Focus on the Future

SDA Interim Executive Director Ann Brockette

Dear SDA Community,

I would like to introduce myself as the SDA interim Executive Director (following the resignation of Stacey Stern) and share with you some of my plans for the organization as we look to the future.

I have been involved with nonprofit management for over twenty years as a board member, mentor in strategic planning and grant writer. I have been specifically aware of the Surface Design Association for many years through my husband, the fiber artist Jack Brockette, and other SDA member/friends. In the 1970s Jack and I opened one of the first galleries devoted exclusively to the fiber arts in Buffalo, NY, where we promoted surface design through workshops and presentations.

Through my relationship with SDA VP of Outreach Jane Dunnewold–and as a result of working with the SDA board and staff on strategic planning–I was asked to step in for six months to guide SDA through an interesting period of transition. During this time, I would like to achieve the following goals:

Increase SDA membership by 15%

I am especially interested in increasing the participation of two audiences: emerging artists and international members. I have asked Saaraliisa Ylitalo, Director of Membership, Jane Dunnewold (VP/Outreach) and Astrid Bennett, Director of Representatives, to work with me on these issues and to brainstorm ideas for identifying and attracting these potential members. I welcome your suggestions and reach out to you all to send me your comments and ideas.

Create a strategic plan of action for fund raising that will increase funding by 10%

I intend to identify funding sources that are closely aligned with SDA’s mission and vision. SDA has formed valuable partnerships with organizations interested in working with us to stimulate interest in textiles and surface design. With the assistance of Bette Levy, VP of Development and Regina Benson, Director of Development, I will identify multiple mission-based fundraising strategies including donor programs and events as well as applications for private and public funding.

Increase communication among all SDA members–regionally, nationally, internationally

As part of our strategic planning program, the board and staff, under the guidance of SDA President Candace Edgerley, have clarified lines of communication to ensure greater efficacy in disseminating information and reducing duplicate messaging. All SDA members already have a direct line of communication to the board through their state and regional representatives. However, you now have an open door for communicating with me–and I look forward to sharing your concerns and suggestions.  You may always reach me at I value your input and expertise.

These 3 issues will be my focus for the next six months. I hope to initiate a Chat Room as soon as possible to enable direct communication with you about the issues that concern you. As we redesign the SDA website and develop new channels for sharing information with you, I know that– together–we can accomplish these goals.

I would like to thank the many people who have guided and assisted me in the last few weeks as I learn how to serve you better. I am especially grateful to Joy Stocksdale and Dot Moye for bringing me up to date on operations and conference issues. Leesa Hubbell has provided me with valuable information about current information technology and platforms for communicating with you. I will be using the monthly eNews email and website-based NewsBlog to keep you informed of SDA’s evolution. I want to thank all the board and staff who have shared their expertise with me and without whom I could not be an effective Executive Director for you.

With warm regards,

Ann Brockette


  • jean dahlgren says

    July 2, 2010 at 6:49 am

    Couldn't think of anyone more capable of guiding SDA through this transition period. Let us know how we can help you achieve these goals.

  • Joan Schulze says

    July 2, 2010 at 9:26 am

    great to have your insights and guidance. Joan Schulze

  • sue bleiweiss says

    July 8, 2010 at 3:29 am

    looking forward to seeing the organization grow and prosper with your guidance.

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