Apra-IL Presents 20 Questions with ... Peter Kotowski
Based on the 73 Questions series produced by Vogue, Apra-IL presents a series of 20 questions to members and the board. We're excited for you to learn more about your leadership and fellow members in this series of 20 rapid-fire questions.
Peter is a Prospect Research Analyst at Loyola University Chicago. He has been a member of APRA-IL since 2016. Peter got into prospect management and research after finishing his PhD in early American history at Loyola. Before joining the team at Loyola University, he was the Associate Director of Prospect Research at Loyola Academy. Outside of work, Peter enjoys reading, finding new television shows to enjoy, and traveling.
1. How do you explain your role to people outside of Prospect Development?
I generally tell people that I work in fundraising but that I don’t solicit donors.
2. When did you decide to become an Adjunct Professor in U.S. History?
I’ve been an adjunct since 2011 and I’ve been teaching in various capacities since 2009.
3. What was your favorite subject in high school?
This may come as a surprise to many, but it was history. I was particularly fascinated by early American history and early modern English history.
4. What is it like to both work as a researcher at and teach for the same institution?
I think it has given me a greater appreciation for the work that I do and a better understanding of what goes on at a university and the way it functions.
5. If you could travel back in time and meet the first person to ever have your role as Prospect Research Analyst, what would you say to them?
I’d ask them how they stumbled upon this career path.
6. If you could spend 24 hours in any period of history, what time would you go back to?
I’d take 24 hours to observe the construction of the pyramids to test my theory that they weren’t built by aliens, but rather by time traveling humans from far into the future.
7. What is one thing Apra has done for you?
It provided me some great information and resources when I first started out in the industry.
8. When you attend Apra-IL meet-ups, what or who do you also make time to visit?
I live in the city, so I generally go straight to the meet-ups and then head home.
9. Best advice you have ever received?
Always double check your sources.
10. What is something new you just learned or worked on at work?
I just finished a first attempt at developing an engagement score to better prioritize new prospect assignments for our gift officers.
11. By 2030, how would the field of Prospect Development have evolved?
I expect it will be much more prospect management focused as more of the research becomes automated.
12. What must you start your morning off with, tea or coffee?
Black coffee only.
13. How do you manage or balance work and life?
I set a firm daily schedule for when I arrive and when I leave, and I never deviate unless it’s absolutely necessary.
14. Where was your last vacation?
I went to Philadelphia for the 4th of July.
15. What is your favorite Season?
Winter. The colder and snowier the better.
16. Chocolate or candy?
17. What was the last book you read?
A good friend of mine from graduate school, Noelani Arista’s recent publication, The Kingdom and the Republic: Sovereign Hawai’i and the Early United States. It's a fascinating exploration of how misunderstandings and misreadings shaped relations between native Hawaiians and European and American merchants and missionaries. Dr. Arista’s work draws heavily on Hawaiian-language sources and was one of the more interesting historical works I’ve read lately.
18. Who or what inspires you?
Pompey, a pug owned by William the Silent, Prince of Orange. He was so loyal to his owner that Pompey risked life and paw to thwart an assassination attempt against William. Thanks to his loyal service, the pug became the official dog of the House of Orange.
19. What was your first job ever?
I worked as a cashier at a drug store.
20. What is your favorite hobby?
Reading and running.