Case Studies

Anna Maria Island Community Center’s Revenue Grows by Over 20 Percent

Customer
Kristen Lessig, Executive Director, Anna Maria Island Community Center

The Problem
The Center had been operating in the red some years. To turn around the Center, Kristen needed to fill her income pipeline.

The Solution  
Each month, Kristen and Karen determined the best way to add $15,000 or more in new revenue into the Center’s to increase income in the current and future years.

The Value

  • The Center’s Giving Partner revenue increased 43 percent over the previous year.
  • The first annual appeal in recent years earned $125,000.
  • The Center began a new wrestling program with 25 first time wrestlers, as young as four. It’s a great developmental program and a new revenue stream.
  • Support for existing, but at the time unstable, significant government revenue stream.
  • After the project, the Center resubmitted a technology proposal and received $30,000.

Customer Testimonial
“I just wanted to say thank you for ALL you did to make this possible. You were an amazing gift to me when I started— I am grateful. I hope we can work together again in the future.”
 


Habitat for Humanity Knows Where It’s Going
and How to Pay for It

Customer
Sarah Pallone, Executive Director, Habitat for Humanity of Highlands County

The Problem
A new executive director needed an active, supportive board, not micro-management. The organization needed clarity about its mission and how it would fund its mission.

The Solution
After gathering input and analyzing results, Karen conducted a board retreat and offered follow-up implementation support.

The Value

• Habitat got eye-opening feedback that, “would never have gotten on our own.”
• The board identified building homes for owners as it’s number one priority.
• The board embraced it role ensuring that organization has adequate resources.
• It decided on a dual income strategy that balanced earned revenue with donations.
• The board responded enthusiastically: “I’ve attended a lot of facilitated sessions led by all kinds of professionals. What they did, didn’t hold a candle to Karen’s leadership.” Ted Puckorius

Customer Testimonial
“Before the retreat, board members were emailing, calling, and texting me—even on the weekends. After the event, that stopped. The board now knows their job. They understand it includes fiduciary responsibilities. It’s not only about showing up at meetings or micromanaging the staff.”


Launching Reach Out Recovery to the Next Level

Customer
Leslie Glass, the founder and CEO/Executive Director of Reach Out Recovery

The Problem
For several years, Leslie had been growing nonprofit with the goal of changing the way we view people with addictions. She was stuck.

The Solution
By working with Karen, Leslie identified possibilities and strategies to move forward. One key was for Leslie to meet with and talk to people until she had met and engaged all of the major “addiction” players. She met and joined leaders in the government, nonprofits, filmmakers, foundations, and academia.

The Value

  • Amongst them, Leslie found helpers, supporters, and experts who pointed her to the resources she needed.
  • Resources and funds to finish “The Silent Majority.” Since that time it has been distributed as part of America Public Television.
  • Today, the organization boost a website that reaches out to 120 million people impacted by additions.

Customer Testimonial
“I highly recommend Karen,” Leslie states. “She will help you do your dream.”


The Florida-Bahamas Synod Helps 100,000 Members Succeed

Customer
The Rev. David Webb, Assistant to the Bishop for Leadership Development

The Problem
What is the best way to help 214 organizations from Key West to Pensacola, with 100,000 members, to be more successful, with little money?

The Solution
Develop a resource center, staffed with one full-time. Hire a person with the mindset of a midwife to help organizations and their members birth their dreams.

The Value

  • The pre-consultant plan was to hire staff with librarian skills to handle the materials part-time. Karen’s research into several successful centers and unsuccessful found that hiring full-time rather than the part-time, quadrupled the support given and reduced the cost of providing each resource by 400 percent.
  • The resource center support member’s new efforts and struggles.
  • Members receive vetted books, links, videos, and advice that help them and align with the Synod’s theology.
  • The Center survived numerous budget cuts and continued to educate, equip, and connect thousands of leaders for over 15 years.

Customer Testimonial
“Karen is highly competent, energetic, and focused on the tasks at hand. Our Bishop has described Ms. Davis as ‘extremely talented.’ Her professional and personal gifts are exceptional.


Suncoast Workforce Boards Helps Hundreds of Sarasota and Manatee County Youth Make the Transition from School-to-Work 

Customer
MaryHelen Kress, Executive Director

The Problem
MaryHelen was excited about a school-to-work program developed in Louisville, Kentucky. She’d like to start the program locally, but she lacks funds to begin it.

The Solution
Anticipating that federal funds were forthcoming, Karen studies existing school-to-work programs to identify best practices. She studies start-up staffing needs, budgets, partners, and the like. Applying Karen’s recommendations, The Workforce Board seeks and receives funding to pilot a program that receives national recognition.

The Value

  • Eight local public high schools agree to participate in the program.
  • Hundreds of youth received help to transition out of school into the workforce
  • When the federal funding becomes available, the Workforce Board was the only nongovernment agency to win funding in the first funding cycle.
  • In two years, the program obtains local, state and national funding from governments, corporations, foundations and individuals to expand and sustain it.
  • Between local, state, and federal dollars more than $628,000 is raised for local youth.
  • Two principals  continued the program after outside resources drys up, because of its “high value.”

Customer Testimonial
“The School-to-Work Program is the best thing we ever did.”


The Senior Friendship Center Sustain A Formerly-Grant Funded Caregiver Support Program

Customer
Erin McLeod, CEO

The Problem
The Senior Friendship Centers received a pilot grant to provide services to caregivers. The funds were about to run out on a very success endeavor. The Center needed a sustainability plan to continue the vital service.

The Solution
Think outside the box to develop a sustainability plan for the Senior Friendship Center Resource Center, a $100,000 per year service.

The Value

  • Helping staff to think creatively about their opportunities to develop permanent funding for their two resource centers
  • Tap income from earned revenue, corporate fees, foundations, and individuals.
  • Develop new relationships to help support and fund the endeavor.

Customer Testimonial
“Over the years, Karen has been an amazing go-to person for counsel and strategy.”


Doubling a Food Banks Chow in Less than Two Years

Customer
Ellen Campbell, CEO

The Problem
To meet community need, The Food Bank of Manatee needed more food. Fortunately, untapped resources existed. They included unsold local farm produce; delayed fruit shipments with little commercial value from the nearby port, plus meat and other food nearing expiration dates from grocery stores.

The Solution
With transportation and community connections food, instead of being discarded, was transformed to feed the hungry.

The Value

  • Karen helped The Food Bank to obtain a refrigerated truck, a refrigerated van, food collection barrels, and other tools.
  • The Food Bank retired several worn vehicles and can now easily serve 40 new partner agencies
  • They doubled the food distributed to two million pounds.
  • The Food Bank increased its income.

Customer Testimonial
“I was apprehensive about making the up-front investment with Karen, not knowing what results she would achieve. It was a risk that paid off, and the payoff grows as we continue to work with her.”


Helping Clothes to Kids Develop a New Store Strategy

Customer
Jennifer Silva, Executive Director

The Problem
Clothes to Kids celebrated its sixth birthday and was growing up fast. In six years, the nonprofit launched a successful store. Each week, they provided 250-300 children wardrobes to meet their mission of providing new, and quality used clothing to low-income, school school-age in Pinellas County Florida, free of charge. With this success behind them, they faced a new question. What was next for Clothes to Kids?

The Solution

Karen worked with staff and stakeholders to develop a set of possible futures. During a board strategy session, Karen helped the board to determine a unique plan, grow in their relationships to each other, and become energized by the future.

The Value

  • Clothes to Kids gains increased clarity, improved teamwork, and increased peace of mind.
  • Staff stress is reduced.
  • Solid support to sustain the new store.
  • Enhanced board and staff relationships.
  • A realistic but exciting vision for the future.

Customer Testimonial
“I love working with Karen because not only is she very good at discovering what it is that I need and she has great instincts. The combination of the two things offers amazing outcomes that exceed my expectations.”