Ohio Prospect Research Network
Established 1987 - Apra Ohio Chapter

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  • November 28, 2022 7:00 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Bill Robbins, Research Consultant, The Ohio State University Foundation

    How did you get into fundraising and/or prospect research?

    Completely by happenstance! The Director of Advancement Services at the university where I was working approached me about the prospect research opening in her office. I had never worked in advancement and had only a vague idea of what prospect research was, but I was ready for a new challenge. Over two decades later, I’m still working in prospect development!

    If you were so wealthy you didn’t need to work, what would you do with your time?

    Travel...and ensure that I never, ever, ever saw snow again.

    What is your favorite board game?

    I don’t have a favorite board game, but I really enjoy building jigsaw puzzles!

    If you were offered a round trip to the moon, would you take it?

    Do I get to travel aboard the Millennium Falcon?

    When/where was your first Apra conference?

    Washington, D.C. in 2002.

  • November 22, 2022 8:20 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    George Tabet, Corporate Research Analyst, MIT

    How did you get into fundraising and/or prospect research?

    Like many, I kinda just fell into it. After I got my degree, I didn’t want to immediately jump into a 9-5 office job so I took a gap year and volunteered for AmeriCorps. Getting that experience in nonprofit inspired me to look for similar opportunities. I found one in event management for a public organization setting up and tearing down events. It was a good job but not what I was looking for. Eventually, I came across a prospect research position. It was a newly established role and an opportunity to build out a prospect development office from the ground up. I applied and got it and ever since I’ve stayed in prospect development within higher education. 

    What are you reading now? 

    For pleasure, The Passenger by Cormac McCarthy. For work, The Book of Crypto by Henri Arslanian

    What piece of advice would you give to yourself at the beginning of your career?

    To share advice that a mentor once gave me; no one ever goes broke betting on themselves. 

    Where’s the next place on your travel bucket list and why?

    Singapore! I studied there in college and had planned a trip to go back and see former classmates and coworkers but the pandemic put that on hold. 

    Is pineapple an acceptable pizza topping?

    If you enjoy it yes. For me? No. Never. Absolutely not.

  • November 14, 2022 7:51 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Donna Wolf, Senior Associate Director, Prospect Development, The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center

    How did you get into fundraising and/or prospect research?

    In the mid-1990s I was attending OSU to get my master’s degree and saw an ad in the campus newspaper for a student job in the Prospect Research office.  The duties of the job including reading local newspapers and business journals to collect articles on the alumni and donors.  Eventually a full-time prospect research position became available, so I took it and never left! 

    How do you approach traveling on vacation? Do you make an itinerary or just explore?

    I research a lot of details before arriving.  I like to go to new places so don’t want to miss a thing while I am there! 

    If you were so wealthy you didn’t need to work, what would you do with your time?

    Operate a beagle rescue organization 

    What skill would you like to master?

    Playing a musical instrument like the piano or mandolin 

    Would you rather have a personal chef, personal housekeeper, or personal chauffeur?

    Hands down a personal housekeeper.  I have a husband who loves to cook and drive but never cleans!

  • November 07, 2022 8:05 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Jenny Sowash, Donor Services Coordinator, Columbus Zoo and Aquarium

    Do you have any side hustles?

    I am the owner of Vintage Promotions which runs an arts and crafts show called ChristmasFair at the Ohio Expo Center every November the weekend before Thanksgiving.

    How did you get into fundraising and/or prospect research?

    I have worked at the Columbus Zoo for over thirty years. I have been lucky enough to be in the correct spot at the right time and have been able to grow with the Zoo. I love to learn new software and to figure out how to do new things. I went from being the mail clerk to running the computer helpdesk when everyone was learning how to use Windows and Office products. I volunteered to take a class on Raiser’s Edge and somehow I ended up running the donor database and researching donors. I will always be grateful for the opportunities I’ve had to learn and grow. Always be willing to learn!

    What are you reading now?

    I am a voracious consumer of audio books. I download them from the library and usually listen to at least two a week. 

    What do you listen to on your commute?

    Audio Books!

    What is your favorite dessert?

    Anything chocolate and ala mode.

    What skill would you like to master?

    Plumbing! Dripping faucets are so annoying.

    What’s your favorite thing about what you do or where you work?

    I am part of a great team who make coming to work everyday fun and interesting. You never know what you will see at the Zoo!

  • October 21, 2022 8:21 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    This past year, we’ve been sharing member spotlights in an effort to get know members better and quite a few have shared what they’ve been reading. In case you missed a few spotlights, here are some suggestions for your book pile:

    Happy reading!

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