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  • Writer's pictureNonprofit Learning Lab

Building Relationships to Fund Your Grant Proposals: Words of Wisdom from Beverly Browning

Updated: Jun 9, 2023

Beverly Browning of the Grant Writing Training Foundation is leading a workshop at the Nonprofit Lab in Phoenix on May 8, 2020. We recently had a chat with her and wanted to share some insights that we think can aid you in a more productive 2020!

What is the best advice a mentor ever gave you?

My mentor was former (and late) Congresswoman, the Honorable Shirley Chisholm. I had a chance to meet her in person and receive a signed copy of her book. She resonated in her communications that successful women must be unbought and unbossed by societal influences. Did I mention that she was born in 1924 and served in Congress for 7 terms?

What is your favorite tool for staying organized? What do you use it for and how do you use it?

Because I am a serial multitasker, I rely on technology to make each day productive. All of my organizing tools are my favorites: Google Calendar, OneDrive, Dropbox, Slack, and hard paper copies of whatever I'm working on for my clients. I also rely on Google Drive for sharing folders with clients. My administrative files and long-term retainer client files are kept in the cloud. Google Calendar tells me hour by hour what I need to do and where I need to be. Nothing gets missed. I am also a fan of Amazon's Alexa devices. I have all reminders and Calendar events connected to Alexa.

During our Phoenix Nonprofit Lab, you are leading a workshop titled "Why Your Grant Proposal Was Not Funded - Red Flags 101." What is the most important piece of advice you think people should take from your workshop?

First, build relationships with all potential funders before you start writing your letters of inquiry or grant proposals. Takeaway the embedded thought that the building relationship phase is like being engaged to be married. Potential funders want to get to know about your organization and its capacity before they encourage you to submit funding requests.

We hope you can join us at our Nonprofit Lab in Phoenix. It will be a great day full of learning, networking, and skills building. Our Nonprofit Labs are a one-day deep dive conference for nonprofit professionals. To register for the Denver Nonprofit Lab, go to



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