Since 2019, development and alumni staff from Kansas Community Colleges and Kansas Technical Colleges have gathered to share ideas, hear from experts, and network. From June 21-23, representatives from 17 colleges convened at Labette Community College’s Cardinal Event Center.
The conference keynote speaker was Bud Cooper, senior executive vice president of kinetic fundraising. Cooper talked about the importance of relationship building and provided numerous applicable personal stories from his more than 30 years of experience as a development professional and fundraising consultant. Robert Swanson, CEO of Swanson House, shared best practices for planned giving.
Other speakers and topics included: Morgan Prather, owner of One28 Marketing, who talked about utilizing social media as an aid to building relationships; Jon Bartlow, former director of Pittsburg State alumni and constituent relations, who was recently appointed as the interim associate vice president and dean of students at PSU, spoke on the importance of alumni engagement; Lindsey Bogner, executive director of institutional advancement at Barton Community College, shared tips on improving employee engagement; Hayley Hobbs, director of donor relations at Butler Community College, provided advice on event planning.
“We have some outstanding advancement professionals working at the two-year institutions throughout Kansas,” said Lindi Forbes, executive director of the Labette Community College Foundation & Alumni Association. “It’s really nice to get together with colleagues (who’ve in many cases become your friends) to bounce ideas, share advice, and support one another. This annual meeting has value for people new to the profession as well as those of us who’ve done this kind of work for years.”
While in Parsons, conference attendees also had the opportunity to tour the Labette Community College campus, enjoy golfing at the Katy golf course, do some local shopping, take in museums, and attend the Music in the Park concert featuring Damsel on Thursday evening. The conference planning committee consisted of Forbes, Bogner, Hobbs, and Mike Crouch, vice president of advancement at Flint Hills Technical College.
Next year the host college will be Barton County Community College in Great Bend.