Hey buddy, it's a case study


Client: Portland Literacy Council

Portland Literacy Council helps adult learners by training tutors, hosting an annual conference for educators, supporting existing literacy programs, and awarding GED™ scholarships to students in need. They have no paid staff, just a dedicated board working hard to break the cycle of poverty through education.

What they needed

In the face of diminishing literacy programs for adult learners, PLC decided to step up and expand their program offerings. To do this, they needed to talk through all the fundraising strategies available to them, assess their current fundraising capacity, and launch a grassroots fundraising program. In the winter and spring of 2018, I worked with the PLC board to 

  • evaluate their current fundraising practices,
  • develop customized fundraising recommendations,
  • finalize their annual fundraising plan, and
  • create and implement a spring campaign.

I also provided coaching, speechwriting, and project management tools.

“Breesa’s technical know-how helped my board have the confidence to go beyond what we knew we had to do but felt we didn’t have the expertise to pull off alone.” 


Three months: We began working together in January and wrapped up in April.


I met with Delpha, my board liaison, approximately every other week. Meeting with Delpha allowed me to dive right in and assess the organization’s needs and capabilities, opportunities and challenges. Scheduling one- to two-hour meetings allowed us to make real progress and have space to brainstorm new ideas. 

Based on our initial conversations, I presented my recommendations at a board meeting to get everyone on the same page and make sure that we hadn’t missed anything critical.

After the board approved the fundraising plan in February, we dove straight into implementation with the wind at our backs.

“Above all, Breesa’s excellent organization skills were what kept our work moving forward at a good clip. Additionally, her willingness to bring her ideas to the whole board ensured that there was buy-in around the process.”


  • Customized fundraising recommendations
  • 2018 fundraising plan
  • Successful spring fundraising direct mail appeal
  • Draft plan and content for the 2017 Annual Report

“The best part about working with Breesa is that she really cared about the cause and her general sense of joy around fundraising allowed us to express our appeal in a way that was inspiring to our constituents.”