Cultivating with Kathleen
Our Development Coordinator Extraordinaire
Photo provided by: Kathleen Ramsey
During the 2014-15 JLNO year, the Board of Directors decided to create a staff Development Coordinator position to offer members and donors continuity.
Carrie Moulder, JLNO Communications Manager and Operations Administrator, outlined the DC role as an individual who “helps build and maintain processes for acquiring donors and donor recognition; maintains existing donor relationships; and trains members to be well versed in how to approach donors for contributions.”
Kathleen Ramsey, a JLNO member since 2003, was serving as Secretary to the Board during the creation of the DC position and when JLNO started searching for the right fit, Kathleen, a sustainer at the time, applied. She was hired and began in July 2016.
Immediately, there was much to do. Both Freret 5k and Girls Night Out were in the throes of planning, and Kathleen jumped in with both feet, helping to complete two successful events. The flood relief effort also began just a month after she started. The silver lining in this tragedy was “people saw JLNO that had not seen us before,” she said. It opened up new relationships in the community and helped Kathleen develop relationships with past supporters who were aiding in the League’s flood relief efforts.
“The Development Coordinator’s main role is establishing new and stewarding existing relationships with donors, which include individuals, businesses, and foundations… [My job] is to maintain an open line of communication between JLNO and its supporters,” said Kathleen. The flood relief effort, particularly, put her immediately in to contact with the community in exactly this way.
The first three events after Kathleen’s appointment also aided her to fulfill the other part of the DC’s purposes. “For members of fundraising committees, I can provide the history of past donors to their particular event or a list of potential partners curated for new projects,” she said. “I handle soliciting participation so that the chairwomen and committees can concentrate on bringing their unique contacts, ideas and strategy to grow their projects.”
“Kathleen being a Sustainer and past board member has been key,” said Maria Pardo Huete, JLNO President. “We want continuity [for donors] and also want our members to have training.” Maria said that because this is a new position and the League is learning what the balance is between staff and volunteers, Kathleen’s experience has been invaluable.
Kathleen considers herself a resource for others within and outside of the League and is passionate about promoting and cultivating “an organization that is making incredible strides to improve the lives of those in Metropolitan New Orleans.” She recognizes that our League is in perpetual development – an important perspective to have in the budding post she has taken on.
“JLNO will continue to evolve and refine the Development Coordinator position alongside the fundraising knowledge and skills of our members,” Kathleen said. As a Sustainer, she certainly is staying active in this evolution that she helped to shape for just over a decade. We hope she’ll continue for another.