Heed the Call
It comes as no surprise that the hot topic of conversation whenever development pros gather these days — whether at a conference, a cocktail party or the water cooler — is the impending postal and legislative changes affecting nonprofit fundraising.
In his editorial, Storms Brewing on Legislative Front (“Because It Matters”), columnist Tim Burgess calls these changes “the most sweeping, intrusive and draconian federal regulation of nonprofit organizations” and implores everyone in the sector to take some very specific actions. For example, make sure that your own ducks are in a row, and then put them on display for everyone to see; make sure that you use contributed dollars in the proper way, and that donors are clear on what that way is — before they donate; work with industry organizations to stay on top of potential changes, and take part in any organized actions of protest; and contact the appropriate legislators to voice your concerns. Demand better enforcement of existing regulations rather than the creation of more, equally toothless ones.
What it boils down to is this: Do your part to ensure that there is no legitimate reason for anyone — donors, the general public, the federal government — to think that deeper, more sweeping and potentially suffocating rules are necessary.
For a far more impassioned and authoritative commentary than I could ever write on this topic, check out Tim’s column on Page 20. Sorry to steal your thunder, Mr. Burgess. Can we just call this a preview? One thing I’ve learned as an editor is when to defer respectfully to the pros.
Good news for you stragglers: The deadline for the first annual FS Gold Awards for Direct-Mail Excellence has been extended. Entries must be received in our office by end of day on Friday, June 24. Winners will be chosen in Acquisitions and Renewal categories (two each, based on mailing size; and Package of the Year). The Grand Control of the Year will be chosen from among packages that have found a home in the Who’s Mailing What! Archive. Winners will be featured in the special Package of the Year edition of the magazine in September.