Leadership Lessons from the First 100 Episodes (Patton McDowell)

April 2021

Reaching the 100-episode milestone on Your Path to Nonprofit Leadership was a wonderful journey thanks to incredible nonprofit leaders who were willing to share their wisdom and experiences with our listeners. Chris Delisio, our guest on episode #24 on the Path, offered to rejoin the show and interview me about the experience since the inaugural episode was published on National Philanthropy Day, November 21, 2019.  Our discussion lifted up several dozen fantastic episodes and the leadership lessons each one produced. Three categories emerged: productivity and management tips, leadership and career development advice, and of course, the best book recommendations and resources our guests could offer.  

"You listen to these amazing nonprofit leaders, and can't help but wonder how do they do their remarkable work with limited resources, staff and time (AND during a pandemic!)."



  • Get your free Nonprofit Leadership Self-Assessment Tool and apply for a free registration in one of the next two Mastermind Cohorts Click here for the application.
  • Top Four Productivity Hacks: self-care routines including diet, sleep, exercise, meditation, reading and journaling; time-blocking and meeting managementEating the Frog and methods of prioritization; and weekly review rituals
  • Top Five Leadership Lessons: the value of mentors, the importance of lifelong learning plans, the distinction of nonprofit career stages; the importance of organizational culture; and the heightened awareness of race and equity.




Chris Delisio, Episode #24 : Leadership Development for the 3 Phases of Your Nonprofit

Mike Smith, Episode # 68 : The 3 "C's" of Nonprofit Leadership

Chris Carnie, Episode #76 : Fundraising During A Perfect Storm

Anna Dewar Gully, Episode #94 : Can Nonprofit Leaders Bring An Equity Lens to Their Strategic Planning?

Andrew Hollo, Episode #40 : What Do I Do With My Nonprofit's Strategic Plan?

Martyn Drake, Episode #82 : 4 Things They Don't Teach You About Nonprofit Leadership

Jason Lewis, Fundraising Talent Podcast

Dolph Goldenburg, Successful Nonprofits Podcast

Jenni Hargrave, Nonprofit Jenni Show

Rob Harter, Nonprofit Leadership Podcast

Mary Hiland, Inspired Nonprofit Leadership

Lea Williams, Episode #59 : 5 Keys to Leading Dynamic Virtual Meetings

Bob Carter, Episode #95 : Adapting Your Plan to Nonprofit Leadership

Kamber Parker, Episode #80 : How to Attract Young Professional Talent to Your Nonprofit

David Malloy, Episode #45 : Navigating the Nonprofit Leadership Journey

Elizabeth Hausler, Episode #84 : 4 Keys to Building A Global Nonprofit

Rhett Mabry, Episode #93 : Leadership Lessons from The Duke Endowment

Ben Mohler, Episode #92 : The 4 Stages of Nonprofit Leadership

Gail Bower, Episode #96 : Getting a Grip on Uncertainty as a Nonprofit Leader

Clay Hodges, Episode #16 : 4 Writing Practices for Nonprofit Success

Tina Postel, Episode #42 : Challenging the Nonprofit Status Quo

Michael Ward, Episode #41 : Dealing with Adversity as a Nonprofit Leader

Alison Singer, Episode #55 : Recalibrating Your Fundraising Strategy as a Nonprofit Leader

Curtis Drafton, Episode #50 : Elevating A Cause Through Nonprofit Leadership

Jay Dowd, Episode #61 : 4 Ways to Advance Your Nonprofit Career

Katherine Lambert, Episode #17 : How Do You Move from Manager to Senior Leader at Your Nonprofit?

Tiffany Capers, Episode #92 : Hiring Talent and Sharpening Your Nonprofit Leadership Skills

Michelle Hamilton, Episode #6 : Navigating Your Nonprofit Career & Creating Positive Workplace Culture 

Stamie Despo, Episode #27 : Building A Culture of Philanthropy at Your Nonprofit

Sally Loftis, Episode #64 : How Can We Address Compensation Gaps in the Nonprofit Sector?

Joanne Beam, Episode #22 : Essential Skills for Nonprofit Fundraising Success

Will Jones, Episode #18 : How Do You Blend For-Profit and Nonprofit Leadership Lessons?

Kristin Beck, Episode #31 : Making the Jump: Corporate America to Nonprofit Executive

Tina Admans, Episode #36 : Fortune 500 to Nonprofit Founder & CEO

Valerie Williams, Episode #73 : What Nonprofit Leaders Must Do to Support Their Teams

Valaida Fullwood, Episode #52 : Celebrating Black Philanthropy and Nonprofit Leadership

Kishshana Palmer, Episode #38 : The Secret Lives of Nonprofit Leaders

Jim Taylor, Episode #35 : Vital Resources from BoardSource

Lisa Baxter, Episode #57 : Bringing Authenticity to Nonprofit Leadership

Penny Hawkins, Episode #3 : Maximizing the Talent of Women in the Nonprofit Sector

Penny Hawkins, Episode #69 : National Philanthropy Day: 3 Lessons for Every Nonprofit Leader 

Mike Blackwelder, Episode #5 : New to Nonprofit? 5 Ways to Hit the Ground Running

Mike Blackwelder, Episode #29 : Agile Nonprofit Leadership During the COVID-19 Crisis

Don Jonas, Episode #8 : Leadership Lessons & Telling Your Nonprofit Story

Shannon Hinson, Episode #7 : Know Your Numbers: Maximizing Data for Nonprofit Success

Alicia Winckler & Alan Mather, Episode #79 : Is Co-Leadership Right for Your Nonprofit?

Karen Lee, Episode #83 : Maximizing Advocacy to Fulfill Your Mission