A proven and resourceful development professional, Jake is a senior consultant with CFA focused on major gifts strategy, planned giving and capacity building for nonprofits.
Jake has over ten years of experience in higher education fundraising at both private and public institutions, including annual giving, crowdfunding, data analytics, planned gifts, major gifts and campaign strategy.
During his time as a Major Gift Officer at the University of Minnesota, his fundraising efforts earned the university a return of 34 times his salary. He led fundraising efforts for the Arts Quarter at the University of Minnesota, representing the School of Music, the Marching Band, Department of Art, and Department of Theatre Arts and Dance. During his tenure, the School of Music had two of their largest fundraising years on record.
He launched the first-ever comprehensive campaign for the Marching Band, including a crowdfunding campaign following the band’s performance in the Super Bowl LII (2018) Halftime Show. The campaign’s success allowed the Marching Band to make their first regular season road trip in 22 years.
Jake began his major gift experience at the University of Northern Iowa’s College of Business Administration, and he worked with RuffaloCODY (now Ruffalo Noel Levitz) as a telemarketing consultant and manager. At RuffaloCODY, he led hiring, data analytics, segmentation, and implementation of the telemarketing annual giving program for the university.
Jake is a member of the National Philanthropy Day Committee for the Association of Fundraising Professionals MN Chapter, and the former President of AFP – Northeast Iowa Chapter.
Jake’s current consultant practices are informed by his years of higher-education fundraising experience. He takes a holistic approach to the art and science of fundraising — considering organizational health from all perspectives and applying the appropriate mix of soft skills and data-driven decision-making.
Never one to offer preordained solutions, Jake works in keeping with one of CFA’s core tenets — providing client-informed feedback and creative, case-by-case solutions.
Jake believes that before you can create a better future, you need to learn from the past. He’s always believed nonprofits shouldn’t be reticent about taking a practical inventory of their history in order to forecast potential opportunities.
Through challenging assumptions, and combining data-driven decisions with passionate determination, Jake has helped provide organizations with system-level solutions that affect sustainable change.
His philosophy on donor relations stems from years of recognizing a pattern — donors give to inspiration, not desperation. Donors are attracted to organizations that think big and feel rewarded when they are able to see the demonstrated impact of their contributions.
Since joining CFA in 2018, Jake has identified over 30 million dollars in potential support on behalf of clients.
A native of Perham, Minnesota, Jake loves the outdoors and especially enjoys being on the lake. He holds a Bachelor of Communication from Concordia College, where he met his wife. They have two children and share a love of folk and jazz music. She plays piano, violin and flute. He sings and plays bass.