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COA Foundation on pace to raise $430K for college

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Robert Wynegar (center), president of College of The Albemarle, shows "Kiss the Pig" winner Sally Francis Kehayes (left) how to kiss Peppa the Pig during the Pork & Pearls Pig Pickin' and Oyster Roast, the College of The Albemarle Foundation's 7th annual fundraiser, Saturday. The event was held at The Crawfish Shack in Hertford.

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By Reggie Ponder
Staff Writer

Sunday, December 24, 2017

The College of The Albemarle Foundation is on pace to raise more than $430,000 for the 2017-18 fiscal year, thanks in part to a fundraiser this summer that featured the college president and a member of the trustee board smooching a pig.

The COA Foundation’s track record in fundraising over the past five years has been pretty consistent. According to the foundation, the amounts raised during that timeframe are: $321,930 in 2012-13; $650,010 in 2013-14, $399,074 in 2014-15, $404,172 in 2015-16, and $414,360 in 2016-17. The report shows a trend of consistent increases from one year to the next, with 2013-14 an exception because of a couple of unusual large gifts that year.

Since 2011 the COA Foundation’s annual fundraising events have yielded $503,187, beginning with $41,878 raised at the 50th Anniversary Gala in 2011.

Other successful fundraisers include the Harvest Moon Ball in 2012, which raised $40,198; the Hangar Deck Dance in 2013 at the then-new Regional Aviation and Technical Training Center in Currituck, which raised $57,026; the An Autumn Affair event in 2014 that raised $80,396; the All That Glitters in 2015 that netted $97,536; and the An Evening Among the Stars in 2016 that brought in $80,490.

Lisa Johnson, the foundation’s executive director, pointed out that this year’s Pork & Pearls Pig Pickin’ and Oyster Roast was the most successful of the annual events — bringing in $105,663 — and also was the first casual event. The fundraiser featured COA President Robert Wynegar and then COA trustee Sally Francis Kehayes planting big kisses on Peppa the Pig. Kehayes “won” Pork & Pearls’ “Kiss the Pig” contest, raising the most money for the foundation at the event.

Johnson also reported at trustees’ Dec. 19 meeting that she will be stepping down from her job at the foundation in the coming year because she’s moving out of state.

One of the foundation’s key missions is to raise private funds for student scholarships. In 2016-17, the foundation awarded 287 scholarships totaling $251,791. The money, which came from 93 different funds, went to 195 students. 

“College of The Albemarle’s success can be directly attributed to the diligent efforts of the foundation,” the report states, noting the foundation is responsible for managing financial gifts and raising private funds needed to support the college’s educational mission.

The COA Foundation was founded in 1980 as a nonprofit corporation that is governed by a board of directors. The board oversees the foundation’s work and makes funding decisions.

Besides providing money for student scholarships, the foundation raises funds to support new technology, capital projects, program enhancements, and professional development for faculty and staff.

The presentation cited information from the management letter included with the 2016-2017 audit report that shows the COA Foundation’s total net position increased $476,634 over the previous year, from $8,71 million at June 30, 2016, to nearly $9.19 million at June 30, 2017. The letter attributed the increase mainly to market returns.

Looking ahead, the COA Foundation’s plans include developing naming opportunities for the soon-to-be-renovated library, cultivating specific donor groups focused on career and technical education programs to establish program-specific scholarships, and continuing stewardship of long-term donors with conversations focused on planned giving opportunities.

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