|Tricia worked for health and human services nonprofits from 1996 to 2004 (American Red Cross, American Heart Association) focusing mostly on annual giving and event fundraising.
The turning point was in 2004 when she applied for a job at Christopher Newport University. The Vice President of IA at the time was leaving the next day for a $45 million comprehensive fundraising campaign at Virginia Wesleyan College. Tricia started there as the Director of Annual Giving, served as Campaign Kick-off Director, then moved into working on major gifts as the Director of Development. She had the Annual Fund staff, Phonathon staff and University Events staff as her team.
In 2008, she was referred by a friend for the Chief Development Officer position at Tidewater Community College. Tricia was excited about the opportunity to work for a female president, she was eager to learn from her and better understand the community college world. She finished out the campaign for TCC, raised new money for the college, represented the president at numerous external functions, and learned how to serve as a cabinet member. Tricia was the youngest member of the president’s cabinet by 20 years, most others sitting at the table were in their mid 50s to early 60s. At the time, she was 33 years old.
After TCC, Tricia had the opportunity to work for Old Dominion University. She was responsible for leading a team of 10 Major Gift Officers who represented six colleges and traveled the country meeting with alumni. She had a small, high-net-worth group who she worked with to engage in the university. While there, Tricia developed a relationship with an alumnus who eventually gave the university over $3 million to support the accounting program.
Tricia also had the pleasure of working with the president’s wife and a small group of committed female executives to form the ODU Women’s Initiative Network. They mentored first generation college students who were having difficulties both in their academics and in their life. They helped them with their schooling, networking, internships and job search. Tricia is very proud of that accomplishment.
After building a very successful team, producing results, forging relationships that resulted in millions of dollars for the university... it was time to do something different.
Tricia went through two big life events that caused her to question her path forward. It was time to try some things that she had dreamed of and see if she could make them happen. One was to develop her own fundraising consulting firm. She knew through her work with nonprofits, serving on various boards, and specifically, serving on the board and as president of the Association of Fundraising Professionals, nonprofits needed access to a fundraising professional. One who had a lot of experience, expertise, and the ability to help them overcome numerous obstacles. Tricia thought that developing a company where nonprofits could access expertise for a reasonable cost could be a win.
And so it was... five years ago Strategic Solutions by Tricia, LLC was born. Since that time, she has helped numerous nonprofit leaders raise funds, develop strategic plans, train boards, execute wide-scale fundraising events, develop annual funds and major gift programs, and run comprehensive capital campaigns. In addition, she has served in interim chief development officer and executive director roles for nonprofits when they are in between staff or need more time to develop their leadership path.