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Our Firm

Legal Counsel for Philanthropy and the Nonprofit Sector

Information and resources on nonprofit law & regulation

Kenneth T. Hoffman

(617) 630-6900

Kenneth Hoffman has been associated with the firm for over 20 years, part of a career combining law and charitable fundraising that began in 1979. He works with clients in the US and globally. Ken's specialty is in advising non-US charities which seek to raise funds from US sources, whether they do so directly from outside the US or when they have an "American Friends" group available.

Some of Ken's clients want guidance in creating the right structure for fundraising. "For a non-US charity, it's tempting to create an 'American Friends' group right from the start. But that isn't necessarily the right step. It is crucial to examine alternatives which may be far more cost-effective." Ken works with our clients to arrive at practical and affordable solutions, suitable to the client's scale of operations and goals.

Other clients seek advice on the planning and conduct of fundraising programs from American individuals, foundations, and corporations. "Many charities realize that 80% of the $300 billion or more given away by Americans each year comes from individual donors. It can lead them to conclude that an individual major donor campaign is the place to start. That might be the right thing to do, but not necessarily. For many charities, the starting point is 'institutional donors' - private and corporate foundations. Adopting a sound strategy depends on an accurate assessment of a charity's program appeal and its capacity to reach the donor communities. And a charity always requires strong participation from its own board of directors."

Ken regularly teaches fundraising workshops in the UK and Europe. He considers teaching critical to the ability to advise well. "Teaching exposes you to the hardest questions from the widest audience...including your peers. I've learned so much from interacting with audiences and students. It can be humbling!"

Ken has provided legal and fundraising advice to charities worldwide since 1986. Before that, he held two positions as lawyer and fundraiser. With the Conservation Law Foundation, an environmental advocacy group, he was part of the team that litigated offshore oil and gas leasing, to protect the Georges Bank fishery, through the federal court system to the U.S. Supreme Court. At The National Trust for Historic Preservation (US), he worked to advance historic preservation goals. Ken earned an A.B. degree from Harvard College and a J.D. from the University of Maine School of Law.

Contact Kenneth T. Hoffman