Megan Fredericks: The Philadelphia Museum of Art

The Perelman Building where my office is.

I started working at the Philadelphia Museum of Art as their Annual Giving Programs Assistant mid-May and have loved everything about it so far. Having completed my assistantship here in Planned Giving September through May, I was lucky in already knowing most of the office (our development staff is comprised of 32 people, and will continue to grow with our new restructuring plan) and knowing who to go to with what questions. This seems pretty trivial, but it made the adjustment process pretty painless. Everyone in the office gets along really well; I can genuinely say there’s not one person anyone dislikes or struggles to work with.

I’m sure everyone already knows what annual giving is, but I’m specifically responsible for what we call the Associate members—donors who give between $2,000 and $10,000 per year as unrestricted funds that support general operations. We closed the fiscal year with 490 Associate households and 100+ Chairman’s Council households. Chairman’s Council members are donors who give over $10,000 annually! Must be nice. The Annual Giving team at the PMA consists of the Director, Manager, and myself, the assistant. I love my job so far and the two supervisors I work with have been awesome and very patient. Nick, the Annual Giving Manager, was just promoted from my assistant position, so that has been really helpful with transitioning. He knows everything inside out and backwards because he’s been here so long. Lisa, our Director of Annual Giving, started a year ago, so it has also been nice to have someone who is relatively new as well. She’s been really supportive and patient—if I am confused or make a mistake, she says she’s done the same thing a billion times and not to worry, and gives me constructive feedback.
My extremely messy desk.
Part of my very sophisticated organizational system.

So far, I have been able to help organize and execute events for our Associates, process gifts, work with other areas of development, maintain and update donors’ records in Raiser’s Edge, coordinate monthly and quarterly mailings, write new acknowledgement letters for FY13, edit the monthly calendars sent to PMA members, meet with our graphic design department to plan new Associate materials, etc. I’m also my team’s point of contact for Associates, so I am on the phone a lot helping arrange tours for members or trying to accommodate whatever it is they are requesting. There are a group of about 70 Associates that regularly attend our events, so it’s been a different kind of learning process getting to know them and remember who they are. It’s a familial kind of member level—when I first started answering phones and had to explain to everyone I was new, they all basically said “welcome to the family.”

It’s been a really interesting experience and I’m lucky that I look forward to work every day. Below are pictures taken by the PMA in which you can see I am OBVIOUSLY very important (my various limbs are circled in red). 🙂

Press and Member Preview of the Rodin Museum
Sol Lewitt Garden Dedication

Rodin Public Opening
This is our studly PMA Director, Timothy Rub.