Center for the Arts Goes to Next Step

Bend – The effort to build the Central Oregon Center for the Arts took a major step forward with the hiring of a consulting company to assist the COCA Board of Directors as it builds its operating and organizational infrastructure.

This effort will be led by John C. Jepson, a Netzel Grigsby Associates executive who is based in Bend. Jepson will serve as lead development counsel.

Hiring a consultant to focus on fundraising and relationship-building will help COCA create an
enduring foundation and infrastructure. 

As a first step, Jepson and Netzel Grigsby will work with the COCA Board to design and facilitate
a professional fundraising plan, a plan for a Major Gifts Program, a campaign-readiness review,
a case-statement development, and a campaign assessment.

The second part of the process will consist of guiding research needed to identify priority prospects with the capacity to consider major gifts to COCA; coaching and training staff in the key principles and strategies for major-gifts fundraising; guide the solicitation of major prospects; and developing a master plan for a capital campaign and facility development.

The process, now under way, is expected to conclude in August 2024. It was made possible by the receipt of a major gift from a donor who wishes to remain anonymous, and by grants from the Bend Cultural Tourism Fund, the Marie Lamfrom Charitable Foundation and First Interstate bank.

“We’re very pleased to be in the position to take this critical next step toward construction of the Central Oregon Center for the Arts,” said Laura Thompson, chair of the COCA board. “We have our work cut out for us, but this agreement with Netzel Grigsby, financed by the generosity of our donors, will make sure that we have the firm organizational foundation required to make COCA a reality,” she said.

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