Timothy L. Seiler, Ph.D., CFRE, has been named the 2014 Outstanding Fundraising Professional by the Association of Fundraising Professionals (AFP) Indiana Chapter.
The director of The Fund Raising School at the Indiana University Lilly Family School of Philanthropy, Seiler was recently named the school’s inaugural Rosso Fellow in Philanthropic Fund Raising, a role he will assume in January 2015. He is 25-year member of AFP and a former advisory board member for its Indiana chapter.
“This is a well-deserved honor. I have the utmost respect and admiration for Tim’s career-long dedication to the advancement of ethical fundraising as a professional and volunteer fundraiser, teacher and mentor,” said Gene Tempel, founding dean of the Lilly Family School of Philanthropy. “Through the course of his life’s work, Tim exemplifies the AFP vision, ‘Fundraising is viewed as a credible and respected profession for civic betterment throughout the world.’ ”
Seiler’s most enduring contributions to the fundraising profession have been as director of The Fund Raising School, a position he has held since 1994; he has served as a faculty member since 1986. An alumnus of both Indiana University and The Fund Raising School, he has led the development of the latter for the past 20 years, more than half of its history. Now in its 40th year, The Fund Raising School has taught in more than 40 countries and has a global network of more than 40,000 alumni.
“This award is certainly unexpected. I’m grateful to the AFP Indiana Chapter and to those colleagues who nominated me and supported my nomination, as well as to the staff and faculty of The Fund Raising School,” Seiler said. “I’m also grateful to the thousands of participants in our courses and the donors who give to support our work. Peer recognition of this kind is akin to the ‘warm glow of giving’ that we experience when we volunteer and give philanthropically.”
During Seiler’s tenure as director he led creation of the Certificate in Fund Raising Management and gave professionals, volunteers and organizations around the world access to training in ethical, effective fundraising by creating online versions of The Fund Raising School’s courses. He has developed many additional regularly scheduled courses on a variety of topics, including women’s philanthropy and the use of social media in fundraising, and he co-created the course on faith and fundraising.
Under Seiler’s leadership, demand for customized courses tailored to a particular nonprofit or community’s needs has increased dramatically. During that period, The Fund Raising School has provided training for major national and international organizations such as United Way Worldwide, Girl Scouts of the USA, Make-a-Wish Foundation of America, YMCA of the USA, Fundraising Managers of Austria, Bogazici University in Istanbul and Inyathelo: The South African Institute for Development, among others.
Formerly vice president of the Indiana University Foundation, Seiler also was a major gifts officer for university development. As director of the foundation’s Indianapolis office, he coordinated the constituency development program for the schools and programs on the Indianapolis campus. He led the Campaign for Indiana in Indianapolis, the comprehensive fundraising program for the Indianapolis campus, which raised more than double the fundraising goal. With his leadership as vice president of the IU Foundation and director of the Indianapolis office, giving increased by 25 percent and the number of donors increased by 17 percent.
Seiler is a highly sought-after speaker for conferences and seminars nationally and internationally. He is an author and editor of fundraising publications and was editor-in-chief of the Excellence in Fundraising Workbook Series, author of the workbook Developing Your Case for Support, and co-editor of Achieving Excellence in Fundraising, Third Edition. He also currently teaches in the Lilly Family School of Philanthropy’s graduate program in Philanthropic Studies and has been voted outstanding part-time graduate instructor.
Deeply committed to philanthropy and making a meaningful difference in society, Seiler also serves the nonprofit sector as a board member and campaign committee member for several nonprofits and serves as a mentor to young professional fundraisers.
Seiler earned a B.A. degree in English from Saint Joseph’s College, Rensselaer, Indiana, and M.A. and Ph.D. degrees in English from Indiana University. He holds the Certified Fund Raising Executive (CFRE) professional designation.
About the Lilly Family School of Philanthropy
The Indiana University Lilly Family School of Philanthropy is dedicated to improving philanthropy to improve the world by training and empowering students and professionals to be innovators and leaders who create positive and lasting change. The school offers a comprehensive approach to philanthropy through its academic, research and international programs and through The Fund Raising School, Lake Institute on Faith & Giving, and the Women’s Philanthropy Institute. Follow us on Twitter or “Like” us on Facebook.