Seminar Faculty

Thomas D. Anderson, J.D., Senior VP

Regional Wealth Executive & FirstMerit Wealth Management Services

Thomas D. Anderson has over 30 years of financial services experience.  He currently leads five of First Merit’s Wealth Management Services teams in northern Ohio.  Tom and his team offer  local expertise to clients in areas such as investments, Private Banking, estate and financial planning, and retirement planning services.

Tom serves on the board of the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation as well as The Malachi House.  He also serves on the Advisory Boards for the Museum of Natural History and Holden Arboretum, and is a member of Cleveland Metropolitan Bar Association, the Ashtabula County Bar association, and the Geauga County Bar Association. 

Dr. Barbara Clemenson

Barbara Clemenson is Academic and Career Advisor at Case Western Reserve University’s Mandel Center for Nonprofit Organizations, as well as an adjunct instructor, a consultant for nonprofit organizations, and a conference presenter. 

Barbara teaches and consults in nonprofit finances, fundraising, management, leadership development and strategic planning, and has served on several national boards.

  Alex S. Petrus

During his 26-year career, Alex has raised more than $100 million dollars in philanthropic support  from individuals, corporations and foundations for non-profit organizations in the Northeast Ohio area.  He has led and managed a wide range of development programs, including annual giving, planned giving, major gifts, foundation giving, corporate giving, special events, prospect research, database and alumni relations programs.

Alex’s expertise lies in managing and leading successful fund-raising programs focused on major and planned gifts. He has overseen successful capital campaigns of $33,000,000 and $5,000,000.  In his current position of Vice President of Advancement at Berea Children’s Home and Family Services since 1999, he completed a $8.9 million dollar capital campaign.

From 1991-1999, he was Director of Development at the Case Alumni Association, Case Western Reserve University (CWRU) where he had capital campaign, major gift, planned giving and endowment responsibilities.  He was the lead staff person in the successful $33 million dollar capital campaign for The Case School of Engineering that completed in 1996. Prior to his work at CWRU, Alex worked as Director of Development for the Catholic Diocese of Cleveland, raising $10 million+ in a capital campaign supporting inner-city Catholic Schools.

Alex has a masters degree in social work from Case Western Reserve University (School of Applied Social Sciences) and an undergraduate degree from Cleveland State University in psychology. He has also completed post graduate work in business administration from Cleveland State University. He earned Certified Fund Raising Executive (CFRE) status in 1991 and served as a trustee of the Cleveland Chapter of the Association of Fund Raising Professionals from 2006-2010.  Alex also serves as a board member of the Greater Cleveland Better Business Bureau. 

Other professional memberships include Estate Planning Council of Cleveland, National Committee on Planned Giving, and Northern Ohio Planned Giving Council. In 2003, he received the Development and Public Relations Officer of the Year award from the national United Methodist Association.

He enjoys serving as a mentor to those entering the field and volunteering in the areas of fund raising and his community. Alex has made numerous presentations on major gift fund-raising, planned giving, annual giving programs, telethons, grant writing, capital campaigns, corporate giving and donor cultivation programs to churches and nonprofit organizations. He makes numerous presentations to undergraduate students at Baldwin Wallace College regarding careers in fund raising, and has served as “Principles of Successful Fund-Raising” faculty for many years.

 Kevin E. Riordan

Currently engaged in consulting and volunteer relationships with several local non-profit organizations, Kevin’s’ professional career spans over three decades, including 22 years in local and national United Way organizations and 15 years in secondary and post secondary education institutions.

Highlights of his career include:

  • Management of complex, multi-faceted fundraising efforts for capital, endowment and operating support with results in excess of $250 Million.
  • Managed successful $32 Million campaign process for private, secondary school in Cleveland including strategic planning, feasibility study, goal setting, volunteer recruitment, and prospect identification, cultivation, solicitation and stewardship.
  • Recruited, motivated and supported staff and volunteer teams to produce agreed upon results.

Cultivated, solicited and stewarded major gift donors to help make their “philanthropic dreams come true.”


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