ENVOY FEB 2011
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By Dan Lawson, Executive Director of Development
The national economic slump hit Emmanuel very hard, and we have had to make major adjustments. The real problem, as our Trustees noted in their last meeting, is that our financial situation has not turned around as quickly as it needs to. We will renegotiate our 7.25 million dollar loan with the bank in October, and they will use our year-end numbers (our fiscal year ends May 31) as a basis for those negotiations. Therefore, it is crucial for us to end the fiscal year in the black – something we have not been able to do since the economy crashed.
Our upcoming capital campaign is called “Celebrate the Future.” We’re looking forward to the campaign kickoff in a few months. In the meantime, in consultation with our Trustees, we are working to close the deficit. Our President and I have been on the road extensively since early November visiting key donors to help strengthen our general fund. These efforts, along with those of our Board members, are all aimed at strengthening our financial position during the remainder of our fiscal year.
We have seen a good response to our efforts so far. In fact, our December year end gift income was the strongest in the history of the School by a large margin. In addition, just before Christmas, Congress voted to extend the Bush tax cuts by two years, which means that people over 70-1/2 years old may give up to $100,000 directly from their IRAs to the School without counting it as income. We are still seeing gifts come in as a result of this decision. A good December is helpful, but it does not, by itself, give us a positive number at the end of May. We will move into the campaign as soon as we feel confident that we will be in a strong negotiating position with the bank.
Our field representatives from the Development Department are not only working to close the deficit by the end of May, but they are launching an effort to solicit friends of the School to make two-year commitments to the general fund. That effort will be a first step toward our campaign, a bridge, so to speak, between closing the deficit this year and the time we begin receiving income from the Celebrate the Future campaign. In that campaign we will solicit friends to make five-year commitments to the School with specific projects in mind to strengthen our future.
We covet the sincere prayers from our friends beyond their continued financial support.
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