Nothing says success like IMPACT. 
What Susan Blackman has done for her clients—

Strategic Planning & Budget Development 

  • H.O.P.E. for Tomorrow
    Facilitated a planning team to develop a business plan that moved H.O.P.E. from a volunteer-run to a small, robust organization, resulting in a two-year operating grant.
  • Kente Arts Alliance
    Worked with the board to develop a three-year strategic plan that mapped goals to specific timelines and measurable outcomes, leveraging its fundraising profile.
  • Chatham Baroque
    Led the Board and staff through a strategic planning process to determine the most appropriate mix of income sources needed to increase musicians’ salary.

Grant Writing & Stewardship Plans

  • Mattress Factory
    Worked with Executive Director and Curator to focus the artistic vision into proposals with realistic budgets that sharply expanded the support base beyond local funders.
  • Higher Achievement: Pittsburgh
    Designed and implemented a stewardship protocol to adapt bimonthly marketing content so that the Executive Director could easily personalize communications with donors and prospects.
  • Pittsburgh Children’s Museum
    Raised $500,000 from two government sources within a two-month window.

Professional Training & Coaching

  • Kelly Strayhorn Theater
    Designed and conducted a professional development program for independent artists and small-arts managers of color that featured workshops, individual coaching, and artist clinics, and created measurable results for participants.
  • Greater Pittsburgh Arts Council
    Delivered education programs on nonprofit management ranging from small clinics to large forums. Provided private coaching to artists and arts organizations, materially improving their efforts.


  • Three Rivers Community Foundation
    Revamped longstanding grant review protocol, resulting in a significantly more deliberate review of each application and increased personal satisfaction among committee members.
  • Women and Girls Foundation
    Developed a program to train professional volunteers to actively engage in site visits with grant applicants and authentically contribute to the grant review process.
  • Greater Pittsburgh Arts Council
    Coordinated grant programs for organizations, arts managers, and individual artists, working with 11 diverse grant review panels each year. Created evaluation tools and metrics to yield data on effectiveness of the funding investment.