Ben Nicol, Chief Executive Officer of the Phi Kappa Psi Foundation, is the 2017 recipient of the William D. Jenkins Outstanding Foundation Professional Award, an honor presented annually by the North-American Interfraternity Conference Foundation (NICF).
Ben was initiated into Phi Kappa Psi at Valparaiso University and began his fraternal career as an Educational Leadership Consultant. He joined the Phi Kappa Psi Foundation in 2004 as Assistant Director of Development, where he was responsible for the design, execution and management of a comprehensive annual giving program, including coordination of supporting initiatives in donor relations, stewardship, communication strategy and volunteer engagement.
After serving in the roles of Director of Operations and Managing Director, Ben became CEO in 2012. In partnership with the fraternity, he led the development of a joint 2020 Strategic Plan to guide the operations and strategic focus of both organizations. His approach to non-profit management includes cultivating personal relationships with each donor and increasing face-to-face meetings to strengthen connections, resulting in a growth of total number of donors by 122 percent and Annual Fund donors by 242 percent.
“He is well beyond his chronological age in terms of his counsel, his temperament and his savvy as a senior leader,” said Frederick Hegele, Chair of Phi Kappa Psi Foundation. “He has a remarkable ability to maintain a steady, positive mindset on both the greatest of successful moments as well as the dark days faced by all senior executives.”
Ben also holds a variety of volunteer positions, including Secretary of his chapter’s House Corporation, and he is a past Treasurer and President of the NICF Board of Directors. During his term as NICF President, Ben helped double the foundation’s assets, significantly increased member and associate member participation, and broadened overall service to NICF member organizations.
According to Beta Theta Pi’s Foundation Director, Jonathan Brant, Ben is held in high regard as an interfraternal leader. “Ben’s advocacy of, and devotion to the interfraternity idea has been longstanding! His actions do indeed exemplify fraternal values, mission and purpose, and model selfless service, visionary leadership, and a lifetime of service to the movement.”
“I have remained a loyal admirer of not only Ben’s talent but his dedication and support of all things that are so wonderful about our profession,” said Kitty deKieffer, Executive Director of Gamma Phi Beta Foundation and current President of the NICF Board of Directors. “He exemplifies the values that we all hold – professionalism, integrity, high donor ethics and servant leadership.”
The William D. Jenkins Award for Outstanding Foundation Professional will be presented on Tuesday, Aug. 29, during the NICF Awards of Distinction Dinner at the Indiana Roof Ballroom, held in conjunction with THE Foundations Seminar. Click here for more details and to purchase tickets for the dinner.
About the NIC Foundation
The NICF advances the fraternal movement by enhancing the sophistication of interfraternal foundation professionals and creating a culture of philanthropy. The NICF delivers strategies for foundation growth through educational programming and services focused on five key areas – communications, engagement, fundraising, management and stewardship. Visit NICF online at nicindy.foundation or on Facebook and Twitter for more information.