Successful grantsmanship is more, Norma Murphy will tell you, than filling out forms. It is, at its core, about insight, understanding and relationships. And in that regard, Norma excels.

“Grant writing is good story telling,” she says. “The better you are able to illustrate the human element—through words, pictures and presentation—the more likely you will succeed. Foundations are comprised of people who have an interest in improving the world. It is your task to show them how their investment in you can make a world-changing difference. Building relationships is critical. Show them you care about them and they’ll show you they care about you.”

As Executive Vice President for Hartsook Companies, Inc., Norma leads Hartsook’s grant-development services. Under her keen eye, clients gain deep knowledge and appreciation for opportunities, possibilities and the dynamics that lead to a successful grant request. Whether researching and writing, connecting people and passion, or coaching a client, Norma guides from a position of success and confidence.

Norma splits her time between Wichita and Kansas City and serves clients nationwide as well as internationally. Though grants are her specialty, Norma has considerable expertise in all facets of fundraising.

She most recently was Vice President of Development for the Cerebral Palsy Research Foundation of Kansas, located in Wichita. At the Cerebral Palsy Research Foundation, Norma served as Campaign Director for two successful capital campaigns and many special projects that collectively raised more than $38 million. Included were seven—and many six-figure grants and other major gifts, as well as state tax credits—an enticing option for some donors.

Before that, she was Development Director for Rainbows United of Wichita. During those four years she completed the organization’s first capital campaign—six months ahead of schedule and 10 percent over goal. Norma also has served as Campaign Director and Development Director for Southwest Missouri State University in Springfield, and Associate Director of Development for the Wichita State University Endowment Association.

Norma serves on a national committee for the American Association of Grant Professionals (AAGP). A member of the Association of Fundraising Professionals, Norma was named the 2004 Outstanding Fundraising Professional of the Year by the Wichita Chapter, an honor awarded only periodically by this chapter. She holds a bachelor’s degree from Wichita State University.