Dean's Update

Lehn Benjamin presenting at the European Group of Organizational Studies conference
Associate Professor Lehn Benjamin presents at the European Group of Organizational Studies conference

July is a good time to take stock of our visibility in the media, especially after June’s Giving USA report, which typically leads to many mentions in major media outlets. To date, this year’s report has earned coverage in at least 725 outlets. Our school was featured prominently in an article in Philanthropy, the Quarterly National Magazine of the Philanthropy Roundtable, titled “Giving by Degrees: Practitioners look at academic programs in philanthropy.” It is well worth sharing with your circles of friends. 

The NonProfit Times named Dr. Una Osili to its 2019 “Power and Influence Top 50” list of leaders in our sector, and many of our guest speakers and leaders of our partner organizations also grace the list. Our splendid faculty continue to attract the curiosity of important channels of news and commentary, in addition to the accolades of their peers.

Our faculty and staff participated in major conferences with U.S. and international colleagues. Dr. Pamala Wiepking delivered a keynote address and Kinga Horvath presented at the European Research Network on Philanthropy Conference in Basel, Switzerland. Dr. Sarah Nathan, Dr. Genevieve Shaker and Ph.D. student Pat Danahey Janin presented at the Nonprofit Academic Centers Council (NACC) Conference in London, where Dr. Patrick Rooney and Dr. Dwight Burlingame participated on panels.

Dr. Lehn Benjamin presented a paper that was distinguished with an award at the European Group of Organizational Studies (EGOs) conference. Dr. Sara Konrath presented at the World Congress on Positive Psychology in Melbourne, Australia. Dr. Leslie Lenkowsky participated in a panel of international experts on civic engagement sponsored by the National Freedom Institute, in Warsaw, Poland, and gave an informal presentation to students at Ukrainian Catholic University in Lviv.

In the U.S., Dr. Tyrone Freeman co-presented at the national conference of the Association for Authentic, Experiential & Evidence-based Learning in New York City. Dr. David King keynoted The Church Network Annual conference in Charlotte, NC, and Sasha Zarins presented a paper at the ARNOVA/Independent Sector Policy Symposium in Washington, DC. 

July is also the early beginning of the new academic year. We welcomed our master’s degree students from across the country for the one-week residential portions of the executive option of our master’s degree program. I had the pleasure of spending some time in Dr. Kathi Badertscher’s history class and in Dr. Rooney’s economics class. It is wonderful to see the range of backgrounds and hometowns represented. We were also pleased to welcome a new addition to our staff, Managing Director of Marketing and Communications Aja May Pirtle

Visitors to the school included Ahmed Shehata of Islamic Relief and author Dirk Johnson. Dr. Elizabeth Lynn, founder of the Center for Civic Reflection and a special projects consultant for the Lake Institute on Faith & Giving, led a civic reflection for school staff. I also had the pleasure of catching up with former Board of Visitors member Mike Henderson and friend of the school Tony George.

Best regards,

Amir Pasic
Eugene R. Tempel Dean

News You Can Use


  • 6, North American Division of the Seventh-day Adventist Church Planned Giving and Trust Services Conference, Indianapolis, IN, Osili presenting
  • 22, Research rollout, “Changes to the Giving Landscape” with Vanguard Charitable 
  • 26, IUPUI Fall semester begins

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Lake Institute on Faith & Giving

  • 11-13, King keynoted The Church Network Annual conference in Charlotte, NC. He presented an initial overview from Lake Institute’s National Study of Congregations’ Economic Practices.
  • 14-18, Lake Institute hosted a convening in Indianapolis for 10 congregations of women religious grantees as a part of its Advancing Mission 2.0 grant. This was the second of three gatherings of the grantees who received training and coaching around fundraising in a religious context.
  • 16, Lynn, founder of the Center for Civic Reflection and a special projects consultant for Lake Institute on Faith and Giving, led a civic reflection for our school’s staff. Civic reflection is a conversational model that uses short readings in the humanities to help people think and talk deeply with one another about their philanthropy and service. For the discussion, Lynn used a short autobiographical passage from the Chilean poet Pablo Neruda to help participants explore questions of mutuality and gratitude in the work of philanthropy.
  • 29-August 1, Lake Institute’s four-day Executive Certificate in Religious Fundraising course was led by Spas, McNabb and adjunct instructor Kyle Small at Fuller Theological Seminary in Pasadena, CA.

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  • 4-5, Horvath presented “Mapping the Future of Philanthropy,” co-authored with Osili presented at the European Research Network on Philanthropy (ERNOP) in Basel, Switzerland.
  • 8, Osili was part of a panel, “Conversation on Citizenship,” that included former Congressman Lee Hamilton and former Chief Justice of the Indiana Supreme Court Randall Shepard.
  • 29, Zarins presented a paper, “Non-Itemizer Incentives for Charitable Giving,” to the Association for Research on Nonprofit Organizations and Voluntary Action (ARNOVA) / Independent Sector Policy Symposium in Washington, DC.

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