An Interview with Erin English, marketing and communications director, Adaptive Sports Center
FS: Do you foresee any big changes in the way you reach potential donors and other supporters in the near future?
EE: Over the coming months the Adaptive Sports Center will strive to reach our donors on a more personal level. Our development team will be contacting many of our donors to ask them how they view the current state of the organization and what their feelings are about the future. In this wavering economy we feel it is going to be critically important to stay positive, to communicate all organizational goals and to work hard to achieve buy-in from all organizational stakeholders.
FS: How would you describe your fundraising philosophy?
EE: Open, honest and personal communication.
FS: How do you reach out to supporters and potential supporters in ways other than purely fundraising? Are you engaged with social-networking sites such as MySpace, Facebook, etc.?
EE: Mike Johnson, the Adaptive Sports Center’s board president, has begun distributing quarterly letters to keep ASC supporters up-to-date throughout the year. The Adaptive Sports Center also distributes a semiannual newsletter, which details current ASC business and includes staff member, participant and donor profiles, as well as a program preview for the upcoming season.
The Adaptive Sports Center has a growing presence on Facebook and has developed a relationship with disaboom.com, a social-networking Web site for people with disabilities.
FS: Can you describe a recent successful fundraising effort?
EE: In August of 2008, the Adaptive Sports Center held our annual fundraiser, the Crested Butte Open. This event consists of an annual western-themed gala, a live and silent auction, and a round of golf, all to benefit the ASC. As we approached the 2008 event, the economy had already begun to take a turn for the worse, leaving the event committee nervous about the financial outcome and wondering if we would even make budget. When the event was all said and done, 2008 was our most successful year ever — surpassing the budget by an amazing 27 percent.