Jacob’s Pillow is a nationally and internationally renowned center for dance; home to the longest-running and largest dance festival in the U.S., a recipient of the National Medal of Arts, and a National Landmark. Comprised of three stages, multiple studios, The School at Jacob’s Pillow, and a renowned Archives, the Pillow is situated on a stunning 220-acre campus in the Berkshires. Its mission is to support dance creation, presentation, education, and preservation, and to engage and deepen public appreciation and support for dance. Most of the world’s best dance companies have performed at Jacob’s Pillow. Its significance cannot be overstated, as recently indicated when the executive and artistic directors of a dozen of the most famous dance companies shared when Jacob’s Pillow took its campaign, Dance We Must, public.
Jacob’s Pillow engaged Development Guild’s counsel mid-way through Dance We Must, which aligns with their new strategic plan and focuses on 3 key areas: renewing campus facilities (which includes the construction of a new theatre); strengthening the artistic core through expanded programming and events for professionals in the dance field; and boosting civic leadership and community engagement. The Pillow was seeking to reinvigorate the campaign’s direction and management as they entered the second half of its duration. The organization was also navigating staff changes on their development team and several financial adjustments to projects that would drive the campaign goal upwards – three times!
We partnered with Jacob’s Pillow Executive and Artistic Director, Board, and senior leadership to strengthen the campaign’s structure. Our counsel included:
Dance We Must is slated to end in December 2021. As of June, the goal has been raised three times, from $18M to $20M to $22M. Thanks to the generosity of the Board, a $3M gift just after the halfway mark, and a remarkably driven campaign committee, Jacob’s Pillow is at $20.7M and the goal is comfortably within reach. Festival 2021 will launch the Seat Campaign playing on the comfortable new seats in a first-ever air-conditioned theater by featuring a photo booth-type fun with a “this seat could be yours” flair. It is our hope that the mini seat campaign will yield $550K!
The leadership and knowledge Development Guild has provided as our campaign consultant has been nothing short of excellent. Their team is curious, thoughtful, and accountable. Early in our work together, they gained the trust of our Campaign Committee who rely on them for expert advice and counsel. We are grateful for the structure they have helped us to create and the tools they have given us. We’re also grateful to them for their partnership.
- Pam Tatge, Director
With over 2,500 executive search and fundraising client engagements, our experience spans the nonprofit spectrum.