Conferences & Training
Faculty - Structuring Major Gifts

Conference Chair

Robert Sharpe Jr.

Robert F. Sharpe Jr.
The Sharpe Group

Robert F. Sharpe Jr. is president of The Sharpe Group and has more than 30 years of charitable gift planning experience. The Sharpe Group consults nationwide with a number of leading educational, health, social service, and religious organizations and institutions in implementing their major and planned gift development efforts. With offices in Memphis, Tennessee, and Washington, D.C., The Sharpe Group has worked with more than 10,000 nonprofits nationwide during its 50-year history.

He has authored many articles and other publications covering numerous gift planning topics. His remarks on this subject have been featured in the Wall Street Journal, the New York Times, Newsweek, Forbes, Smart Money, CBS Market Watch, the Chronicle of Higher Education, Trusts & Estates, Kiplinger's and other national publications. He is chairman of the philanthropy editorial board of Trusts & Estates magazine and a co-author of the Model Standards of Gift Valuation adopted by the National Committee on Planned Giving (NCPG).

Sharpe is a recipient of the CASE Crystal Apple Award for teaching excellence and the Donaldson Distinguished Service Award from the Planned Giving Group of New England. He is an honors graduate of Vanderbilt University and Cornell Law School.


Winton Smith Headshot

Winton C. Smith, Jr.
Legal Counsel, Planned Giving

Winton C. Smith Jr., an attorney representing many charitable institutions in the planned giving area, combines his comprehensive legal experience with more than 20 years of practical experience in the marketing of planned gifts. In his more than 15 years as a CASE speaker, this nationally recognized educator has taught at more than 100 CASE conferences, and conference participants consistently shower him with "excellent" teaching ratings. In fact, he was the first CASE speaker to receive an overall rating of 100 percent. In recognition of his outstanding teaching, CASE awarded him the Crystal Apple Award in 1984.

Previously, he served nine years as a director for planned gifts for Southwestern in Memphis where he raised more than $30 million in planned gifts. Most recently, Smith has served as legal counsel for development at Rhodes College. His travels take him across the nation, conducting the CASE Introduction to Planned Giving conferences and the CASE conferences on Marketing and Soliciting Major Planned Gifts. He has also been on the faculty for CASE's Advanced Planned Giving Conferences. Smith lectures for programs sponsored by bar associations; estate planning councils; colleges and universities; law schools; hospitals; and religious, health, social welfare, and other charitable institutions. He has the unique ability to present the many complex subjects involved in charitable giving in a down-to-earth, easy-to-understand manner. His publications are widely read and are written in basic, non-legal language.

Shannon Woodward

Shannon Woodward
Senior Philanthropic Advisor
Tulane University

Shannon Woodward is the senior philanthropic advisor for Tulane University. She has 11 years of corporate management experience and over a decade of major and principal gift work in higher education. Four years ago she was entrusted by Tulane's executive vice president to create, implement and manage the new Office of Gift Planning for the university, which integrated major and planned gifts and changed the development culture at Tulane. She holds a principal gift portfolio, works directly with senior university leadership and creates philanthropic plans for complex high-level gifts from donors throughout the United States.

Woodward is active with several civic and charitable organizations. She offers consulting and training for various nonprofit agencies and is a regular presenter on blended giving and the power of the three part ask to both philanthropic and financial professionals.

Woodward attended the University of Mississippi and is a graduate of Tulane University.

CASE Crystal Apple award winner for excellence in teaching.