Annual Giving Leader from OSU Foundation Named to National List

Media Contact: Molly Brown, 541-737-3602
Source: Lacie LaRue, 541-737-4704
Source: Eden Stiffman, Reporter, The Chronicle of Philanthropy, 202-466-1202

Lacie LaRueCORVALLIS, Ore. – Lacie LaRue, senior director of annual giving programs for the Oregon State University Foundation, has been named one of 2016’s most innovative young leaders in the nation by The Chronicle of Philanthropy.

She is the only person from Oregon in the January 2016 cover article titled, “40 Under 40: Young Leaders Who Are Solving the Problems of Today — and Tomorrow.” Other honorees include Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg and Priscilla Chan of the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative; Jason Cone, executive director of Doctors Without Borders; Alicia Garza, co-founder of Black Lives Matter; and Henry Timms, founder of Giving Tuesday.

The Chronicle includes LaRue among a group of “number-crunchers,” stating that “the up-and-coming fundraiser is helping the Oregon State University Foundation break away from staid ideas of annual giving, bringing a data-driven approach to keeping donors in the fold and encouraging them to give more.”

LaRue oversees all OSU Foundation strategies related to raising gifts under $25,000. While annual giving programs typically divide donors into various categories, LaRue’s complex system of segmentation places donors in more than 2,000 groups.

“Yes, I’m a data nerd, but digging through the numbers is really effective,” she said. “When we narrow our focus, we can develop strategies to reach these specific groups of people.”

Under LaRue’s leadership, the number of OSU donors who annually give $1,000 or more for academics has grown 5 to 11 percent each year since 2011. Her team has steadily raised the bar for annual giving programs at Oregon State, with those donors giving more than $19 million in the 2014-15 fiscal year.

“This recognition of our industry’s young ‘trailblazers who are crafting innovative new approaches to entrenched problems’ is well deserved for Lacie,” said Mike Goodwin, president and CEO of the Oregon State University Foundation and board chair of the Council for the Advancement and Support of Education (CASE). “Her outside-the-box approach and strategic use of analytics have spelled great success for our annual giving efforts and have made her a leader among her peers.”

LaRue also participates in face-to-face fundraising including overseeing the foundation’s regional efforts in Washington, D.C., and collaborating with the OSU Alumni Association. In addition to other presentations in her field, she has served several times as a faculty member and conference chair for CASE and the Annual Giving Network.

Prior to joining the OSU Foundation in 2008 LaRue worked for the annual giving programs at Iowa State University, the University of Maryland and Portland State University, overseeing programs that included parent and student giving, direct mail and phone programs. A native of Belmond, Iowa, LaRue earned her bachelor’s degree in Spanish from Iowa State University.

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