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Reports from the Field!

Threads of Resistance and More: Expanding the Appeal and Relevance of Craft                Fuller Craft Museum, located in Brockton, has unique expertise in aligning contemporary craft exhibitions -showcasing works in glass, fiber, metal, wood or clay - with topical, political, and social issues. A focus of their recently completed five-year strategic plan is to expand the museum’s audience to new geographies and to engage more deeply with the local community. The CCT team is interviewing 15+ arts and culture museums, including comparable and aspirational organizations, to identify best practices and tactics for audience expansion and engagement. The team is also interviewing Fuller staff and board members for insights, conducting financial analyses, and completing digital marketing assessments of the target institutions. Once the CCT team has synthesized the findings, they will hold a work session with Fuller to review the initial recommendations.

Remember that Middle School Science Experiment?                                                  The Museum Institute for Teaching Science (MITS) focuses on helping teachers more effectively teach science with hands on, inquiry-based approaches. CCT is helping to articulate value propositions for marketing MITS services to four target constituencies: school administrators, teachers, informal educators and corporate funders. The first phase of the project included surveys and interviews with these constituencies, as well as interviews with board members and staff to understand key needs and MITS differentiators. Following the interim report, the team is focused on developing constituent personas and value propositions, as well as testing.

Financial Indigestion                                                                                                        The Eliot School’s mission is to inspire lifelong learning and craftsmanship for all by offering in-house courses inwoodworking, upholstery and other disciplines. They also provide courses with Boston Public School partners. CCT was asked to help measure individual program profitability, enable what-if evaluation of initiatives, and develop reporting to the board that is digestible rather than a “tsunami of statistics.” The CCT team is conducting a peer analysis, working on a financial model, and designing a key performance indicator dashboard for use by the school and for reporting to their board.

Improving the Lives of Court-Involved Children                                                   Adolescent Consultation Services (ACS) of Middlesex County works to support and empower court-involved children and families by providing no cost mental health prevention and intervention services to help them envision and work toward a better future. As input to developing a new five-year strategic plan, ACS asked CCT to complete a SWOT (strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats) assessment. In the first phase of the project, the CCT team is using interviews, surveys, and research to gather input from key stakeholders to inform the analysis. Following the interim presentation, the team will focus on analyzing and synthesizing the data, completing the SWOT assessment and developing recommendations.

This Homework is Lots of Fun!                                                                              Boston Arts Academy’s (BAA) is the only public arts school in Boston. The CCT team is helping BAA assess whether their mission statement appropriately reflects their plans for the future. The CCT team has been interviewing all stakeholders, including the boards (there is a school board and a foundation board), teachers, students, alumni, families and caregivers.  

                                                                                                                                             

Volunteer Profile - Bill Sones

Current CCT Role: Project Manager                                                                                                                                                                                   Volunteer Since: I first worked with CCT in 2003.  Work and life events have led to a couple of brief hiatus periods but it’s been 15 years since I first worked with CCT.
                                                                                                                          Projects and Roles for each: Recent projects include Children’s Healthwatch and Minuteman Senior Services as PMs.  Others include Conservation Law Foundation and the Women’s Crisis Center as a team member, and I have also worked on the Volunteer Committee.

MBA: Yale 

How you discovered CCT:  There was outreach to local Yale alumni and it sounded like a great organization.

Describe your CCT experience:  I have found CCT to be a tremendously rewarding experience on so many levels.  First and foremost, it’s always so rewarding to have an opportunity to help so many organizations that are dedicated to great causes.  But it’s also always great to meet like-minded professionals in the area that are also drawn to helping these non-profits.  I’ve met so many people with varied backgrounds that I would not have had a chance to get to know otherwise.

Volunteer Profile - Lisa Coney

Current CCT Role: Site Visit Coordinator for Client Development 

Volunteer Since: 2012

Projects and Roles: WalkBoston, Project Manager (PM); Emerson Umbrella (now, The Umbrella), PM; Root Capital, PM; The House of the Seven Gables, PM; Roca, PM; EVKids, PM.

MBA: University of Chicago, Graduate School of Business

How She Discovered CCT: Lisa had taken a couple of years away from the workforce to take care of her mother’s affairs and was looking for some interesting volunteer opportunities. A former colleague who was a Wharton MBA shared an email she received regarding CCT and Lisa followed up. She completed an application, “…and never looked back.”

Volunteer Profile - Lorri Veidenheimer

Current CCT Role: Board Member and Co-Chair of the Client Development Committee

Volunteer Since: 2015

First Project: NEADS Service Dogs

MBA: Kellogg (Northwestern University)

How You Discovered CCT:

After moving to Boston about nine years ago, I was trying to make new friends and do some professional networking. I discovered a wonderful woman who went to both my undergraduate college and graduate school so I asked her to meet for coffee. She was a long-time CCT volunteer and suggested I get involved as well. It took me a couple of years before I signed up - wish I’d done it earlier.

Describe Your CCT Experience:

Volunteer Profile - Aish Agrawal

Current CCT Role: Project Manager for Charles River Conservancy

Volunteer Since: 2013

First Project: Cristo Rey Boston

MBA: Fuqua (Duke) School of Business, 2011

How You Discovered CCT: An email to all Fuqua grads from Duke’s Boston chapter

Describe Your CCT Experience: CCT has been a rewarding experience in many ways - honing my skills, meeting and working with folks from different industries, learning about the nonprofit world, and more importantly, working for clients who would otherwise find it challenging to get some of their critical projects off the ground. At one point or the other, each project became demanding and the teams worked together to deliver the project on time for clients who were always pleased not just with the outcome but the passion that the teams brought to the project. In every project, I have seen the client have at least one “Aha” moment, demonstrating the value CCT teams bring to the Boston area nonprofits.

What Don’t We Know About You? I learned I was claustrophobic when I stepped into the Great Pyramid of Giza. I made people behind me in the line turn around so I could get out. Some were not happy.

Volunteer Profile: Carol Krauss

Current CCT Role: Advancement Chair

Volunteer Since: 2009

How She Discovered CCT: Carol Krauss responded to an email from her alma mater, Tuck School at Dartmouth, about a small all-volunteer nonprofit that did consulting for other Boston nonprofits. Having worked in management consulting before business school and then afterwards for Arthur D. Little, this seemed like a natural fit.

First CCT Project: In her first project in 2009 for NEADS Dogs for Deaf and Disabled Americans, she connected so much with the organization that she became a long-term volunteer Weekend Puppy Raiser raising two dogs for veterans with PTSD.

Volunteer Profile - Gabriele Loebbert

Current CCT Role: Board Co-Chair

Volunteer Since: 2008

First CCT Project: Judge Baker Children’s Center

MBA: Darden School of Business at UVA

How She Discovered CCT: Gabriele says she is, “forever grateful to Julie Rowe who introduced me to CCT.” Gabriele and Julie had known each other from having worked on a start-up together.

CCT Experience: Although there certainly have been challenges while leading the organization during this recent period of growth and evolution, Gabriele describes her board experience as, “a lot of fun with such a talented group of individuals.” Gabriele has been involved with many facets of CCT’s operations. When asked what she has enjoyed the most, she responds, “I love the project work as that is the core of our mission - I’ve been a team member, project manager and sponsor.” In addition to project work, Gabriele also admits to a passion for client development. She co-chaired the Client Development Committee and still loves doing client outreach during the summer months as well as conducting site visits with applicants in the fall. Gabriele shares, “I love meeting with potential clients, learning about the incredible work they are doing and figuring out how a CCT team could best help.”

Volunteer Profile: Julie Rowe

CCT has been fortunate to have Julie on the team for nearly 10 years. Julie started with CCT in 2006 and has worked with a number of CCT client organizations including ImprovBoston, Charles River Conservancy, Danforth Art, Commonwealth Shakespeare Company and twice with Helping Hands Monkey Helpers.   Julie started as a team member and progressed to project manager; she was appointed to the CCT Board of Directors as Co-Chair of the Volunteer Relations Committee in 2011. In this role, she is critical in assessing, growing and building CCT’s work with volunteers. If you have a volunteer question, Julie is the one to ask!   Julie has very much enjoyed her involvement with CCT. Julie noted that it’s rewarding to apply one’s skillset to the business problems of Boston’s nonprofit organizations, in addition to learning from other teammates. Additionally, she emphasizes that CCT’s culture is fun and collaborative.  This year Julie is heavily involved with implementing Salesforce.com, software that will streamline the management of CCT’s volunteer database. Over the next several years, Julie would like to see CCT further spread the word about its organization and grow its volunteer membership. Last year CCT served 11 nonprofit clients but had to turn away a number of others.

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