Life Science Capital

Land Use Strategies

Non-Stop Networking, Walk the Train to DC

Legislative Data

Real Estate Gurus

For Business Growth Look Beyond Finance

Speakers Available

Corrections or additions?

These articles by Michele Alperin and Carole Price were prepared

for the January 24,

2001 edition of U.S. 1 Newspaper. All rights reserved.

Non-Profits: Making the `Big Ask’

People feel that the worst part of starting or running

a nonprofit is asking for money," says Anne Seltzer, director

of development at the Peddie School. But without significant donors,

the existence of a nonprofit with even the most impeccable mission

will always be in peril. Based on her own experience, Seltzer offers

a straightforward process that she hopes will demystify the process

of cultivating donors for nonprofit organizations.

Seltzer speaks at Community Works’ Workshops for Volunteer Development

at the Princeton University’s Woodrow Wilson School on Thursday,


1, 5 to 9:15 p.m. Sponsored by the Rotary Club of Princeton, the $25

cost includes a box supper and two workshops. DeForest B.


Soaries Jr., New Jersey secretary of state, is the keynote speaker.

Call 609-924-8652.

Linda Meisel, executive director of Jewish Family Services,

will teach "Non-Profit Dynamics: Building the Team," and Karen

Woodbridge of Princeton University will moderate a press panel

on publicity. Dana George of ETTC will talk about using the

Internet as a tool. Marge Smith, who chairs this event, will

do a workshop on leadership for volunteers and staff, and Marty

Johnson, executive director of Isles, will discuss


Networking and Collaboration," with particular interest on trust

issues and turf issues. Claire Schiff-Kohn, Princeton’s new

superintendent of schools, will cover "Strategic Planning."

Other workshops will be on the basics of volunteering, making grant

requests, conflict resolution, and finance and budgeting.

An organization must build a strong constituency, using focus groups

and public talks, before it can start to fundraise. Focus groups can

provide a sense of how the organization is perceived, what may keep

people from supporting it, and what "hooks" can help get


involved. Public talks might focus on what the organization does to

fulfill a particular need, who it is serving, and how the listeners

can help.

Another necessary early step is to develop a board. Seltzer suggests,

"Start with people who have an interest in your mission and


what you’re doing." The board can be fine-tuned later, by either

broadening or narrowing its scope.

Later on, fundraising events-galas, tennis and golf outings, auctions

— become important in developing a base of potential donors. The

amount of money these events raise is not of primary importance.


it is how these events connect people to the organization and create

a sense of community. "For the amount of time and effort it takes

for the development office to run the event," says Seltzer,


could have cultivated one large donor. But," she continues,


those people get involved!"

Cultivating donors is not a one-time event, but a process that


over many years. In 1993 Walter Annenberg contributed $100 million

to the Peddie School, the largest donation ever given to a secondary

school. But he had given his first gift in 1927, when he graduated

from the school. "We’ve always had a special relationship with

the Ambassador," says Seltzer. The lesson of the gift, she


is that it was the result of "successful stewarding over many

years." When reaching out to an organization’s base of support,

she continues, "You must reach out often — imaginatively and

authentically. Make sure you think with some imagination about how

to get people involved."

Once the organization has a constituency of people who identify with

it and support its mission, the process of converting a supporter

into a donor is fairly straightforward:

Cultivate the potential donor . Provide material and


about the organization, and invite the person to an event, such as

a performance or a discussion. By laying the groundwork, the request

for money "is not out of left field," explains Seltzer.


background work has gotten the person to the point where you can ask

for a gift."

Get the appointment . "You don’t want to be coy,"

warns Seltzer. Be clear that the appointment is for a meeting to talk

about the organization’s mission and the potential donor’s support

for it. "You don’t want people to feel you are coming under false

pretenses, and then ask for money," says Seltzer.

Include the spouse . Although it may feel easier to speak

only to the person who has already been active in the organization,

remember that a donation comes out of family assets. If both spouses

are not present, one might say, "my husband [or, my wife] makes

all of the financial decisions."

Know where to meet and where not to meet. Try to schedule

the meeting at the office or wherever is most comfortable and


for the potential donor. Be aware that a restaurant can present


or uncomfortable situations. For example, what happens if the money

request is rejected even before the meal has been served? Or, if the

request is to be left until coffee, the whole meal may be spent


for the shoe to drop."

Whom to take to the appointment. "It is the ideal

to have two people go to a meeting for a gift," suggests Seltzer.

Two people can more easily gauge donor reaction and pick up on things.

In a big organization, the duo might include someone from the


office as well as the CEO, President, or head of the organization.

Script the visit ahead of time. "Specify in advance

who will say, ‘Would you consider a gift of X?’ so that you are not

falling all over yourself," Seltzer warns. Spend no more than

10 minutes welcoming and getting to know the people. Then discuss

the organization’s needs and why the gift being requested is so


Finally, pop the question. "If you’re looking for a specific


suggests Seltzer, "say, `would you consider a gift of X?’ If


not sure about the person’s finances or interest, you can bring a

sheet with several levels of gifts and ask, `Where would you see


on this sheet?’ or `Which seems most appealing?’"

Stop and give the person some thinking time . It is easy

at this point to jump in and back track before giving the person a

chance to respond. But don’t do it! Be quiet and wait a minute.

Clarify . Both the development person and the potential

donor probably have questions. Talk about them. Specify how quickly

the money is needed and whether cash or stocks is preferable.

Conclude . "Once you have thanked and thanked and thanked

the person, repeat exactly what they’ve said so there is no


advises Seltzer. If the person requests time to think, maintain


by stating when and where you will get back to the person. Do not

say, "Please call when you have made a decision." Thank the

person again, and write a thank-you note immediately after the


Seltzer does not have academic preparation to become a


director. Her undergraduate degree from the College of Wooster in

Ohio in 1964 was in Latin and Greek Classics, as was her master’s.

She taught classics at Northwestern University, but when she moved

to Princeton, she needed a job and took "a one year position"

teaching English at The Peddie School. As things turned out, one year

stretched into many, and she served as head of Peddie’s English


for 10 years. At that time the Head of School, a good friend of hers,

died, and she became Acting Head of School. In this role, Seltzer

did fundraising, and, she says, "it became second nature to think

about what the school needed and who could help us to fill the



After taking a year off from Peddie to work as Adult Program Director

at the Princeton YWCA, she returned to Peddie as director of


in 1993 — at about the time of the large Annenberg gift. During

her tenure, Peddie’s endowment has increased from $16 to $212 million.

Seltzer enjoys the process of bringing people together with a worthy

cause. "By and large, people like to help people," muses


"If you’ve created a strong need for the organization, you are

allowing the person to make a wonderful gift. It is a chance to enrich

their lives. If you have done your job, you’re not asking people who

don’t want to support and help you; you’re just making that


— Michele Alperin

Top Of Page
Life Science Capital

Senior citizens have attracted recent publicity for

crossing the border by bus to Canada for prescription medicine


produced here, but available in Canada at a lower cost. Randall

Sunberg, of Morgan Lewis & Bockius at the Carnegie Center, will

discuss the complex interplay of factors affecting pharmaceutical

pricing in the United States in a talk for Equity Research Group’s

Private Healthcare Company Conference on Thursday, January 25, at

the Nassau Club.

An alumnus of Yale (Class of 1977) and New York University Law School,

Sunberg was a partner at Shook Hardy & Bacon before joining Morgan

Lewis & Bockius last year. "Upcoming Regulatory Issues Likely

to Affect Life Science Companies," is the title of his workshop.

"Financing Outlook for Private and Public Biotechnology


by Samuel D. Isaly of OrbiMed Advisors will be the keynote topic

at this conference for venture capitalists and accredited investors.

Other presenters are Steven M. Cohen of Morgan Lewis & Bockius

and Thomas Nagle of Valuation Counselors. Conference admission:

$150. Reservations are required; call 609-737-0267. Equity Research

Group ( raises money for early stage

companies and does convertible preferred equity placements dealing

with the institutional market or accredited qualified investors.

Though senior citizens are now legal purveyors of drugs across


that may change. An enormous amount of pharmaceutical legislation

and litigation is still undecided. Re-importation is just one of the

issues waiting for President George W. Bush, Congress, and the

state legislatures. Also watching closely: drug purchasing officials

in managed care facilities. Government entities like the Veterans

Administration and private anti-trust litigants are also concerned

with drug pricing.

"A lot of groups not likely to give up are focusing on the


New Jersey has cases pending before the Department of Justice where

soon there will be settlements regarding health care fraud and


says Sunberg. "The decisions will affect pricing, promotion and

reimbursement. What if citizens can get drugs from other countries

which are the same product that we have here?" He cites these


Brand Versus Generic . Pharmaceuticals want legislation

that would affect the ability of the generics to get their competing

products on the market. Companies with lawsuits pending in this area

against the Department of Health are Astra Zeneca, Pfizer, Glaxo-Smith

Kline, and Wyeth Ayerst. They seek to differentiate the generics from

their own products from the standpoint that they may not be exactly

alike (the official term is "sameness") and that there may

not be the same quality control in the generic version. They claim

that the methodology and formulation for producing these drugs are

protected by patents even when the active ingredient is no longer

protected by patenting and is available in the public domain.

The issue of bioequivalency . The pharmaceuticals are claiming

that there may be differences in how the branded product and the


work in the body due to patented methods of production. They may also

be absorbed differently in the body. There may be differences in


— one product may need to be taken just once a day because of

patented breakdown and adsorbability, and the other may need to be

taken several times a day.

Sameness may not be bioequivalence . The generic companies

now have to demonstrate sameness to the Food and Drug Administration,

and the pharmaceuticals are challenging it to try to get them to


bioequivalence. This is of major concern to companies doing R&D,


drug production and outsourcing, and those who provide clinical trial

work and manufacturing.

"This political atmosphere and environment affects biotech


that are essentially innovators working on research projects affected

by these legislative, regulatory and pricing environments," says

Sunberg. "This is what makes Big Pharm say yes or no to them."

Good science is only part of the picture . Breakthroughs

in science are heralded and accuracy and precision lauded, but


and pricing also affect production. "Some products may come out

more easily than others — where generics can’t duplicate them

or where pricing regulation is easier. All kinds of issues play a

big role in this political soup."

"There are pockets in the population who also have some

particular interest here and there — lobbyists, special interest

groups like the cancer movement,or an aging population who may be

interested in drugs for osteoporosis and this is added to the mix,

too," says Sunberg. In the meantime, let’s hope your granny


get arrested in Morocco because someone misread her prescription!

— Carole Price

Top Of Page
Land Use Strategies

A two-day land use planning seminar, "Preserving

This Place Called Home," is set for Monday and Tuesday, January

29 and 30 at Princeton University, Robertson Hall. The Stony


Watershed Association has planned this seminar for town officials,

planners, and citizen groups. For information, call 609-818-9211.

More than 30 nationally and regionally recognized experts address

topics that include sound planning, zoning measures, and ordinances

to plan future landscapes, preserve open space and natural resources,

revitalize cities, and fight sprawl. Materials are available at

Top Of Page
Non-Stop Networking, Walk the Train to DC

The Capitol Steps, the troupe of Congressional staffers

turned comedians, will entertain at the New Jersey Chamber of


annual Congressional dinner on Thursday, February 1, at 6 p.m. at

the Marriott Wardman Park Hotel in the District of Columbia. It is

part of the annual walk to Washington, so-named because the Amtrak

train to D.C. — which leaves Newark at 11:27 a.m. and stops at

New Brunswick and Trenton — is so packed with networkers that

travelers literally "walk," shaking hands and handing out

business cards, most of the way.

For those who prefer a less rambunctious ride, the chamber is running

a second train, called the "Chamberliner." Reservations may

still be available for the trip; those who are not members pay $575

for the train, reception, and dinner. Go to or call


About 1,900 people are expected to travel those chartered trains that

day, and the return trip leaves Union Station late the following


Call 202-328-2900 for hotel reservations with the Omni Shoreham as

a second possibility (202-234-0700).

Top Of Page
Legislative Data

The new edition of the New Jersey Legislative District

Data Book is available on disk for $50, in hard copy for $45, or


for $85. It has the most recent election returns for state and federal

races, tables of regional school district data, state totals in


demographic categories, and equalized property tax rates. New


construction, net school budget per pupil, retail sales per capita

in 1997, and a new measure of per capital income — all are


in these statistics.

The data can also be obtained on two different disks, organized by

district, that can be sorted by municipality or county. One disk has

the demographic and election information, and the other has contacts

and addresses. With two disks and one book, the package is $125. Call

Joan Buck 732-932-3640, extension 628.

Top Of Page
Real Estate Gurus

Architects, accountants, financial analysts, investors,

asset managers, bank officers, and developers — those who must

deal with real estate problems in their daily work — Monmouth

University has a program for you. The university, based in West Long

Branch, offers a five-course Real Estate Certificate program using

the case study method to stress practical applications.

Three courses in the program start in February. "Regulation and

the Real Estate Development Process" begins Monday, February 5,

at 6 p.m., and it will be held in West Long Branch. The instructors

are John Giunco, of the law firm of Giordano Halleran & Ciesla,

and Peter S. Reinhart of K. Hovnanian Enterprises. Students

will examine the phases of a real estate project, step by step, from

concept to sale or lease-up.

Also offered in West Long Branch on Monday, February 5, is "Real

Estate Appraisal, Valuation, and Income Analysis, taught by Donald

M. Moliver, who also directs the institute. He will present


analysis, appraisal problems and solutions, and valuation of


properties. He will also give an in-depth review of capitalization

methods and mortgage equity concepts.

At Two Tower Center in East Brunswick, William T. Kitley, vice

president of GMAC Commercial Mortgage, will teach "Real Estate

Finance, Investment, and Taxation." Using actual deals, he will

analyze finance issues from both the developers’ and lenders’


The course starts Tuesday, February 6, at 6 p.m. Also at Two Tower

Center, Steven J. Brodman of Scarinci & Hollenbeck will teach

real estate law starting Thursday, February 8.

Qualified applicants will have a minimum of three years of experience

in a real estate-related activity, have the support of their current

employer, and be approved by Moliver. To apply, send a non-refundable

fee of $35. Each course costs $725 including course materials and

refreshments. To be taught in the fall is "Lease Negotiations

and Analysis." Call 732-571-3660.

Top Of Page
For Business Growth Look Beyond Finance

Cutting costs is a short term route to success, says

Alok Mittra, CEO of a new management consulting and training

firm. The way to grow your business is to develop your customers and

market, market, market.

Last fall Mittra left a corporate job to start a management consulting

and training firm, Asna Worldwide Group LLC, based at Box 358,


Junction 08550. He offers training sessions to show business owners

and corporate managers ways to grow sales faster than their


The next one-day workshops are Wednesday, February 28, March 7, and

March 14, from 8:30 to 4:30 p.m. Cost: $295. Call 609-897-9227


A graduate of Oakland University in Rochester, Michigan (Class of

1979), he has an MBA in marketing and international business from

Central Michigan. His 21-year corporate career has included stints

at General Motors, Searle Pharmaceuticals, Unisys, and Bristol-Myers

Squibb. His workshop includes eight steps to increase and exceed sales

or budget revenue, innovative techniques to win customers, and ways

to develop loyalty programs for keeping customers.

The son of an electrical engineer, Mittra says he has always been

interested in how to motivate people to buy. "I entered the sales

field to understand how people behave; I really wanted to have the

first hand experience." His "first first-hand experience"

as a boy was with a newspaper route. "I did extremely well; I

developed a vacant territory and convinced people to get the


I was marketing. I showed them the value they would derive from buying

the newspaper I was selling and the information they would get."

His customers switched from a regional newspaper and even from the

statewide Detroit Free Press to get the local newspaper, the Rochester


Developing customer loyalty is much more cost-effective than staging

expensive promotions, he maintains. "It is five times more costly

to acquire a new customer than to retain a current one," he says.

"The costs of attracting a new customer easily exceed the gross

margin of the initial order, which means that the company is typically

out of pocket at the time of the first purchase."

"The reason I started this company," he says, "is that

a lot of businesses, even though they have been running for many


have been unable to grow their business. I wanted to show the owners

and corporate executives how to look at a business, what steps you

have to go through to grow a business. Often, they focus on finances.

But if you don’t sell the products effectively and focus on marketing,

you will never have to worry about finances, because you will not

bring in revenues."

Top Of Page
Speakers Available

Commercializing technology, managing customer


and how to hire consultants are several of the two dozen topics that

speakers from the Institute of Management Consultants can present

for corporations, clubs, and trade associations. The institute, which

has its Princeton chapter based in Lawrenceville, certifies


and has just announced its Speaker’s Bureau service. All topics and

speakers are available at no charge. The list can be found at

or call John McCrea at 732-571-1621. For chapter information

call Paul Gondek at 609-896-4457.

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