Major Giving

Major Giving

Whether your organization sees a major gift as $100 or $100,000, having a major gift program with a strong foundation is vital to growth and success. In this class, Rebecca Zanatta will walk participants through what makes a strong major giving program -  one that uses data, relationships, and programs collaboratively. The five sessions are highly focused and will provide participants with tools, resources, and the knowledge base to build a new or refined major giving program.

This cohort meets every Thursday at 9:30 am via Zoom from July 16th - August 13th (see curriculum below). *Please note this cohort has limited capacity

​Pricing Options

Regular Price - $1,500

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3 Monthly Payments of $500 -

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If either of these payment options doesn't work for you and you'd like to make other accommodations, please reach out to us at 

What The Course Covers

Week 1:

The foundations and principles of major giving and whether your organization needs it.

Week 2:

Define the line! This week you will be guided through the classification process of a major gift at your organization. We will also walk through and identify who in your donor pool already fits into that category

Week 3:

Why should we give a dollar? Having a case for support for your major giving priorities is critical, having it tied to your organization's comprehensive case for support is vital.

Week 4:

Let’s get moving. During this week we will explore the existing activities and actions that we can use to engage with our new major donors. The next step will be to connect with staff and board members that are the center of expertise in each area.

Week 5:

The best strategy is one that exists. It’s time to take all we’ve learned and start to build unique and customized major giving strategies for the prospects in our pipeline.


“Working with Ostara was invaluable in coaching both our organization and philanthropy team through a critical transition. Their expertise in the non-profit space along with both group and individualized coaching sessions helped refocus our strategies and efforts to where they were most effective. I highly recommend Ostara to any organization that is seeking an objective partner to help navigate an evolving  internal and/or external climate.”

Lizanne Wicklund, Sr. Major Gifts Manager at Forterra

Frequently Asked Questions

Why is this course more expensive than the others I’ve seen online?

  • Many online classes will only walk through the basic development practices, but do not review and give feedback on your work. Not only will we provide you with the tools and templates you need to succeed in this course (20-hours of work already done for you), an Ostara consultant will work with you step-by-step to build a new or refined major giving program. Compared to our other campaign services, you'll have the opportunity to learn from your peers, increase your knowledge base, and build the confidence you need to succeed outside of this course.

What is the difference between cohort learning vs. 1:1 coaching? 

  • Group coaching and learning within a cohort provides participants the opportunity to spend time with an Ostara consultant at a reduced rate, follow a structured guide, and learn from others in the group. In each cohort learning environment, we have produced and participated in, we have discovered that hearing from your peers is just as important as absorbing the lecture.

What type of knowledge or experience should I have before signing up?

  • There are no prerequisites for joining this cohort. We only ask that you have a passion for mission-driven nonprofit work.

Meet the Instructor

Rebecca Zanatta, Senior Strategist 

Rebecca brings more than 20 years of experience building and stewarding strategic donor partnerships to Ostara. Prior to Ostara, she served in high-level development roles for organizations like the Pacific Science Center and the Washington State University Foundation. Rebecca has a deep understanding of everything from the planning, building and managing a diverse and successful major gift and capital campaign to implementing a realistic and focused strategic plan.

Rebecca graduated from Washington State University with a BA in organizational communication and holds a MEd in higher education administration from the University of Idaho. She completed her Certificate in Fund Raising Management (CFRM) from the Indiana University School of Philanthropy and has consulted with non-profits on their fundraising strategies including generational giving, social media and volunteer management programs.

Participating in the community is an important value of Rebecca’s work. She is a past President of Northwest Development Officers Association (NDOA), now AFP – Advancement Northwest, the largest professional association of fundraisers in Washington State. Rebecca joined the faculty at Seattle University in the Master in Nonprofit Leadership program. She is a graduate of the Leadership Tomorrow program in Seattle, serves on the WSU Foundation Board of Trustees and is a sustaining member of the Junior League of Seattle.

Ready to discuss how we can work together?