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Case Studies

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Employee Volunteering

Kelsey-Jenney College

The San Diego Rock ‘N’ Roll Marathon attracts over 20,000 runners and supports the Team In Training fundraising efforts for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society. Kelsey-Jenney College had the unique opportunity of fronting the marathon course. By sponsoring the race, and providing volunteers, it was able to build public awareness of the college’s education programs and increase pride among its staff and students.

Lisa planned and implemented all aspects of the college’s participation. She engaged and organized the team of 100 volunteers and managed all interactions with the race organizers on behalf of the college. She also suggested and implemented additional public exposure opportunities such as college-logoed visors on the race day and using the college’s computer lab to allow race participants to email their results to family and friends.

Just in Time for Foster Youth

Just In Time for Foster Youth was a growing non-profit, serving a population demographic that had previously been underserved. The focus was on new programs helping more and more young adults who had aged-out of the foster care system. The staff was stretched to their limits with still to come their largest community-centered program, “My First Home for the Holidays.”

Lisa working alongside other volunteer leadership took an active role in ensuring the program was a success. She contacted community groups to join the effort, organized volunteers into manageable groups, established a central, online calendar to keep schedules on track, created PowerPoint presentations for progress briefings, provided a keen eye to edit written communications and helped set up for the event.

CSR Strategy and Efficiency Solutions

Staples Incorporated

In honor of its 25th anniversary, Staples Incorporated wanted its global employee base of 100,000 to collectively volunteer 250,000 hours to their communities. As the year wound down, only 25,000 hours had been recorded. Management knew that more had probably been done, but the labor-intensive and old-fashioned manner in collecting the data didn’t reflect the results.

Lisa demonstrated for them a state-of-the-art software platform that encouraged employee engagement and also automatically recorded company-sponsored volunteer events. As an added bonus, the product donation procedure was automated too, greatly reducing the cost structure. The adoption of the Profits4Purpose software platform eventually led to the company’s successful associate-driven giving program, called “2 Million & Change.” This unique program allows associates around the world to direct $2 million of Staples Foundation funding to non-profit organizations focused on education and job skills. The program brings associates into the giving process and encourages community involvement.

F. Gavina & Sons, Inc.

Family-owned and operated since 1870, Gavina has a long history of supporting its community with coffee donations and gift baskets. Virtually anyone who asked for support was helped in the community and with fundraising goals through donations of coffee and gift baskets. It was a noble endeavor, but a nightmare to manage with emails and spreadsheets.

Lisa showed them how to automate the process. Donation requests are now automatically funneled from the company website to a software platform which allows a single point of control for reviewing the requests, viewing past assistance, allocating donation inventory and informing both the warehouse and the accounting office of approved requests and the associated value. Even the non-profit requestors are automatically kept in the process loop, eliminating them having to call to follow up or wonder if their request would be granted. The efficiencies allowed easier management and reporting and freed valuable resources to spend more time on profit-generating centers of the business.


Soroptimists Together Against Trafficking

Soroptimists Together Against Trafficking is a countywide volunteer committee comprised of Soroptimist members from different Soroptimist Clubs across San Diego County. Its mission is to support non-profit organizations that assist victims of human trafficking and to raise public awareness of human trafficking in the county. The committee meets monthly and organizes quarterly events, which results in the need for a well-organized implementation plan with multiple activities being planned concurrently.

Lisa chaired and organized the committee for two years. Relying upon volunteers, she ensured that every facet of each event was under control and all were synchronized for the common goal with an eye toward the critical path for success. She oversaw activities such as event communication and promotion, speaker preparation, venue and refreshment logistics, and volunteer staffing. All events came off without a hitch and elevated the position of STAT as a community resource in the fight against human trafficking.



As a small and growing high-tech firm in Sorrento Valley, all employees were working full out, with most people asked to wear many hats every day. The director of marketing knew that she wanted to supplement their marketing activities with printed client case studies for trade show collateral, but had a tiny department with everyone already stretched to the max! Lisa took over the responsibilities for the project. She contacted and interviewed the clients, wrote the copy and then sourced and worked with a graphic designer and print company to create the final printed handouts.


Proxima – Website Content

Proxima Corporation hosted a value-added website offering customers and prospects tips for using their multimedia projectors more effectively by improving their presentations. The site initially got good reviews but soon became old and stale. Who had time to keep it fresh?

The director of marketing first asked Lisa to simply source a few articles that could be uploaded as fresh content. She drafted the article contents and once approved, then arranged for a specialty copywriter to write the short yet punchy and compelling deliverables. Proxima was so please with the quick and professional results, management asked her to find additional content for the site including templates and images eventually asking her to develop a contributor model that provided ongoing fresh content for Proxima and publicity for the contributors.

Proxima – Project Registration

While sales of their multimedia line of projectors was healthy, the company had a difficult time getting new owners to register the purchases limiting contact with them and the ability to sell upgrades and follow-on products. The customer support team thought including online registration would be more successful than the paper registration cards, but still thought the customer might need an additional incentive to take that step.

Having worked with Lisa on other projects they asked her to source some additional free software tools that could be burned onto a CD to encourage the customers to explore what was being offered. Lured by the freebies, it was an easy next step to click on the registration link. Lisa recruited the software partners, handled the legal documentation and worked with a graphics design firm to build an eye catching CD package with easy to navigate content that was well-received in the field.

Partnerships & Alliances

InFocus – Presenter’s University

InFocus Corporation had a fully staffed marketing department focused on sales support and brand awareness for their award-winning line of multimedia projectors. But resources were still tight and when the opportunity arose to be an integral part of the inaugural PowerPoint Live conference, the correct skilled resource was not available. InFocus was already relying on Lisa to source content for one of its websites. She also created and distributed the monthly digital Presentation Pointers newsletter. InFocus asked her to be the main point of contact with the conference management to represent the company.

Lisa first negotiated a mutually beneficial relationship with PowerPoint Live to promote the conference to InFocus’ newsletter database in exchange for an InFocus booth at the conference. She attended on behalf of InFocus and represented the company to the organizers and attendees.

The first conference was only the first of many, and Lisa organized and managed InFocus’ participation each year. She cultivated a business relationship with both the PowerPoint Live management as well as the multitude of other vendors with products targeted to business presenters. Through these alliances, InFocus was able to reach companies of complementary products to their projector product line. These organizations contributed content and trial products for the use of InFocus’ clients and prospects, thereby increasing the value provided by InFocus all the companies involved.

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