Penelope’s Audiences

Penelope Burk’s keynote speeches and training sessions are legendary in the fundraising industry. She is that rare professional who brings compelling, evidence-based information to delegates while delivering it with clarity and humor.

No one knows donors and what they want better than Penelope. She has an uncanny ability to captivate a diverse audience from senior practitioners with 30+ years of experience to young professionals in their first front-line jobs. Her vast repository of research themes and studies mean that every delegate – whether professional or volunteer, whether working in fundraising, marketing or management – feels that Penelope is speaking directly to him or her. And, her delivery style is both engaging and unique. At the end of a Penelope Burk session, no one feels that they have been talked down to or been part of a session that was over their heads. Everyone agrees that they have just experienced one of the best educational sessions of their professional careers.

While Penelope headlines conferences with thousands of delegates, she is just as eager to bring her compelling evidence and decades of experience to a single staff team or Board of Directors. Her insight, her passion for donors, and her dedication to helping people become more successful is evident in every Penelope Burk session.

  • The session, Donor-Centered for Boards, with Penelope Burk was by far the best learning experience I’ve ever had as a board member for any organization. I also bought and read both her books (which is something I rarely do after attending a session) and I have applied so much of her donor-centered philosophy to my work, not only as a board member but as a donor, too.

    Robert C. Woodhouse Jr. Trustee, Saint Mary’s Foundation
  • Penelope Burk is a phenomenal presenter for two reasons: first, her casual and engaging style draws participants in and makes the subject matter easy to understand with real-life examples and an “I know what it’s like” connection to those in the room; second, her data is extensive and compelling, and it gives fundraisers real-life tools that they can use to begin shifting from a traditional dollar-centered approach to a more dependable and lucrative donor-centered approach.

    Elizabeth Brunner Habitat for Humanity International
  • Penelope’s keynote address and her break-out session yesterday were the highlights of the conference for me. She shared such relevant and immediately-applicable information. What an inspiration she is—in speaking, in writing, and (most important) one-on-one.

    Karen H. Crane Director of Development, University of Jamestown
  • I congratulate Penelope for her presentation at the AFP International Conference. She is a truly dynamic performer and speaker who shares her vision with humor and energy. Listening to her makes me want to commit more to my work; and she increases my dedication to philanthropy.

    Elsa Desjardins Director Events and Fundraising Projects, Montreal Heart Institute Foundation
  • Penelope is the most knowledgeable and interesting speaker I have ever heard in my nearly twenty years in the business.

    Kelly Millington Vice President of Financial Development, YMCA of Greater St Louis and YMCA of Southwest Illinois
  • Penelope is a rock star for fundraisers. Always entertaining; always provocative. She has transformed how we see our donors and how we do our work in fundamental ways.

    Laura Breeze President, AFP Southwest Florida Chapter
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