Our Team

John Wm. Thomas - Senior Consultant
Senior Consultant
OAI Team Member Since: 

General Info

Phone (DC): 
(202) 719-8071
Phone (NY): 
(212) 424-1910 x5
(202) 338-8182


John Wm. Thomas joined the OAI team in 2007, bringing with him more than 33 years of senior management experience in strategic fundraising.  In addition to partnering with OAI, John heads a Virginia based consulting firm which specializes in strategic and philanthropic planning, powering up revenue generation strategies and board development for nonprofits and for profit companies. 

From 1995 to 2007, John was Vice President for Development at Children’s National Medical Center and Chief Operating Officer of the Children’s Hospital Foundation.  In this capacity, John built a strategic major gifts program for Children’s Hospital, expanded its fundraising marketing capabilities, and completed two comprehensive campaigns over goal.  The "Giant Steps" campaign, originally targeted for $200 million, was concluded on January 28, 2004 with $301 million in hand.  Following this success, John planned and managed the quiet phase of the $500 million "Transforming Medicine" campaign which is now being managed by his successor.  During John’s tenure at Children’s Hospital, fundraising grew from $14.5 million to $90 million in FY00, and now averages nearly $45 million annually.

From 1992 to 1995, John was Senior Vice President for Development at the American Red Cross.  While there, he strengthened American Red Cross fundraising capabilities by initiating national market positioning research, converted many chapters and strengthened their major gift fundraising.  He raised nearly $26 million in four months to re-engineer the American Red Cross blood supply and added a major gifts focus to disaster campaigns.  John built a $105 million reserve for the American Red Cross to use during disasters and other emergencies.

From 1986 to 1992, John was Vice President for Development at New England Medical Center in Boston, MA.  Under his leadership, the Medical Center benefited from a 250 percent increase in fundraising, gaining national recognition for this growth.  Prior to 1986, John was the Executive Director of Medical School and Hospital Development at the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia, PA.

Representative Clients:

  • Working with Educare DC, an early childhood education center serving children age birth to 5 and their families in Ward 7, to create and execute a plan to raise the operating funds needed to support its new facility, which opened in June 2012.
  • Working with the International Council of Shopping Centers Foundation (ICSCF) to implement a multi-year campaign plan OAI put together in support of increasing ICSCF’s endowment in order to launch new scholarship programs for students who indicate a preference for a career in retail real estate.
  • Worked with the Nelson Mandela’s Children Fund to conduct a feasibility study prior to launching a campaign to raise $75 million from the North American region in support of Nelson Mandela’s final legacy project – a new $125 million pediatric hospital in Johannesburg, South Africa. 
  • Worked with Meritus Healthcare Foundation to manage the final phase of a $15 million capital campaign for Washington County Hospital in Hagerstown, MD. 
  • Worked with the American Red Cross in the National Capital Region during a time when they lacked a full-time Chief Development Officer.
  • Worked with AABB (formerly the American Association of Blood Banks) to manage the fundraising component of their national transfusion surveillance network. 
  • Worked with the American Floral Endowment (AFE) to conduct a development audit and craft a development plan to help determine opportunities for charitable funding growth and then help implement the development plan.  OAI helped raise more than $63,000 and managed several important projects that propelled AFE to the next level with their fundraising.

Community Activities:

  • Former Member, Burgundy Farm Country Day School Board (2003-2012)
  • Former Member, Children’s Hospital Foundation Board (2008-2013)
  • Former Council Chair, Washington Street United Methodist Church
  • Member, Leadership Greater Washington (Class of 1998)


  • B.A. Philosophy and Religious Studies, Dickinson College, 1966
  • M. Div, Union Theological Seminary, 1969
  • Coursework toward Ph.D., Counseling Psychology, University of Miami, 1974-1978


Active throughout his career in the Association of Fundraising Professionals (AFP) and the Association of Healthcare Philanthropy (AHP), John received the "Outstanding Fundraising Professional" award from AFP in 2004.  John also developed the basic ideas which led the Advisory Board Company to begin their healthcare Philanthropy Council business in 2005.

John is an avid runner, having completed the Newport, RI marathon in 1991 with a time of 3:07:24.

Children’s Law Center

CLC retained OAI to provide a high-level development assessment and fundraising assistance. 

Marriott Foundation for People with Disabilities

"We've worked with OAI for many years now, and the longevity of our partnership is no accident.  They consistently provide a level of effort and excellence that, year after year, yields outstanding events."  -Mark Donovan, Vice Chairman, Marriott Foundation for People with Disabilities