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Top Philanthropy Research Prize Awarded to Philadelphia Fundraiser Michael Rosen

(Arlington, Va. - March 17, 2011) -The Association of Fundraising Professionals (AFP) has awarded its top research award, the Skystone Partners Prize for Research on Fundraising and Philanthropy, to Michael J. Rosen, CFRE, a fundraising consultant in Philadelphia, for his bestselling book, Donor-Centered Planned Gift Marketing.

Each year, the AFP Research Council awards the Skystone Partners Prize for Research to the author of a book that contributes substantially to the knowledge and understanding of fundraising or philanthropic behavior. The award is made possible by an endowment established by Skystone Partners, an international fundraising consulting firm, through the AFP Foundation for Philanthropy to encourage advanced research that extends the knowledge of fundraising and philanthropy.

Donor-Centered Planned Gift Marketing incorporates the latest research from a variety of sources on the topic of planned giving and uses it to guide the reader's planned giving fundraising practice. The book's organization and layout make it useful both for learning by the novice and as a reference for more experienced gift planners.

"Rosen's Donor-Centered Planned Gift Marketing is a well-researched and eminently practical guide to planned gift marketing," the council said in its statement about the award-winning book. "Beyond serving as a tool for the seasoned planned giving specialist, this book makes planned gift marketing accessible for any fundraiser. The approach shows that research and everyday practice are linked. In keeping with the qualifications and criteria for this AFP research prize, Rosen's book is outstanding."

Michael J. Rosen, CFRE, is president of ML Innovations, Inc., a fundraising and marketing consulting firm in Philadelphia. He has contributed chapters to the book Membership Development: An Action Plan for Results (Aspen Publishers), written by Dana Hines and Patricia Rich, ACFRE. He wrote the foreword for the book Effective Telephone Fundraising by Stephen F. Schatz, CFRE, and his articles have been published in a variety of fundraising and philanthropic publications. Rosen also lectures internationally at a variety of conferences and seminars. He is certified as a Master Trainer by AFP, frequently speaks at AFP conferences internationally and regionally, and is a regular continuing education faculty member at Villanova University where he teaches fundraising ethics. He is the host of the popular blog

 "As the nation experiences the largest inter-generational transfer of wealth in history, a practical understanding of planned giving marketing has become essential to every development office," said Liz Knuppel, managing partner for Skystone Partners. "Michael's book is timely, relevant and provides meaningful guidance to development professionals at all levels of sophistication.  Donor-Centered Planned Giving Marketing is a valuable contribution to our profession, and Skystone Partners is delighted with the Research Council's selection."

The Association of Fundraising Professionals (AFP) will present the prestigious Skystone Partners Prize for Research to Rosen at its board meeting before 48th AFP International Conference on Fundraising in Chicago.

"Planned gifts are an extremely important source of revenue for nonprofit organizations, and in many ways they culminate in being a donor's most important gift to an organization," said Paulette V. Maehara, CFRE, CAE, president and CEO of AFP. "Michael's book does a wonderful job of helping nonprofit organizations of all sizes find effective ways to spread the word about the power of a planned gift. It's a very interesting and very important topic, and one which Michael explores thoroughly with practical advice throughout. AFP is proud to honor him with this research prize."


The Association of Fundraising Professionals (AFP) represents 30,000 members in 213 chapters throughout the world, working to advance philanthropy through advocacy, research, education and certification programs.  The association fosters development and growth of fundraising professionals and promotes high ethical standards in the fundraising profession.  For more information, go to


Skystone Partners and its diverse team of fundraising consultants have counseled nonprofits and managed campaigns with goals from $1 million to over $500 million.  Headquartered in Cincinnati, Ohio, the firm and its 35 U.S.-based professional staff members are currently serving institutions throughout North America.  For more information go to



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