FYI Blog

Avalon Dispatch 11.08.2022

This week, the @AvalonFYI dispatch is full of client news! You will also find guidance on ethical storytelling, a big change for personal finance, Avalon’s new flock, and reasons to check out our open positions:

Dear friends,

Today is Election Day. Avalon is closed today to allow people time to vote and volunteer. And as you know, the nonprofit sector is impacted significantly by the outcome of elections at every level of government. Avalon has decades of experience creating fundraising strategies for an ever-shifting political landscape, and we are ready to respond with you. No matter who wins today’s contests, you will empower your donors to make a difference. But first, let’s get out the vote!

November is also Native American Heritage Month, and this Friday is Veterans Day. The National Museum of the American Indian will host a three-day celebration to honor the military service of Native American, Native Hawai’ian and Alaska Native veterans. A procession and dedication ceremony on the National Mall will kick off events at 2pm on Friday. In addition, there will be educational, cultural, and other activities all weekend. If you can’t make it in person, many of the events will be livestreamed.

Speaking of the National Mall, the Washington Post reported that the Smithsonian Board of Regents has identified locations for two new museums: the National Museum of the American Latino and the American Women’s History Museum. The next step will be for Congress to approve the sites and to designate each site for a specific museum. Avalon senior account director Nova Cohen-Prohow had a great reaction to the news. I couldn’t agree with her more:

One of my favorite things about living in the DC area is watching the evolution of iconic institutions like the National Mall to better represent America to ourselves and the world.

Congratulations also to Habitat for Humanity NYC and Westchester County for their work on behalf of Black women homeowners and their families in NYC. Habitat partnered with residents at 2178 Atlantic Avenue in Brooklyn to provide financial and legal assistance when government failures and an investor’s predatory actions threatened their ownership of the building. It was a 10-year journey, and they won! 2178 Atlantic is now a thriving resident-owned co-op with a secure future.

I’m also excited to share that Avalon has adopted a flock as part of Farm Sanctuary’s 2022 Celebration for the Turkeys. This is one of my favorite Avalon and Thanksgiving traditions. Check out these beauties:

Avalon's 2022 turkey flock bios: Sandy, Elsa, George, Galadriel, and Roberto

For messaging pros, Giving USA published a helpful explanation of ethical storytelling. In it, John Thompson of TrueSense calls for a shift from the “donor as savior” model to a story of shared mission that connects nonprofits, donors, clients, and the wider community. The recommendations line up with Avalon’s guidance on DEI-informed messaging. And I second this hopeful conclusion:

Imagine the effect a consistently applied movement toward empathy could have over time, across a donor audience, across a community, across society. Not another demonstration of Us vs. Them, but a new paradigm built on the concept of We.  Fundraisers, and the stories they tell, are uniquely positioned to effect positive change in their donor audiences — and perhaps, someday, in society at large.

For your personal finances, heads up on a rule change for retirement savings: The federal government is increasing the amount of money Americans can save through 401k and IRA accounts. If your employer offers retirement savings, be sure to make the most of them—and share this info with your team so they can benefit too.

Finally, this reminds me…Avalon’s benefits are the best! I feel strongly about this as an ethical and strategic priority. Not only do we offer a generous 401K match, but we also fully cover quality health, vision and dental plans, disability insurance, and life insurance for all employees. Among other perks! Check out our benefits and open positions here.

Take care,


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