Consultation & Clients

Consultation Services

Organizational Development

All consulting services are designed to achieve long-term sustainable positive change and growth.

Each consultative project is designed exclusively for the client’s unique situation, size, and budget.  Experience has demonstrated that organizational impact cannot be achieved in a few days, or even a few months. Thus, our consultations use a process that secures input, involvement, innovation, and inspired momentum over time (generally one year or more).

Our project-process-approach uses organizational development techniques and best practices for the nonprofit sector.  We may borrow ideas from the corporate sector, but we remain firm that the nonprofit sector must focus on the mission first, so the money will follow.

Board & Leadership Development

Governance challenges persist, in part because the industry’s “new boards” want more relevance and measurable impact.

We offer a version of board training that is designed to develop the full potential of your board.  Therefore, we do not advocate for a one-time training session.  Instead, we work directly with your board to assess where they are, and where they want to be.

This process may include an assessment, leadership training, team-building, recruitment with on-boarding, and the selection/evaluation of performance metrics.  Our goal is to be sure that your board members perform both individually, as well as collectively.  This means, each board member has a specific role to play during his/her tenure that maximize time and talents, and that the entire board assumes responsibility for its own performance.

Strategic Visioning & Planning

Gone are the days of the one-day retreat strategic planning session; today’s environment requires constant critical analysis and alignment.  That means some things work and stay, and others don’t (including process, procedures and even programs).

Our services guide the organization’s leadership through a series of steps, including a deep dive into fact-finding, that will uncover the information needed to make well-informed decisions.  This may include the development of a long-range strategic plan, or just the development of a new project.  It might also include the creation of a new vision, or just a reinvention of old business model.

The key to strategic planning is actually strategic thinking.  It’s not the written plan that matters in the end, it’s the dialogue that leads to brilliant decisions that come to fruition.

Board & Staff Training

Knowledge is power.  The more board members and staff understand the purpose of philanthropy, the more likely they are to appreciate and participate in fundraising.

Presentations include: the Power of Philanthropy, Nonprofit Trends and Challenges, Marketing Value Exchanges, Motivating Different Donors, Fundraising Innovations, and many more.

All presentations are based on market and academic research, and utilize active learning techniques and measurable outcome goals.  Depending on the organization’s needs, presentations may range from one hour to a full-day facilitated retreat, or somewhere in-between, and they are individually tailored to each client.

Click here to contact Karla to discuss your particular needs.


For the past 35 years, Karla has served a wide range of both local and national organizations.  Her clients have engaged her in every type of consultation from large scale organizational change, to small group facilitation around advancement or alignment issues.  While she is primarily called in to address what appears to be a fundraising challenge, most organizations have discovered the need for more systemic work around culture and leadership.  With those two in place, fundraising is seldom problematic.

Current and Former Clients

  • Alliance for Children with Cancer, MN
  • Archdiocese of St. Paul & Minneapolis, MN
  • Big Brothers Big Sisters, MN
  • Big Brothers Big Sisters, NC
  • Binder Park Zoo, MI
  • Bluffton College, OH
  • Brightest Horizons, FL
  • Charlotte Housing Authority, NC
  • Child & Family Services, MN
  • Child & Family Services, TN
  • Children’s Home Association, IL
  • City of Lakes Waldorf School, MN
  • Common Bond, MN
  • Community Counseling Services, AR
  • Crisis Assistance Ministry, NC
  • Daniel Stowe Botanical Garden, NC
  • Eagle Village, MI
  • Family Resources, FL
  • Forest Lawn Historic Cemetery, NY
  • Girl Scouts, Hornet’s Nest Council, NC
  • Goodwill Industries, NC
  • Hennepin County Parks, MN
  • Hospice & Palliative Care, NC
  • Houston Grand Opera, TX
  • Intergenerational Living & Health Care, MN
  • International College, FL
  • Joe DiMaggio Children’s Hospital, FL
  • Johnson C. Smith University, NC
  • Lambda Chi, IN
  • Lauritzen Botanical Gardens, NE
  • Lutheran Family Services of NC & SC
  • McGill Rose Garden, NC
  • Memphis Grants Center, TN
  • Michigan 4H Foundation, MI
  • Minnesota Landscape Arboretum, MN
  • Minnesota Zoo, MN
  • NC MedAssist, NC
  • NC Zoological Park, NC
  • NeighborWorks America, DC
  • North Carolina Dance Theatre, NC
  • Omaha Public Library, NE
  • Peter Kiewet Foundation, NE
  • Richland Community Foundation, OH
  • Ronald McDonald Charities, MN
  • SAFE Place, MI
  • Safe Alliance, NC
  • Second Harvest, TN
  • St. Paul Public School Foundation, MN
  • The Conservancy of SW Florida
  • The Shelter for Battered Women, NC
  • The Village Family Centers, ND
  • The Woodlawn Historic Cemetery, NY
  • United Family Services, NC
  • United Way of Central Carolinas, NC
  • Urban League, NC
  • VFW National Children’s Home, MI
  • Woodland Historic Cemetery, OH
  • YMCA, MN
  • YWCA of Monroe, LO
  • YMCA of Greater St. Louis, MO
  • YWCA of Central Carolinas, NC
  • Zaoksky Adventist University, SVO

Presentations & Training

The following list is certainly not complete, but it offers a good representation of the scope of her speaking/training work.

  • AFP International Conferences
  • AFP Chapters in United States & Canada
  • AFP NC Conference
  • Alliance for Children & Families, USA
  • Alzheimer’s National Association
  • Arts & Science Council, NC
  • Association of Health Care Philanthropy
  • Association of Lutheran Development Executives
  • Bectler Museum of Modern Art, NC
  • Benedictine Health Care, MN
  • Benedictine Health System, Upper Midwest
  • Big Brothers Big Sisters, MN and NC
  • Campus Ministries, USA
  • Catholic Diocese, MN
  • Child Welfare League of America
  • Children’s Museum of Omaha
  • Children’s Theatre of Charlotte, NC
  • College Possible, MN
  • Communities in Schools, NC
  • Cristo Rey Schools, Omaha
  • Cultural Trust & Arts Science Council, NC
  • Discovery Place, NC
  • Evangelical Lutheran Church Association, NC
  • Family Service of America
  • Free Will Baptist Children’s Home, NC
  • Heifer National Foundation
  • Hospice & Palliative Care Charlotte Region, NC
  • Humanities Nebraska
  • Jazz Arts Initiative, NC
  • Joe Dimaggio Children’s Hospital, FL
  • The John Crosland School, NC
  • Junior League of Charlotte, NC
  • Keep American Beautiful, USA
  • Knoxville Housing Services, TN
  • Knoxville Marketing Association, TN
  • Lee Leadership Institute, NC
  • Levine Museum of the New South, NC
  • McColl Center for the Arts & Innovation, NC
  • Mental Health Association, NC
  • Michigan Association for Nonprofits
  • Michigan 4H Foundation
  • National Historic Cemetery Association
  • National Humanities Commission
  • National Public Radio Association
  • National YMCA Development Officers
  • NC Community Foundation
  • NC MedAssist, NC
  • Philanthropy Journal, NC
  • Charlotte Symphony, NC
  • NeighborWorks America
  • Northpark College and Seminary, IL
  • OPERA America, USA
  • Peter Kiewit Foundation, NE
  • Philanthropic Services Institute, DE
  • Planned Parenthood National Association
  • Red Cross of Greater Charlotte, NC
  • Richland County Community Foundation, OH
  • Ronald McDonald House Charities, MN
  • Safe Alliance, NC
  • Salvation Army National & Local, USA
  • Seventh Day Adventist National, USA
  • Susan G. Komen Charlotte, NC
  • United Arts Councils
  • United Way Association of North Carolina
  • University of Arizona Medical Foundation, AZ
  • Urban Ministry, NC
  • Wayne County Community Foundation, IN
  • WE (Women’s Executives), NC
  • Women’s Impact Fund, NC
  • YMCA Charlotte, NC
  • YWCA Charlotte, NC