Brewer Direct

State of the (Fundraising) Nation

From  Phil Stolberg, Chief Operating Officer, BDI 


Now as the official inauguration of a new President is complete, there are a number of developing issues that could impact the effectiveness of nonprofit fundraising strategies and tactics.

Of course, now we know that the Senate will be split evenly between Democrats and Republicans, with a new Democratic Vice President being the tie-breaking vote if Senators vote strictly along partisan lines. The Democrats also control the House of Representatives, but their majority margin is thin. Because both Legislative Houses will be so evenly balanced, it just might suggest that our legislative leaders will seek opportunities for bipartisan collaboration in 2021… or, conversely, they’ll elect for partisan gridlock.

However our Congress chooses to proceed in 2021, there are a number of issues that we here at BDI are closely monitoring and are committed to sharing our recommended strategic responses depending on the outcome.

  • Postal Rates. The U.S. Postal Service has received approval for rate increases effective early in 2021. But expect more increases. The Postal Regulatory Commission has increased the cost of direct mail postage, and those increased costs could have a significant impact on fundraising.
  • Charitable Deduction Limits. It appears that the new administration will be open to considering limiting charitable deductions for the wealthy; meaning those in a tax bracket of 28% and above will only be able to deduct 28% on any charitable deductions. The nonprofit community will need to work with their friends on both sides in the House and Senate to make sure this limitation on deductibility doesn’t gain traction. 
  • National Privacy Legislation. There are a number of privacy issues being considered, including the privacy of donor gifts and the sharing/trading/selling of household information. There are competing points of view in both the House and Senate, and as the debate at the national level continues, many states are considering action at the state level.


We’ll continue to monitor developments on these and other issues of national importance, doing our best to keep you informed and prepared to adapt your fundraising strategy to address the outcome of these initiatives. Stay tuned.

Phil Stolberg, Chief Operating Officer

With over 40 years of experience in marketing and communications, BDI’s Chief Operating Officer, Phil Stolberg, has dedicated his career to working with not-for-profit organizations. He has held a variety of leadership positions, both with nonprofit organizations and with agencies that consult with the not-for-profit world, allowing him extensive experience with marketing, major donor and capital campaigns, special event and foundation fundraising.

At Brewer Direct, Phil is responsible for internal and external business relationships, contracts and policies. His responsibilities include defining agency strategies, goals, and implementing systems and processes. He provides leadership to the agency’s Creative, Digital, Human Resources, Finance, Project Management, Data and Analytics, Production and Administrative teams. Phil has served, and continues to serve, on a number of boards addressing the business needs of nonprofit organizations.

Email Phil now.

You need to read this! Click here to read “Leading the Charge in 2021” from BDI’s CEO and President, Michael J. Tomlinson.

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