The Washington Nationals Youth Baseball Academy (the Academy) was founded in 2013 with one goal: to use the sports of baseball and softball as vehicles to foster positive character development, academic achievement and improved health among youth from underserved communities in Washington, D.C.

With initial support from the Washington Nationals, Major League Baseball, and the District of Columbia, the Academy grew rapidly. By 2017, the Academy recognized it was ready for an evolution – moving beyond its start-up phase to scale its staff, programs, and impact across D.C.

To execute on this next phase of growth, the Academy partnered with Orr Group to develop and implement a long-term and strategic fundraising plan. Our partnership began with a comprehensive assessment of the Academy’s development department. Orr Group staff interviewed key stakeholders and major funders, analyzed the Academy’s donor base, assessed development systems and databases, and benchmarked the Academy against peer organizations.

This research process resulted in a high-level development road map, charting actionable steps toward increased and diversified philanthropic revenue, alignment of major stakeholders around key Academy initiatives, and recommendations for transforming donor data collection and analytics.

Since delivering the plan, Orr Group has continued our partnership with the Academy to help execute the strategies outlined in the road map. We provide overall data collection, analysis, and systems support for the Academy’s development department, including managing the Academy’s Salesforce database and regularly producing dashboards to plot progress toward end of year goals.

We also drive the moves management process for the Academy’s prospect pipeline, consisting of four staff portfolios, by providing cultivation, solicitation, and stewardship counsel and support. Our strategies instill a data-driven approach to move managements through realistic assessments of ask amounts, probabilities for closing gifts, and expected close dates. Orr Group additionally assists with proposal writing and other solicitation and marketing efforts.

Most recently, the Academy, with support from Orr Group, launched a board development campaign focused on identifying and recruiting a pipeline of future board prospects. In this role, Orr Group is creating and refining key governance documents, assisting with board leadership transitions, and managing the overall process to identify, research, cultivate and recruit the next generation of Academy board leadership.

Orr Group drives the moves management process for the Academy’s prospect pipeline, providing cultivation, solicitation, and stewardship counsel and support.