HomeExpertsBrian Gawor, CFRE

Brian Gawor, CFRE

Brian Gawor’s focus is research and strategy to help propel both alumni engagement and fundraising results of RNL clients. Brian has 20 years of higher education experience in student affairs, enrollment management, alumni engagement and development.

Previous Experience

Beginning in student affairs and admission, Brian’s efforts supported the achievement of record enrollment at Knox College. He then joined the college’s $3 million Knox Fund as a fundraiser. Most recently, Brian served for four years as director of development for the College of Fine Arts at Illinois State University. He has worked to direct RNL’s fundraising research, providing actionable insights to hundreds of clients each year, since 2013.

Brian regularly presents at professional conferences, including CASE and AFP. He also hosts our popular Fundraising Voices podcast. Brian has regularly been featured in industry publications and webinars, including CASE, NonProfitPro, the Chronicle of Philanthropy and Inside Higher Ed.


Brian holds a Master’s degree from Western Illinois University and is currently completing a doctorate at Illinois State University, where he is studying higher education alumni response, predictive analytics of donor response, and industry trends.

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Presentations and Recent Content

Quotes from Brian

“Economists now say: behavioral incentives are important. It’s about what our donors get and feel when giving that makes a difference. There’s way too much friction in giving at most institutions. Make giving easy and fun. You’ll grow response instantly.”

“We have mountains of data on our donors—more than any other charitable area. We need to use this data better to spark joy and excitement through personalized donor experiences.”

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