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Ralph Strohl

Adjunct Counsel: Prospect Research

Ralph Strohl has been a prospect researcher for 28 years, and has operated in the arenas of both major and principal gifts fundraising research. He is a specialist in research analysis and strategy development, and also has significant experience in prospect management.

Most recently, Ralph spent three years as the prospect researcher for the small North American principal gifts office at The Aga Khan University, a medical and teacher-training institution with campuses in Karachi, Pakistan, and East Africa. In that role, he identified potential donors at the principal gifts level, as part of a campaign to raise $625 million over ten years to create a new university campus in Arusha, Tanzania. His work developing strategies for cultivation and solicitation was essential to the progress of this major campaign.

Ralph began his career in prospect research at the University of Chicago’s central development office in 1988 and became the director in 1992. He oversaw the research operations for central development throughout the University’s $650 million capital campaign of the 1990’s.

A long-time member of the Association of Professional Researchers for Development (APRA), he served as Secretary and President of the Illinois chapter of APRA in the early 1990’s. In 1998-2000, Ralph became the first Director of Principal Gifts Research at the University of Chicago, working with the Vice President and Director of Principal Gifts to establish that unit.

After that, Ralph established and organized the prospect research function for Rush University Medical Center’s Department of Philanthropy, and oversaw the research function through its $330 million capital campaign in the first decade of this century. He played a significant role in establishing the prospect pipeline and implementing moves management procedures.

Ralph is a graduate of Haverford College, where he majored in history. He also holds a master’s in Theology from the Lutheran School of Theology at Chicago, and a Ph.D. in History of Religions.

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