Collidescope.io’s 5 in 3 Non-Profit Leadership Series: Abby Cohen, Founder of Mac & Co.

The Asthma & Allergy Association of America

Welcome to Collidescope.io’s 5 in 3 non-profit leadership series. We ask non-profit leaders all over the world to answer 5 question about their non-profit experience to create this 3-minute piece. Collidescope.io’s mission is to empower organizations to thrive, inspire, and serve the world. Though we primary do this through technology, providing a platform to share the stories and experiences of leaders in the non-profit space is also an important part of executing on that mission.

I am pleased to introduce Abby Cohen. Abby is a serial entrepreneur in St. Louis. Abby’s current venture, Mac & Co, was born out of her experience leading the search process for the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America, St. Louis Chapter’s new Executive Director. During the process she saw first-hand a gap in affordable services to support leadership transitions for small to medium-sized non-profits. This led her to start Mac & Co. Mac & Co is a non-profit executive search firm focused on helping small to medium sized non-profits. She has served on the board of the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America, St. Louis Chapter for six years and has served as President of the Board for the last two. She has been recognized locally and nationally for her work, including being named to the Forbes 30 Under 30 in 2017.

How did you get your start in the non-profit space?

While leading the medical device and services company that I founded, called Sparo, I got involved in the St. Louis non-profit community. I joined the board of the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America, St. Louis Chapter. Through my experience leading the search committee for AAFA-STL’s new Executive Director, I saw first-hand a gap in affordable services to support leadership transitions for small to medium sized non-profits.. This is what led me to start Mac & Co.

What is one challenge you’ve encountered that you didn’t expect while working for a non-profit?

I think one of the largest challenges I have seen is ensuring there is alignment in vision and buy-in amongst all internal stakeholders (funders, partners, staff, and board).

What is one opportunity you’ve identified because of the changes due to COVID-19?

While I don’t think virtual events and service delivery will completely replace in-person events and service delivery, I think the opportunity to leverage hybrid approaches to service delivery, fundraising activities, etc. will help non-profits increase access and impact by meeting people where they are.

What is your most effective fundraising medium?

For AAFA-STL, events and grants are our biggest revenue drivers.

What is one fundraising rule you live by?

It is easier to go from 1 to 2 than from 0 to 1. In other words, take care of and grow your existing donor relationships. It is much easier to retain a donor than find a new one. Existing donors have already demonstrated alignment with your mission.

Thank you for sharing your story Abby.

You can learn more about Mac & Co and Abby below.

Abby Cohen

Mac & Co Website: www.macand.co

Abby on LinkedIn: https://bit.ly/2JPggFa

Empowering corporations and non-profit organizations to thrive, inspire and serve the world through social good