Don Knapp
Building a Quality Culture



Don Knapp working on downtown plan for Billings, Montana.


A community activist and visionary who has shared his ideas and experience with hundreds of nonprofit organizations for more than four decades, Don Knapp is an authority on nonprofit management, development planning and downtown revitalization.


Nonprofit Management:
For 25 years, he was Executive Director of The Honeywell Foundation, Inc. and its three story cultural and conference facility, the Honeywell Center (, in Wabash, Indiana that Mark Honeywell, co-founder of what is today Honeywell International, established in his home town. There, he managed theater programs, exhibits, festivals and a conference center in collaboration with a team of 35 employees and many more volunteers. He also co-founded a county citizens league, voluntary action center, arts council and the Indiana Donors (now Grantmakers) Alliance and served on the board of each.

Golf Course-Housing Development:
Brother of architect Robert Knapp, chief designer of New York's Madison Square Garden and Boston's Prudential Center, Don applied his interest and training in development planning and design to two award-winning developments in Indiana.

Knowing his board's interest in a public golf course, he proposed to transform Mr. Honeywell's former country estate just north of Wabash into a planned unit development or PUD with clustered housing surrounded by what would become the Honeywell Golf Course, called one of the ten best public courses in Indiana by The Indianapolis Star. Don coordinated the planning for the development, which opened in 1980.

Theater-Gallery-Restaurant Development:
He coordinated the planning and major gift fundraising for the $15 million addition to the Honeywell Center including the 1,500-seat Ford Theater, two galleries, a restaurant and outdoor event plaza. The Theater has become an Indiana showplace and destination for thousands of regional residents who come to Wabash to see major performers.

In the ten years prior to joining the Foundation, Don, who has an MA in public administration, was assistant director of public relations and director of placement at Wesleyan University in Connecticut and director of career planning and placement and assistant to the president at Macalester College in Minnesota. During this time, he organized student-run community volunteer programs at both institutions and led a team of 20 U.S. and African student volunteers in building a village school in Ethiopia.

At Macalester, he coordinated job enrichment training for students and their real world supervisors in the Twin Cities using industrial psychologist Frederick Herzberg, creator of the motivation/hygiene theory, as the resource. Herzberg was the author of Work and the Nature of Man, recognized as one of the ten most important business books of the 20th Century. His article Drawing on the right side of the brain for Innovation, which appears on this web site, will also be in a future issue of NONPROFIT WORLD magazine published by the Society for Nonprofit Organizations.

Downtown Revitalization:
Don co-founded Wabash Marketplace, Inc., as a Main Street corporation and managed it for 12 years, was a member of the International Downtown Association and Urban Land Institute each for more than 15 years and the National Trust for Historic Preservation for many years and was invited by the IDA to speak at three of its meetings.

His article Connecting the Dots Downtown was on the home page of the IDA web site through 2003.

Don now lives in Indianapolis, IN and is a consultant to nonprofit organizations.




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