A capital campaign is an important step for your nonprofit as it continues to grow, but it’s also an enormous undertaking! Between soliciting major gifts and ensuring the ongoing support of your community through the process, there’s a lot on your team’s plate during these campaigns.

There are experts who can help you through the process, though. Capital campaign consultants are professionals in the nonprofit world who work with different nonprofits to guide them through every aspect of a successful campaign, from maximizing their marketing strategy to measuring fundraising metrics.

But how do you decide which capital campaign consultant is the right fit for your nonprofit? Luckily for you, we’ve compiled this list of our 10 favorite consultants so you can get a feeling for who would work best with your team.

  1. Robert Happy – Averill Fundraising Solutions
  2. Aly Sterling – Aly Sterling Philanthropy
  3. Sandra Davis – Donorly
  4. Brian Lacy – Brian Lacy and Associates
  5. Abbie von Schegell – A. von Schlegell and Co.
  6. Carl Diesing – DNL OmniMedia
  7. Ellen Bristol – Bristol Strategy
  8. Marc Pitman – Concord Leadership Group
  9. Claire Axelrad – Clairification
  10. Jay Frost – Jerold Panas, Linzy, & Partners

All of these consultants have their own unique philosophies, strategies, and areas of expertise, so read our list and find out who would be the best capital campaign consultant for your nonprofit!

Robert Happy at Averill Fundraising Solutions is one of the top capital campaign consultants.

1. Robert Happy – Averill Fundraising Solutions

Capital Campaign Consultant Overview:  Robert Happy is a trusted capital campaign consultant.

Robert Happy is the president of Averill Fundraising Solutions, and his breadth of experience in all aspects of fundraising make him a formidable capital campaign consultant.

He has more than 35 years of fundraising experience, first with CCS as their Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer, and then with Averill Fundraising Solutions.

His commitment to creating a collaborative and unique solution for your nonprofit comes from his years of experience and understanding of different nonprofits’ needs.

Campaign Consultant Services:

As the leader of Averill Fundraising Solutions, Robert Happy and the rest of the Averill team are ready and willing to assist your nonprofit by providing:

  • Campaign direction.
  • Campaign planning and feasibility studies.
  • Embedded staffing.
  • Leadership learning and executive search.

Averill’s emphasis on providing boots-on-the-ground assistance and tailored plans can help any nonprofit’s capital campaign.

Why we recommend him:

We’re thrilled to recommend Robert Happy as a capital campaign consultant for any nonprofit organization ready to take on the world with a major fundraising campaign.

His proven track of fundraising success, extensive experience, and hands-on leadership approach make him a powerful capital campaign consultant.

Chad Peddicord will help your nonprofit as your capital campaign consultant.

Aly Sterling of Aly Sterling Philanthropy is one of the top capital campaign consultants.

2. Aly Sterling – Aly Sterling Philanthropy

Capital Campaign Consultant Overview:Aly Sterling is an experienced capital campaign consultant.

As the founder and president of Aly Sterling Philanthropy, Aly Sterling is a fundraising force to be reckoned with. She provides sustainable solutions to nonprofits through strategic planning and board leadership development.

With her philosophy that leadership is the most important factor in organizational success, she is dedicated to making sure that her clients are being led by well-prepared people.

Her experience stems from her postgraduate education, her time as a board member for various institutions, and her years of problem-solving for nonprofits long before she founded Aly Sterling Philanthropy.

Campaign Consultant Services:

Sterling’s services include:

  • Fundraising solutions.
  • Strategic planning.
  • Board Catalyst.

Board Catalyst is an Aly Sterling Philanthropy-exclusive process, through which Sterling helps your nonprofit assess, strengthen, and energize your board to reach new heights.

Why we recommend her:

Aly Sterling would be a great choice to lead your nonprofit through a capital campaign if your organization is looking for an individually tailored strategy that strengthens every aspect of your nonprofit, not just your fundraising techniques.

Sterling has experience with nonprofits of all sizes and missions, so she’s comfortable working with a broad variety of organizations.

Aly Sterling's experience as a capital campaign consultant can help any mission.

Sandra Davis of Donorly is one of the top capital campaign consultants.

3. Sandra Davis – Donorly

Capital Campaign Consultant Overview:Sandra Davis is an innovative capital campaign consultant.

Sandra Davis’s heavy emphasis on prioritizing research while planning campaigns has served her well, both in her previous experiences and in her current tenure as founder and president of Donorly.

As a research-driven consulting firm, Donorly (and Davis!) is committed to providing individualized answers to your nonprofit’s questions and issues. 

Davis emphasizes elegant and organic solutions tailored to an organization’s individual culture and mission, making each consulting engagement a dedicated and extensive undertaking.

Campaign Consultant Services:

Davis and her whole team of researchers and development consultants are prepared to assist nonprofits with things such as:

  • Donor and prospect research.
  • Capital campaign planning.
  • Executive board expansion.
  • Interim staffing.
  • Grant proposal writing.

Each service is tweaked to fit the organizational culture and community of your nonprofit, so that the solutions that they come up with are flexible and collaborative.

Why we recommend her:

Davis and her team at Donorly are a great fit for nonprofits who are looking to step up their major gift solicitation game and ensure that they are using their current donor base effectively.

Their creative and collaborative process is great for nonprofits who need specifically tailored results and are willing to dig deep with a team to find long-term fundraising solutions, and their innovative membership-style pricing make it easy for any nonprofit to choose the level of engagement that they need.

Sandra Davis and the Donorly team are the perfect capital campaign consultant resource for prospect research.

Brian Lacy of Brian Lacy and Associates is one of the top capital campaign consultants.

4. Brian Lacy – Brian Lacy and Associates

Capital Campaign Consultant Overview:Brian Lacy is a dedicated capital campaign consultant.

Brian Lacy, of Brian Lacy and Associates, is a fundraising veteran with a history of helping nonprofits of all missions, including colleges and universities, religious ministries, healthcare institutions, and more.

His experience in various aspects of the nonprofit landscape gives Brian Lacy and Associates a unique foothold as a fundraising and data services firm. He and the team will find a solution regardless of size of team or budget through annual giving campaigns and capital campaigns.

Campaign Consultant Services:

The Brian Lacy and Associate services include:

  • Consulting and audits.
  • Data and wealth.
  • Solicitations and appeals.
  • Marketing and communication.
  • Constituent services.

They also provide services of communication through various means, digital design, community engagement, providing a well-rounded experience for your nonprofit.

Why we recommend him:

Brian Lacy’s experience with data cleansing, confirmation, and expansion can turn any nonprofit’s CRM into a treasure trove of valuable data.

If your nonprofit is looking for ways to maximize the utility of your donor data in time for your next capital campaign, Brian Lacy is the consultant for you.

Brian Lacy's experience as a capital campaign consultant is an invaluable resource for any nonprofit.

Abbie von Sclegell of A. von Schlegell and Co. is one of the top capital campaign consultants.

5. Abbie von Schlegell – A. von Schlegell and Co.

Capital Campaign Consultant Overview:Abbie von Schlegell is a dynamic capital campaign consultant.

Abbie von Schlegell is an experienced nonprofit professional, who worked as a senior development officer with four separate institutions. She has special expertise in women’s philanthropy, a frequently overlooked but powerful donor segment.

She and her consulting firm have worked with institutions of all sizes and causes across the United States. In addition to her nonprofit knowledge, she remains connected to the field on a personal level as an active volunteer for nonprofits in her home state of Massachusetts.

Campaign Consultant Services:

Von Schlegell and her consulting firm offer nonprofits services such as:

  • Advancement.
  • Governance.
  • Management consulting.
  • Women’s philanthropy.
  • Wealth screening.

As she is a BoardSource Certified Governance Trainer, your nonprofit can rest assured that von Schlegell can take your nonprofit’s leadership to new heights.

Why we recommend her:

Abbie von Schlegell’s combination of real-world experience from working for a variety of nonprofits as well as a knack for understanding everything from board dynamics to human behavior make her a capital campaign consultant to trust.

Her team excels at examining results of previous efforts and using that analysis to better plan your nonprofit’s next move, which makes a world of difference in long-term fundraising efforts.

Let Abbie von Schlegell help you as your team's capital campaign consultant.

Carl Diesing is a top capital campaign consultant with DNL OmniMedia.

6. Carl Diesing – DNL OmniMedia

Capital Campaign Consultant Overview:Carl Diesing is a reliable capital campaign consultant.

Carl Diesing, the managing director of DNL OmniMedia for over a decade, has helped over 100 nonprofit organizations improve their online marketing and fundraising strategies through DNL’s focus on technological solutions and improvements.

Diesing’s passion for web design and online promotional strategy, alongside DNL OmniMedia’s emphasis on smart technology solutions to improve existing processes, helps nonprofits use technology to make everything that they do smarter, faster, and easier.

Campaign Consultant Services:

Through a partnership with DNL OmniMedia and Diesing, a nonprofit can build new strategies in the fields of:

  • Web design and development.
  • Fundraising.
  • Digital and event marketing.
  • Content and data migration.
  • Donation and advocacy campaigns.
  • Nonprofit marketing and communications management.

As digital strategies become more and more important, your nonprofit needs to make sure that it’s prepared for the future and is ready to adapt to the changing landscape.

Why we recommend him:

Diesing’s creativity when it comes to adapting technology solutions to help nonprofits achieve their goals is unparalleled, so if your nonprofit needs a strategy created specifically for your organization, DNL OmniMedia can help you find the best fit.

He has experience working with a wide range of nonprofits, and has helped other organizations reduce their overhead costs by consolidating their processes and eliminating redundancies.

Improve your nonprofit's technology strategy with Carl Diesing as your capital campaign consultant.

Ellen Bristol of the Bristol Strategy Group is one of the top capital campaign consultants.

7. Ellen Bristol – Bristol Strategy Group

Capital Campaign Consultant Overview:Ellen Bristol is a renowned capital campaign consultant.

Ellen Bristol is an innovator and a revolutionary in the nonprofit world because of her foresight to bring the science of productivity into the charity sphere and her groundbreaking research into staff fundraising productivity.

She has developed multiple processes for nonprofits to assess their own shortcomings, such as the SMART methodology, the Leaky Bucket Assessment for Effective Fundraising, Fundraising the SMART Way, and the SMART Fundraising Game.

All of these tools have helped over one thousand nonprofits and nonprofit professionals discover where their ‘leaks’ were and learn from their results.

Campaign Consultant Services:

The Bristol Strategy Group offers nonprofits a variety of services that all relate to ensuring the effectiveness and productivity of the nonprofit. In addition to supporting nonprofits with the SMART methodology and related programs, they offer services such as:

  • Training resources for sustainable fund development.
  • Development coaching services for success strategies.
  • Strategic planning, using the balanced-performance-scorecard model.
  • Board development services.

Their services are effective no matter what your nonprofit is planning, from a board retreat to running a capital campaign.

Why we recommend her:

Bristol’s creativity and innovation in all aspects of fundraising and strategic productivity make her a formidable capital campaign consultant.

If your nonprofit wants to make sure your fundraising strategy is ‘waterproof’, consider bringing on Ellen Bristol as your capital campaign consultant.

Ellen Bristol's unique methodologies make her a top notch capital campaign consultant.

Marc Pitman of the Concord Leadership Group is one of the top capital campaign consultants.

8. Marc Pitman – Concord Leadership Group

Capital Campaign Consultant Overview:Marc Pitman is a fundraising-focused capital campaign consultant.

Marc Pitman—perhaps better known as the Fundraising Coach and the author of Ask Without Fear—is an international leadership coach and fundraising trainer. His strategy as a consultant is to get board members and staff excited to ask for money.

He also believes in harnessing the power of stories to make your nonprofit’s mission the most important aspect of your fundraising ask. By training a nonprofit’s team to be better askers and storytellers, Pitman sets up your nonprofit for long-term success.

Campaign Consultant Services:

Pitman offers the following services in engagements with nonprofits of all shapes and sizes:

  • Team building courses.
  • Event planning and management.
  • Strategic planning.
  • Fundraising solicitations.
  • Staff/team training.

These different services will train your nonprofit’s team to be more effective fundraisers, increasing your fundraising capacity across the board.

Why we recommend him:

Besides Pitman’s extensive record of coaching, presenting, and teaching as an indicator that he is a successful consultant, his previous leadership experience in a variety of nonprofits settings prove that he has tried his methods and found them successful.

Nonprofits looking to improve their leadership’s capacities, as well as strengthen their major gift solicitation strategies, should consider investing in Pitman as a capital campaign consultant.

Marc Pitman's approach to leadership makes him a strong capital campaign consultant.

Claire Axelrad of Clairification is one of the top capital campaign consultants.

9. Claire Axelrad – Clairification

Capital Campaign Consultant Overview:Claire Axelrad is a highly motivated capital campaign consultant.

Claire Axelrad’s experience with philanthropy began after she left her career as an attourney and a legal publisher, and she never looked back. She has worked with organizations such as the San Francisco Food Bank, Jewish Family and Children’s Services, and the San Francisco Conservatory of Music, among other things.

In 2011, she founded her own fundraising training and coaching business, Clairification, which includes services from an online course of study about fundraising and leadership to personalized consulting.

Her motto is “passionate philanthropy, not forgettable fundraising”, and her teachings prioritize aligning purposes to get donors fired up, promoting customer-centric cultures, and building relationships.

Campaign Consultant Services:

Axelrad’s services vary based on the needs of the specific nonprofit, as well as what their projects are, but some common services that she offers include:

  • Board and leadership coaching.
  • Campaign consulting.
  • Fundraising workshops.
  • Executive performance assessments.

Axelrad can be as hands-on or hands-off as your nonprofit requires, but her previous engagements have showcased her abilities to reinvigorate a board or a team from the inside out.

Why we recommend her:

We are big fans of Axelrad and Clairification because of the breadth of information that she possesses and distributes while working one-on-one with nonprofits.

She also offers a unique service called the “Hour of Power”, in which she offers an hour of her time at a discounted rate to nonprofits who either can’t commit to bringing on a consultant or just want to run some ideas or a specific problem by her.

Whether you’re a small nonprofit looking to benefit from just a little time with a trained consultant or a larger nonprofit ready to bring on a consultant for your capital campaign, Claire Axelrad is a good choice for any organization.

Claire Axelrad's unique approach make her a phenomenal capital campaign consultant.

Jay Frost of Jerold Panas, Linzy, and Partners is one of the top capital campaign consultants.

10. Jay Frost – Jerold Panas, Linzy, and Partners

Capital Campaign Consultant Overview:Jay Frost is an energetic and dedicated capital campaign consultant.

Jay Frost is a Senior Consultant at the firm of Jerold Panas, Linzy & Partners, and has over 25 years of experience with finding fundraising opportunities for thousands of nonprofits. Now, as a consultant, he prioritizes creativity, flexibility, and accountability.

He has experience as the former president and CEO of FundraisingInfo.com, the chief strategy officer at WealthEngine, and the president and CEO of WealthID, and is now one of the nation’s leaders on social media and its use in major gift solicitation.

Campaign Consultant Services:

Frost’s experience as a senior consultant with Jerold Panas, Linzy, and Partners as well as his own previous experience with other nonprofit organizations makes him a powerful consultant with a proven track record of success with a variety of organization.

The firm offers services such as:

  • Market research.
  • Planned giving support.
  • Fundraising training and development.
  • Board, staff, and volunteer training.
  • Planning and feasibility studies.

Though JPL has a broad suite of features, each service is tailored to the individual organization during the consulting engagement.

Why we recommend him:

We highly recommend Frost and JPL to nonprofits that are ready to revitalize their fundraising strategies and adopt new innovative ways to achieve their goals.

JPL keeps their end of the bargain with style and high energy, so if your nonprofit is chomping at the bit to fulfill your capital campaign goals, hire Jay Frost as your capital campaign consultant.

Jay Frost is an energetic, creative, and innovative capital campaign consultant from Jerold Panas, Linzy, and Partners.

Now that you’ve learned about our top ten favorite capital campaign consultants, check out some of our other most trusted additional resources to strengthen your fundraising: