Dartmouth Receives Eight 2020 CASE Awards

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Last year proved to be a banner year for CASE awards for Advancement and Communications.

Dartmouth Hall
The most ambitious women’s fundraising effort in Dartmouth history secured $25 million to restore the iconic Dartmouth Hall. (Photo by Eli Burakian ’00)

Dartmouth received a total of eight awards from the Council for Advancement and Support of Education (CASE), honoring Dartmouth’s work in support of The Call to Lead campaign. Dartmouth was recognized in the categories of fundraising, diversity and talent management, communications, writing, publications, events, and donor relations.

The CASE Annual Circle of Excellence Awards recognize outstanding work in advancement services, alumni relations, communications, fundraising, and marketing.

Alumnae Campaign for the Dartmouth Hall Renovation

In the fundraising category, Dartmouth received a gold award for the alumnae campaign to renovate iconic Dartmouth Hall. At the launch of The Call to Lead, alumnae announced an ambitious goal of raising $25 million to renovate Dartmouth Hall, preserving its history and increasing its functionality for generations to come. On Feb. 17, 2020, Dartmouth women reached their goal of raising $25 million.

“We want the next generation of students to know that women and men are equally committed to the power of a Dartmouth education,” says Dartmouth Trustee Beth Cogan Fascitelli ’80, a member of The Call to Lead campaign executive committee.

Empowering Women in Advancement

The Amplify Women and Gender Initiative, led by Alexis Kanda Olmstead, director of Advancement talent management at Dartmouth, won both gold and silver awards in the diversity and talent management categories. Amplify Is an eight-week program for women in Advancement in CASE institutions that builds leadership and organizational capacity to address gender inequity. Amplify puts women and other marginalized groups at the forefront of leading change. It tackles not only external forms of oppression but also internalized sexism and racism.

Amplify launched shortly after the start of the pandemic as a virtual program. During the protests following the killing of George Floyd, content was adapted to address the needs of women of color and the group meetings developed into a community of resilience and hope. “Amplify demonstrates strengths around employee engagement,” wrote the CASE judges, “particularly for internal strength- and community-building.”

New Direction for The Call to Lead’s Core Message

Dartmouth Advancement Marketing and Engagement created messaging for The Call to Lead’s campaign rededication—changing the focus of the campaign to student financial aid as the primary goal. To support the new messaging, marketing and engagement created and launched a wide range of communications, such as a revised campaign website with gift opportunities; enewsletter, ad series; public relations strategy; and a fundraising video—all within six weeks of the campaign rededication. The work won a CASE silver award.

The CASE judges wrote: “Dartmouth’s response to the new and increased demand for student financial aid in the wake of COVID-19 was smart, strategic, and far-reaching. The video was amazing, communications were all encompassing (from talking points for gift officers to a beautiful website), and the breadth of outreach was phenomenal. There are many lessons for other organizations can learn from this impactful and successful communications pivot!”

Flying in the Face of Danger,” an article in Dartmouth Engineer magazine, received a bronze award in the writing category. The article features Keji Wei ’19, a research analyst who is a consultant for airlines. He uses mathematical models in order to find solutions in real time for airline passengers whose flights are disrupted because of natural disasters or other reasons. The story delves into how he applied his engineering degree into flight scheduling and his strong relationship with his Thayer faculty adviser.

In the publications category, Dartmouth won a silver award for a specially designed calendar with stunning photographs taken by students that tells the story of Dartmouth’s off-campus programs.

CASE honored Dartmouth with two more bronze awards: one for Dartmouth’s Global Summit in London, which brought The Call to Lead story to a worldwide audience with special sessions on Dartmouth research. Another bronze award went to Donor Relations and Stewardship for the “250 for Dartmouth’s 250” program—setting an ambitious goal of securing 250 endowed scholarships by the end of Dartmouth’s 250th anniversary year. A total of 280 funds were raised for this historic initiative.

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