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

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AFP, an association of professionals throughout the world, advances philanthropy by enabling people and organizations to practice ethical and effective fundraising. The core of activities through which AFP fulfills this mission include education, training, mentoring, research, credentialing and advocacy.

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