Interview with Professor Russell James

Professor of Charitable Financial Planning at Texas Tech University

Making bequests and major gifts fundraising your highest priority

Professor Russell James spent over 25 years as a planned giving fundraiser, an estate planning attorney in private practice, a major gifts fundraiser, and now as a university professor at Texas Tech University researching charitable giving and fundraising.

Interview with Professor Russell James

Professor of Charitable Financial Planning at Texas Tech University

Making bequests and major gifts fundraising your highest priority

Professor Russell James spent over 25 years as a planned giving fundraiser, an estate planning attorney in a private practice, a major gifts fundraiser, and now as a university professor at Texas Tech University researching charitable giving and fundraising.

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Summary of video interview with Russell James

Section 1: Key lessons learnt early in Russell James’ career
  • Russell James’ first fundraising opportunities and the key lessons he learnt early on in his fundraising career
  • Where fundraisers and nonprofits are missing opportunities when it comes to maximising their planned giving campaigns
  • Russell James on progressing his career to teach Charitable Financial Planning at Texas Tech University

 

Section 2: Bequests fundraising
  • Why bequests fundraising is so important
  • Common mistakes nonprofits are making when it comes to executing their legacy giving campaigns
  • Important data and trends to be aware of for legacy giving
  • Understanding the mindset of bequest donors through the neuroscience of philanthropy
  • Russell James’ advice to bequests fundraising managers

 

Section 3: Major gifts fundraising
  • Planning a successful major gifts fundraising strategy post Covid-19
  • Where nonprofits should start in planning their first major gifts programme
  • Understanding the importance of bequests and major gifts fundraising in the sector and why it’s crucial to be prepared

 

Section 4: Job titles in fundraising
  • Findings from a study on the effectiveness of fundraising and development job titles
  • Which job titles can lead to better donor engagement

 

Section 5: Next goals and summary
  • Next milestones for Professor Russell James 
  • Reflecting on Russell James’ career
  • Russell’s final advice to inspire and fulfil fundraisers

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