Mr. David P. Bennett serves as the Senior Vice President for Development and Alumni Relations at Howard University. In this role, Mr. Bennett provides strategic vision, and leads the critical work of developing campaigns and activities that will enhance philanthropic support and alumni engagement for the University. Mr. Bennett is an energetic leader with more than 25 years of experience advancing development strategies for organizations with national and international focus. Most recently he led all philanthropic programs globally for one of the world’s largest nonprofit organizations, the National Geographic Society. Serving as Chief Development Officer, his responsibilities included managing a portfolio of trustees and high net-worth donors and prospects, overseeing all international fundraising efforts and providing direction for several key areas including principal and major gifts, planned giving, annual giving, and stewardship. In addition, he helped to build a network of fundraising and programmatic offices for National Geographic around the world. Mr. Bennett has a proven track record of building close, collaborative, and transparent relationships across teams, creating strategies that increase engagement, and driving campaigns that exceed their target goal.
Prior to joining National Geographic, Mr. Bennett was Chief Advancement Officer of Safe Kids Worldwide, an international injury prevention organization. In this role, he was responsible for the fundraising, communications, and public policy functions of an organization with over 350 affiliates in the United States and operations in 17 other countries. His previous experience also includes serving as vice president of United Cerebral Palsy of America and as director of the Fundraising and Sponsorship Group of Odell, Simms, & Lynch, a consulting firm that provide services to nonprofit organizations. Early in his career, Bennett worked in federal politics as a finance director for two United States Senate campaigns and as a fundraiser for a national political party. Mr. Bennett earned a Bachelor of Arts in Foreign Affairs from the University of Virginia.