Dickerson’s service to Fresno Pacific University leads to honor

Success for Fresno Pacific University has translated into success for a member of its staff.

Bud Dickerson, director of major gifts and capital campaigns, was named "Outstanding Fund Raising Executive of the Year" by the California Valley Chapter of the Association of Fund Raising Professionals. The award came November 14 during a lunch celebrating National Philanthropy Day.

This year the university saw ground broken for a new campus center, construction begin on a math and science building and completion of an alumni plaza. A new soccer field and track also went into service. "It's been such a banner year," said Linda Calandra, university director of annual giving and donor relations, who nominated Dickerson for the honor, "and Bud has been a big part of that."

Calandra noted Dickerson's integrity, humility and inclusiveness. "He's always willing to share his knowledge and expertise and has been a mentor not only to me but to many others," she said.

"Bud has been a real addition to the advancement division," said Mark Deffenbacher, FPU vice president for advancement and university relations. "He has helped identify financial resources for buildings that will benefit our students for many years to come."

Dickerson came to the university in 1998 after seven years as director of development at Fresno Adventist Academy, a private K-12 school. Before that he served as executive director of enrollment services at Loma Linda University.

At the academy, Dickerson raised $2.75 million for a 25,000 square-foot building dedicated to athletics, music and other uses. This was the largest project the academy had attempted.

Being the conduit between the university and its donors and prospective donors is the best part of fund raising, Dickerson said. "It's a perfect job as far as I'm concerned because I can translate institutional dreams to donors who have some dreams of their own."

Fund raisers need to use persistence and people skills. "It's not begging, it's not pleading and it's not pressuring people," Dickerson said. Instead, it's matching those who want to help to the opportunities available. "Not everyone can give a million dollars, but all of us can do our part," he said.


Wayne Steffen
Associate Director of Publications and Media Relations