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Keturi DeLong, Vice President of Advancement at Texas A&M University-Commerce on why giving is like dating, and how to help achieve your donors’ goals.


Keturi DeLong is the Vice President of Advancement at Texas A&M University-Commerce, overseeing 17 full-time staff that align philanthropy and donor interests with the strategy of the university through alumni relations and advancement.

“Donors give through us, not to us”


Philanthropy is about what impact the donor wants to have on the world, and as Keturi articulates, their role in advancement is all about listening and engaging with the donor to understand what their core values and how they want to affect change, and to then provide a philanthropic opportunity that allows the donor to achieve this.

During the episode, Keturi explains her giving pyramid to show how her team works with other departments across the university, from communications to careers services, to ultimately lead to philanthropy. 


“Giving is like going on dates”


Like dating, giving is about relationships, and knowing how to make requests varies hugely on the maturity of the relationship and the magnitude of the ask. With over 90,000 living alumni, and only 17 staff to directly manage their huge community, Keturi delves into how they build their relationships, and how they know when to make the right ask. 


“Never waste a crisis”


Watch the full episode to find out more about how Keturi and her team build cyclical philanthropy in their alumni community, and how COVID has helped to reconnect alumni living across the world. 

For more expert insight on development & alumni relations, tune into another Fuelling Fundraising episode. 

Keturi DeLong
Keturi DeLong is the Vice President of Institutional Advancement at Texas A&M University-Commerce. DeLong is the incoming Chair for CASE District IV, and on faculty at AGN Resources providing webinars on various development topics. Previously, DeLong served as AVP at A&M-Commerce; Senior Director of Development at the University of North Texas, College of Education; Director of Stewardship, Planned Giving, and Major Giving at the Hockaday School; Director of Annual Giving at Hockaday; and Advancement Assistant at The Lamplighter School. In addition to her service to CASE, she also serves on the board of the Boys and Girls Club of Commerce Texas, and on the Board of Governors for her alma mater, St. Timothy’s School in Stevenson, MD. Keturi earned her MA in Communication Studies at the University of North Texas, and undergraduate degrees in Spanish and Communication Studies at The University of North Carolina Wilmington.

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