Jun. 22

Seven National Nonprofit Conferences Worth Attending This Year (Under $500)


As we are coming off of our Conference we thought it was important to highlight other great conferences that might be beneficial to enhancing nonprofit leadership this year.

Today's post was written by Rosetta Thurman and published on her blog on June 20th.

"It’s getting really tough to find affordable nonprofit conferences these days, which makes it even harder for young people or organizations with small budgets to gain entry to ongoing learning opportunities. Here are seven events that are happening throughout the rest of this year with great speakers and organizations involved.

Note: For many of these conferences, you can attend the whole thing for under $500. For others, you’ll have to be a member, get a one-day pass or qualify for the student or group rate to attend under that price.

JUNE 2011

Millennial Donors Summit: June 22, 2011, virtual event

A virtual summit providing a day of speakers, thought leaders, and provocateurs challenging the traditional modes of fundraising and engagement. This summit is for the traditionalist. It’s for the fundraiser or executive who needs to be schooled on the new methods to involve millennials; the new technologies to increase engagement of millennials in a cause; the new approaches to raising support while spreading messages. In essence….this summit is for all fundraisers and executives who recognize the future of their work is dependent upon how they engage with the rising generation.

  • Join us from your desk for a Virtual Summit on 6.22.11 to explore Millennial Donor Fundraising
  • Explore new techniques for a new breed of donors
  • National speakers, thought leaders and provocateurs give insights on trends and the latest research
  • Interactive, Peer-to-peer Discussion, Practical Applications
Social Media for Nonprofits: June-October 2011, various cities and dates
Social Media for Nonprofits is co-produced by Darian Rodriguez Heyman, author of Nonprofit Management 101: A Complete & Practical Guide for Leaders and Professionals and Ritu Sharma and is made possible through the fiscal sponsorship of NTEN and the support of Microsoft.  Enjoy keynotes, workshops, seminars, and panels from a variety of dynamic experts, all sharing practical tips and tools for nonprofit leaders. The program will feature practical tips & tools for fundraising, marketing & advocacy, and will be followed by book release parties for Nonprofit Management 101.
Here is a sampling of the topics that will be addressed in the keynotes, seminars, case studies, and workshops:
  • Insight Into the Latest, High Profile Viral Marketing Campaigns
  • Harnessing Social Networks to Recruit Staff and Volunteers
  • Resource Review of Low-Cost and Free Social Media Tools
  • Monitoring and Optimizing the Impact of your Campaigns
  • Social Email Campaigns: What Works and What Doesn’t
  • Tweets that Travel: The Essential Skill of Viral Writing
  • Using Social Media for Lobbying and Advocacy
  • Identifying and Connecting with Influencers
  • Maximizing your Facebook Presence
  • Fundraising with Social Media
All sessions are designed to provide attendees with concrete insights and takeaways, showcasing best practices, pitfalls to avoid, and free, helpful resources for nonprofits and causes. Special discount for all the special readers: Get $20 off the Social Media for Nonprofits conferences using the “Rose” discount code in San Francisco (6/29), Washington, DC (7/14), New York City (8/4), Los Angeles (8/22), Seattle (10/14), Chicago & Atlanta. Keynotes by Beth Kanter, Guy Kawasaki,’s Ami Dar & Reddit’s Alexis Ohanian.

JULY 2011

6th Annual Bridge to Integrated Marketing & Fundraising Conference: July 20-22, 2011, National Harbor, Washington DC

Inaugurated in July 2006, the Bridge to Integrated Marketing and Fundraising Conference combines the resources of the two host organizations: the Association of Fundraising Professionals, Washington DC Metro Area Chapter and the Direct Marketing Association of Washington as well as those of the Educational Co-Hosts.  The Bridge Conference features regionally, nationally and internationally renowned speakers, offering some of the finest cutting-edge educational programming available to fundraisers and direct marketers. Held in the city that boasts the largest number of nonprofit organizations and marketing industry leaders in North America, the sixth Annual Bridge Conference (as it has come to be known) is expected to draw 1,400 – 1,700 people.

The Bridge Conference is where you will experience over 70 sessions divided into 10 tracks that will offer you the latest in technology and the best in strategy.  You will:

  • Learn the best in collaborative techniques
  • Discover new and innovative ideas
  • Hear from experts about tactics as well as strategy
  • Network with your peers to learn of their successes
  • Learn from the vendors what actually works and doesn’t!

When you return to your office, you will be armed with information that will ultimately help you improve, and maximize, the results of your fundraising or marketing campaigns.


BoardSource Leadership Forum: September 22-23, 2011, Atlanta

Nothing less than the future of your organization and your community are being shaped by the decisions you and your board make today. What must you anticipate and consider as you make these critical decisions? Exploring the answer to this question and more is the focus of the 2011 BoardSource Leadership Forum. The BoardSource Leadership Forum is the only national conference focused on the impact of nonprofit boards and the unique role they play in advancing the public good. Every year, approximately 800 nonprofit board members, chief executives, and senior staff from around the world gather with an impressive array of experts to discuss the newest thinking and practices in nonprofit governance.

Through plenary sessions, workshops, presentations, and networking opportunities, the participants learn how to build the effectiveness of their boards and achieve their organizations’ missions.


2011 Nonprofit Human Resources ConferenceOctober 9-11, 2011, National Harbor, Washington DC

The Nonprofit Human Resources Conference is the nation’s only human resources conference dedicated exclusively to meeting the professional development needs of nonprofit human resources leaders. The conference provides participants nonprofit specific education and outstanding networking opportunities designed to help mission-driven organizations more effectively carry out their visions and goals.

This three-day event (October 9-11, 2011) brings together a diverse group of more than 350 nonprofit professionals from across the nation for educational sessions conducted by experts in the field of human resources. Attendees will include human resources directors, executive directors and other key decision makers in an unprecedented and critically important forum in the heart of the nation’s capital. Specifically designed to be timely and relevant, the 2011 conference provides attendees with more than thirty timely and relevant concurrent sessions covering a number of topics including:

  • HR for Non-HR Professionals (HR101)
  • Legal & Compliance Strategy
  • HR Strategy/Workplace Culture
  • Talent Management
  • Total Rewards
  • YOUR Professional Development

2011 Independent Sector NGen Preconference: October 29-30, 2011, Chicago

The NGen: Moving Nonprofit Leaders from Next to Now program enhances the visibility, leadership capacity and professional networks of emerging leaders under age 40. The program offers targeted workshops and networking opportunities for emerging nonprofit leaders.
NGen events complement the main program of the 2011 IS Annual Conference by offering:
  • Workshop sessions addressing topics important to emerging leaders
  • Opportunities for rising young leaders to connect
  • Networking with established leaders of all ages on issues central to the nonprofit    community

Independent Sector Annual Conference: October 30-November 1, 2011, Chicago

The IS conference is where leaders go to build strong networks that help them achieve their mission. Join 1,000 of the brightest minds from nonprofits, foundations, and corporate giving programs for high impact networking and programming that challenges you to think differently about the issues we face and how we move forward in these ouR-Evolutionary Times. Our sector and the communities we serve are changing rapidly through events and advances both small and large. The 2011 Independent Sector Annual Conference will challenge you to think differently about who we are, how we lead, and the serious steps needed to shape a new future for the nonprofit and philanthropic sectors in these r-evolutionary times.

What are some other national nonprofit conferences worth attending this year that have an under $500 price tag? And how can organizations continue to keep costsdown for attendees to make it easier on our wallets?"

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