Claudia Looney, senior vice president for development at Children’s Hospital Los Angeles, has managed a successful $1-billion capital campaign and was named the Association of Fundraising Professionals’ 2012 Outstanding Fundraising Professional.
What’s the secret to her success?
Learning to take risks and accept failure, she told The Chronicle in an interview seeking her advice for new fundraisers.
“You learn from each experience,” she says. ”You just try not to fail more than once at the same thing. That really is where you grow and you become better at what you’re doing, because you’re sort of stepping out of your comfort zone.”
Ms. Looney says fundraisers setting out on their first big campaign need to have five elements in place: an inspirational cause, a pool of donors with enough money to get the campaign started, strong leadership, enough resources for fundraising, and a good marketing and public-relations plan.
And while new fundraisers can get caught up in the mission and their love of the job, it’s important to take time away from the job, she says: ”You will never regret it if you leave early to go and see your child play a sport.”
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