Get to Know: Rudi Pakendorf, Ethics and Government Chair


How long have you been in fundraising? Have you ever worked in another field (ie marketing, sales, finance, etc)? I have had several previous careers: I was a high school teacher in South Africa, a licensed financial representative in Minnesota and for 10 years a corporate management team member at Thrivent Financial. My fundraising work started when I joined the development team at Lawrence University (major and planned gifts); then I was VP for Resource Development at Goodwill NCW. I have my own capital campaign consulting business now and have an agreement with Walsh & Associates to lead capital campaigns in churches.


What’s the best vacation you've ever taken? I lived in Africa for many years, and through my work at Thrivent and Lawrence have traveled extensively in the U.S. and elsewhere. But nothing beat a week I spent with my two daughters bumming around and sightseeing in London a few years ago (they – now married – and my wife appear in the picture – supporting the Wisconsin State Fair’s unhealthy food).


What are you most passionate about? Helping people and organizations fulfill their promise.


Share two truths and a lie about yourself:

--I have played and coached rugby.

--I have completed three marathons.

--I have climbed Mt. Kilimanjaro.

OK the last one is a dream.


What book do you always recommend to others?

Covey: Seven Habits of Highly Effective People