Q-and-A With Jo Sullivan
As announced last week, Jo Black Sullivan, who has served at the ASPCA for a decade — most recently as executive vice president of external affairs — has accepted a position with CDR Fundraising Group as senior director of integrated marketing and manager of direct-response television.
The appointment marks an exciting new chapter for Sullivan, who also serves as a member of the FundRaising Success Editorial Advisory Board. We had a chance to catch up with her last week and to talk about what she'll be doing at CDR, keys to her successes at ASPCA and what she believes the future holds for the nonprofit sector.
FundRaising Success: This is an exciting new career change. Can you talk a little about some of the things you're going to be doing at CDR? What excites you the most about the new position?
Jo Sullivan: At CDR, I'll be working beside one of my industry heroes and mentors, Geoff Peters, as well as his amazing staff. I'm hoping to contribute with both the successes and failures the ASPCA has experienced in our 500 percent growth track over the past several years. We did a lot right and a lot wrong, and I am honored to be able to apply those learnings across CDR's impressive client groups. From Wounded Warrior Project to Toys for Tots and all the rest — these groups do such important and vital work. I am honored to be a small part of whatever Geoff and his team have already begun to do.
FS: What is one of the most memorable experiences or achievements you've had while working at the ASPCA?
JS: I can't count them all. It has truly been my honor to serve animals over the past decade. From watching from the foot of the Empire State Building as it went "Orange for Animals" to sitting across from Sarah McLachlan as she sang a cappella to a reluctant DRTV dog — they are all amazing. Standing in the middle of a Wal-Mart store seeing ASPCA product on shelves and knowing our brand successfully translated from cause to trusted pet partner — those things will always be with me.