Senior Vice President, Development Services
As PBS' Senior Vice President, Development Services, Betsy Gerdeman leads strategic efforts to ensure the long-term sustainability of PBS and its member stations. This includes working with stations to identify fundraising needs, implementing and enhancing fundraising tactics and providing effective integrated tools, services, training and ongoing counsel to member stations in support of fundraising. In addition, Gerdeman collaborates across PBS to ensure best practices are incorporated into pledge programming, as well as with PBS Digital to support the online fundraising system serving member stations.
Gerdeman has dedicated much of her career to public media, having held a number of key development roles across the public television system. She recently served as member station KLRU’s Senior Vice President, Development, where she was a member of the senior leadership team and was an officer of the KLRU Board of Directors. Responsible for oversight of all philanthropic activities at the Austin station, during her tenure she successfully reinvigorated an annual giving program and guided a foundation relations effort that resulted in a 150% increase in foundation funding.
Earlier, Gerdeman was Senior Development Officer, Major Gifts at WETA, where she established and managed a new major donor prospect program for the Washington, D.C. PBS member station. Prior to WETA, Gerdeman worked at PBS as Assistant Director, Major and Planned Gifts. In this role, she developed and managed resources and tools for all PBS member stations related to major and planned giving. In addition, she provided consultation and professional development services for local stations, and served as PBS’ primary consultant for stations regarding capital campaign efforts. She began her public television career with San Antonio PBS member station KLRN, where she served as Director of Individual Giving.
Gerdeman's development and fundraising experience outside of public television includes her work as Vice President for Community Engagement at the Interfaith Ministries for Greater Houston, directing the strategic plans and work of interfaith relations, development, marketing, communications and volunteer services. Prior to that, she was Vice President and Chief Development Officer for the Treasure Valley Family YMCA in Boise, Idaho where she oversaw all development efforts. She also held roles at the Washington National Cathedral in Washington, D.C., as well as the United Way.
Gerdeman holds a B.S. in Sociology from San Antonio’s Trinity University and earned her MBA with an emphasis in European Studies from Boston University. She has been an active member of the Association of Fundraising Professionals for nearly 20 years, where she has also taught courses in fundraising.