Dr. Carla Maxwell Ray, CFRE

Senior Generosity Strategist

Meet Dr. Carla Maxwell Ray


Dr. Carla Maxwell Ray’s goal in life is to glorify God by using her gifts for seeing possibilities and empowering others to achieve, advance, and fund their vision for their lives, churches, and organizations.

She is a visionary leader and her expertise includes generosity and financial coaching, fundraising, strategic planning, external relations, Board development, and non-profit management. She recently authored Five Pillars of a First Class Life, a guide to financial freedom and mission-driven living. Currently, Carla is a Sr. Generosity Strategist with Generis. She helped to successfully conclude campaigns raising over $1,000,000,000.

As an institutional advancement administrator at Spelman and Morehouse Colleges and later the University of Maryland College Park, she helped their campaigns significantly exceed goals. In addition, she served as a vice-president at the National Office of Boys & Girls Clubs of America. Carla now works with our country’s largest churches, powerful medium and small churches, and nonprofits coaching them through generosity initiatives.

Carla regularly hosts webinars and speaks at various engagements, having previously partnered with Nona Jones, Dr. Howard-John Wesley, Higher Education Institutions, Evangelical Council for Financial Accountability (ECFA) and InTrust. She  contributes to multiple publications, including best seller #ministrythatimpacts, a collection of strategies by thought leaders to assist you with creating or enhancing your ministry so that it impacts your congregation and community.

Carla has an honorary Doctor of Humane Letters from Hood Theological Seminary, holds an MBA from the University of Delaware, and graduated Valedictorian from Lincoln University with a BA in Public Affairs. She is married to her college sweetheart, Pastor Robert A. Ray, and they have two adult children that are flourishing. In addition, Carla enjoys swimming, gardening and mentoring others to establish financially-secure and healthy lifestyles.


No matter the size of your God-inspired dreams, it can be daunting to think about chasing down the necessary resources. The truth is that while vision almost always exceeds current realities, the means to support your vision is within your grasp. 

With Generis, you’re not alone. Our customized Campaign approach will help you assess, rethink and reframe your current reality, allowing you to reach your specific goals while also establishing a foundation for increased generosity overall.

Every church deals with staff turnover and transition. It’s a normal and healthy cycle that can quickly become disruptive in the absence of a solid transition plan or a prolonged period of time trying to find the right replacement. Many members of the Generis team have worked IN a local church. They’ve fought the battles and earned the T-Shirt. They can help you plan for a healthy transition and maintain continuity as you wait for the next right leader to take the reins.

The most successful Fundraising organizations we know operate from a carefully crafted annual Development Plan. Whether your organization needs help building a Development Program and Plan from the ground up, or whether you’d like to enhance your current Development Plan, we can help. We specialize in meeting you and your organization right where you are and helping you take strategic steps forward. We’ll work with you on issues such as:

  • Setting realistic targets for gift income over the next 2-3 years
  • Setting realistic targets for gaining new donors each year
  • Creating customized strategies to help you build your pool of donors
  • Creating a Donor Communications Plan
  • Creating or enhancing a Major Gift program
  • Building or Enhancing an Annual Fund Program
  • Planned Giving promotion within reasonable budget
  • Establishing best practices for Advancement Services (gift receipting, thank-you letters)
  • Creating events that will bring in new donors and new gifts
  • Appropriate metrics to measure Fundraising performance
  • Helping your board understand their role in Fundraising

Your organization is unique and worthy of a fully customized Plan to help you fund your vision.

Would you like to have a conversation with us about the current state of your Development Program? We’d love to speak with you.


From time to time, it can be extremely helpful to analyze the habits of your overall giving climate to see what is currently working as well as where opportunities for a culture of generosity to increase might exist.

The Generosity Assessment is a one-day experience that provides a thorough assessment of your church’s effectiveness and reveals new opportunities for creating a culture of generosity. Think of it like an x-ray into the giving perspective of the church.


Contact Carla Maxwell Ray