Grahame Darnell, Partner Consultant

Strategic Fundraising and Marketing

Complex Stakeholder Management

International Strategies for Growth

Leadership Giving Specialist



After leaving the corporate sector, where Grahame worked in a marketing agency, he applied his skills to corporate fundraising, immediately delivering growth and impact. This success stayed with him throughout his career as he evolved towards Leadership Giving, mixing corporate strategy with major gift and foundation opportunities. Grahame also developed individual giving skills through planning and leading major fundraising appeals.

A proven strategist and all round fundraiser, Grahame has standout skills in individual giving, corporate, events, major donor and community fundraising. Grahame balances his strategic skills with in depth practical hands on knowledge of key fundraising areas, ensuring that strategies can be implemented and closely tailored to an organisation and its cause. As an ex Director of Fundraising he understands people, structures and cultures, bringing solutions and original thinking to optimising the power of people within organisations.

Grahame has developed strategies for a range of charities both big and small. His successes include delivering a growth and investment plan for a £2.3m turnover disability charity that resulted in the trustees agreeing to invest in the fundraising effort. He has also worked with one of the UK’s biggest cancer charities to deliver a new strategy for its multi-million pound flagship product, which is one of the most significant and well known fundraising activities in the UK market.

Grahame has worked with a range of global charities on significant strategic and transformational projects, including those with both centralised and federated / highly devolved structures. His recent work has included a fundraising review across multiple country offices for a major international housing organisation and developing a new fundraising approach for a global men’s health foundation. He has also worked on innovation briefs including developing a new audience segmentation approach for a global women’s rights organisation and on expansion and market entry for an international children’s charity. 

Grahame has broad experience of conducting fundraising reviews – from departmental audits to in-depth strategic reviews across the whole of the fundraising mix. His work has delivered a new direction and focus for a number of charities and several of these continue to ask for his support as they have implemented the recommendations. Grahame also has solid brand and communication experience in the charity field having led a successful rebrand of a £200 million charity.

Grahame has contributed stories and features to various publications, including Third Sector, Charity Times and The Guardian. He is a seasoned facilitator and, as well as delivering numerous workshops for clients, has led sessions at Conferences. Grahame takes a keen interest in the development of the fundraising profession and acts as a mentor to several fundraisers.

‘The right mix, for the right cause, at the right time.’