In Memory of Richard ("Rick") E. Hendrix (1957-2016)

With great sadness, I report the passing of a friend, a colleague, a leader in the conservative movement, and a good and humble man.

Rick Hendrix passed away yesterday, June 13, at Fairfax INOVA Hospital.  He was surrounded by his loving family and friends.

Rick worked as a direct mail fundraiser for more than three decades.  Most know him as a founding partner of ClearWord Communications Group, a successful and effective high-dollar direct mail agency.

For 10 years before that, from 1993 to 2003, Rick ran the direct mail program here at the Leadership Institute.  He oversaw a more than tenfold increase in the Institute's donor base.  Staff often joked that Rick could write in my voice even better than I could.

For the last 23 years, Rick provided the copy for many of the Institute’s monthly mailings.  His work generated millions of dollars in donations that have made the Institute’s many activities possible.

Rick volunteered as a lecturer for almost all of the Institute’s fundraising schools.  Over the years, he taught thousands of conservatives how to build fundraising programs for their organizations.  The entire conservative movement and our country benefitted greatly from Rick’s generosity in sharing his time and talent.

Rick was the director of the Direct Mail Track at Madison Down Under, a fundraising conference sponsored by the Fundraising Institute of Australia, and was a regular speaker at American University’s Campaign Management Institute. He was a certified fundraising executive (CFRE) and a member of both the Direct Marketing Fundraisers Association and the Association of Fundraising Professionals.

He was active in Republican politics in Virginia and served as a member of the Electoral Board in Prince William County. He was also a member of the Board of Directors of my Conservative Leadership PAC.

Rick is survived by his wife Taania and their three daughters, Emily, Laura, and Megan.


Morton C. Blackwell
Leadership Institute