12 months is probably the average amount of time people spend on planning their big fundraiser.  Over the next month or so, I am going to put together a YEAR-OUT timeline that will detail some of the things that need to get done in that time frame.  It is a broad list, and everything may not apply to you and your event, or organization.

The first list 10-12 months can be found here

The 2nd one 7-10 MONTHS out.


  • Establish committees.  Often times it is best to have one or two people in charge, who are able to make decisions.  But certainly those leaders need to have committees.  Fill committees with people who have personal strengths in the roles they are assigned.
  • Conduct an Acquisition Party.  Time to start procuring items for your auction.  Stephen Kilbreath Auctions & Events, can even hold procurement rallies for your board members, or your PTA.  This also includes putting together donation forms.  This also includes putting together solicitation letters
  • Finalize your theme, location and marketing plan.  Think about how you are going to get the RIGHT people at your event.  Go through your invitation list.  See who was at your event last year, and who you need to get back at your event THIS year.
  • Develop save-the-date cards, and work on how you will promote your event.
  • Make sure you have some sort of auction software, or a way to keep track of all the items you are collecting for your event.  Auction software can also help you keep track of your invitation list.
  • You need items, and you need guests, but you also need sponsorships and underwriting.
  • Make sure you have hired a professional audio/visual company.  A company that will do a walk-through and give you just what you need to make your event heard by everyone in the room.