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Summer Symposium

Summer Symposium 2019

Register Now for Summer Symposium 2019!

Come to Summer Symposium in Seattle and leave inspired. This year's meeting promises educational sessions, discussion, and meaningful connection as we work together to invent the future of philanthropy.


A Space for Invention
July 11-13, 2019
Kimpton Hotel Monaco Seattle
Seattle, Washington



Registration Rates

Before 6/1
After 6/1
Before 6/1
After 6/1
Second Member from Same Firm
Before 6/1
After 6/1
Third Member and Beyond Same Firm
Before 6/1
After 6/1



This year's program will explore many interesting topics:

  • The future of giving days
  • Fundraising in an age of increasing data privacy
  • A model public-private partnership that will transform Seattle’s waterfront
  • The latest research on giving trends, from LGBTQ philanthropy to planned giving
  • Findings from a new compensation benchmarking study of our firms
  • The rise of racial equity as a philanthropic lens
  • The role of impact investing in philanthropy
  • And much more….!

This year's schedule will feature a variety of presentation modes and formats to keep you on your toes, from panel discussions to Ignite presentations, roundtables, and an interactive workshop.



Preliminary Schedule

Thursday, July 11

7:30am - 6:30pm
Registration Opens
7:30am - 1:00pm
The Giving Institute and Giving USA Foundation Governance Meetings (EC, Committees, and Board)
1:30 - 2:00pm
Welcome and Opening Statements
2:00 - 3:30pm
Educational Sessions
3:30 - 3:45pm
3:45 - 4:30pm
Lightning Session
Adjourn for the Day
Depart for South Union Lake Park for Waterways Cruise
6:00 - 10:00pm
Welcome to Seattle Cruise on Lake Union Reception and Dinner

Friday, July 12

8:30 - 9:30am
Breakfast and Lightning Sessions
9:30am - 12:30pm
Educational Sessions
12:30 - 2:00pm
Lunch and travel to Seattle Waterfront Park and Aquarium
2:00 - 4:30pm
Seattle Waterfront Park and Aquarium
4:30 - 6:00pm
Dine Arounds

Saturday, July 13

8:30 - 9:30am
Breakfast and Roundtable Discussions
9:30 - 10:30am
Educational Sessions
10:30 - 10:45am
Networking Break
10:45 - 11:45am
Educational Sessions
11:45am - 12:15pm
Closing Remarks




Future Summer Symposium

Summer Symposium 2019
July 11-13, 2019
Kimpton Hotel Monaco Seattle
Seattle, Washington


Past Summer Symposiums

Summer Symposium 2018
Navigating the Future of Philanthropy
July 12-14, 2018
Charleston, South Carolina

Summer Symposium 2017
Re-Imagining Philanthropy
July 13-15
Detroit, Michigan

Summer Symposium 2016
July 7-9, 2016
Silverado Resort and Spa
Napa, California
"Great Philanthropy. Great Wine. Great Times"
View photos

Summer Symposium 2015
July 9-11, 2015
W Boston in Boston
"Achieving the Leading Edge"

Summer Symposium 2014
July 24-26, 2014
Renaissance Vancouver Harbourside in Vancouver, BC, Canada
"Philanthropy: The Future, The Firm"

Summer Symposium 2013
July 25-28, 2013
Lansdowne Resort in Leesburg, VA
"Advocacy Talent Impact Global"

View past Summer Symposium final programs and resources (members only).

History of Summer Symposium

The Giving Institute (formerly The American Association of Fundraising Counsel) began planning the first Summer Institute for Consulting Professionals in 1991. They perceived the meetings as an opportunity to:

  • Give leading consulting professionals in the philanthropic sector a chance to identify and discuss the most important issues facing not-for-profit organizations in their fund-raising endeavors.
  • Initiate ongoing review and discussion of the technologies employed in the fundraising profession.
  • Provide an opportunity for professional leaders, inside and outside the AAFRC, to interact collegially, and to look at new ideas and methods in the profession.
  • Offer a national setting for the exchange of ideas about the profession.
  • Explore standards and changing practices.
  • Augment the training of younger professionals.

The first Summer Institute was held in July of 1992 in Beaver Creek, Colorado. Over the years, the Summer Institute topics have allowed participants to explore aspects of the industry in depth.

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