317-872-1112 foundation@nicindy.org

Greek Retreat

March 8-9, 2018  |  Indianapolis, IN



Program                     Schedule                  Registration                  Hotel                         Contact

Program                     Schedule                  Registration                  Hotel                         Contact

Program At-A-Glance

The Greek Retreat gathers annual giving professionals from fraternal foundations in an informal setting to learn, plan, network, and exchange resources and best practices. The intentionally-designed curriculum provides sessions that are tied to one another for a learning experience that builds from beginning to end. This design also ensures all attendees are exposed to the same concepts at their appropriate experience level. To achieve this goal, each session is tracked with both a 101 and 201 level option. Participants can attend all of the same track, or bounce between both from session to session depending on skill level in each area.

At the end of the program, participants who attend Greek Retreat will:


      • Understand the importance of annual giving as a basis of support for their organization
      • Learn tactics to plan and execute or enhance a direct mail solicitation strategy
      • Learn tactics to plan and execute or enhance a digital media solicitation strategy
      • Learn tactics to plan and execute or enhance a stewardship strategy
      • Develop draft strategies and ideas to take back to their support team and supervisors
      • Receive tangible resources and best practices related to annual giving
      • Network with peers, subject-matter experts and Alliance Partners
      • Grow their professionalism and pride as a fundraiser

Schedule At-A-Glance

Each Greek Retreat session begins with a brief introduction for all attendees to lay the ground work for the topic. Hour-long breakouts (101 and 201 tracks) provide the deep-dives on the subject, and each session also has a wrap-up to bring everyone back together for sharing of key takeaways. This structure is intended to reinforce core learning from the Retreat.

Thursday, March 8

8:30 – 11 a.m.

9 – 11 a.m. 
PRE-CON: Annual Giving Orientation (add-on to general registration, $20)
The pre-con meeting is beneficial for Greek Retreat attendees who are brand new to the field of fundraising or are moving into an annual giving position for the first time. The program will cover a baseline understanding of annual giving operations, as well as an introduction to the purpose of Greek Retreat and how to maximize the experience.  

11 a.m. –  Noon
Welcome & Lunch

Noon – 1:30 p.m. 
Opening Session
This year’s opening session will explore the meaning of philanthropy and fraternal philanthropy. Session leaders will also discuss the Case for Support, giving cycles and the significance of annual giving.  

1:30 – 1:45 p.m.
Direct Mail: Introduction

1:45 – 2:45 p.m. 
Direct Mail: Breakouts

  • 101 – Relevant terms/elements, strategy, planning, executing and measuring success of a direct mail campaign; an overall “how-to” discussion with a content expert.
  • 201 – Direct mail critique and best practices; creative writing activity

2:45 – 3:15 p.m.
Break & Snacks

3:15 – 3:30 p.m. 
Direct Mail: Wrap-Up

3:30 –  3:45 p.m.
Digital Marketing: Introduction

3:45 – 4:45 p.m. 
Digital Marketing: Breakouts

  • 101 – Relevant terms/elements, strategy, planning, executing and measuring success of an online campaign; discussion of how to solicit online with a content expert.
  • 201 – Today’s tech tools and best practices

4:45 – 5 p.m.

Digital Marketing: Wrap-Up

5 – 5:15 p.m. 

5:15 – 6:30 p.m.
Networking Session & Happy Hour

6:30 p.m. 
Dinner Groups
Dinner is on your own and is not included in registration costs; however, group dinner outings are being organized by Greek Retreat Committee Members for various restaurants near the hotel. More details will be shared as they become available.   


Friday, March 9

7:30 – 8 a.m.
Breakfast & Recap Day 1

8 – 8:15 a.m.
Stewardship: Introduction

8:15 – 9:15 a.m.
Stewardship: Breakouts

  • 101 – Relevant terms/elements, strategy, planning, executing and measuring success of a stewardship program and an overall “how-to” discussion with a content expert.
  • 201 – Impact reporting, a closer look at magazine alignment, annual reports and other non-solicitation communication efforts.

9:15 – 9:30 a.m.


9:30 – 9:45 a.m.
Stewardship: Wrap-Up

9:45 – 10 a.m.
Mini Campaigns: Introduction

10 – 11 a.m.
Mini Campaigns: Breakouts

  • Days of Giving
  • Telephone Fundraising
  • Donor Events
  • Giving Societies/Recognition Programs

11 – 11:15 a.m.


11:15 – 11:30 a.m.
Mini Campaigns: Wrap-Up

11:30 a.m. – 1 p.m.
Closing Session
The closing session will recap lessons learned throughout the Retreat and include an Annual Fund Audit activity. Session leaders will also discuss the alignment of communications strategy and planning for success, and annual giving inside the broader development team/plan.

1:15 – 4:30 p.m.
POST-CON: Lunch & Mid-Manager’s Leadership Workshop (add-on to general registration fee, $50)
The post conference program is intended for mid-level managers looking to grow leadership potential, learn from others with similar management responsibilities, and share best practices or challenges faced. Lunch is served in conjunction with the program.

Registration Information

Registration for Greek Retreat 2018 is now closed

If you have any questions about the program, please contact Director of NICF Programs and Services Ashley VanDewark.

Who attends

Greek Retreat is designed for professionals who work directly with annual giving and seek to strengthen their organization’s annual giving strategies while growing as a professional. The 2018 program provides a 101- and 201-level track for each breakout session – Direct Mail, Digital Marketing and Stewardship. Beginning and mid-career fundraising professionals, as well as those fundraisers who are new to annual giving roles, will benefit from the 101 track sessions. The intentionally-designed curriculum in these sessions will introduce relevant terms, necessary elements, strategy, planning, execution tactics and assessment for several annual giving strategies.

Experienced annual giving professionals will benefit from the 201 track sessions. These dive deeper into different elements of direct mail, digital marketing and stewardship that will help expand an organization’s current annual giving strategies through the collaborative sharing of best practices and introduction of new concepts being used by the greater fundraising world.


Travel and Accommodations


If you are flying into the Indianapolis International Airport, there is a variety of ground transportation options from the airport to the hotel, including shuttles, buses, car rental services, BlueIndy electric car-sharing services, and more. Transportation to and from the hotel is the expense of the attendee.

The host hotel, The Sheraton at Keystone at the Crossing, is in the heart of Indianapolis’s Northside hub for shopping, dining and other services. 

The hotel features an indoor pool, fitness center, concierge service, The Keystone Cafe for snacks and beverages, an outdoor patio with fire pit, and complimentary self-parking. The hotel is also connected via skywalk to The Fashion Mall at Keystone, a premier retail destination showcasing over 100 upscale stores and restaurants.

Have questions about Greek Retreat? Contact Ashley VanDewark, Director of NICF Programs and Services, or call (317) 872-1112.