Tuesday, June 27, 2006


Promises, Promises

Even though the 2005-06 fiscal year isn't over for another three days, it's time to start planning for the 2006-07 Annual Fund. I know what you're thinking: "This means I get another set of Jason Thompson Direct Art! Finally!" Right you are, but that isn't the only thing to look forward to.

In the next fiscal year, the Annual Fund is going to start to be more "donor-centered." "Donor-centered" is a term that is thrown around a lot in fundraising circles (just like the terms "friendraising" or "stepping out of the box" or "in a brainstorm, there are no bad ideas"- which everyone knows is complete hoo-haw. There ARE some really bad ideas). To be "donor centered" means that development offices and goals look at all donors as (gasp!) people rather than pseudo ATM machines or as ID numbers. This means looking at preferences and attempting to make the giving process as easy as possible for you, the donor, rather than us, the University.

What does this mean to you? Well, for starters, it means that you may not receive all of the mailings this year depending on your historical period of giving. Why? Because mailings are going to be sent based upon the historical dates of when the gifts are made- so if you have made your gift to the Annual Fund in April every year, then we'll only send you mailings after January. Also, an e-mail is going to go out in July giving to mark the beginning of the new fiscal year. When you give, you won't receive anything else from the Annual Fund for the rest of 2006. This is just the beginning.

"But Jason, then I won't have the complete set of the 2006-07 Direct Art Series if you start thinking about me more than yourself!" While that is true, if you contact me and make a request, I promise that I will make certain that you receive every piece of mail in next year's set, autographed by yours truly. If the line is busy, just keep trying- there will be a huge demand.

Thanks for all of your support this year.

The Mowry Christmas, er, Holiday Party
Sometimes people wonder what a Mowry Alumni Center office get together is like. What is it like when those Mowry people go out in public? Well, I finally got around to getting the video of the Christmas party digitized and up on the server. We were at the Backstretch in Delaware. This short video clip is interim VP Jack McKinnie '54 dancing with Donna Burtch '79 and Mary Lou deJonge. And yes, ladies, Jack did indeed teach me some of his moves.

Tribute to "The Man"
Speaking of Mr. McKinnie, this week is Jack's last full week as Interim Vice President before handing off the reins of this stage coach known as University Relations to Mark Shipps '70. When Mr. McKinnie first started, every person in the building was excited about having Jack around every day, but I'm not sure if anyone really knew what a positive influence he would be. Jack has done more for the University than anyone in the past 6 months and deserves the recognition of everyone associated with Ohio Wesleyan. Without the steady leadership of Mr. McKinnie, this trying year would have enjoyed the success that it had.

Thanks for everything, Jack. We'll miss you. That is why I am quitting my job here and moving back to Westlake with Jack to become his personal assistant. He thinks I'm kidding about this, but I'm not. I hope Mrs. McKinnie is a good cook.

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