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Skillful relationship building that will keep your fundraising on par

Skillful relationship building that will keep your fundraising on par

May 18, 2022

In this edition of The Beacon Podcast, Lighthouse Counsel Senior Consultant Kathy Gaston talks with Dick Horton, past president of the Tennessee Golf Foundation, about relationship building and its importance in fundraising.

Dick shared his insights on how organizations can harness the power of relationships to keep their fundraising going strong. Among the topics discussed:

  • Making friends and nurturing relationships with prominent philanthropists
  • Developing a legacy giving program and the role it plays in an organization’s financial success
  • The best advice for nonprofits when it comes to relationship building

About our Guest

Dick Horton served for 35 years as the executive director of both the Tennessee Golf Association (TGA) and the Tennessee Section PGA (Professional Golf Association of America). He was one of the first 15 full-time PGA Section executive directors in the United States and he gained national attention by bringing together golf’s formerly competitive and often-contentious factions: professional golfers (PGA) and amateur golfers (TGA). He became executive director of both organizations and eventually was able to put all the state’s collective golf operations under one roof.

Starting as a one-man operation in a bedroom office, he took the sport of golf in Tennessee from a largely structureless environment into the era of modern commercial golf. A skilled fundraiser, he secured enormous donations that allowed him to act on his ideas of the future for golf administration — he created a single golf complex called “Golf House Tennessee,” which served to administer all golf activities in the state, including pro golf, amateur golf, women’s golf, junior golf and turfgrass research. It was the only facility of its kind at the time. Dick’s success influenced other states to follow his blueprint. Tennessean sportswriter Joe Rexrode calls Dick “the Godfather of Tennessee Golf.”

Connect with Dick on LinkedIn