Whether for buildings, athletic facilities, scholarships, or any other purpose, we can help you complete a campaign to achieve your vision.

Serving Colleges & Universities since 1985.

Dickerson, Bakker & Associates has extensive experience working with private and Christian Colleges and Universities.

Successful Higher Education Capital Campaigns require careful planning and disciplined execution, and will require much staff time and volunteer resources.  We can provide expert guidance for planning your campaign, researching prospects, training volunteers and keeping your campaign on track to successful completion.

Over the 30+ years that our firm has been in business, we have helped conduct hundreds of capital campaigns that have raised hundreds of millions of dollars.

Our team focus’ on enhancing your organizations’ unique attributes, your fundraising and your campaign priorities and potential.  With over 30 year’s experience in higher education fundraising – DB&A knows exactly what it takes to provide expert guidance for planning your campaign, researching prospects, training volunteers and keeping your campaign on track to successful completion. We partner with you to build and enhance the fundraising skills of each member of your team, your senior administrators, board members and other key volunteers so that you will have a successful capital campaign, that will also build permanent, long-lasting improvements in your institutions’ fundraising.

Whether you are looking to conduct a campaign for new buildings, athletic facilities, scholarships, an endowment, a combination of the above, or any other type of major fundraising campaign, we are experts in providing the counsel and assistance to successfully complete a capital campaign that will help your school take a substantial leap forward in the fulfillment of your vision.

Our Five-Step Process for Capital Campaigns

We will customize a campaign plan to fit your unique situation, constructed against the framework of our five-phase process and incorporating best practices based on our 30+ years of experience conducting hundreds of campaigns.

Click on any of the stages shown in the campaign phases infographic for information about each step your college or university will go through.

Feasibility Study

3 months or more
A pre-campaign feasibility study is an essential element of any major college / university capital campaign. The purpose of the feasibility study is to provide an internal assessment of your school’s readiness, and an external assessment of the willingness and ability of the school’s constituency to support the campaign should be conducted. When this study is well executed, it can provide focus, momentum & strengthen critical donor relationships for the entire campaign.
Here’s what you can expect during this first phase with the feasibility study:
·      Assess strength of the case for support
·      Recommend a realistic goal
·      Review likely sources of support
·      Estimate budget, timeline, and plan of action
·      Identify campaign leadership
·      Uncover negative factors needing to be addressed

Pre-Campaign Planning

3 to 6 Months
This phase is where you will be training and preparing the campaign leadership for their roles and responsibilities, organizing committees or campaign teams & gearing up for what will be coming over the next few months. The success of phase two will rely on many people conducting a well-orchestrated series of events and activities.
Here is what you can expect during this second phase of pre-campaign planning:
·      Determine the campaign structure
·      Research advance gift prospects
·      Goal setting for each sub-group
·      Staff and volunteer leadership recruitment and training
·      Craft the campaign case for support
·      Produce campaign printed materials, audio-visual, and digital media 

Leadership Giving

3 to 12 Months
The quiet phase of your campaign is when your school will set aside extra time to give special attention to those members of the community, staff, board members & other insiders who may be able to give at a high level. These major contributors will have a big impact on the outcome of your campaign but will require this extra care & attention. The quiet phase is vital to setting your campaign up for success.
Here is what you can expect during this third phase of Leadership Giving & Quiet Phase:
·      Solicit advance gifts from staff, Board, and other insiders
·      Solicit leadership gifts from top tier donors and prospects, comprising at least 60% and ideally 70% or more of the total campaign goal 

Public Campaign

6 Months:
After about 50 percent or so of the goal is reached in the quiet phase, your college/university will embark on the fourth phase of the campaign, the public phase. This phase will kick-off the campaign launch and will continue to seek smaller leadership gifts & donations to help reach it’s final goal. Ways to publicize your campaign could include running stories in the local paper, hosting a fundraising event, give on-site tours and using a visual chart to show the campaign’s progress.

Here’s what you can expect during this fourth phase of the public campaign:
·      Launch campaign with public event(s)
·      Roll out campaign to all constituent groups to challenge every possible donor in as effective a way as possible to commit to the campaign


2 – 3 Years
Reaching the commitment goal for your campaign is cause to celebrate, but it doesn’t mean your work is done. In truth, this is only the beginning – a capital campaign is not complete until the last pledge is collected, and that can take years. For a capital campaign to succeed in the long run, you must finish strong.
Here is what you can expect during this final phase of fulfillment:
·      Close out campaign with a celebratory event (e.g. ribbon cutting)
·      Ensure pledge commitments are paid and donors are properly stewarded through to completion of their commitments to the campaign

Let's build your future, together

Each organization is unique and has different goals.
We'd like to hear about your vision today.

Contact us to get started