The Art and Science of Persuasion

Faculty should know that this train is moving, and if there are suggestions or cliams to be made or priorities to be established, this is the time to do it.

—Carl Holladay, Charles Howard Candler Professor of New Testament Studies

Vol. 8 No. 4
February/March 2006

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The Art and Science of Persuasion
Faculty, fundraising, and Emory's comprehensive campaign

The Development and University Relations Faculty Advisory Council

The Emory College Faculty Committee on Fundraising

"Faculty should know that this train is moving, and if there are suggestions or claims to be made or priorities to be established, this is the time to do it."

"Fundraising is an enormously long process, with hours devoted to stewardship."

Dangerous Ideas
The responsibilities of courageous inquiry

Emory's Living Room
The case for a university faculty club

A Day in the Life
Juggling family and academic science



Academic Exchange:
When you think about faculty being involved in fundraising and the campaign, what kinds of activities come to mind?

Carl Holladay: I think there’s a very fine line that we have to respect: that faculty are primarily faculty. As faculty, we have responsibilities to teach and do research and serve. The development office should be careful in the ways in which we draw on that resource. Faculty in the School of Theology operate with an enormous sense of goodwill; they are willing, whenever they are speaking or traveling, to speak in behalf of Emory. Some faculty engage in development activities naturally. People will be attracted to Emory through them. But it’s usually as an extension of their own academic interests, a sense of their own vocation, their own passions.
I think it’s vital to make sure that the strategic plan has faculty ownership and not just the ownership of a small subset of faculty. But that doesn’t necessarily translate into faculty themselves taking on development tasks.

AE: Probably not all members of the faculty are going to be willing and able to do so. Do you think it’s possible that those who don’t participate won’t benefit?

CH: No, I don’t. Some faculty don’t have the disposition or the interest or the time to do it. And I think it’s important to remember that being a faculty member is a full-time job. And if development represents an extension of their vocation, or if it’s natural for faculty to talk to their constituents or their own circle of friends about the campaign, then fine. And I think it’s important for the university to cultivate those people. There are members of the School of Theology faculty who are extraordinarily well connected, not only in the church, but also in the business community throughout the Southeast, nationally and internationally. I think the development program can have full faculty ownership without necessarily every faculty member being involved in some direct way. I operate with a theology of diversity of gifts: those faculty who are gifted in that way, fine. Those who are not, that should be fine as well.

AE: You’re comfortable asking someone for a specific dollar amount, say, five million dollars?

CH: Absolutely. When I was the academic dean here I was involved to some extent in development work. And when I was asked to participate in those kinds of activities, I welcomed it because the School of Theology has a great story to tell. I always felt it was important to present who we were, what we do. And I think there are a lot of friends of the university whose special interest is theology, religion, the church, its ministries. I was really gratified that the university decided to make “Religion, Society, and the Human Experience” one of its major themes. That highlights a strand of Emory’s longtime commitment.

AE: As a member of the Development and University Relations faculty advisory committee, what message do you want to carry back to the faculty, and vice versa?

CH: The members of the committee are interpreters in two senses, interpreting the will of the faculty to the committee and interpreting dur to the faculty. And I think there are two or three things to interpret to the faculty. One is that strategic planning is a process, that certain decisions are being made that are consequential, but it’s an ongoing process, and faculty should feel that they can either contribute to that process or make suggestions that might alter that process. Second is the central administration’s and the development office’s desire to have genuine faculty ownership that is both broad and deep, that no one is interested in moving this university ahead with half of the faculty or a third of the faculty on board. They really do want this to be a university strategic plan. Third, faculty should know that this train is moving, and if there are suggestions or claims to be made or priorities to be established, this is the time to do it.

Faculty can do one of two things. They can more or less ignore this process or not participate in it, in which case they may find programs being redefined or defined in ways in which they don’t have input. Or they can be a part of the creative energy that is going to shape the new institutions, the new programs, the new policies, the new priorities.