Who will we discover today?
- Prospect research and profiles for individuals, foundations and corporations
- Wealth and asset assessment
- Prospect identification and wealth qualifications
- Relationship networks
- Post-wealth screening guidance, assistance, implementation
- Tailor-made prospect management design
- Prospect management implementation
- Prospect list creation and assignments
Staff Training and
This is a sample of the services offered. DVG Discovery aims to be a strategic partner with your organization. Please see our Frequently Asked Questions page for more details.
"Research is creating new knowledge.”
- Neil Armstrong
Meet DVG Discovery.
Devon Villa Gessert
Owner, Seeker, Finder of Gems, Teller of the stories
A Washington, D.C., native, Devon Gessert has 15 years of prospect research and prospect management experience and over 20 years of experience in the non-profit sector. Not only highly skilled at research, Devon spent 10 years building and managing a team of researchers as well as building and managing the board of APRA-Metro DC.
Called on by APRA to lead the formation of the “Prospect Research” domain of the APRA Body of Knowledge, Devon directed volunteers who all assisted to shape this domain. The end-result is now a complete tool that helps researchers, managers, executives, and HR leaders ensure they or their staff have the knowledge and resources needed, assume new responsibilities within their organization, or identify growth opportunities.
As a manager, Devon is proficient at assembling and assessing teams and staff training. She joined the 21st Century Leadership Institute at American University in 2015 and was the recipient of both APRA’s Distinguished Service Award and APRA-Metro DC’s 5 Years of Leadership Award.
As a researcher, she adheres to the APRA Code of Ethics while conducting high-level, in-depth research as well as quick, qualification research. Devon is curious by nature and loves the hunt. She is well-versed at searching, finding and interpreting financial/wealth data in order to provide philanthropic capacity estimates and wealth ratings on prospects.
During her tenure at AU, Devon managed the creation of AU’s prospect management system. The system, designed to focus on collaboration and coordination within the Advancement office, was aimed at identifying a prospects’ interest and matching that interest up with the right fundraiser. In light of this experience, she can build solid relationships with fundraisers and collaborate to shape portfolios, assist with prospect research requests, and work hand-in-glove with the team during the proposal process.
Technically, Devon is familiar with multiple online research sources, wealth screening services, as well as the full suite of Microsoft Office products. She has been a donor database power user, using systems such as Colleague Advancement (Ellucian) and Raisers Edge (Blackbaud) to enter in contacts, prospect tracking data and assignments, ratings, and proposals on a daily basis.
In her spare time, Devon is planning her next adventure with her family, since camping, hiking and kayaking are some of her favorite activities. She also enjoys hanging with the official DVG Discovery mascot, Cindy Lou, practicing yoga, time with friends, and reading.
As a seasoned research and prospect management professional, I thoroughly enjoy the hunt and thrive on helping people succeed and make data-driven decisions with research.