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This program includes four dynamic key sessions and up to eight elective sessions over a two day period, as well as plenty of time to network and interact with industry-leading sponsors.

Also included in the registration fee is continental breakfast and a networking lunch each day and an opening networking reception.

Don't forget to check out overDRIVE/Apra, an analytics-based educational program that takes place following the DRIVE/ Conference on May 25 OverDRIVE/ 2017 will provide a deep dive into the world of analytics. Separate registration is required. Register before April 8 to receive early-bird pricing!


Day 1, Tuesday, May 23


9:00-9:45 AM

The Transformative Power of Data

Discover how career disruption and using data and storytelling can transform lines-of-business, your company and ultimately, yourself.

Vala Afshar, Chief Digital Evangelist, Salesforce



  • Hiring and Building a Quality Development Operations Staff
    Our most precious resource is our human capital. It is vital to making our operations run effectively. Building a quality team requires understanding the strengths and weaknesses of the current team, insightful assessment of those you might hire to become part of the team, and constant management of human relations through high-demand and high-stress times, as well as when times are slow. This session is led by two senior administrators who have experienced the good, the bad and the ugly of staffing for development operations. Learn how to take advantage of the strategies they have developed for hiring the right team members.
    Karen Greene, Senior Consultant and Principal, Marts and Lundy; and Shomari White, Associate Vice President, Foundation Business Operations, Children's Hospital Foundation
  • Secrets of Data-driven Nonprofits
    Big data is completely transforming how companies drive their decision making, but many nonprofit organizations are unprepared to make the most of this opportunity. How do senior leaders across the nonprofit sector help to embrace these new possibilities and drive change at their organizations? Join Steve MacLaughlin as he shares insight, ideas and examples from his best-selling book, Data Driven Nonprofits. Explore how successful organizations have unlocked the keys to becoming more data driven through sound strategies, empowering their teams, and willingness to evolve their cultures.
    Steve MacLaughlin, Vice President, Data and Analytics, Blackbaud
  • OSU CORE: Streamline Business Processes and Reduce Administrative Costs Through Inter-Institution Collaboration
    This session focuses on best practices that have been developed in an eight-year collaboration between the OSU Foundation and Oregon State University. The work that has been done in partnership with each other has automated more than $350M in transactions between the two organizations. The automation is part of OSU CORE (Collaborative Open Reporting System Environment), which has been recognized by the EAB for best practices in their research publication, A Common Currently, and received both the 2015 NACUBO Best Practices Award, and the 2016 TDWI Best Practices in BI on a Budget.
    Michael Hansen, Director Business Intelligence Center, Oregon State University
  • Evolving Analytics: Moving from What and When to Why and How
    Predictive analytics is a practiced approach to driving insight for countless nonprofits-and one that is well understood by practitioners at all levels in this space. This session looks at the rarely used third tier of analytics, prescriptive analytics. By using a combination of theory and case studies, you can learn how nonprofits are not only predicting behavior, they are making analytically optimized decisions to engage and change behavior by connecting to the "why" and "how" of philanthropic behavior through machine learning and optimization algorithms.
    Alexander Oftelie, Subject Matter Expert, Business Analytics Group, IBM
  • From Hours to Milliseconds: How GPUs are Reinventing Data
    As technology advancements create an explosion of human data-millions of tweets, hours of video, and patterns every day-a new universe is emerging. Todd Mostak reveals how to explore and visualize this data in transformative ways. How? By using GPUs, the gaming technology poised to massively improve industries at scale by providing instantaneous data visualization and real-time analytics. To illustrate the power of GPUs, Mostak will pull up a live demo analyzing billions of data points in real-time.
    Todd Mostak, Founder and Chief Executive Officer, MapD


11:10 AM-NOON
Targeted User Group Session
Presented by Ruffalo Noel Levitz, IBM and Blackbaud

How to Build a Data Analytics Unit
Laying the groundwork for a data analytics team takes a lot of work and dedication. This session covers the steps our organization has taken to develop our data analytics unit, and explains how we keep the project's momentum going. Review the benefits that come with establishing a data analytics team and some of the goals our organization hopes to achieve with our team.
Mark Koenig, Assistant Vice President for Advancement Services, Oregon State University Foundation

NOON-1:30 PM
Networking Luncheon


  • Analytics Adoption: Key Factors to Drive Organizational Acceptance, Transformation and Value
    The underlying goal of any data-driven project is to overcome a challenge, gain insight or seize a critical opportunity to add business value. Analytics projects of any size require leadership support as they face adoption issues, resource constraints and cultural challenges. Learn how proven change management strategies and continuous improvement frameworks can help you, as a leader, analyst and/or stakeholder, light a fire to cultivate support and creatively motivate the action required for your success.
    Rodger Devine, Senior Executive Director, Business Intelligence, University of Southern California
  • Key Metrics in Major Giving Fundraising: Why Visits this Fiscal Year to Date Should Not Be One of Them
    Many major giving teams manage to the wrong metrics. As a result, they don't achieve the results they should. In particular, there is an over focus across the sector on fiscal year-based activity metrics. While these can be useful, most prospects are indifferent about fiscal year and are cultivated across different time periods. This session looks at:
    • common practices used across the industry*,
    • managing major giving teams to a set of metrics that include:
      • Prospect pool size
      • Pool penetration
      • Prospect movement through stages
    • Ask levels vs. expected values based on capacity and affinity,
    • Proposal close rates,
    • Revenue,
    • Data visualizations that can enhance your ability to manage to metrics and
    • Actual success stories* resulting from managing to the right metrics.
    Douglas Cogswell, Chief Executive Officer, ADVIZOR Solutions, Inc.
  • Developing and Implementing a Comprehensive Business Intelligence Strategy: A Case Study
    In 2013, Pomona College received a grant to develop and implement a comprehensive business intelligence strategy. This presentation highlights the planning efforts for this project, reviews specific data warehousing solutions selected, and explores the ways in which hundreds of reports written in a combination of Tableau, Cognos, and SSRS were integrated into a centralized portal that provides users with streamlined and customized access to reports on both desktops and mobile devices. Attendees are provided with sample project plans, best practices for data warehouse development, and examples of compelling dashboards covering a range of key performance indicators for advancement.
    Nadine Francis, Senior Director of Advancement Services and Information Systems, Pomona College; and Michiel Westerkamp, President, Cassius Information Systems
  • Metrics for Good, Not Evil: Using Data for Positive Impact, Our Data Journey at City of Hope
    Individually and organizationally, to thrive in the new era of philanthropy, we must maximize our experiences of the past and leverage the competitive advantages of today. Examine how City of Hope uses metrics to learn from the past, understand the present, and create a bright, donor-centric future. From the creation of Prospect Development to the deployment of Tableau, we take you along our journey of becoming a data-driven organization and share our recipe for successful collaboration, deployment and adoption:
    • Learn how to best use prospect research and advancement services to harness the synergies required for building out the data infrastructure necessary to produce accurate, relevant and reliable metrics,
    • Find out how to achieve enterprise-wide adoption of business intelligence software focusing on sustainability over speed and
    • Identify and track quantifiable activities necessary for success.
    Nathan Chappell, Senior Vice President, Advancement Operations and Giving Campaigns; and Nathan Fay, Associate Vice President of Prospect Development, City of Hope



Targeted User Group Session
Presented by Ruffalo Noel Levitz, IBM and Blackbaud

Feature Engineering for Fundraising Analytics: Using Hidden Data to Optimize Models and Create a Competitive Edge in an Algorithm-rich Ecosystem
It is consistently easier to access a large number of predictive modelling algorithms. With such a vast array of tools available today to everyone, and the ability to easily ensemble results, how can you create a competitive advantage and add value compared with those that simply have more computational brute force available to apply to a problem? One very powerful technique is feature engineering. This session defines feature engineering and looks at methods for creating new variables and offers tips for illustrating the performance gains. Examples demonstrate evidence of the impact.
Michael Pawlus, Director of Prospect Development, The Trust for Public Land



You Can't Resist Me

How important is effective collaboration to your personal and professional success? It's pretty significant, right? Do you believe your organization's overall project performance would improve if your teams worked more collaboratively? You bet they would!

Communication is key to getting everyone on the same page, putting your heads together, learning from each other, setting goals, showcasing leadership skills on the tasks you are assigned and making sure the team understands the direct goals to be achieved.

This session offers a road map for building effective teams. Master an easy-to-learn and easy-to-use set of verbal and nonverbal communication tools that will leave you irresistible during-and after-life's most important, and sometimes difficult, conversations on how to band together and work best while joining forces.

Janine Driver, New York Times Best-selling Author and Body Language Expert

Welcome Reception

Conference Adjourns for the Day
Dinner on your own



Day 2, Wednesday, May 24


8:00-9:00 AM
Continental Breakfast


Why Kiva Worked: Lessons From Founding a $1B Mission-Driven Venture
Kiva is one of the fastest-growing, most successful social ventures in history. Since its founding in 2005, Kiva has facilitated more than $850M in loans to entrepreneurs in the world's poorest communities, connecting people across 216 countries. And it continues to grow. In the for-profit world, $1B companies are often called "unicorns"-Jessica Jackley is one of only a handful of people in the country who can speak to the experience of starting a "unicorn" in the social sector.

Jackley shares the inspiring, circuitous and unlikely story of Kiva's founding, its hyper-rapid growth, and navigating inevitable twists and turns along the path to success.

Jessica Jackley, Co-Founder, Kiva



  • Leveraging Alumni Survey Data and Analytics for Engagement and Fundraising Strategies
    Examine the process for developing a predictive model using constituent and attitudinal data to support the optimization of resources for cultivation and solicitation activities. This process involves analyzing alumni survey data for themes built on institutional strengths that can effectively support engagement and fundraising. Learn how to survey data that can serve as the basis for a multigenerational alumni and segmentation model to support constituent engagement. Find out how to apply qualitative and quantitative analysis for identifying themes and strategies. Discover how to create a framework for developing an action plan with tactics.
    Wayne Combs, Principal, W. Combs and Associates
  • Develop Your Own Interactive Database Interface and Reporting System Using R/Shiny
    Too many custom report requests? Disappointed with one-size fits all reporting solutions? Learn how to develop your own customized and interactive reporting solution for free using R and Shiny. Watch a live demo of Colby College's custom built web-based advancement reporting system and learn how to get started with R and Shiny. Colby's Prospect Finder system has automated the advancement division's reporting and provides an intuitive and user-friendly interface that encourages data-informed decision-making.
    Rich Majerus, Director of Advancement Strategy and Analysis, Colby College
  • An Adventurous and Disorganized Journey on Data and Analytics Dissemination in a Complex Development Office
    Fundraising is increasingly a data-driven enterprise, and the role of data analytics is evolving into a vital component of organizational success. Big development shops now support a variety of business intelligence platforms and data delivery vehicles to balance the need for putting real-time, interactive, actionable analytics in the hands of end users while maintaining a "single version of the truth." This presentation showcases the journey Mount Sinai undertook to integrate various data sources and business intelligence systems using Crystal Reports and Tableau, by deploying a SQL Server report server backend and SharePoint 2013 interface, while maintaining continuous end-user support.
    Eugenie Packer, Director of Development Systems and Analytics, Mount Sinai Health System
  • Revolutionizing Advancement Systems at Rutgers
    Ever wish you could search all the meaningful information on alumni, athletics supporters, prospects and grateful patients through a single, intuitive search engine? Do you dream of delivering a great mobile online experience with social integration and mobile contact reports for staff and volunteers, but can't find a solution that will sync the data with your legacy systems? Join us to hear the story about how an unmet need in advancement software resulted in the development of Uprising, a revolutionary new software product, and hear how Uprising is helping Rutgers University Foundation rethink how they deliver and manage data for alumni, prospects and grateful patients.
    Terry Callaghan, Associate Vice President, Information Technology, Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey; and Regan Holt, Chief Executive Officer, Uprising Tech


11:10 AM-NOON
Targeted User Group Session
Presented by Ruffalo Noel Levitz, IBM and Blackbaud

The Basics of Azure Machine Learning
Review the essentials of building predictive analytics models using Microsoft Azure Machine Learning (ML). This session touches on the basics; you don't need to have previous experience in Machine Learning or prediction algorithms to gain a solid understanding of the concepts discussed in this session. We will be using high-level machine learning concepts to build predictive models and analyze a data set as it goes through the entire process from importing, to cleaning, building, training, testing and finally deployment.
Vivek Narendra, Assistant Director of ITS, Oregon State University Foundation

NOON-1:30 PM
Lunch on your own


  • Using Emerging Technologies for Prospect Research
    Two areas in our industry that seem to be ever changing are technology and prospect research, specifically around tools and techniques. At Children's Hospital Foundation in Washington, D.C., our Word-based Prospect Research process has become a barrier for new data sources and work-flow requirements. Therefore, we developed a project to improve the efficiency of researching prospects, and search and sharing those results more easily. Join us to review the new cloud-based data warehouse used to manage the massive amount data, a full-text search engine to make finding information quick and easy, and "Bot" technology to synchronize data and automate tasks.
    Lyn Rowland, Director of Data Services and Business Analytics; and Shomari White, AVP - Business Operations, Children's National Health System - Foundation
  • Tableau's Marketing Analytics Process: Metrics
    How does one of the premier business intelligence software vendors go about leveraging analytics and technology for their marketing? Wade Tibke shares Tabelau's MarTech stack and insights on getting the most out of demand generation efforts and data assets. This conversation is held in the context of greater business, analytics and marketing trends.
    Wade Tibke, Senior Director of Marketing Operations, Tabelau
  • Building Apps to Boost Efficiency
    Have you discovered processes at your institution that aren't efficient? Did you ever think that you could automate a task? Do you want to help your colleagues use their time better? Look no further! With the use of R, the Shiny package, and information already in your database, you can create interactive, user-friendly applications to solve common problems. This session walks you through two examples currently implemented at the College of William & Mary and describes how we created them, how they use information in our database, and how they have benefited teams across our organization.
    Samantha Wren, Data Analyst, College of William & Mary
  • Asking the Right Questions, Getting the Right Answers: Leveraging Data Visualizations to Springboard Advancement Success
    The most effective data visualizations answer the same big questions, again and again. They enable users across the organizational structure to not only glean insight, but also facilitate discussions about business operations. Review some of the universal questions asked in any fundraising operation, along with the dashboards that intuitively and simply deliver the answers. You'll leave with fresh ideas to address the very same questions posed at your organization.
    Ron Eisenstein,
    Assistant Vice President, Advancement Services, DePaul University



Targeted User Group Session
Presented by Ruffalo Noel Levitz, IBM and Blackbaud

Finding Features in Free Form Text: Clustering, Classifying and Categorizing Constituent Comments to Capture Insights
Most of our organizations have dense repositories of constituent-created content from survey responses to online giving comments. In addition, external sources such as Twitter provide even more details about our base of supporters. However, we do not often leverage all of this data because the valuable insights are buried in a sea of characters. Attend this session to learn how to:

  • Isolate and extract certain key terms using regular expressions,
  • Pull out predictive features using tf-idf between constituent classes and
  • Begin exploring the sentiment of the feedback received using freely available taxonomies.

Michael Pawlus, Director of Prospect Development, The Trust for Public Land



Ego Is the Enemy: How to Change the World By Conquering Yourself
Many of us insist that the main impediment to a full, successful life is the outside world. When in fact, the most common enemy lies within: our ego. Early in our careers, it impedes learning and the cultivation of talent. With success, it can blind us to our faults and sow future problems. In failure, it magnifies each blow and makes recovery more difficult. And even the most successful companies can be torn apart by destructive egos-the disease of "me". At every stage, ego holds us back.

In this session, adapted from his upcoming book Ego Is the Enemy, Ryan Holiday draws on a vast array of stories and examples, from literature to philosophy to history. He invokes fascinating figures such as George Marshall, Jackie Robinson, Katharine Graham, Bill Belichick and Eleanor Roosevelt, who all reached the highest levels of power and success by conquering their own egos. Their strategies and tactics can be ours as well.

In an era that glorifies social media, reality TV, and other forms of shameless self-promotion, the battle against ego must be fought on many fronts. Armed with the lessons in this fascinating and motivational talk, "you will be less invested in the story you tell about your own specialness, and as a result, you will be liberated to accomplish the world-changing work you've set out to achieve."

Ryan Holiday, Author, Marketer, and Entrepreneur

Conference Adjourns


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