A Conversation With Katie McFadden
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A Conversation With Katie McFadden

Katie McFadden has held the position of Director of Membership Services for eleven years, managing, recruiting and supporting the 935 volunteer members of the Pasadena Tournament of Roses Association.  She has conducted workshops on volunteer management at two IFEA (International Festival and Event Association) conventions and has a CFEE (Certified Festival and Event Executive) certification from IFEA. Prior to the Tournament of Roses, Katie spent nine years coordinating and managing volunteers for a faith-based organization.  Katie has a Bachelor’s Degree in Theater from the University of Illinois. Her own volunteer activities include home-building projects in Tijuana and participating in community musical ensembles.

In this episode, Katie speaks at length about the unique and crucial roles played by volunteers to put on the Parade year after year. She talks about the “membership” model and how it has worked for the Parade for decades. This episode is a fascinating lesson in how to maximize the talents and enthusiasm of volunteers for the benefit of any organization!

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Key Episode Moments: 

  1. 5:05 - Committee chairs are trained in their responsibilities and how to manage their group. They have support, but the responsibility is real – without them there is no Parade!  
  2. 9:25 - The best recruiters for new volunteers are CURRENT volunteers!
  3. 11:00 - For the Parade, volunteers are members and there is year-round communication to keep them engaged.
  4. 12:27 - The membership model works for the Parade. Prospective volunteers are interviewed before acceptance and it’s a real commitment. This is a valued, long-term relationship.
  5. 14:40 - Technology has made communication easier than ever with a member website with committee pages. Email keeps everyone up to date as well.
  6. 18:50 - You cannot say, “Thank You,” enough! Ask your volunteers how their experience is and how it can be improved and you will always be rewarded!
The Amplifier is brought to you by Saffire in cooperation with IAFE, IFEA, IAVM and WFA. For more information or feedback, please contact info@saffire.com.

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