The Crown Challenge, which has produced more multi-year donor pledges than at any other time in CMC’s history, has been honored by the Council for the Advancement and Support of Education (CASE) for its revolutionary strategy to maximize the impact of donor gifts.
The top organization honoring achievement in higher education across the country, CASE has named the College’s Crown Challenge as the recipient of its Circle of Excellence Gold Award for 2014, a prize based on a comprehensive criterion that takes into account the innovation, quality and impact of the program on its community.
“This is a distinct honor that recognizes the leadership and creativity of Steve Crown '74 and the strength of our alumni,” said Andrew Brewer, Director of Annual Giving at CMC. “Crown’s insight, generosity, and support of our Advancement team’s efforts have been crucial in creating a program that speaks to all of our supporters.”
Since its inception in 2009, the Challenge has encouraged consistent giving among supporters by providing matching funds that magnify the impact of every gift, regardless of size.
The creation of Trustee Crown, Vice President of Development and External Relations Ernie Iseminger, and the College’s Office of Annual Giving, the Challenge started with a simple, appealing message—that every gift counts—at a time when many college development offices were facing tough challenges posed by a recessionary global economy.
In the years since its establishment, the College has climbed from having virtually no alumni with multi-year pledges to one in three alumni joining the Challenge and making a four-year commitment—a phenomenal surge in growth.
The CASE Awards is a preeminent program recognizing higher education excellence and achievement in a wide range of categories, including fundraising, alumni affairs and communications. This year, the CASE awards competition in all 100 categories comprises more than 3,000 entries from nearly 630 organizations, including independent schools and nonprofits. Out of these entries, 283 bronze, silver and gold awards were given to recipients.