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Michelle Buchanan, CFRE

Principal, Houston

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Two words come to mind to describe Michelle’s counseling style – determination and results! Well actually, three words – the third is fun! While taking the work of fundraising seriously, Michelle doesn’t make the work of planning, campaigning and mentoring anything but an enjoyable experience. When in a tough spot, Michelle will settle for nothing short of success and the celebration that follows achieving a goal. Her goal is to make others better – to strengthen the skills and results of those with whom she works.

Building strong, trusted relationships was one of the secrets to Michelle’s success as a development professional and major gift officer. Michelle began her fundraising career at the Wesley Community Center, eventually serving at the University of Houston’s main campus. Before joining Dini Spheris, Michelle was a leader among the major gift solicitors at The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center. There, Michelle managed an annual portfolio of over 150 individuals – many of whom she would come to regard as personal friends.

At Dini Spheris, Michelle has served as team leader on numerous projects. Those projects include building a centralized philanthropy program for St. Louis’ Mercy Health system, which spans four states and 32 hospitals, as well as working with Medical Center Hospital in Odessa, Texas, to create the first-ever major gift foundation. A graduate of Texas Tech University, Michelle is often heard speaking at major professional conferences in nonprofit, educational and healthcare philanthropy.

Representative Clients Served

  • Academy of the Sacred Heart
  • Allied Arts
  • American Cancer Society
  • American Cancer Society - Oklahoma City
  • Big Brothers Big Sisters of South Texas
  • Child Advocates of Fort Bend
  • Conway Regional Medical Center
  • El Campo Medical Foundation
  • Front Range Community College
  • Galveston Historical Foundation
  • Gleaners Community Food Bank
  • Glenwood Cemetery Historic Preservation Foundation
  • Institute of American Indian Arts Foundation
  • KIPP Texas Public Schools
  • Literacy Council of Fort Bend County
  • Lone Star College Foundation
  • Lutheran South Academy
  • Matagorda Regional Medical Center
  • Medical Center Hospital
  • Mercy Health - Mercy Hospital Oklahoma City
  • Midland Shared Spaces
  • Mississippi Aquarium
  • Network of Community Ministries
  • Odessa College
  • Oregon Coast Aquarium
  • Pensacola State College
  • Regional Food Bank of Oklahoma
  • Ronald McDonald House Charities of Central Iowa
  • Sam Houston State University
  • Second Harvest Food Bank of Greater New Orleans and Acadiana
  • Sire, Inc.
  • Smithsonian Institution, National Museum of the American Indian (NMAI)
  • South Plains College
  • St. Louis Community College
  • Stephen F. Austin State University
  • Suffolk Community College Foundation
  • Sweeny Community Hospital
  • Texas Biomedical Research Institute
  • Texas Ranger Hall of Fame and Museum
  • University of Central Arkansas
  • Visitation Academy

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