Hudson Institute

The Hudson Institute in Washington D.C. has a long-established track record as a leading public policy think tank. However, the organization historically did not have a comprehensive and systematic development program. Instead, the organization relied on a project-specific, rather than organizational-centric, development model.

As Hudson Institute grew, its leadership decided this model was no longer the most effective for driving organizational growth. Accordingly, Hudson Institute needed a new development strategy and a detailed, action-oriented plan for implementation.

American Philanthropic worked closely with Hudson Institute leadership to identify challenges and goals and then crafted a customized three-year strategic development plan to guide and structure a robust, multi-faceted development program. The resulting plan was organized around an overarching landmark goal and outlined five strategies to optimize 1. Development operations and human resources; 2. Donor communications; 3. Donor acquisition; 4. Donor cultivation and solicitation; and 5. Leadership and governance.

Each strategy entailed a series of specific, time-bound, and assigned tactics and tasks to be executed by Hudson development staff and leadership over the lifespan of the plan. The final plan also included a series of revenue projections and benchmarks, development input objectives, and a plan matrix that operationalized the execution of the plan by time and personnel.

The resulting strategic development plan energized Hudson’s board, leadership, and staff and provided a concrete and practical rallying point for implementing a new approach to development. The planning process forged a broad consensus within the organization about how it should approach development going forward.

With the help of American Philanthropic, Hudson Institute is now in the process of implementing its strategic development plan and meeting the aggressive, but realistic goals outlined therein.


American Philanthropic is registered as “fundraising counsel,” “fundraising consultants,” or other similar designations in all states requiring this kind of registration. We did not act as a “professional fundraiser” in the case cited above, meaning, among other things, that we did not at any time solicit funds, assets, or property on our client’s behalf.