Capital Campaigns

The Arc Fond du Lac
The Arc exceeds a campaign goal with strong community backing and solid leadership

A well-timed feasibility conducted by McDonald Schaefer indicated that The Arc Fond du Lac could raise $1.1 million for their renovation and expansion campaign.  This would be no small feat in a community with several competing multi-million dollar campaigns being run simultaneously.  The Arc had a limited annual development program and no development staff, but their campaign succeeded despite these potential barriers to success, exceeding goal and raising nearly $1.2 million in 18 months.  The key to their success was internal dedication to the campaign and strong volunteer leadership, both of which helped make up for a smaller number than usual of major donor prospects.  

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Mukwonago YMCA
Small community raises $10 million for new YMCA

McDonald Schaefer directed a campaign for this all-volunteer group of local citizens that raised $10 million. The group had several challenges, including no paid staff (no Executive Director and no Development Director); no existing YMCA (no members, no donors); and a campaign underway during a deep economic recession. With McDonald Schaefer’s help, this organization demonstrated extraordinary dedication and perseverance, conducting a successful campaign and proudly opening their new $10 million facility to an enthusiastic and grateful community.

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Aldo Leopold Foundation
Environmental Group raises $8.25 million to preserve an important conservation legacy

After conducting a feasibility study, McDonald Schaefer managed an $8.25 million campaign and helped this small foundation preserve the vulnerable assets of its namesake, renowned
conservation pioneer Aldo Leopold. Although Leopold is perhaps best known for writing A Sand County Almanac, he was an extraordinary conservation visionary whose principles are more relevant today than when he defined them. With the $8.25 million they raised, the foundation built the Leopold Legacy Center, an environmental education center that was the greenest building in the world and the first certified as carbon neutral when it opened. The foundation also used the funds raised to protect Leopold’s aging assets, including his original writings, sketches and photographs, along with the simple structure known to his family and now the public as “The Shack.”

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Sauk Prairie Memorial Hospital
Small community raises $5 million for a new state-of-the-art hospital

After conducting a feasibility study, McDonald Schaefer directed a $5 million capital campaign to help this small hospital foundation partially fund construction of a new state-of-the-art $47 million hospital. With limited major gift fundraising history, McDonald Schaefer guided this foundation’s growth and redirected its focus to major gift opportunities presented by the campaign. The community raised an astonishing $5 million, a groundbreaking figure for rural Wisconsin hospitals.

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The Basilica of the National Shrine of Mary, Help of Christians, at Holy Hill
A religious order of Carmelite Friars raises $6 million to save national shrine

More than 500,000 people from all over the world visit the Basilica each year, but with the original roof failing, rainwater was increasingly damaging the shrine’s magnificent sanctuary. With small clumps of plaster falling more than 50 feet to the pews below and the shrine becoming vulnerable to structural damage, the Friars needed to act quickly. After conducting a feasibility study, McDonald Schaefer quickly mobilized a selected group of key constituents and successfully directed a $6 million campaign that replaced the old roof, repaired windows and the exterior, completely restored the shrine’s ornate interior and, ultimately, helped this group of Friars to achieve their goal of repairing and renovating their famous shrine.

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YWCA Madison
100-year old Health & Human Service agency renovates its prominent building on Capitol Square

McDonald Schaefer conducted a feasibility study before helping the YWCA launch the Campaign for Real Lives, Real Change. Renovation of the 80-year old, 12-story building was not an option; engineers insisted on major repairs inside and out to keep the building safe and affordable for the 150 low-income women and children in residence. $1.8 million, which included a highly competitive Kresge Foundation Challenge Grant, was raised to complement government funds for a total project of nearly $17 million.

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