Sacred Places Fall 2011 - Page 21

Make a commitment. From 2008 to 2009, because no funds were designated to support a full-time staff person for Friends, the responsibility was added to a staff already stretched thin. As the Cathedral struggled to balance its operational budget, raising funds for Friends and its restoration mission was not a priority. When Dean McCaleb created a full-time Executive Director position in January 2010, Friends began to be successful. Do what it takes. When the executive director position was created, only $20,000 was available to fund the salary, administrative, and fundraising operations. The executive director The Very Reverend Douglas McCaleb of Trinity Episcopal Cathedral in Miami, FL, immediately developed an annual thanks patrons at a Friends of Trinity Cathedral gala. Photo credit: Al Ricketts Photo. budget and outlined a strategy to raise seed money for the first year’s operations in addition to In 2009, serendipitously, Trinity Cathedral participated the first year’s funding goal for restoration. in Partners for Sacred Places’ New Dollars/New Partners for Your Sacred Places training, gaining a valuable Create an identity. Once Friends was formed in 2007, framework and context within which to further develop students from the local design school were invited to and advance Friends of Trinity Cathedral. As former submit ideas for a Friends logo and stationery package. Executive Director of Friends, Cheryl D. Chapman, The winning designer received a cash prize – and explains, “the materials and training brought to life Friends had its own identity. the fullness and richness of our historic church, both as one of Miami’s truly magnificent historic buildings, Communicate a vision. Without the Dean’s vision for but also as a vital community asset essential to and the Cathedral, nothing would have been possible. But reflective of the early and ongoing development of Friends also needed a vision and mission that 1) would Miami.” inspire and compel people to give and 2) would clearly define the purpose of Friends. Developing consensus From its exhilarating Murder in the Cathedral murder among key staff and leaders of Friends and the mystery, which attracted more than 100 participants Cathedral regarding the vision and mission was critical. and several new prospects, to its highly successful Friends of Trinity Cathedral Annual Preservation Gala, Tell your story. In many ways, including a semi-annual which raised $85,000 in net proceeds in just its third newsletter, an annual report, Facebook fan page, parish year, to “First Friends,” which recognized those donors visits and presentations, a diocesan convention exhibit, who contributed $1,000 or more, Friends of Trinity and one-on-one meetings, the Cathedral’s restoration Cathedral generated significant funds and dramatically and preservation story was told to as many individuals increased awareness of the Cathedral’s restoration and and audiences as possible. preservation needs. Develop a plan. Working with key volunteers, While it was not without some challenges during its the executive director researched and prepared a first year, Friends energized excitement and generated comprehensive five-year business plan for Friends, more than $500,000 in financial support from within including five-year revenue and expense projections, the Cathedral congregation, the diocese, and the wider and a 12-month calendar of fundraising and historic preservation community. communications strategies and activities. A newly established Friends Task Force reviewed and approved Here are the key elements that made the fundraising the plan. efforts of Friends of Trinity Cathedral so successful: Sacred Places • Fall 2011 • 20