#ChatBytes Guest Bios

Craig Belanger | Darren Cooper | Preeti Gill | Mark Koenig | Stephen Lambert | Anne Soulé | Renee Teate

Craig Belanger is Assistant Director of Prospect Research at Biola University.

I came to Biola University to pursue graduate studies in Christian Apologetics and stayed to serve in various roles related to prospect research and analysis since December 2002. I am continually amazed at the ways my diverse professional background informs my work in prospect research at Biola. What background, you ask?

  • Real estate and consultative sales training
  • Publication printing (I completed a five year journeyman apprenticeship program)
  • Undergraduate and graduate studies in biblical studies, theology, Koine Greek, hermeneutics, comparative religions, adult education, and the liberal arts
  • Pastoral ministry

Besides, what’s not to like about getting paid by people with Ph.D.’s to exercise your curiosity? But seriously, nothing I have done has engaged my diverse interests, nor has anything been informed by my education and experience, to the extent my work at Biola has. When university President Barry Corey wrote to me earlier this year: “This is very interesting! Thanks for passing it on. And let me take this moment to thank you again for your astute research and insights. You are truly a blessing to me in my work!” it made many long hours of work worthwhile.

Even more, I get to work with some great people who pull together to accomplish together things we could not do without each other. My research team has especially embraced my philosophy of close collaboration and situational awareness. We use our skills and experience to help each other produce a higher quality result than we would achieve going solo. Thus we seek to divide our burdens and multiply our rewards.

I live in Southern California where I enjoy discussing the great questions of life with others, reading, travel, cooking with my wife Jean (married nearly 32 years and still my greatest love under the sun!), and growing in faith in community with other Christ followers.

Connect with Craig on LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/craig-belanger-1313b717


Darren Cooper is a prospect research and fundraising strategy consultant based in Rochester, Minnesota. Previously, he worked in higher education prospect research and supply chain software sales. Learn more at www.linkedin.com/in/darrenpcooper/ or contact him at dpc@bmcweb.net. Finally, none of the content is intended to serve as tax of financial advice and should not be construed as such.


Preeti-1Preeti Gill is a non-profit researcher and writer in Vancouver, BC. She authors a blog called Sole Searcher. With formal journalism training, she has been a Prospect Research professional for close to 15 years and a member of APRA-Canada for just about as long. Preeti chairs APRA International’s editorial advisory committee which publishes Connections. Connect with Preeti on Twitter:  @SoleSearcherPR


Mark Koenig is the Senior Director for Advancement Services for the Oregon State University Foundation. In this role, he oversees the research, relationship management, information technology services, and database management units and has developed expertise in building, restructuring, and managing these programs. He also has extensive experience in the creation and utilization of fundraising best practices including incorporating analytics, conducting surgical prospect screenings, launching discovery programs, and bridging the communication divide between information technology and higher education advancement.

Mr. Koenig chaired the 2013 CASE (Council for Advancement and Support of Education) District VIII conference and is currently the district’s incoming chair.

Prior to joining Oregon State, Mr. Koenig was the Director of Prospect Research and Management for The George Washington University. He has also held research positions at Georgetown University, Georgetown Medical Center, and Rice University. A native of Tulsa, Okla., he earned his B.A. in history and economics from the University of Houston and is now completing an Ed.M. in Adult Education and Organizational Capacity from Oregon State University.

Connect with Mark on LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/markckoenig


A native of Bridgewater, Virginia, USA, Stephen W. Lambert, PhD has served as Advancement Researcher & Analyst at Susquehanna University in Selinsgrove, Pennsylvania since January 2015. In his work he curates data that identifies and ranks prospective donors through traditional research methods and predictive modeling. His introducing predictive analytics to the University’s Office of Advancement is providing experiences in strategic applications that aim to solve complex business problems and optimize critical decision-making processes.

Stephen is a 2014 graduate of the Nonprofit & Community Leadership doctoral program in the School of Strategic Leadership Studies in the College of Business at James Madison University.

Drawing on his past as high school teacher, university instructor, community coalition founder, and lay minister, Stephen works to advance higher education and philanthropy because he knows their transformational powers. Stephen’s core values include authenticity, community, hard work, health and knowledge. These values bring strategic foresight, vision with systems thinking, motivating and empowering, and partnering for data-driven decision-leadership to the fundraising shop he works for. Without such values and leadership maintaining fundraising capacity in dynamic times and environments is severely diminished.

In 2016 he presented to international audiences on fundraising analytics to CASE’s DRIVE/ Conference, IBM and The Chronicle of Philanthropy’s “Ditch the Crystal Ball” webinar, and the Data Analytics Symposium of APRA International’s conference Prospect Development. He is an avid poster on LinkedIn on diverse fundraising topics.

Connect with him on LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/swlambertphd


Anne Soulé has spent more than 15 years supporting nonprofit organizations with professional prospect research. Her experience includes launching new research programs at a small college and a major orchestra, as well as support for a comprehensive campaign at a large research university.  Anne served as a board member of the Ohio Prospect Research Network, a chapter of APRA, from 2005 to 2013. She has a B.A. in literature and music from Case Western Reserve University, and once upon a time was a licensed real estate appraiser. Connect with Anne on LinkedIn: www.linkedin.com/pub/anne-soule/2/659/194/en


Renee Teate is the creator and host of the “Becoming a Data Scientist” podcast, the associated Data Science Learning Club, DataSciGuide learning directory, and other data science related sites. You may know her as “Data Science Renee” @becomingdatasci on Twitter.

Renee has a BS in Integrated Science and Technology from James Madison University and a Masters in Systems Engineering from the University of Virginia. She has worked as a database designer, SQL developer, and Data Analyst for most of her career, and recently started working with HelioCampus as a Data Scientist.

Connect with her on LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/reneeparilakteate