Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Get to Know Audra!

Audra Clark Deputy Director of Development

Hometown: Overland Park, Kansas

Education: BA in Business and Communication from Trinity University in San Antonio, Texas and MPA in Non-profit Management from George Washington University

What is your position and what do you do here at CYDC? I am the Deputy Director of Development, which basically means I am responsible for making sure that each year we fundraise enough money to cover our expenses. The Development team achieves this through a number of different strategies, including individual meetings, fundraising events such as breakfasts and dinners, mailings, and submitting proposals to corporate, foundation, and government sources. I also oversee branding, communications, media, and the implementation of site-wide events such as Opening Day and Graduation.

How long have you been with CYDC and why do you serve? This is the start of my sixth year with City Year Washington, DC. I originally came to City Year directly after finishing a year of service as an AmeriCorps VISTA with ACCION Texas in San Antonio, where I had worked on fundraising efforts. Before my year of service, I thought I was going to go into for-profit marketing. As a VISTA, I discovered the field of non-profit fundraising and decided I wanted to spend my career helping non-profits raise money. My year of AmeriCorps service had such a profound impact on my career path that I was attracted to working at City Year because I knew it was a place that gave other young people like myself exposure to the non-profit sector and all of the opportunities available in the sector. I continue to serve at City Year because I truly believe corps members are positively impacting the lives of thousands of DC kids every year, and improving their own lives in the process.

What are you most excited about this year and or the future of CYDC? I am really excited about Whole School, Whole Child and the continued implementation and refining of the model. I think there is real power in having corps members work with the same kids every day through the entire school year and I have loved watching the program develop and grow. We just got back the standardized test results from our first year of implementing the program in DCPS and the results are VERY encouraging. Corps members are making a real impact on kids’ academic performance and that’s really exciting to me. I think the program will only get stronger from here and I am excited to see how it is strengthened this year.

What is something most people don’t know about you and wouldn’t guess? Hmmmm…that’s a hard one…maybe that I don’t like any drinks that are carbonated…but people would probably guess that. More surprising is probably that my two favorite things to watch on TV are American Idol and any sort of real-life murder mystery show (as long as it doesn’t get too scary).

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