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Leslie Sharp, Dean of Libraries, Georgia Institute of Technology

This session explores the basics of building relationships with foundations through being “Ready, Willing, and Grateful.” The Georgia Tech Library has historically been without a dedicated development professional; however, it has had fundraising success with foundations through three fundamental practices: 1) having an ongoing list of Library wants and needs targeted toward past funders; 2) being willing to respond at a moment’s notice through engaging Library employees; and 3) providing timely updates that express deep gratitude for our shared passions. This consistent approach involves the dean, her executive assistant, library employees, and frequent communication with Georgia Tech Foundation Relations.

Speaker Bios:

Leslie N. Sharp is Dean of Libraries at Georgia Tech. Previously, she served in dual roles as interim CEO for the Library and associate vice provost for Graduate Education and Faculty Development. As associate vice provost, Sharp managed operations, including communications, human resources, finance, and general administration. She also oversaw an expanding organizational mission and operations, including growing personnel and services that offered enhanced graduate student support, professional development for graduate students and postdocs, postdoctoral services, and more intentional faculty development. Sharp has worked to improve the recruitment and retention of faculty and staff through systemic changes based on equitable practices and building a positive culture in all of her roles.

Sharp teaches historic preservation in the College of Design, where she formerly served as the assistant dean. Sharp holds a Ph.D. and a master’s in history of technology from Tech. Her research explores the impact of technology on people and places within the framework of historic preservation, gender, and race.