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  • Zack Hayhurst 9:05 pm on June 29, 2010 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: artistic administration, Development,   

    Country Life, opera, and blogging 

    For those of you who regularly read my blog posts and keep tabs on my progress (thanks Jessica and Matt!!), you will know that I haven’t posted on here in a while.  It’s not that I don’t want to – far from it.  However, living in a part of the country with limited cell phone service and spotty internet connection presents a new challenge to frequently blogging not seen since the day of dial-up AOL.

    I’ve now been here at Glimmerglass Opera for about a month and a half.  In other words, I’ve just past the halfway point of my summer here.  Things have definietely picked up, and I finally feel like I understand my role here and where this summer is headed.  Some of things I’ve been doing include setting up for audition panels, processing VIP tickets, revising young artist resumes, assist scheduling manager with company daily schedule.. just to name a few.

    There also a lot of things that happen here that I can’t necessarily talk about in a public forum.  Hence, my material for these posts must remain somewhat watered down and general.  Sorry!

    Looking forward to the rest of the summer, I can look forward to a host of additional fun things.  For example, there are a series of development events later this summer where certain guest artists and young artists are asked to perform for donors, etc.  It will be my job to act as a contact between the artistic department and the development department in coordinating all of this with the selected singers.  Good times!  I’ll be sure to post more about that as it happens.

    Okay – back to my country roads and cow pastures!

  • Anna Casey 10:10 am on June 2, 2010 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: Civil action, collective action, DEN-L, Development, , , , , , Paulo Freire, , , Poverty   

    A First Taste of Liberia 

    Greetings from Liberia! 

     I arrived safely in Liberia Wednesday night after over a full day of exhausting travel. After less than a week, I have found myself falling in love with this beautiful culture and its people. My DEN-L coworkers have been extremely welcoming and eager to make me as comfortable and at-home as possible. I am quickly becoming accustomed to the hot and muggy climate, the few hours of the day when electricity is available (my flashlight and headlamp are probably the two most useful things that I packed), the spotty running water situation (bathing with just a bucket of water to splash on yourself is so much more fun), and of course the killer mosquitoes. (More …)

    • David Casey 5:12 pm on June 2, 2010 Permalink | Reply


      Why not have Den-L help the village leaders send a follow up letter to the political leaders in attendance, reiterating their questions and specific requests in writing and asking for measurable responses within a certain reasonable time frame, together with a follow on meeting to be scheduled now?


      • Anna Casey 10:58 am on June 4, 2010 Permalink | Reply

        That’s definitely part of what DEN-L does, Dad, but it’s difficult in a place where virtually no one in the town is literate. The idea is to guide the people to take action themselves. If they cannot understand the letter they may feel that the process is out of their control. Of course, it doesn’t mean that a letter is totally out of the realm of possibility, but you have to be careful to make people feel included in the process.

        • Ann Tobey 12:13 am on June 5, 2010 Permalink

          how to say…. essential that the people are the process…. good luck with those mosquitoes and may your headlamp work properly for the duration

          Aunt Ann

    • Matt Pierson 3:36 pm on June 7, 2010 Permalink | Reply

      Good to see you are jumping right in to the madness that is DEN-L. You are going to have such an amazing time there. I am very jealous.

      You were talking about the singing, what I found interesting was not only that it was used for entertainment but it was a way to pass on history and stories from generation to generation. I used to love falling asleep out in the villages listening to the girls do their call and answer standing in a circle clapping and singing about their every day lives, their work, their schooling, boys, etc.

  • Anna Casey 6:10 pm on May 23, 2010 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , civic action, , Development, gbarnga, gender, , , , , , war, West Africa   

    Getting ready to embark… 

    Hey all,

    As I’m preparing to leave on Tuesday to begin my epic adventure in Liberia, I thought that I would take a minute to introduce myself. My name is Anna Casey and I just finished my first year within American University’s MAID program (Master of Arts in International Development), which is part of AU’s School of International Service. Specifically, my concentration within the program focuses on Conflict, Peacebuilding & Development. I am interested in working on issues facing post-conflict settings in Sub-Saharan Africa including: refugees, youth in conflict, peacebuilding and reconciliation, community health and development, and gender relations.  (More …)

    • Megan Yaner 5:33 pm on May 24, 2010 Permalink | Reply

      So exciting! WIll def enjoy reading about your experiences.

    • Lainie 2:13 am on May 25, 2010 Permalink | Reply

      So wonderful! Can’t wait — safe travels love!

    • Scott Wood 9:34 pm on May 25, 2010 Permalink | Reply

      I wish you all the best, Anna. Your work-to-be is very admirable. Stay positive over there!

    • David Casey 12:22 pm on May 26, 2010 Permalink | Reply

      I am enormously proud of you, Anna. Get after it!

      Love, Dad

    • Ally K 2:58 pm on May 26, 2010 Permalink | Reply

      work on that website if you get a chance 🙂 and post pictures!

      wish i could fit in your suitcase!

    • anne maher 4:49 pm on May 27, 2010 Permalink | Reply

      am waiting eagerly for Anna to surface!

    • Sally 2:44 pm on May 29, 2010 Permalink | Reply

      miss you! xoxo

    • Cara 8:44 pm on June 1, 2010 Permalink | Reply

      Hi Hun!!!

  • Emily Thompson 10:02 pm on April 20, 2010 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: Development, ,   

    DoR: What Worked, What Didn’t? 

    Today at the USHMM was a day of reflection. Looking back at last week’s events and discussing what worked and what didn’t. Yesterday (Monday) a lot of people were still out of the office, DoR takes a lot of energy, so some decided they needed a little more R&R…I can’t really blame them. Seeing how much work and time went into planning the event (1 year to be exact….next year’s dates are already out. May 3-5, 2011), I could see why some staff would want to take a little break! So, today at the prospect strategy meeting, the development staff at the museum, and the development staff at locations around the country, video/phone conferenced to discuss DoR. While I won’t go into every little detail about what was said, I will say there is always room for improvement. Many of the guests of this year’s events thought it was the best DoR EVER! Which is amazing, but looking back, there were a few little issues that could be fixed. I learned that when planning events of this nature, you can’t be afraid to make changes for the next year. It is okay to take some risks and do some experimentation to see what really works! What works one year, might not work the next, and so on and on and on. So, you sometimes have to listen to everyone’s idea and thank them graciously, even if deep down you are thinking to yourself, “There is no way in H*** I will ever let that happen!”, because the truth is, it might end up being a great suggestion! Listening to everyone’s input today was really fun, and at times a little disheartening, but in the end what everyone says is taken back to the head honchos, looked over and this starts the planning for next year! To leave you with something fun, if you are on twitter, take a look at what some people had to say about this year’s events! #2010DOR

    • Leila Smith 11:49 pm on April 20, 2010 Permalink | Reply

      I call it refreshing an event — every year something needs to be freshened and everything should be on the table. You just hope that some things stay on the table and that others fall underneath. Opera America used to close down for several days after their annual meeting!

  • Emily Thompson 8:51 pm on March 20, 2010 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: Database, Development, ,   

    I’m Back! 

    Hi All, I’m back from my fabulous trip to the Netherlands! What a beautiful country. My family is there for a while because of business, and live about an hour and a half south-east of Amsterdam. We drove up there and I did see the Anne Frank House, which I was very excited about because of my involvement with the museum, obviously, and you name it, we did…except for some things which were off-limits due to the fact i was traveling with 4 children under the age of 13.  🙂 We did a million other things, but I don’t feel the need to bore you with stories of my family vacation.

    Back at work this week and its going well. I hit a little bump in the road on Monday when they made me move desks again. Seriously starting to be a real pain. Is it too much to ask to just have a desk I can leave all my stuff at each night and know in the morning it is going to be there? Having to constantly move around, change floors, and update computers to fit my needs is such a hassle. I’m trying to make the most of it though and am meeting new people around the museum! Steve, the tech guy, and I are practically best friends haha.

    I’ve finally started working with Team Approach, the museum’s database to keep track of donors, members, etc. I’m familiar with Razer’s Edge, but this is so different. It is a very weird program, not sure how I feel about it yet. It is not very user-friendly. Anyhoo, all the work I did looking through files and finding information about donations made to the endowment now has to be updated into Team Approach. So, I think this is Part 2 of my project.

    Things are getting SUPER busy now at the Museum because Days of Remembrance is fast approaching, the 2nd week of May. This is a 3 day event including a tribute dinner (only $325 a plate, yikes) with Speaker Attorney General Eric Holder. This dinner pays tribute to the US Soldiers who helped defeat the Nazis during WW2 and liberate Holocaust survivors. This year’s event is going to be extremely special as many veterans are going to be in attendance. I am lucky enough to get to work this event, although I’m not entirely sure yet in what capacity.  I’ll keep you posted!!!

    • Karen Thompson 3:53 pm on March 21, 2010 Permalink | Reply

      Emily, I really enjoyed reading all of your posts. It sounds very exciting and the work seems rewarding. It is a lot more information than I get from your phone calls. How often do you blog?

  • Emily Thompson 4:32 pm on February 22, 2010 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: bequests, CGAs, Development, Donations, Endowments, Estates, IRA, , Trusts,   

    Working in Planned Giving: Endowments 

    So, most people know what development is. It is the part of an organization that helps get money! Development is most commonly seen in the Not-For-Profit world, but some for-profits have development as well. What most people don’t know however is that there are several areas of Development; Grants, Foundations, even Special Events! At the USHMM, I am working in Planned Giving. PG is about planning for the future and ensuring the museum remains for future generations. Receiving charitable donations through bequests, estates, IRAs, trusts, and many others donors ensure that the memory and lessons of the holocaust will never be forgotten

    One of the most important aspects of development is knowing where donations are meant to go. There are several areas such as the permanent collection, education programs, and the endowment. The endowment is a large pool of money that can be used for the museum’s general purposes and programming. This money is extremely important to have just in case anything were to ever happen, there would be money to fall back on.

    This is where my job comes in! Currently, I am going through each and every donor file to see if they have specifically designated their money to go to the General Endowment. It may not seem like the most thrilling job, but it is important information for the museum to have an estimate of how much money they have in the endowment, just in case!!

    • FB 1:20 pm on February 25, 2010 Permalink | Reply

      It is interesting. Are you getting a sense of who the donors are and what they’re like? Is it a struggle to get funds for general operations because people want their money to go to highly visible projects?

  • Emily Thompson 5:14 pm on February 19, 2010 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: Development, , , United States Holocaust Memorial Museum,   

    Emily’s First Post!! Woo Hoo! 

    Hi Everyone!! My name is Emily, I am a graduate student in the Department of Performing Arts. I am currently working on getting my master’s in Arts Management! I recently graduated from Syracuse University in May 2009 with a dual degree in Art History and Public Policy, and a minor in Public Communications. I LOVED Syracuse and had a wonderful experience there, but now I am VERY excited to be in DC now and studying at AU.

    This January I started interning at the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum in Planned Giving, an area of Development.  So far, things are going really well. I’m really enjoying the people I work with, and learning about development, planned giving and the museum. This is now my “4th” week at the museum, or it would have been, had it not be for the snow week, yuck! So, I will make sure to update you all on everything that has already happened, and will keep you posted on what is to come! Hope you enjoy the ride with me!

    • fblume 12:09 am on February 22, 2010 Permalink | Reply

      Welcome to the blog! (Where’s your photo?!) Planned giving is really interesting. Are you seeing it as a way for people to feel involved?

      • Emily Thompson 2:34 pm on February 22, 2010 Permalink | Reply

        Thank you!! It is great to be a part of such a great project! My only hope is that other’s will enjoy reading about my experience and it the USHMM as a great place to work! Planned Giving is definitely interesting and there is a lot more to it than I had originally anticipated. The PG Director, associates, and stewards work really hard to keep the donors involved through different “groups” such as Legacy of Light or Wings of Memory Societies. I will have to blog about these groups in another entry at some point!

  • Mohsin 4:53 pm on January 21, 2010 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: Brookings, Development, , ,   

    Mohsin’s Introduction 

    I’m a first year M.A. student in IPCR (International Peace and Conflict Resolution) with a concentration on International Development. I’m currently working for the Center for Universal Education at The Brookings Institution in Washington, D.C. My primary work duties include conducting intensive research and representing CUE at events around the city.

    • John Charles 10:34 pm on January 21, 2010 Permalink | Reply

      Mohsin: Glad to hear you are at Brookings. Looking forward to hearing more.

    • FB 7:15 pm on February 8, 2010 Permalink | Reply

      What attracted you to Brookings? How did you get your internship? Have you attended a favorite event?

      • mohsin 11:38 pm on February 20, 2010 Permalink | Reply

        I was obviously very much attracted to the high quality research reputation that Brookings has, and because I enjoy satisfying my intellectual curiosity by looking into things more analytically, this seemed like a perfect fit for me! When I was interviewed, I was very excited to be speaking with someone who had worked/written on education so of course I had questions for her. All events I attend are amazingly insightful!

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