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Key Clients of
The Colonial Theatre
Built in 1903, the historic 950-seat Colonial Theatre lay hidden above a paint store from 1952 to 2001 when The Colonial Theatre Association, created to restore and operate the Colonial, bought the Theatre for $1,000,000. In 2004, the Colonial purchased the building to the north for $750,000 to provide needed space for box office, lobbies, offices, backstage wing space, dressing rooms, and loading dock. The restored Colonial is expected to jumpstart the revitalization of downtown Pittsfield.
March 2002 Board Retreat. Halsey and Alice North facilitated a 1-1⁄2-day board retreat for the Colonial to refine the Theatre's vision and mission, determine the Theatre's capital and operating needs, and prepare for the fundraising feasibility study.
Spring-Summer 2002 Fundraising feasibility study. The Norths worked with Susan Sperber, now Former Executive Director (413-297-3619, firstname.lastname@example.org), to create the case for support which highlighted:
Halsey and Alice helped identify and recruit potential members of the Feasibility Study Oversight Committee and potential interviewees who might have the resources or access to the resources to help the project significantly. They conducted 46 in-depth, face-to-face confidential interviews with 54 key community leaders and produced a 97-page report and 74-page addendum giving the findings, including the interviewees' opinions about the need and desirability of restoring the Colonial, their confidence in the board and staff, their willingness to give and at what level, and their willingness to work as volunteers on the campaign. The report outlined how much the Colonial could raise and recommendations for strengthening the Theatre's fundraising capacity. The report recommended a specific campaign structure, timeline, and strategies.
2002-2003 Public meetings. Because the Colonial had been a visible project in Pittsfield for many years and needed to show progress publicly, Halsey and Alice worked with Susan to conceive and implement three public and televised meetings to discuss and plan for the future of the Colonial, involving a broad range of constituents and public officials.
2002-2005 Capital and endowment campaign, including solicitor training. To help the Colonial develop is internal fundraising muscle, Halsey and Alice helped Susan create job descriptions, interview prospective staff members, and put fundraising recordkeeping systems in place. During monthly visits, among other things, the Norths helped identify potential campaign leaders and actively participated in recruiting those leaders as well as members of the Campaign Leadership Team. The Norths also helped refine the campaign structure and strategies, conceptualize and write the campaign and solicitation materials, conduct prospect research interviews, provide training for campaign volunteers, prepare requests for New Market and Historic Tax Credits, and create a compelling presentation to request $1,000,000 from the Pittsfield City Council. They assisted with the campaign for gifts from Board and former Board members, the quiet advanced component of the campaign, the Second Century Campaign for annual operating funds, and the preparations for the broad-based public phase of the campaign. The campaign goal has been set at $20,800,000 and to date, the Colonial has raised about $17,300,000 (83%) and plans are in place to raise the rest.