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Case Study: Modest investments generate major returns

Published Oct. 8, 2020 by Lindsey Melki

With support from the Park Foundation, INN launched a pilot, the Major Gifts Coaching Program, with 10 nonprofit newsrooms. The results exceeded expectations. All participating organizations achieved increased major donor funding, ranging from 9 percent to 367 percent increases.

The pilot suggests that with focused, short term training and the right tools, nonprofits can dramatically improve their fundraising results. This case study describes the pilot, the pilot cohort’s experiences and recommendations for other nonprofits seeking to build revenue.


This case study was completed by INN consultant Lindsey Melki based on financial reporting from and interviews with each of the eight organizations that completed the training. It also incorporates 2019 debriefs with trainer Diane Remin by INN Executive Director Sue Cross and former Chief Knowledge Officer Fran Scarlett, who designed the program with Remin.

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