In 2011 the IOCDF embarked on a new initiative — we needed a fundraising department! And so, with the aid of some generous donors, we were able to find our first Director of Development, Jeff Smith. Jeff and I hit it off right away and he immediately charmed everyone in the OCD community. He has done a spectacular job of building a comprehensive and effective fundraising program at the IOCDF. Our annual income has risen from $1.5 million in 2011 to almost $2 million in 2015. Jeff had an important hand in that growth. Increased income means increased programming, increased resources, increased impact. Jeff is now off to his next adventure, and while one door closes, another one opens both for Jeff and for us. Please join me in bidding Jeff Smith adieu, and also join me in welcoming, Eric Steinert as our new Fund Development Manager, beginning today. Below, please read Jeff Smith’s farewell message to you all. — Jeff Szymanski, PhD
After almost 5 years at the IOCDF, Friday was my last day as Director of Development. The day was marked by a wonderful lunch with the IOCDF staff that was full of laughter sprinkled with reminiscing.
It is always a difficult decision to leave a job, especially when you feel that in some small way you have had a positive impact on someone’s life. I am not one for a long goodbye. In fact, I hate them all together and would rather leave the party early than have to say my goodbyes.
However, this is not one of those times when I feel that I can just slip away without saying thank you.
I truly feel privileged to those who I have met on this journey. Many of you I have had the pleasure of meeting in person at the Annual OCD Conference in San Diego, Chicago, Atlanta, Los Angeles or Boston. Others I met at the 1 Million Steps 4 OCD Walk in Boston, Sacramento or Atlanta. (I was not able to be in Houston this year!). For a large number of you, our meeting most likely took place on the phone or via an email exchange. Regardless of how we met – I want to thank you for sharing your very personal stories with me and then allowing me to share them with others so that they would be inspired to give.
I want to thank the many donors, sponsors, and volunteers who I have had the opportunity to work with. Your generosity is extraordinary and is the sole reason why the IOCDF continues to fulfill its mission to help everyone affected by OCD and related disorders. Thank you for sharing your resources, time and commitment.
Lastly, I want to thank the members of the IOCDF Board of Directors, Executive Director, Jeff Szymanski and my colleagues and friends on the IOCDF staff — thank you for a wonderful experience. I am so very honored to have been part of this incredible team!