656-4944 x152.

    *We DO NOT accept enrollments from consultants.


    Our Guarantee

    ISM believes in providing quality and excellence in all of our events and in ensuring the satisfaction of everyone who attends. Nearly 100% of our participants say they would recommend our events to their colleagues. If you are not satisfied with your event for any reason, ISM will credit the fee you paid toward another similarly priced workshop or will refund it.

    If you have any questions, click below to send us an email. 

    Workshop Registration

    Register for your workshop online by filling out the form below. If you'd prefer to register by mail, download our registration form.


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