On this week’s episode of RAISE Podcast, Brent talks with Andy Jhanji, Interim Vice President for University Advancement and Executive Vice President of the Florida State University Foundation. Andy discusses the intersection of our personal and professional lives, how we can really make a difference through advancement work, and shares some valuable insights on the nuances of negotiating a big gift. Andy and Brent also talk about blended gifts, naming opportunities, binding estate commitments, tax implications of gifts, and lots more. It’s a packed episode!
Catch some highlights and listen to the full conversation here.
Highlights from the episode…
“This is a relationship business.” Fundraising is all about relationship building; with donors, students, mentors, and colleagues. Advancement folks often have tons of communication with both external and internal constituents – they’re kind of like the “front door” of the University.
“You can’t make an impact if you’re jumping around.” The relationships Andy developed in his nineteen years at the University of Colorado and eleven years at FSU have been highly valuable. His commitment to these institutions and access to mentors have been key factors in his professional success.
“I’m not about legacy building; I’m about leaving places better than when I got there.” As an only child, Andy felt responsible to move back home and care for his family when his father fell ill. He felt his family needed him more than the University did, so he left his position at the University of Colorado and moved back home to Florida.
“The person is committing their resources and their legacy to the institution they give to.” Andy discusses the importance of respecting donors’ gift intentions. Donors are trusting the currency of their hard work in the hands of advancement folks. The dollar amounts may be vary between donors, but all donors should be treated with the same gratitude.
“If you have an opportunity that fits into a donor’s interest or passion, then you can really have a gift conversation.” Andy and Brent discuss the opportunity for negotiating all aspects of a gift. Perhaps receiving a blended gift is an option? Perhaps the donor wants to give through a DAF? Is there a planned giving component to the gift? Andy reminds our listeners to always remain curious and be a great listener during the process of aligning the donor’s interests with the institution.
More about Andy…
Andy A. Jhanji joined the Florida State University Foundation in August 2011 as executive vice president, overseeing the Foundation’s day-to-day operations and advancement strategy. Andy recently assumed the additional responsibilities of Interim Vice President of University Advancement.
Jhanji has worked in public higher education for three decades. Before arriving at FSU, his most recent positions included serving as vice chancellor for university advancement and chief of staff to the chancellor at the University of Colorado Denver and the Anschutz Medical Campus. Prior to that, he served as the special assistant to the chancellor, preceded by holding the position of director, research and technology transfer at the University of Colorado Denver.
During Jhanji’s time as executive vice president at the FSU Foundation, he has played a key role in the planning and execution of Raise the Torch: The Campaign for Florida State, a $1 billion capital campaign and the most ambitious in University history. He also oversaw the financing and purchase of a new home for the organization, bringing the Foundation closer to campus.
In his new interim role, Jhanji will lead FSU’s fundraising, alumni relations, advancement services and real estate activities, overseeing the FSU Alumni Association, FSU Foundation and the FSU Real Estate Foundation.
Jhanji earned a Bachelor of Science degree and a Master of Project Management degree from Western Carolina University. Jhanji, his wife Jane and son Trent live in Tallahassee.