David R. Cooper is Vice President for Individual Giving at the National Recreation and Park Association (NRPA). David leads NRPA’s efforts to solicit and steward philanthropic gifts from individuals to advance the organization’s work in the areas of conservation, health and wellness and social justice.
Prior to joining NRPA, David served for three years as the Chief Development Officer for the Gettysburg Foundation supporting the Gettysburg National Military Park. Prior to this, David spent ten years as the chief development officer with two different national advocacy organizations, the National Trust for Historic Preservation and the Land Trust Alliance. Both organizations are based in Washington, DC.
At the Land Trust Alliance, David led a comprehensive five-year “Campaign for the Land” to raise $85 million, and in so doing, establish a national major donor program. The successful effort was conceived and implemented while working in collaboration with the Alliance’s 1,500 member land trusts across the country.
At the National Trust, David led its three-year $170 million “People Saving Places: The Campaign for America’s Heritage,” the largest fundraising campaign for historic preservation in the nation’s history. The resulting major donor program was critical to the Trust’s financial health having moved away from Federal funding prior to the effort.
David entered the field of fundraising in 1986 and has held leadership positions in the development offices of Loyola College, the Kennedy Krieger Institute, Peace College, the University of Maryland University College and George Mason University. He worked as a fundraising consultant for Ketchum, Inc. providing capital campaign counsel to a diverse range of organizations. Over his career, he has helped raise almost $400 million at a wide range of small and large organizations. Today, David regularly consults with heritage and preservation based non-profits across the country.
A native of North Carolina, David graduated from Campbell University and received his Masters of Divinity from Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary (Wake Forest, NC).
David has extensive service in his local community, including service on the boards of Partners for Sacred Places (Philadelphia, PA), PACT: Helping Children With Special Needs, Inc. (Baltimore, MD), the Norbel School (Pikesville, MD), and the Central Fairfax Chamber of Commerce (Fairfax, VA).
David lives in Ashburn, VA with his wife Kristi who works for the National Institutes of Health. He has three children, Ashley, Sara and Matthew and a new granddaughter, Canady.