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Nonprofit Notes with Zuri Group
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Nonprofit Notes with Zuri Group

Author: Zuri Group

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Tune in for insights into nonprofit technology, leadership, and the future state of social impact.
27 Episodes
Today we chat with Christina Pulawski, where we talk through the nature of Development and Advancement work and how they have expanded in their capacity over time. Join us as we discuss how data and technology have shaped and reshaped how Advancement teams perform their functions and communicate their needs, and the value of remaining a flexible learner both as an organization and as a consultant in a field of change.Want to talk more with Christina? Contact her at!
A core facet of the non-profit world is how an organization engages with its community. In this podcast,  Jaemi Loeb discusses her experience and insight on building sustainable community engagement through the lens (or rather to the tune) of musical non-profits. Join us as we discuss how organizations can work to build their audience through enriching events to contribute to its long term health and funding!Have questions for Jaemi? You can reach her at and at jaemiloeb on LinkedIn!
Fundraising is a core pillar of the nonprofit world, and equally important are the operations and processing behind each gift. Maintaining a smooth flow of operations can be challenging, particularly in a time of office and spatial changes. How does an organization keep operations flowing while focusing on the mission? Your donor journey data may be part of the answer; tune in with Amy Bobrick and Kent Grove of Merkle to learn more.Want to connect with Amy and Kent? Contact them at and
When you love the work you do and have a talented group of developers on your team, innovation is inevitable. Join us for a discussion with Zuri Group’s Andrew Urban, Patrick Shepherd, and Ken Swift as they discuss the origin story of ZuriLabs, it’s critical role as a space for innovation within Zuri Group, and how it’s proven to be a powerful tool in creating accessible technology solutions for our nonprofit partners.Want to connect with Andrew, Ken, or Patrick? You can email them at,, and 
Good donor data is always an important driver in fundraising, but data is only as helpful as the context made available to those who work with it. How do you convey the value and story of individual supporters in the thick of a database? Join us for a conversation with Hawken Brackett, Executive Director of Strategic Engagement at University of Alabama, for a discussion on the role of intentional, data driven and dynamic approaches to constituent engagement.Want to connect with Hawken? You can email him at
Selecting the right system is essential for successful fundraising. Joanna Joslyn, Zuri Group's resident Salesforce savant, started her career building fundraising software for art-focused nonprofits. Many years and multiple degrees later, she's particularly good at optimizing systems with an eye for the nuances of each organization. Listen in as Joanna and Chris Cannon discuss the importance of system selections and how to ensure that the new tool is not only fitting for the organization but also meticulously configured for maximum benefit.  Want to connect with Joanna? You can email her at 
In 2020, Oklahoma State University Foundation was selected as the second best nonprofit to work for among mid-sized organizations, and fifth overall. This esteemed recognition isn’t happenstance—it is the result of competency, comradery, and strong workplace culture. In this episode of Nonprofit Notes, Chris Campbell, the Senior Associate VP of Information Strategy at OSUF and Zuri Group’s Chris Cannon discuss the tools necessary to create a successful advancement operation. Listen in as they delve into the importance of ethos, strategies for retaining and scaling an effective team, and how OSUF has adapted amidst the pandemic and their ongoing UCI implementation. Want to connect with Chris? You can email him at
In the final episode of our four-part CRM lifecycle series, Zuri Group’s Management Consulting team dives into the topic of post-implementation and how to leverage your new system. Tune in as our experts discuss the importance of developing good business practices, building organizational self-sufficiency, managing expectations while learning a new system, and share their final thoughts on how to make sure that your implementation is successful after go-live. 
So you’ve performed a system selection, prepared your team, and are ready to move to implementation. Now what? In part three of our series on the CRM lifecycle, Zuri Group’s Management Consulting team discusses the major considerations as you move through your implementation. Listen in to learn about the importance of asking the right questions, the value of user stories, and how to navigate (or completely avoid) the common technical and functional obstacles that may surface. 
CRM implementations are not a sprint, not a marathon, but a triathlon. There are tons of moving parts, forcing you and your team to be dynamic, agile, and intensely prepared. What does it take to set yourself up for success? Tune in for part two of our podcast series on the CRM lifecycle where our Management Consulting team discusses the key factors that determine implementation readiness. Learn about the power of a project charter, risk registers, change management, and what you can do to make sure your implementation is executed well. 
What does preparation for a system selection look like? How do you assess appetite for change, define success metrics, and outline a coherent vision? In this episode of Nonprofit Notes, Zuri Group’s Management Consulting team does a deep dive into the first step of the CRM lifecycle: the selection process. Listen in as they discuss the major considerations of system selection, the critical steps leading up to it, and the opportunity (and challenges) this poses to the way an organization does business.
Change management plays a critical role in every project, regardless of the scale or scope. It's key to managing expectations on both sides of the change curve–  addressing concerns of change-resistant folks ,while taming those who are overzealous in a way that leverages their excitement. Listen in as Zuri Group’s Ellen Rohwer-Pappas and Kate Nimety discuss the values and practices that are at the core of change management and the implications that result from omitting this crucial process.Want to connect with Ellen and Kate? Send an email to or to get in touch!
Like many of our guests on Nonprofit Notes, Adrian Owen Jones is wildly interesting. Formerly the Assistant VP for Advancement Services at Louisiana State University Foundation and now Chief Growth Officer at ThreeSixtyEight, Adrian discusses her background in grant management, her role in Advancement Services, and notably, how her World of Warcraft gaming skills have lent themselves to building a highly successful advancement operation at LSUF. She became proficient at talent management, mastering the “ability to quickly identify the strengths, talents, and abilities of the people around me, and think creatively about how to apply them.” Listen in to hear Adrian and Zuri Group’s Chris Cannon contemplate the advancement space, its creativity gaps, and the path forward.  Want to learn more about Adrian? You can find her on LinkedIn at 
Texas Christian University’s David Nolan and Travis Soyer are exceptional at what they do. Between leveraging TCU’s first billion dollar campaign in addition to day to day operations, David describes his role as “chief priority setter.” Listen in as David and Travis, along with Zuri Group’s Chris Cannon, discuss the roadmap of their careers, the importance of collaboration and humility, and balancing the art and science of the Advancement industry. “We all want to do more, but we have finite resources. How do we manage those to get the best results? That is where partnership is centered.”Want to connect with David or Travis? You can contact David at and Travis at 
“If I could write my dream position, this would be it.” Cheryl Ann Cerny, Associate Vice President for Advancement Operations and Campaign Director of the Worcester Polytechnic Institute, is a nuanced problem solver, risk seeker, and thought leader with over 20 years of experience in the advancement space. Listen in as Chris and Cheryl discuss the growing presence of Salesforce, the importance of innovation, and the critical role of data driven strategy in informing fundraising operations. Want to learn more about Cheryl? Contact her at 
From nearly not attending college to becoming Senior Vice President of DonorSearch Aristotle, Nathan Chappell embodies innovation and going against the grain. In this episode of Nonprofit Notes, Chris Cannon and Nathan Chappell dive into discussing the role of artificial intelligence in philanthropic giving, the importance of nuanced activity, and the myth of “anomaly” major gift donors. Tune in to hear Nathan’s compelling perspective on the evolving field of philanthropy and the future of generosity in the age of machine learning. Want to connect with Nathan? You can contact him at
With more fundraising technology available each year, will privacy and artificial intelligence play larger roles in philanthropy? Ellen Rohwer Pappas, a leader in the Advancement Services space, shares her predictions on the future of fundraising.Want to learn more about Ellen? Contact her at
As technology advances, we're faced with increasing distractions, demands, and competition for our attention. How can we tune out the noise to focus on what truly matters? Extending this idea to the Advancement Services field, Michael Felberbaum from Yale University walks us through the notion of causativity and how we as individuals and organizations can respond to change in a positive manner.Want to connect with Michael? Contact him at
Where opportunity and experience meet, great ideas are born. In this session, founder of Zuri Group, John Murphy, shares his life trajectory that led him to starting Zuri Group along with the core principles that drive him today.Want to learn more about John? Contact him at
Finding the equilibrium between creativity and technicality, Molly Kelly is an expert at bringing creative, functional solutions to life. From building a content management system to improving interface, conversion, and data management, no challenge is too big to embark on. Learn how Molly uses data as AI to inform digital experiences and a few trends that she sees are coming to life in 2021. Want to learn more about Molly? Contact her at
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