A graduate of Atlanta's Emory University and long-time member of the Atlanta Association of Fundraising Professionals, Cara Schroeder began her fundraising career nearly three decades ago at the NW Georgia Girl Scout Council. During her tenure with the organization, she created giving clubs, set up a successful donor records and prospect tracking system, and helped manage a $3.8 million capital campaign.

While serving as the Director of Development at Wesleyan School, Cara worked closely with the Board of Trustees and the Headmaster to raise nearly $32 million in capital funds over a five-year period. In addition to her campaign responsibilities, Cara organized and managed the School's first ever development office, including the parents annual fund, major gifts, special events, internal systems and volunteer management and training. As the Associate Director of Development for the Atlanta Ballet, Cara directed the Annual Fund Campaign, which produced nearly $2.5 million in yearly support from subscribers, friends, corporate sponsors and foundation grants. She played a principal role in raising $3.5 million through a building purchase capital campaign, and another $1.2 million for debt reduction.

Cara was then hired by the Make-A-Wish Foundation of Georgia and Alabama as Chief Development Officer, where she created a new donor recognition program and secured the Foundation's first major gifts. She was instrumental in training regional program officers on how to raise contributed income, which resulted in an increase of support to the "Stories of Light" holiday campaign.

Cara spent her next four years as Major Gifts Officer at the Alliance Theatre. She established a new approach to securing major gifts by identifying and cultivating donors through Board development, expanding campaign benefits and creating special events. She also solicited and secured a challenge gift campaign program to grow major gifts, resulting in a 200% increase in giving.

Cara served as Vice President of Institutional Advancement at Fernbank Museum of Natural History, where she conducted an in-depth audit of the development program and implemented a new plan for contributed income. She also established new policies and procedures related to development practices. She also worked with the Atlanta Botanical Garden, directing a public awareness campaign for the organization's major expansion into north Georgia, Atlanta Botanical Garden Gainesville.

Currently, Cara directs Schroeder Resources, offering hands-on expertise to a roster of non-profits to assist them in achieving their fundraising goals. Outside of work, she is active with the Friends of Tucker Parks Leadership Council, Chairs Friends of Henderson Park and is a founding member of the Henderson Park Community Garden. Cara was appointed to the City of Tucker Community Council in August 2016. She is also involved with the Oxford College Alumni Association. Her volunteer efforts in the past have included leadership roles with the Atlanta Chi Omega Alumni Chapter and Atlanta Area Panhellenic Association. She and her husband, Michael, live in Tucker, Ga.

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