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044 Building up regular giving with Fran Malarée, Fellow and Development Director, Churchill College

In this episode I talk to Fran Malarée, Fellow and Development Director, Churchill College, and Chair of the Cambridge Development Directors’ Committee, University of Cambridge. With over twenty years’ experience in alumni relations and fundraising in higher education, Fran is the ideal person to talk to about regular giving and giving circles.

We discuss first how the development and alumni offices work within the University of Cambridge, how the colleges work alongside the University and specifically the launch of Churchill College's 'Think Forward' campaign and the challenges the COVID posed to that launch.

We then talk about how Churchill College instigated an annual telephone campaign, direct mail and email campaigns to increase the number of regular donors. We discuss the importance of a telephone conversation to forge a personal connection with a prospective donor and of having a consistent message across all communications channels.

Finally, we look at how Churchill College uses giving circles to incentivise major donations and Fran's thoughts on the role educational fundraising should play in enhancing social justice and social mobility.

Episode Highlights

  • Introducing Fran Malarée (03:33)

  • Overview of how development works within the University of Cambridge (03:50)

  • How Churchill College has increased the number of regular donors (08:19)

  • The importance of consistent messaging (19:34)

  • Using 'giving circles' to incentivise major donations (26:30)

  • The role fundraising plays in enhancing social justice and social mobility (39:35)

Download your copy of the free eBook ‘The Strategic Independent School Leader’ at

Think Forward Campaign website:

Catch up on previous episodes at


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