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LINDA SMITH SPEAKER

Linda Smith

2X Emmy Award Winning TV Host and NBC Today Show Digital Lifestyle Expert

Publications

LINDA SMITH BOOK

Linda is one of the most extraordinary development leaders in the US. Her stories about how nonprofits and their boards can connect with donors, all while making the process enjoyable, are unlike any you’ll hear. I highly recommend her to speak and engage with any group who wants to strengthen their non-profit, board or fundraising process. She puts the fun in fundraising!

— Julie Murray

CEO, Moonridge Group Philanthropy Partners

Historically, our Board was not developed for fundraising. At a recent Board retreat, Linda inspired our board through storytelling to innovate and seek creative and practical solutions.Linda reminding us that fundraising is all about building trust and developing relationships.Based upon her guidance, the Board created the first ever Fund Development committee which led to the development of our first major philanthropic campaign. I recommend Linda to any non-profit desiring to educate and inspire their Board to the critical importance of fundraising.

— Steve Chartrand

CEO, Goodwill

Linda uses her intelligence, energy and charm to exceed every goal ever set for her. During our last capital campaign, Linda and I had decided to ask a local foundation for a lead gift of $25 million. In the car on the way to the appointment she convinced me that we should increase the request to $35 million! They agreed. Linda was also able to steward legacy gifts and through her efforts Opportunity Village has received tens of millions of dollars in bequests. Las Vegas is a town that’s built on special events. Whether it’s the Magical Forest, the Great Santa Run, the annual Board Dinner or any of the other events Linda set a standard that no other organization could match. Her creativity and organizational skills are remarkable.

— Ed Guthrie

CEO, OpportunityVillage

Linda provides a level of expertise and insight to non-profit fundraising and campaigning that is simply unmatched. After working with a number of consultants, we brought Linda in for a weekend retreat. Inside two days, our board of directors was refocused, energized, and ready to take on a major project. She encourages leadership to think beyond the realm of a typical non-profit organization and challenges them to achieve the greatest possibilities for the people they serve.

— Michael Thomas

ExecutiveDirector, MyPossibilities

Linda Smith has been a wonderful addition to the Noah Homes Development team in her role as consultant. Her dynamic style and her demands that we "think big" and value what we have thus far created, resonated into more fundraising dollars generated in the short time she has been with us. I appreciate her energy, enthusiasm, and her never ending ideas! We have embraced her philosophy and are on the road to smarter fundraising and collaboration within our community. So glad she has become a part of the Noah Homes family.

— Molly Nocum

CEO, Noah Homes

Linda, I am speechless. I know I am just one person a father of a Child with Down syndrome and for what it’s worth I am so proud of you for all you have done for all people. Not just the ones with Disabilities. You have fought a long and hard battle over the years I have watched you bring Opportunity Village from a small run-down building on Charleston to a multimillion-dollar organization who has helped thousands of people with disabilities and without. I know you're giving of yourself to others is not over yet and you still have plenty of passion in you to let out. I am proud to call you my friend and want to thank you for everything you have done for my son Nick and all the other people you have helped.

— Joseph Calarco
President, Down Syndrome Organization

Bio

Fundraising Consultant, Author, Speaker

An advocate for people with disabilities and a recognized influencer of nonprofit causes, Linda Smith built one of the largest charitable organizations in the nation, and in doing so raised a half a billion dollars and inspired the giving of hundreds of millions more across the globe. Today, she shares her story of perseverance inspired by the birth of her profoundly disabled son. 

As an author, speaker and fundraising consultant, Smith enjoys helping development professionals and boards of directors think big, raise expectations and increase fundraising efforts and results for their nonprofit organization's mission. This spirit has led to the launch of Smith’s consulting business where she specializes in fundraising consulting for capital campaigns and major gifts, non-profit board development, signature event development and overall fundraising leadership and management. 

With nearly 40 years of development experience, Smith is recognized as a fundraising icon whose knowledge and efforts have impacted organizations throughout the world. Inspired by her eldest son Christopher and her life experiences, Smith was led to author her memoir “Unwanted,” which will launch in Spring 2019. 

Speaker Fee Range

Corporate = $5-15,000 + Hotel, Airfare and material shipping costs paid·Non-profits = no speaking fee, however Hotel, Airfare and material shipping costs paid

Speech Topic

Inspirational & Leadership

  1. My Journey to Here. How Linda Smith’s life experiences and the birth of her son inspired her to become a disability activist and a fundraiser for charities.
  2. Overcoming Adversity: From Dancer to Disability Activist. Raising a child who she was told to throw away, Linda Smith speaks about how as a mother she fought discrimination to gain acceptance and citizenship for her child.
  3. My First Yes and No and The Lessons In Between to How the twists and turns of rejection and reward provide lessons in human behavior and philanthropic comportment Fundraising.
  4. How to Get Top Investors to learn how to gain high-level investors for start-ups and new business ventures.
  5. Fundraising for Beginners to Lessons on becoming more confident and turning fears of rejection into winning solutions.
  6. So, You Want to Be A Fundraiser? What becoming a fundraiser is all about: inspiring passion, the science, the art, the task.
  7. Is Fundraising A Science or An Art? Learn how to develop strong relationships with donors; honor them, thank them and love them in order to succeed.
  8. Innovations in Corporate Philanthropy. Learn how to think outside the box, identify new donors and sponsors and provide unconventional methods of approaching potential sponsors.
  9. How to Bring in More Money/How to Raise a Ton of Money. Think differently and get personal with donors, understand that asking is not begging, be ready to turn a no into a yes by thinking big, being the best steward and embracing the possibilities. Signature Event Development, Special Event Planning, Rocking Events.
  10. Why People Give to Learn how to motivate donors in making decisions to contribute large amounts to your charity.
  11. Debunking Fundraising Myths. Learn real solutions in fundraising versus common misconceptions SIGNATURE TALKS: My Journey to Here. How Linda Smith’s life experiences and the birth of her son inspired her to become a disability activist and a fundraiser for charities.
    • How to Bring in More Money/How to Raise a Ton of Money to Think differently and get personal with donors, understand that asking is not begging, be ready to turn a no into a yes by thinking big, being the best steward and embracing the possibilities. Signature Event Development, Special Event Planning, Rocking Events

INDUSTRY/GROUPS:·Business Professionals, Women’s Leadership, Non-Profit, Charity, Philanthropy, Development, Advocacy, Activist, Lobbying, Universities, Human Resources, Human Rights, Immigration, Naturalization, Intellectual Disability, Equal Employment Opportunity IDEAL AUDIENCES:·Business Professionals, Employee Retreats, Non-Profit Organizations, Women’s Groups, Fundraising Professionals, Event Promoters & Planners.

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