We Understand Your World

GG+A’s very first client, in 1961, was an independent school. Since then, we have served more than 150 others worldwide: Day and boarding. Single-gender and co-ed. Faith-based and secular.

We understand the pressures on fundraising programs at independent schools— to grow philanthropy to increase support for programs, financial assistance, and faculty; to engage parents and grandparents; and to produce significant results from small alumni pools. We know that limited resources require tough choices, and that no matter the budget, every decision about investing in your fundraising program must be backed by data and informed by the best strategic thinking.

Challenges & Solutions

While each situation is unique, we find that many independent schools struggle with the same handful of challenges. How to create a major-gifts program when staff and resources are focused on budget-relieving annual giving programs? How to broaden major-gift fundraising beyond the trustees? How to prepare board members and other school leaders to run an effective campaign? How to support a Head of School who may be new to fundraising?

Depending on your ambitions—and the insights we’re able to gain through original research—we will work with you to develop and implement practical plans that are custom-built to succeed.

Many independent schools have been built on the support of families, many for generations, who are dedicated to the school’s mission and the communities they serve. Charlotte Country Day School (CCDS), an independent, JrK-12 coeducational school in North Carolina, accomplished several fundraising campaigns throughout its history based on this kind of support–a small donor base of trustees and families.

Charlotte Country Day School
Read Success Story

Our Services

We listen. We research. We position schools to increase their appeal to alumni, parents, and friends. We help build programs for sustained success. Services include:

Board and staff training and coaching

At GG+A, consultants with extensive development-leadership experience coach clients in the core competencies of major-gift fundraising: qualifying and planning, cultivating, asking, negotiating, and stewardship. Learn more.

Campaign operating plans

A strategic and tactical plan that addresses all components of campaign planning and management, including core strategies to realize goals and a table of gifts needed to meet those goals; cash flow projections and operating budgets; timeline for all phases of the campaign; roles and responsibilities for leadership and volunteers; naming, crediting, and acceptance policies; and prospect management strategies. Serves to guide a wide range of campaign activities and can help avoid delays at key junctures in the campaign or at critical points of a gift negotiation. Can also be designed as mid-campaign operating plans, or overall fundraising plans for smaller institutions.

Campaign planning studies

Provides the insights and data needed to make critical decisions about a proposed campaign’s structure, objectives, and implementation, offering an objective review of strengths and weaknesses  relevant to the proposed campaign. Fundamental activities include briefing lead prospects and volunteers on the campaign’s goals, soliciting feedback on the case for support, and face-to-face conversations that explore the perceptions and gift potential of key constituents. Includes an analysis of internal resources available to support the effort and evidence-based recommendations for strategies, investments, and reallocations that will help support an ambitious and achievable campaign.

Development program reviews

An assessment of the development operation that provides recommendations on the optimal organizational structure and deployment of staff and resources, as well as an evaluation of overall culture, environment, and level of readiness to support sustainable increases in fundraising. Typically focuses on management and organization, resources and budgets, prospect management, communications, and constituent engagement.

Our Clients

GG+A has long and deep experience consulting with independent schools around the world. Here is a sampling:

  • American College of Sofia
  • American School of Paris
  • The Blake School
  • Bryn Mawr School
  • Buckingham Browne & Nichols School
  • The Cambridge School of Weston
  • Cate School
  • Charlotte Country Day School
  • Charlotte Latin School
  • Christ School
  • Collegiate School (VA)
  • Dana Hall School
  • Delaware Valley Friends School
  • Durham Academy
  • Episcopal Academy
  • Episcopal School of Baton Rouge
  • Episcopal School of Dallas
  • Far Hills Country Day School
  • Forest Ridge School of the Sacred Heart
  • Francis Xavier Warde School
  • Friends' Central School
  • Friends School of Baltimore
  • Germantown Friends School
  • Girls Preparatory School
  • Greenwich Country Day School
  • International School of Indiana
  • King School
  • Kinkaid School
  • Latin School of Chicago
  • Loomis Chaffee School
  • Manzano Day School
  • Montclair Kimberley Academy
  • National Cathedral School
  • New Canaan Country School
  • North Carolina School of Science and Mathematics
  • Polytechnic School
  • Punahou School
  • San Francisco Friends School
  • Sidwell Friends School
  • St. John’s High School
  • The Madeira School
  • The St. Paul’s Schools (MD)
  • Tower Hill School
  • University of Chicago Laboratory Schools
  • University School of Nashville
  • Upper Canada College
  • Westover School
  • Westtown School
  • William Penn Charter School
  • Woodlynde School