Serving Nonprofits. Strengthening West Virginia.

2019 Nonprofit Leadership Summit Workshop Descriptions

Click on each presenter’s name to read their bio.


1:15 – 2:45 PM                     LEARNING LABS SESSION 1

Attendees will get a 90-minute interactive crash course in financial statements, budgets, 990 tax returns, benchmarking, and audits. Brian will talk about internal financials reporting and best practices when developing your budget and comparing it to what actually occurred. Then he’ll move into the realm of 990 tax returns, deconstructing the complexities to focus in on key parts of the form and talk about how you can use publicly available data as benchmarks. You’ll also be presented with the question: Is your audit worth the paper it’s printed on? If not, Brian will provide a roadmap for working through the RFP process to find a new audit firm. Finally, you’ll leave this session with action items to give you the confidence to do the most important job supervisors have to do…manage employees!

Nonprofits have amazing stories to tell. But the pressures of providing services, managing staff, and working with your board can make communications just one more thing on your long list of to-dos. And in a sea of information, communicating in a way that cuts through the noise can be difficult. Yet we know powerful communications can be transformative—they can grow our volunteer base, help fund our mission, and even change the culture of our community. Come learn from 84 Agency, a creative solutions and consulting firm based in Charleston, WV, about how mission-driven organizations can use compelling communications to connect with people and deepen their impact.

Strategy is important to any organization. Unfortunately, strategic planning is often relegated to a retreat activity and many plans are “shelved” a few months later. This workshop will introduce a framework that uses strategy every day and ensures our daily activities are aligned to our big goals. Participants will leave with an enhanced understanding of the value of strategy, elements of a strong strategy, a framework for strategy creation, and confidence to repeat and share the process within their organizations.

Every time a volunteer serves your organization, it’s an opportunity for you to turn them into an advocate for your mission. Providing a great volunteer experience is one of your best forms of advertising. On the contrary, if a volunteer has a poor experience, they may be hesitant to work with your organization again – or even with other nonprofits. This panel will examine how to best leverage the time and skillset of volunteers from all walks of life, whether a one-day group or a member of your board of directors, so that they stay engaged and tell their networks of the great work you do every day. A well-organized, professional program helps to give volunteers a meaningful experience and ensures their time best meets the needs of your organization and clients. We will cover topics such as the importance of: detailed, organized, and thorough communications; running a well-organized volunteer event; sharing your story so that volunteers connect with your mission; easing concerns and managing volunteer expectations; following up to say thank you; and tracking their impact.

Nonprofit organizations give their time, energy, and passion to help people, and those who are inspired by the dedicated efforts of your agency may wish to offer their support for your programs. The question is: “How do you build a fundraising community that fuels your mission?” Is it an annual appeal letter, social media video, fundraising event, foundation grant, a corporate sponsor? The answer is YES – it is a combination of fundraising strategies that ensure success. This workshop will expose you to a variety of traditional and new fundraising ideas that will help create a fundraising strategy that works for you!

  • F. Turbo Charge Your Team’s Emotional Intelligence with Earl Haddad

While Emotional Intelligence (EQ) is most often associated with individuals, it can (and should be) applied to organizations as well. When tested alongside 33 other important workplace behaviors, EQ was found to be more important than time management, motivation, vision, and communication. It is a fundamental skill required for successful cross-functional collaboration and the deconstruction of workplace silos. EQ is the single best predictor of performance in the workplace and is the strongest force behind leadership and personal excellence. This highly interactive session will fill your toolbox with practical tips to help your team increase collaboration and decrease unnecessary drama.

3:00 – 4:30 PM                     LEARNING LABS SESSION 2


  • A. First-Person Perspective Mission Marketing with Ben Bisbee

How do you ethically showcase a beneficiary when talking about an organization’s mission? Some argue for striking potential supporters right in the heart by using sad or more negative images.  Others think it’s best to show a happier circumstance, the positive side of the outcomes. But you don’t have to choose! Instead, invest in first-person perspective mission marketing by creating powerful visuals, content, and narratives that allow people to have an empathetic experience, witnessing what it’s like to be a benefactor of a mission, to truly experience change. Attendees will learn what makes for the best first-person perspective mission marketing including how to use visuals to create an honest and real experience that fosters true engagement between those who benefit and those who want to support our cause.

  • B. A Leader’s Guide to Sustainably Leading Well with David Ray

The preeminent role of a leader is to advance the mission of their organization. In the nonprofit world, this is not only a leader’s responsibility, but often their passion. Nonprofit leaders frequently eat, sleep, and breathe with their organization in mind. However, without proper self-care and management, we will not be able to function well as leaders, let alone as human beings, sustainably. For this reason, we must prioritize the conversation of self-care and wellness. In this interactive session we will discuss the uniqueness of leadership, identify common roadblocks that keep us from practicing self-care, and examine an approach to self-care and wellness that will have leaders set up and maintain practices that focus their attention on transforming and improving their lives and their organizations.

  •  C. Realign Your Team by Creating a “Serve-Us” Community with Charles Stump

This highly interactive session will challenge the paradigm of a “team.” Many organizations claim to work as a team, but in reality, they are a group of smaller teams that compete against one another for limited resources and time. Participants will learn the importance of creating a “community” mindset that encourages greater support for one another and a higher sense of sacrifice for what is best for all parties involved. They’ll also learn how to increase the value of all relationships through increased communication, focusing on clarity and clearly understanding defined expectations. Learners will leave with a tool they can take back to their organizations and use to clarify roles and completely re-align the way they work together.


  • D. Using Email Marketing in your Year-End Giving Campaign and Beyond with Andrea Shirey

Email marketing is perhaps one of the most under-utilized tools in our nonprofit toolkit today. Unlike many other digital channels, we have complete control over getting the right message to the right person at the right time when we use email marketing as a part of our story-telling strategy. In this workshop, you’ll learn how to unleash the power of email marketing for your nonprofit’s upcoming giving season with practical advice on planning, designing, writing, and evaluating your emails. Plus, take home real-world ideas for how to incorporate email marketing into your 2020 marketing plan.

  • E. Applying Professional Development in a Nonprofit World with John Finlayson

More and more, the responsibility for professional development is falling on individual employees, and yet the skills and behaviors they are looking to learn are needed to achieve organizational as well as individual goals. This session will teach participants to identify differences between “training” and “professional development,” to create an organizational culture that includes professional development based on vision and values, and how this can all be linked to the employee performance review.  Each participant will be challenged with creating a beginning step to introduce the process within their own organization.

  • F. Leadership Matters: Moving the Board Beyond Basic Duties of Loyalty & Care with Mark Mangano

Governance is critically important to every organization. Statutes on governance provide direction on how to make legal decisions but provide little guidance on how to make effective decisions. This presentation will teach attendees the elements and traits boards should work toward in order to achieve effective decision making and outstanding leadership. Learn how to take your board to the next level by discussing topics like board roles, communication, and how to foster a safe environment to disagree and question. Participants will come away with an understanding of how to evaluate their boards and ensure outstanding leadership for their organizations.


9:00 – 10:30 AM                  LEARNING LABS SESSION 3


  • A. Internal Controls, Fraud Prevention, Responsibilities, & Best Practices with Jodey Altier

This presentation will discuss the establishment and use of a sound internal control structure for nonprofit employees, management, and the board of directors. Jodey will discuss fraud prevention and give specific examples of fraud and how these situations could have been prevented. She will go over best practices and answers any questions attendees have surrounding these topics. Leave with actionable steps you can immediately implement upon your return to your organization!

  • B. Do the Most Good with the Best Brand with Paul Allvin

Your brand is the foundation of every single donor, volunteer, program, and beneficiary relationship that sustains you. What the public experiences as your brand determines if they will reward your cause with their trust, loyalty, and advocacy, and understanding this is the difference between strong and weak brand stewardship. This session will demystify the practice of brand stewardship and give attendees six concrete steps to gain a strong understanding of how to tap of the full potential of their brand and build vibrant support communities to transform mission delivery capacity.

Connecting with journalists at traditional media outlets (newspapers, radio, and TV) is a key method to launch the message of your work out into the world. Even beyond the benefits of greater visibility for your work, traditional media outlets continue to serve as a primary place to learn new information for many West Virginians – particularly those lacking reliable Internet access. Attend this highly interactive presentation to learn how to identify stories about your group that will interest the media – and the steps to connect with journalists to get your story told.

Do you have open seats on your board that you struggle to fill? Do you have to beg people to serve on nonprofit boards in your community? Are you tired of the same old board meetings? Build a better, more engaged board for your nonprofit through more intentional practices. Identify your organization’s needs and the people in your community that will help you succeed. This workshop will help you identify those assets in your community and ensure that their experience on your board will have them engaged and wanting to stay!

  • E. Don’t Waste Time Planning: Unleash Your Team’s Power to Shape the Future with Mark Mangano

Strategic planning is critically important to every organization. So why do most organizations avoid the process or employ methods that do not fully engage the board and management? This workshop suggests a simplified definition of strategic planning goals and explores the benefits and limitations of a variety of planning styles. It introduces a straight-forward but very effective process for engaging the board and senior management in a productive and ongoing conversation about the essential priorities of the organization and how to address them.

  • F. Donor Development: The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly with Susan Adkins

Most of the time it is a joy to work with nonprofit donors. These individuals believe in our work and pour their financial and human resources into our organizations. However, there can be bumps in the road when the donor goes past the boundary between donor interest and operations of the organization. Additionally, there are times this goes beyond stepping over the line to confrontations and manipulation of staff and other donors. This workshop will explore the “The Good, The Bad, and the Ugly” of donor development discussing ways to maximize “the good”, mediate “the bad”, and minimize “the ugly.”

10:45 AM – 12:15 PM         LEARNING LABS SESSION 4

Videos on social media are the future of marketing! Learn how to plan for your videos, create them using easy to use (and free resources), and share them over multiple platforms to get the most out of your efforts. This hands on training takes you step by step through how to set up, plan, and execute videos for your organization.

Your brand is the foundation of every single donor, volunteer, program, and beneficiary relationship that sustains you. What the public experiences as your brand determines if they will reward your cause with their trust, loyalty, and advocacy, and understanding this is the difference between strong and weak brand stewardship. This session will demystify the practice of brand stewardship and give attendees six concrete steps to gain a strong understanding of how to tap of the full potential of their brand and build vibrant support communities to transform mission delivery capacity.

Most organizations experience a volunteer gap – a gap in number of volunteers needed, a gap in ages represented in their volunteer base, and a gap in consistent volunteer engagement. In this workshop, you will be introduced to three tools to help fill these gaps and discuss the volunteer program qualities that transcend generations. Reset your volunteer mindset, work through the process of determining your volunteer needs, and take home forms that can be adapted for use at your organization  

  • D. Building Better Corporate Partnerships with Ben Bisbee

Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) is often seen as two-way road where both corporations and nonprofits benefit and are well supported – but it’s not true. CSR may drive the private sector to partner with nonprofits however, most nonprofits don’t have their own focused model to powerfully respond with their needs supported first and foremost – until now. A strategy model focused on the design of mission advancement, Nonprofit Partnership Advancement makes partnerships about more than money, creating room for what corporations want most and built against what nonprofits need most: impact, outcomes, co-branding, volunteerism, and partnerships. 

What is attracting young talent to nonprofit work in West Virginia? What new perspectives, skillsets, and motivations can they offer your organization and what are some ways to have a successful multi-generational workplace? We’ll share our own internal lessons learned as a rapidly growing young staff as well as share best practices from recruiting and retaining young talent through our Impact Fellowship program. Generation West Virginia is the statewide nonprofit focused on attracting and retaining young talent in the Mountain State.

In 2020, the US Census will attempt to count everyone living in the US, but nonprofits are preparing their outreach now. Why? The Census will determine funding, representation, and allocation of infrastructure and public services for our state and our communities. The census also provides comprehensive data on the people that nonprofits serve. So organizations like yours are intent on making sure that the US Census Bureau has the resources it needs to conduct an effective count, and that all persons are counted. In this workshop, you will learn how to access US Census resources and tools to educate your stakeholders, identify collaborative partners connected to hard-to-count communities, work with community and state Complete Count Committees, and organize to get out the count so the communities you serve are not under-represented!