FYI Blog

Avalon Dispatch 02.08.2022

Year of the Tiger, Black History Month, postal delivery, branding a football team, cozy fireplaces, and supply chain humor—all in this week’s @AvalonConsultingGroup Dispatch!


Dear friends,

Happy Lunar New Year! I hope you had a chance to see the winter lantern display at The REACH at the Kennedy Center. All the lanterns (nearly 100, consisting of 10,000 LED lights) were crafted by Chinese artisans to celebrate the Year of the Tiger. The Kennedy Center also hosted several performances in honor of the holiday. And thank you to Vu Le for sharing these 22 courageous things we can do during the Year of the Tiger.

Activities are also underway for Black History Month. The Avalon staff has been sharing some fantastic resources. Here are a few highlights:

In other news, the Washington Football Team has a new name: the Washington Commanders. While there are mixed feelings about the choice (I laughed out loud about a possible new cheer: Go Commando!), I enjoyed this Washington Post reporting on the branding process. In their interview, team officials emphasized transparency. Perhaps they have been reading the Avalon blog? According to Jason Wright, team president:

We set a precedent that that process was going to be open and engaging. This wasn’t something we were going to go in a back room and decide. …It’s something that broadly resonated with our fans in this process, and it’s something that embodies the values of service and leadership that really characterize the DMV.

I also recommend this NYT opinion video series on American agriculture’s “irreparable harm to the planet.” It’s difficult, but important. The first video spotlights big agriculture, the second will examine the chicken industry, and the third proposes a dietary modification that “may gross you out—but might also help curb climate change.” (How’s that for a teaser?!)

At Avalon, we are excited about the Grand Canyon Conservancy’s new digital membership card, which they are using via Cuseum. The platform has neat features like push notifications for renewal, geofencing capabilities, and other opportunities for engagement. Reach out to your Avalon team if you’d like to explore this for your nonprofit.

In direct mail, the latest update from Production Solutions (PS) analyzed 2021 postage delivery. They found that both first class and marketing mail delivery are averaging about half a day longer than 2020. The increase is more dramatic over the past five years, with an increase of 1 full day for first class and 1.4 days for marketing mail.

PS also emphasized ongoing supply chain issues. Our previous advice to plan ahead and prepare to be flexible holds. Speaking of which, I had to laugh at the recent New Yorker cartoon that pokes fun at this challenge.

Finally, with all the snow in the DC area, I have been feeling nostalgic for the fun DC venues with cozy fireplaces. Washingtonian posted this round-up, if you need some inspiration. Bar à Vin in Georgetown is at the top of my list, and the fireplace at the Iron Gate is an old favorite lunch spot on a cold day. There are also some COVID-friendly outdoor spots on the list.

Take care,


Allison Porter headshot

Allison Porter, President
Avalon Consulting Group
202-429-6080 ext. 102