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Meet the Avalonian: 7 Questions with Evan Herring-Nathan

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Evan is an Avalon Analytics senior statistician. He crunches your data so you know exactly what is happening with your file and how to get the results your organization needs. He also happens to be an accomplished saxophone player—we highly recommend that you check out his band, Los Caribbeat

What is the most exciting project you have in the works right now?

I’m involved in an ongoing project to determine relative long-term value of co-op and non-co-op lists. Targeting the best acquisition prospects is paramount to an NPO’s long-term success. For that reason, the results of the analysis are especially beneficial because they are broad, being applicable to most if not all of our clients. The analysis will be updated on a periodic basis as we stay on top of long-term giving trends of the co-ops that we work with. As we collect more data, we gain more insight into the most effective use of co-op names.

What industry conversation is most interesting to you?

Recently, Roger Craver kicked off a mini-series editorial on The Agitator entitled “Raise More, Ask Less.” From a statistician’s perspective, this concept represents a great opportunity to continue developing useful tools in marketing strategy. Identifying pockets of donors and their contact-amount-preference is something that I have researched to some degree, and I’m looking forward to digging deeper into this idea. Successful categorization of donors would mean our clients’ fundraising dollars could be more efficiently spent on mission-related priorities. It would also mean big savings of our own time, money, and, in the environmentally-conscious world that we are actively cultivating, resources.

Give us some inside dirt on Avalon.

We actually enjoy what we do.

What makes a great fundraising agency?

Flexibility; the ability to adapt to an ever-changing charitable environment which encompasses a respect and appreciation for our clients and their committed donors. Of particular relevance to a data analyst, this also means the ability to adapt to the evolving technologically-fueled analytical landscape which makes advancement more efficiently realized.

Where are you traveling this year?

I lived in New York City for 9 years, and, no matter how many times I go back, I always experience something new and something refreshingly familiar. That’s a pretty cool combination.

What are you reading right now?

Ram Dass, Be Here Now. It’s a book written by a pioneer in the spiritual movement of the 1960s. Here’s a good quote from it: “Be here now.”

What is your favorite way to clear your mind?

I’ve been a musician for almost as long as I can remember. The vibrations of the instruments inspire my creativity and I get lost in sound. My instruments of choice now are saxophone and drums. I play in a band called ‘Los Caribbeat’ where we blend Latin, Jazz, and World music. We just released our first album ‘Anya’s Calypso’ and things are really picking up. Music is a great way to engage my mind in a perfectly instinctive and natural way.