28th Annual Summer Symposium – August 24 & 25, 2016

The two-day symposium is becoming known as one of the best regional Planned Giving conferences in the country with the industry’s top philanthropic speakers, valuable networking, customized breakout sessions and industry sponsors to share new insights, ideas and trends.

The Symposium kicked off on Wednesday morning with Craig Wruck’s popular Planned Giving: The Essentials workshop that was attended by 91 professionals. Craig is an engaging speaker, a top industry expert, and past president of the Partnership for Philanthropic Planning (PPP). The workshop is an annual favorite that gave attendees an introduction to the nuts and bolts of planned giving. Topics included tax essentials, charitable gift assets, and planned gift vehicles. The emphasis is on the concepts and developing a conversational understanding of these technical topics so that you can speak with confidence to donors and prospects. As always, Craig got rave reviews for his workshop. One attendee wrote, “I very much enjoyed Craig’s presentation. Now that I’ve been immersed in planned giving for two years I realized that, while listening to Craig, it ‘clicked!’ I enjoy learning from Craig. He makes it easy to understand and his sense of humor helps infuse energy into the day! ”

On Wednesday afternoon, Kaspick & Company expert and CPGR Board member Kristen Dugdale, JD, presented a hugely informative advanced session on Charitable Remainder Trusts which was widely attended. Kristen’s topic “Assessing the Real Value of Trusts and CGAs to Your Organization” provided the audience with an insider’s understanding of the complexities involved with this beneficial planned giving strategy and people were able to come away with a deeper understanding of how to negotiate terms that will put this type of trust in the best position to have the desired impact for their organizations.

A new CPGR speaker kicked off the Symposium with a wonderful Plenary Session that inspired and engaged attendees. Ron Schiller of Colorado’s own Aspen Leadership Group and the Philanthropy Career Network gave a speech entitled “Belief and Confidence: Facilitating Philanthropic Partnership”. During his presentation, Ron examined the many dimensions of belief and confidence required to create an environment in which philanthropic partnerships thrive. He spoke with passion and thoughtfulness and shared his considerable experience in working throughout his career with high income and dedicated philanthropists. It was an incredible insight into his distinguished and successful work with wealthy donors and provided an overview of his published book of the same title.

The Keynote presentation was provided by another Summer Symposium newcomer, Dr. Una Osili, of the Indiana University Lilly Family School of Philanthropy. Dr. Osili, Professor of Economics and Director of Research at this prestigious school, kicked off the Symposium with an energetic and fact-filled presentation of recent studies of philanthropy in the world and how they are impacting our fundraising efforts. Her Keynote topic, “The Power of Data to Change Philanthropy”, provided key insights into the changing landscape of donor motivations, the impact of technology and economic forces in the philanthropic sector, as well as the forces that will drive philanthropy in the future.

This year’s breakout sessions took inspiration from our world-class Colorado ski industry and had some fun with new names for the Speaker Tracks and new color codes for the level of expertise presented by each speaker: The Copper Mountain and Loveland Basin tracks were mostly filled with “Green Run” sessions, best suited to early-in-their-career gift planners and the Breckenridge and Keystone tracks featured some more complex “Blue Runs” and “Black Runs” for the more experienced gift officers. A new track this year, Loveland Basin, was included to provide Small Shop instruction for those attendees with interest in starting a planned giving operation in their non-profit. As always, this Symposium featured nationally-known speakers who generously gave of their knowledge and time to provide quality planned giving education to our attendees.

In between the breakout sessions was a wonderful networking lunch on the Inverness patio where guests had the chance to network with colleagues and enjoy the award program. Katy Kotlarczyk, CPGR Board member and Chair of the Programming Committee, was awarded the “Volunteer of the Year” award for all of her hard work throughout the year in building solid programs for CPGR and providing service to the gift planning community! Also at the luncheon, Mike Jackson, American Diabetes Association, & Karen Aalund, Porter Hospice Foundation, were awarded the “King and Queen of Membership” for their hard work in bringing the most new members to CPGR in the last year through our referral program! In addition to the scholarship program donations ask (which has successfully provided over 55 scholarships to deserving gift officers of non-profits over the last few years), Gordon Smith presented a new scholarship which honors our wonderful, late colleague Paul Jonas. Donations to this new scholarship program fund the newly announced Paul Jonas Emerging Leadership Award. Details will be announced later this month.

The Symposium’s generous sponsors deserve special recognition for their time and commitment to the Planned Giving industry in Colorado! Without their support, this successful symposium would not have occurred. This year’s Platinum Sponsor was State Street Global Advisors; the 2016 Gold Sponsor was BNY Mellon Wealth Management; our Silver Sponsors were: Zia Trust, The Stelter Company, MidFirst Bank, CCS, Crescendo Interactive, U.S. Trust and Wells Fargo; and our Bronze Sponsors were: Dini Spheris, PG Calc, Rose Community Foundation , Ryley Carlock & Applewhite, PNC Institutional Advisory Solutions , Thompson & Associates, EDS, Kaspick & Company, Roecker Consulting Group, Pentera, AFP, TIAA, and the University of Colorado’s Gift Planning and Leadership Giving office. And many thanks again to Community First Foundation, as sponsor of this year’s highly successful Symposium Scholarship program.

We are always looking to improve the Summer Symposium and appreciate your feedback and suggestions for future programs. We also would like to encourage your involvement as a Symposium committee member. If you’d like to participate in next year’s planning, please contact Tina Drum at cpgr@q.com.

Save the Dates!
The 2017 Summer Symposium will take place on August 28 & 29 at the Inverness Hotel in Englewood! Please note that next year’s Symposium will take place on Monday and Tuesday so be sure to update your calendars!!