Lay-Driven Pandemic Mortgage Reduction Campaign

CAI, an 850 family Conservative synagogue in suburban New Jersey, reached out to RAISE Advisors in February 2020 to provide strategic guidance and analytic support for a mortgage reduction campaign, which coincided with its 100th anniversary and a historic rabbinic transition. Without a dedicated development professional, CAI's "Centennial Campaign" would be completely lay-driven and required full support from RAISE around data analysis, strategy, materials and accountability. Through weekly meetings and focused effort on a quiet-phase, the community was able to raise over $3 million during COVID and pay down over half of its mortgage. The scope of the engagement with RAISE included advice on a celebratory journal for their retiring rabbi, integration and support around Board of Trustees buy-in, and most importantly, campaign committee accountability and discipline.

Upon completion of the Centennial Campaign, CAI continued its partnership with RAISE for advice around Annual Fund expansion and solicitor training. The most valuable long-term contributions RAISE made were the development of a donor pipeline that can be used for multiple, ongoing projects and the empowerment of synagogue lay leadership in development strategies and continuing to prioritize stewardship.