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Testimonials

Testimonials Testimonials

“David Phillips is one of my favorite human beings. I had the pleasure of working with him at CDS for several years on a number of amazing and successful campaigns. David taught me so much about communication, about organization and effective fundraising; and I had been a fundraiser for quite some time before working with him. He is simply the best. I use all of these skills I learned from him in my work today. David is a consummate professional; he has so much to offer clients through CDS and so much to offer other professionals as a mentor and colleague.”

Tara Elgin Avery, Director of Development
Episcopal Church USA
The Episcopal Church, 815 Second Avenue, New York, NY


“I am the person who persuaded David Phillips to get into this profession, though his grandmother was an experienced fundraising professional too. He is as good as anyone in the business, and I am proud of all he has accomplished through his firm Custom Development Solutions, Inc. (CDS). Having watched him grow in the profession for 35 years now, he towers over most folks in the field, and he is one of the kindest and most loving people I know. I am proud to be his brother in law.”

Peter Ramsey, Senior Fundraising Consultant
Marts and Lundy-Boston, MA


“David Phillips is an outstanding development professional. CDS, Custom Development Solutions, is David in action – planning and raising millions of dollars for a variety of non-profit clients. David has built a consulting firm of senior professionals who understand development strategies and execution. The dedication, skills, and expertise that David and his team bring to clients is unparalleled. I have learned a tremendous amount from David Phillips about service to clients and exceeding expectations.”

Mary Chrow, Associate Dean for Advancement
Rutgers University-Graduate School of Applied and Professional Psychology
Bernardsville, NJ


“I have known and worked with David Phillips for 20 years. Initially, I hired his firm CDS as their client when I was a development officer in a retirement community. Next, I went to work with him at CDS and ran several capital campaigns as a member of his team of campaign directors at CDS. I have now established my own firm, but we are working jointly together on a major capital campaign in Greenville, SC once again. As I tell our board and volunteer staff-I learned everything I know about fundraising from David G. Phillips and the system they employ at Custom Development Solutions, Inc. (CDS). I don’t know many other firms that have the continuous track record for success after success like they do at CDS. Doing it the right way, with the right people gives you the right result-success, and David always works to make sure you have a little fun along the way. Take it from a colleague, a client and a fellow professional-there are none better than CDS!”

Patti McAbee, Principal
Patti McAbee Consulting
Greenville, SC


“I recommend Custom Development Solutions to you highly. David Phillips, founder of CDS, was my colleague for seven years. When I was V.P. for resources for Habitat for Humanity Intl. I was instrumental in bringing CDS in to run several campaigns for some of our affiliates. He has an unprecedented record of success because he helps his clients focus on the important issues-those fundamental issues which can make or break your program! Not only is David Phillips a highly respected development professional, but he is a gentleman and a delightful human being. CDS is your best bet!”

Tony DiSpigno, Senior Vice President Resource Development
Enterprise Community Partners
New York, New York


“I first met David when we served together on the ePhilanthropy Foundation Board. I was immediately and continue to be impressed with his in-depth understanding of contemporary fundraising and ability to provide strategic and proven solutions for his clients. Dave’s passion for philanthropy is contagious. We need more like him! I recruited him to sit on the board of directors of America’s Charities when I was the CEO and he has done an amazing job for them too!”

Steve Delfin, Retired CEO
America’s Charities
Chantilly, VA


“David Phillips is one of the most talented and capable people I know – he approaches everything he does, both personally and professionally, with a level of originality and vigor. His personality is infectious & everyone who knows him respects him. David and his firm, CDS, gets my highest recommendation.”

Matthew Bauer
CEO at Sparrow Communications
San Francisco, CA


“I have known David Phillips for 30 years, both personally and professionally. His expertise in capital campaign planning and implementation is unmatched, and is integral to all the campaigns that CDS plans and directs. David is a consummate professional, highly knowledgeable and has a great deal of integrity. Most importantly David’s campaign strategies get results. I highly recommend David and Custom Development Solutions to help anyone build a winning capital campaign or major gift fundraising operation.”

Mark A. Berlyn, Senior Fundraising Professional
CCS Fundraising
Nashville, TN


“Working with David and his firm CDS, our organization was able to not only meet our fund development goals, but we grew in our ability and performance in this area, and we had a lot more fun asking for money than we ever thought was possible. I cannot commend him and his team any more highly.”

David Buckshorn, President and CEO
Wesley Commons United Methodist Retirement Community
Greenwood, SC