The Goddard Center raises $10.5MM to keep bringing the performing arts to the Heartland
Learn how The Goddard Center is on their way to $10.5MM for a major renovation and expansion.
The Goddard Center provides south central Oklahomans live performances, fine arts exhibits, and educational arts camps. Since its founding, it has become an indispensable community center for art, music, and cultural activities. Expansions in the early 2000s added an art teaching space, and their Centennial Sculpture Garden.
The Goddard Center’s main building was a state-of-the-art facility when it was built in 1970. To ensure they serve their growing community well for the next fifty years, as well as expand their impact, it became clear that improvements were needed to their aging facilities.
The planned remodel and expansion, originally estimated to cost $8MM, will include open studio space, lobby space, teaching space for the digital arts, ADA accessible and code compliant for fire suppression.
Knowing a capital campaign was inevitable, Dr. Ken Bohannon, the Goddard Center’s Executive Director, began investing in himself and his team to up their fundraising game. As a career music educator, he saw the need to acquire the expertise required to make the campaign a success.
While attending the Lilly Family School of Philanthropy, a classmate recommended he reach out to Andrea Kihlstedt for help.
Ken and the team had interviewed local consultants who came with a high price tag. The opportunity to work with an expert virtually at a fraction of the cost — and network with other Capital Campaign Pro clients — was too good to pass up.
Shortly after, Ken was paired up with Jeff Hensley, one of our Senior Campaign Advisors.
Ken and Pat, a member of the board of directors, quickly got to work with Jeff on formulating a strategy and a case for support.
“The board thought that working with Capital Campaign Pro was economical, compared to local fundraising consultants. Frankly, the online materials and Jeff’s timely advice on how to proceed has kept us from misstepping with donors and ensured that we touched all the bases as we worked toward our goal.”
As the campaign progressed, the goal grew to $10MM+ to include endowment and to meet rising construction costs, Jeff assisted the team with planned giving and direct mail support, in addition to major gift solicitation during the quiet phase.
He also provided guidance on events (including tours of the renovation sites), and conducted solicitation trainings for the board, which proved to be invaluable in creating buy-in.
“Jeff was an amazing consultant. Very easy to work with, and was always there ready for us at any point in the campaign to answer questions about anything concerning the campaign. It was especially helpful to have someone who has been through a groundbreaking event, and other fundraiser events throughout the campaign AND now that we are about to have the Grand Opening, to guide us through that as well. Jeff coached me and my board on how to make the ‘ask’, and reviewed any correspondence we might have to donors throughout the campaign. He was always there to inspire me and others to get out there and make more contacts. Jeff is very friendly and not at all pushy as some consultants might be. He also helped us create a legacy campaign for us to start when this project is over. A great guy to work with.”Dr. Ken Bohannon, Executive Director
Ken also took advantage of our weekly peer-support calls, where he was an active participant not just in asking questions, but answering them as well.
Today, The Goddard Center is just shy of their $10.5MM goal thanks to the contributions from the board, individual donors, corporations, and foundations. A legacy giving society has also been established to grow their endowment and ensure sustainable future funding.
“Rarely have I encountered such a dedicated and hard-working staff and volunteer group. They believe in the Center’s mission and are passionate about the future of the arts in their community. Moreover, their faithfulness to our work, to implementing the strategies that I coached them on, and to using the resources available in the Toolkit helped them achieve their goals with limited staff and internal resources. They maximized the cost-effective benefits of our service offerings at CCPro such that the ROI on their investment is extraordinary!”Jeff Hensley, Senior Campaign Advisor
The next 50 years indeed looks bright for this cultural gem in America’s heartland.
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