Client Successes
Philanthropic organizations make the biggest difference when run well.

Abacus’s leadership has deep experience serving on the boards and finance committees of organizations.

Ranging from colleges and universities to local arts groups, that experience gives us a distinct depth of knowledge in advising on the portfolios of endowments and foundations.

It can be about fundraising. About the joy of distributing grants. About preserving and growing funds for future giving. In every case, the bottom line to success is faithfully honoring the mission of the organization and maximizing the impact of its resources via strategic, smart-business decisions.

The sweet sound of holding your ground.

There are two players in this story. The lead player, a nonprofit arts organization, created as a standalone entity to financially support player number two, a major musical performance group. The second mission of the nonprofit: Promoting music appreciation through youth educational programs in the community. This dynamic nonprofit of over 200 volunteers has been a benefactor of the performance group for decades and donated hundreds of thousands of dollars. Of course, that doesn’t mean there hasn’t been a family squabble or two along the way. Case in point: The performance group’s leaders came to the nonprofit’s leaders and asked for $300,000 to shore up its finances. Wait. If the nonprofit agreed to that, they would have literally bankrupted themselves. So, with Cheryl’s guidance, the nonprofit countered with a challenge offer. If the performance group could raise $100,000 over three years, the nonprofit would match that amount. It was a win-win that meant the nonprofit would stay solvent and continue its all-important youth programs.

Our leader is also a leader in this arena.

You likely noticed the reference to “Cheryl” in the story above. (You did read it, right?) That would be “Cheryl” as in “Cheryl Holland,” the founder of Abacus. As she will tell you, she “has had the pleasure and the challenge of sitting on both sides of the table – as someone giving advice to philanthropic and nonprofit organizations and as someone weighing advice on behalf of those groups.” This dual perspective is a key reason she has emerged as a forward-thinking, in-demand resource in this arena. Want some examples? Just for starters: Cheryl chaired the investment committees for Bryn Mawr College, American Bible Society and Clemson University.

Clear mission. Dedicated leadership. Sound business and financial guidance. That is the trifecta for establishing solid-ground footing — and having the power to take bold steps forward — in the vast philanthropic, nonprofit universe.