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Research Basics Bootcamp

  • Thu, March 11, 2021
  • Fri, March 12, 2021
  • 2 sessions
  • Thu, March 11, 2021, 9:00 AM 12:30 PM (EST)
  • Fri, March 12, 2021, 12:30 PM 4:00 PM (EST)
  • Online
  • 0


Registration is closed

Research Basics Bootcamp

Thursday, March 11, 2021, 9:00 AM - 12:30 PM EDT


Friday, March 12, 2021, 12:30 PM -4:00 PM EDT 




Research Basics Bootcamp is two half days of instruction in the essentials of prospect research. This training is a must for those new to research or those who have had research added to their roles. No experience in the field is necessary to begin learning how to apply professional research methodologies. The two half days will cover such subjects as:

  • The Strategic Role of Advancement Research
  • Prospect Research Fundamentals
  • The Ethical Researcher
  • Advancement Research Sources and Methodology
  • Assessing Gift Capacity
  • Presenting Research


Amber W. Countis has served as Director of Donor Relations for Texas A&M University-Commerce since December 2018. In this role, she has responsibility for Stewardship and Donor Relations, Advancement Services, Prospect Research and Management, Annual Giving, Student Philanthropy, and Phonathon functions. She previously served as Senior Director of Advancement Services at Norwich University in Vermont from 2012 to 2018 and was Director of Prospect Development and Research at Tufts University from 2005 to 2012.


Amber began her career in development and prospect research at Loyola University (2003 to 2005) and Ochsner Clinic Foundation (2001 to 2003) in New Orleans. She is a graduate of Tulane University with a BA in political science and environmental studies, and earned a certificate in management of nonprofit organizations and a master of public policy from Tufts University. She served two terms as president (2012 to 2014) of the New England Development Research Association (NEDRA) and was on the board of directors from 2009 to 2015 serving in various capacities including conference co-chair, vice president, secretary, scholarship and nominating committees. She is a member of ADRP, AASP, CASE, and Apra where she served as a member of the curriculum planning committee for the 2018 and 2019 Prospect Development conferences. She was a faculty member for the CASE Annual Conference on Prospect Development in January 2020 and a presenter and the Advancement Services track chair for the CASE District IV Conference in March 2020.

Lisa Foster is the Director of Prospect Development at Phillips Academy in Andover, Massachusetts, where she is also an alumna, past parent and current parent. Lisa recently completed her six-year term as member of the Board of Directors of NEDRA. Over the course of her term, she served as the Treasurer of the Board of Directors, Conference Co-Chair for two NEDRA Conferences, Secretary of the Board, and Co-Chair of various committees. Lisa continues to serve on the NEDRA Programming Committee. Lisa recently stepped down as a Director of the Haverhill Foundation for Excellence in Education after serving as a director for over twenty years and has also served as a director of the Discovery Club Program. 

Tara McMullen-King is Assistant Director and Data Insight Lead at the Helen Brown Group, where she works with a team of researchers and data insight consultants to support nonprofit clients all across the United States. She began her career in development in 2002 supporting the Major Gifts department at Simmons College, and ultimately went on to serve as Assistant Director of Prospect Research. Since that time, she has also worked as a Senior Research Analyst at MIT, as Associate Director of Prospect Management and Research at the Harvard Graduate School of Education, and as Director of Development Research at Combined Jewish Philanthropies (CJP). Tara originally joined the Helen Brown Group team in 2007 and served as a Research Associate and ShareTraining coordinator until 2008 – she rejoined the company in 2013. She has been an active volunteer with NEDRA for many years and served on the board of directors from 2010-2016. During her time on the board, she served in many different roles, including terms as Vice President, Secretary, Chair of the Website and Technology Committee, Chair of the Volunteer Committee, and as Chair and Editor of NEDRA News. In addition, Tara has also been involved as a volunteer with Apra, serving stints on the Membership Committee, Chapters Committee, and Bylaws Task Force. An alumna of Smith College, she lives in the Witch City of Salem, MA, where she also operates a boutique wedding planning and coordination consultancy.


NEDRA Member: $199

Non-Member* (New Member): $298

*Note: Non-member registration includes a full year of NEDRA membership. Contact office@nedra.org to redeem.

Scholarships are available for this program!


Day 1:

9:00 AM Informal introductions/conversations

9:30 AM Program begins

12:30 PM – Program ends for Day 1

Day 2:

12:30 PM Program Begins

4:00 PM Program Concludes

Advance registration is required. The link to join the session will be emailed 1-2 days in advance.


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Waltham, MA 02452

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