Creative Development Strategies

About Us


Marla Kannel believes that a healthy non-profit sector is vital to us all. She began her career in government relations, PR, and marketing. As a consultant, Marla has worked with more than 20 non-profit clients in social services, education, civic life and engagement, and Jewish community organizations. In addition, she has advised several independent foundations.

Known for her enthusiastic and passionate approach to development, Marla is grateful for the opportunity to see her clients' organizations grow and thrive.

Creative Development Strategies works with a limited number of clients each year to provide a highly personalized and creative approach toward fundraising, board and staff development.

We are a small, energetic consulting firm dedicated to strengthening non-profits so they can implement and grow their mission. Whether you want to raise the level of your annual fundraising, plan a capital campaign or seek to enhance board performance, we help you build a program that is focused on results. We partner with you in ways that assure our work is consistent with your organization’s culture and goals for growth.

Founded in 2007, CDS specializes in helping non-profits with annual budgets ranging from $5- $25 million. As needed, we draw from a pool of talented professionals to provide the skills for your project. This flexibility ensures that our clients receive the highest results.


By focusing on the strengths of your existing leadership, staff and donors, CDS works with your team to improve all aspects of your fundraising efforts. Through creative and proven initiatives, we help you raise more money, so you can serve more people.