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October 23 & 24, 2024  ●  Malibu, California  ●  Pepperdine University

Join us in Malibu on October 23rd & 24th, 2024. Our Early Bird registration is now open, and attendees can receive 50% off the standard ticket price for a limited time by using code EARLYBIRD when registering.

For information about conference sponsorships, including table sponsorships for your organization, please contact Center Director Jonathan Hannah at A list of current sponsorship opportunities for the 2024 conference can be seen here.


Our fourth annual Givers, Doers, & Thinkers conference will gather donors, nonprofit leaders, and scholars from across the country. This conference is your chance to:

  • Network with like-minded people in the world of nonprofits, education, and charitable giving.
  • Learn from expert panelists who will share knowledge and tips as to how you and your organization can strengthen civil society.
  • Hear from expert speakers and panels on subjects such as K-12 education, free speech on college campuses, proposals for higher education reform, and how donors can successfully work with college and university partners to create gift agreements that honor donor intent.


The 2024 Annual Conference for Givers, Doers, and Thinkers will take place in Malibu, California, on the campus of Pepperdine University. The conference is the fourth in a series of events that will bring donors and civil society leaders together to discuss and develop ways to strengthen American civil society. The purpose of this conference series is to advance a robust vision for charitable giving that is grounded in the Judeo-Christian understanding of charity, to champion local giving, and to share ideas on how to conserve the natural and cultural goods of our communities and our nation. 

Recent studies suggest that Americans are at near-historic lows when it comes to trusting institutions of higher learning and believing in the value of a college degree. Yet, many colleges and universities are thriving by offering excellent educational opportunities and by working with donors who truly care about the quality of education offered to today’s youth. By joining us in October, you will see how leaders in the education space are finding creative ways to make meaningful and impactful education available to those who seek it. 

If you are passionate about the fundamental role that education plays in American society, please join us in Malibu this October!


  • WHEN:  The conference will take place on October 23rd & 24th, 2024.
  • WHERE:  The Wilburn Auditorium on the campus of Pepperdine University.
  • DETAILS:  The full conference agenda, which includes two featured speakers and five panel discussions, will be released soon!
Attendance is open to donors; donor advisors; charitable foundation representatives, staff, and board members; and nonprofit leaders. This is a non-solicitation event.


Mark Bauerlein

Mark Bauerlein earned his PhD in English at UCLA in 1989. For two years (2003-05) he served as Director of the Office of Research and Analysis at the National Endowment for the Arts. He is now Emeritus Professor of English at Emory University and an editor at First Things magazine. Currently, he serves as Trustee of New College of Florida. His books include The Pragmatic Mind: Explorations in the Psychology of Belief (1997), Literary Criticism: An Autopsy (1997), The Dumbest Generation: How the Digital Age Stupefies Young Americans and Jeopardizes Our Future (2008), and The Dumbest Generation Grows Up: From Stupefied Youth to Dangerous Adults (2022). His essays have appeared in PMLA, Partisan Review, Philosophy and Literature, Wilson Quarterly, Commentary, and New Criterion, and his commentaries and reviews in the Wall Street Journal, New York Times, Washington Post, Boston Globe, Weekly Standard, The Guardian, Chronicle of Higher Education, and other national periodicals.


Hanna Skandera

President &Chief Executive OfficerDaniels Fund

Hanna Skandera joined the Daniels Fund as a Board member in 2019 and was subsequently selected as president and CEO in 2020 due to her proven track record of transformative leadership and impact in both public and private sector organizations.Founded by cable pioneer Bill Daniels, the Daniels Fund transforms communities through grantmaking and college scholarships in Colorado, New Mexico, Utah and Wyoming. Its mission is rooted in Bill Daniels’ own life story, vision, and values and its work is centered on developing contributing citizens, enhancing quality of life, driving upward mobility, and promoting the free market. In 2021, the Daniels Fund celebrated giving away $1 billion since 2000.Hanna is nationally recognized for her expertise in education, with significant improvements in student achievement during her leadership in New Mexico, where she served as secretary of education under Governor Susana Martinez. She also previously served as undersecretary for California Governor Schwarzenegger and as deputy commissioner for Florida Governor Jeb Bush and as deputy chief of staff and senior policy advisor for the U. S. Department of Education.


Cherise Trump

Executive Director of Speech First

Christy Wolfe

Senior vice president for policy, research, and planning for the National Alliance for Public Charter Schools

Jenna A. Robinson

President the James G. Martin Center for Academic Renewal

Dr. Jennifer Nolan

President and Co-Founder of the new Catholic Polytechnic University

Nancy Padberg, MBA

President & CEOCatholic Education ArizonaSchool Tuition Organization

Panayiotis (Pano) Kanelos

Founding President of the University of Austin (UATX)

Dr. Timothy J. Collins

President of Walsh University

Pete Peterson

Braun Family Dean's ChairSenior Fellow at Davenport Institute

Dr. Gene C. Crume Jr.

President of Judson University

Jeremy Beer

Senior Fellow, Center for civil society & Co-Founder & Executive Chairman, AMPhil

Jack Fowler

Senior Fellow, Center for civil society & Senior Director, Strategic Partnerships, AmPhil

Cecilia Diem

Director, Donor Advisory

Jonathan Hannah