First Amendment Foundation • Tallahassee, FL • July 2012 to present
Manage day-to-day operational activities and membership for a state organization dedicated to educating individuals, government agencies and the media about Florida’s public records and open meeting laws.
- Increased membership by 30 percent in previously underutilized categories by creating and implementing new membership plan.
- Improved contact and outreach with donors and members by designing and implementing a new database system.
- Added improved functionality and increased services for members by creating and implementing a new website design with additional features such as online training and members only pages.
KLGarner Management & Consulting • Dallas, TX • January 2009 to present
Manage small to mid-sized nonprofits by serving as a “virtual executive director” providing executive, administrative and programming support.
President & Owner
- Initiated, planned and implemented strategic planning sessions for start-up and existing organizations including Connecticut Foundation for Open Government, Master Songwriting Sessions and Clean Elections Texas.
- Successfully coordinated start-up effort for Texas-based organizations including drafting IRS nonprofit filing paperwork, articles of incorporation and by-laws.
Business Council for the Arts • Dallas, TX • November 2010 to March 2013
Managed programs and membership of local nonprofit business membership organization fostering strategic corporate investment in the arts & culture of Dallas.
Director of Membership and Programs
- Increased overall membership 13 percent by formulating and implementing new membership tracking system, maximizing opportunities and reducing liabilities.
- Expanded attendance at monthly networking event more than 50 percent using new marketing strategies and increased stakeholder contact.
- Conceptualized and delivered new format for annual fundraiser increasing net profits 30 percent from previous year.
Freedom of Information Foundation of Texas (FOIFT) • Dallas, TX • June 1994 to February 2009
Managed and ran state organization dedicated to educating individuals, government agencies and companies about Freedom of Information laws.
Executive Director (October 2001 to February 2009)
- Redesigned agenda for training program and included additional tracks for attorneys. This allowed the course to earn Continuing Legal Education credits raising attendance to the highest levels in three years.
- Created, developed and directed the Light of Day project, a statewide university journalism program that teaches college students how to use the Texas Public Information Act for investigative stories. The project led to several published award-winning articles.
- Initiated first legislative summit in conjunction with the FOIFT’s annual state conference to identify and build upon the talking points for the next day’s panel discussions. Brought together other organizations with similar open government issues to help develop a positive legislative agenda.
- Produced and implemented FOIFT’s first new board of director orientation that trained 40 board members, substantially increasing board relations and participation.
- Directed the second of two redesigns of the FOIFT Web site, this time integrating E-commerce and dynamic pages into its features. Conducted ongoing maintenance of site and developed content.
Assistant Executive Director (July 1999 to September 2001)
- Updated and streamlined campaign renewal process to reduce response time to new and sustaining donors from three weeks to three days.
- Oversaw the first redesign of the FOI Focus print newsletter in 15 years. Managed all aspects of the 8,000 quarterly circulation including layout, editing, production and distribution.
National Freedom of Information Coalition (NFOIC) • Columbia, MO
Managed and ran national organization of citizen-driven nonprofit freedom of information organizations, academic and First Amendment centers, journalistic societies and attorneys.
Board of Directors, Treasurer and Grants Chair (July 2005 to present)
- Established new grant-making policies and procedures. Developed overall grant strategy for distribution of more than $1.5 million and collaborates with potential grantees about funding proposals.
- Consulted and collaborated with journalists, academics, attorneys and consumer advocates across the country to create new Freedom of Information organizations in 15 states and 40 new programs.
Executive Director • Dallas, TX (October 2001 to June 2005)
- Improved attendance at the NFOIC annual conference 75 percent by creating alliances with and marketing to other like-minded organizations.
- Grew the organization to a level from three part-time staffers to four full-time employees. Organization grew to a level that it required its own staff and offices.