Results: Arts & Culture

Grand Opening

Cade Museum opens in Gainesville as hub for innovation

The revitalization of downtown Gainesville continued on Saturday with the grand opening of The Cade Museum for Creativity and Invention. Some 100 visitors took to exploring the 26,000-square-foot intellectual oasis on its inaugural morning. The museum is the result of 13 years of fundraising and $9.2 million on the part of the Cade Museum Foundation.

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21
Posted on May 21, 2018
Major Announcement

Guzzo jump-starts organizational transformation for Cultural Center

The Cultural Center at Ponte Vedra Beach (CCPVB) is on a mission to reinvent itself, and new Executive Director Donna Guzzo isn’t wasting any time to initiate that transformation. 'We’re hitting the ground fast,' said Guzzo, who was appointed to her leadership role Jan. 29. 'There’s no time to sit around and think about it.' The new executive director is additionally leading the charge to reconstruct the organization’s programming. The Cultural Center’s board of directors, she said, hired an Atlanta-based company to conduct a feasibility study on the organization in November/December, and that study revealed challenges in the programming department. Guzzo explained that the center is mostly seen as a place for infants, toddlers and seniors, with a considerable gap in between those generations.

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29
Posted on March 29, 2018
Miscellaneous News

Past in progress at Jekyll stables

A large concrete wedge dominates one half of the building. Unseen bugs reign. It helps to have a bit of an imagination, but that will not be necessary for long — plans remain for the multimillion-dollar Jekyll Island MOSAiC Musem to open early next year. The Jekyll Island Foundation ended its fundraising campaign for the facility in December 2016, pulling in thousands of dollars more than the $3.134 million goal. Gov. Nathan Deal said at the time, 'The MOSAiC will offer anyone who visits an opportunity to know the island's past, enjoy its present and help protect its future.'

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23
Posted on March 23, 2018
New Leaders/Jobs

Meet our newest Principal!

Carol Wick joined the Convergent team as a Partner to launch our Making Mission Happen Division. The goal of the new division was to expand Convergent's ability to help organizations grow and "make mission happen." Now, not only can we help nonprofits secure funding for strategic initiatives and capital needs, we also assist with organizational development, incorporating earned revenue, executive coaching, evidence-based evaluation, and national/global replication.

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Everybody’s got a book club these days, so we thought we’d better get in the mix too! The fundraising professionals on our team have centuries of combined experience and are currently raising millions of dollars for nonprofits all over the country. Who better to turn…

The following is a guest post from our friends at Wild Apricot. Many of the top nonprofits I’ve worked with have one thing in common: they regularly use tech tools to help them in every department. In today’s mobile-driven world, that means it’s time to…

The following is a guest post from our friends at Creative Economic Development Consulting. We are always surprised when we hear professionals disparage strategic planning. While some folks may see the process as a barrier to beginning the “real work”, strong nonprofit leaders see a…

As fundraisers, we love donors (or investors, as we prefer to think of them) who possess high propensities and high capacities to give. Their passion perfectly aligns with the organization, and they tend to be at the top of lists for capital campaign chairs and…

Cost Per Dollar Raised. Donor Retention Rate. Matching Gift Rate. Social Return on Investment. The list goes on for metrics and measurements that come across your desk as a nonprofit executive on a daily or even hourly basis. No one can deny the importance of…

As I have traveled around the country in the past 20 years doing lectures and workshops, there has been one sentence that has resonated with all of my audiences:  “If your organization doesn’t demonstrate its value to potential funders,  they’ll fund an organization that does.”    Many of…

The New York Times recently had an article on precrastination, which is defined as “the tendency to tackle sub goals at the earliest opportunity — even at the expense of extra effort,” or the opposite of procrastination. It’s so satisfying to move forward and check…

I recently wrote a post for the U.S. Chamber of Commerce’s Institute for Organizational Management blog titled, “Identifying Effective Board Members.” In the piece, I mentioned one skill board members need is fundraising. This blog will focus on why this is important and tactics to…

Over 20 years ago, the idea of discussing “investors” and “return on investment” in relation to nonprofit organizations seemed preposterous. Today, however, it is not uncommon to hear both terms used widely throughout the sector.

Before a surgeon can operate, the surgical team must check the patient’s vital signs to ensure they are healthy enough to undergo the procedure. Similarly, a capital campaign is a major operation impacting the financial health of your nonprofit. A feasibility study is a critical…

Many nonprofit organizations have been solely dependent on government funding for so long that the idea of pursuing private sector funding can be a bit intimidating. Where do you even begin? I recently had the opportunity to talk about effective fundraising processes at the National…

It’s the end of the fiscal year and you’re a few bucks short of your annual fund goal. The reserves are thin. What should you do to close the gap? Here are the top three things you should never do. 1. Send a mass email and post on social media that you must raise funds by year-end.

Feasibility studies are a critical first step in fundraising. They typically are 20 to 30 questions in length and give you a great perspective on your organization: how people view the board, the effectiveness of the team, and who in the community should lead the…

Your capital campaign is over. You’ve secured the funding needed to implement your strategic plan, grow your services, make capital improvements, etc. Now what? Having a strong investor relations program is a critical element of every capital campaign.

Does your case for support look something like this? “We have to serve more people, so you need to give us more money.” Unfortunately, many nonprofits tend to put out a similar message. Inevitably, at the end of the fiscal year, you’ll see another one:…

Conducting a funding feasibility study is an important first step every organization must take before launching a capital campaign. This process helps you determine the viability of your project before investing significant time and money into the campaign. A well-executed feasibility study will paint a…

Capital campaigns are a group effort. Simply having a strong executive director or board chair at the helm is not a guarantee of success; it’s all about having the right team assembled. Convergent is happy to share Allison’s guest blog post as it provides valuable…

You’re in a team meeting when lightning strikes: your team just hatched the most incredible idea! It has the potential to answer all your problems, fix community issues, and revolutionize your organization. It is so tempting to go out and try to raise money for…

If we are being honest, on most days our inboxes are buried under a barrage of email. Many of the emails are automated email newsletters from businesses or organizations that we support. Many get marked “read” without us ever opening them or reading them. Really…

Convergent Note: The following is a brief excerpt from the article “Counterpoint: Feasibility Studies and Other Reasons Outside Counsel Can Help Small Nonprofits,” recently published by NonProfit PRO and written by Principal Mark Bergethon. To read the full article, follow the link at the bottom of…

Initiating a capital campaign is an exciting opportunity. It’s a time when you can help move your organization forward in a very dynamic way, although there are always a few challenges that will arise during a campaign. Many Executive Directors & CEOs might find themselves…

By Mark Bergethon We are excited to have Principal Mark Bergethon featured in FundraisingSuccess’s “ProSpeak,” which features essays about “the nitty-gritty of fundraising, written by the people who do it every day.” Here is a quick look at the article: Through the implementation and analysis…

Special events are often a part of a nonprofit development plan. However, the true purpose of a special event can easily get lost in the flurry of planning activity, and the results usually don’t outweigh the effort. When discussing special events with our clients and…

The Central Florida Foundation (CFF) is a public grant-making foundation that serves as a trusted philanthropic home for more than 400 charitable funds throughout Central Florida.    Convergent has had the good fortune to get to know CFF better over the past several months, and…

Throughout this blog you’re bound to see many posts where we refer to “investors” and nonprofit “investments.” Don’t worry though; you are in the right place. This blog is meant to help nonprofits get a better understanding of the fundraising process, and we believe that…

A recent article in the The Chronicle of Philanthropy has spurred a lot of discussion among the principals here at Convergent. The article cites a study by Szu-chi Huang, assistant professor of marketing at Stanford University’s Graduate School of Business, in which she suggests that…

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We’d love to hear more about your organization’s fundraising concerns and goals to see how we can help.

The strategy and support offered by Convergent helped our Board expand its vision for the Foundation, which in turn helped to refocus and redefine the organization's impact in our community. The methodology behind Convergent's capital campaign process not only helps to raise more money in the immediate, it also builds best practices for long-term investor relations and lays groundwork for the success of future funding initiatives.

Dion Davis, Executive Director
Jekyll Island Foundation, GA