"I found that I learned some things. Sometimes you think because you have been doing this for a long time that you know most of what you need to know. But Allison gave me new ways to look at the same information which was very helpful."

Don Eitel, Managing Director at Mu Performing Arts

Mu Performing Arts is a performing arts organization that produces theater and taiko from the Asian American perspective. Their social justice mission uses art as a tool to create a platform for Asian American representation on stage and in the media. As with any growing nonprofit arts organization, managing cash flow can be a challenge. Mu Performing Arts is no different. Working in the nonprofit arts sector for several years, Managing Director Don Eitel contacted Nonprofits Assistance Fund for a line of credit to help manage cash flow. They had a couple of years of deficits during a big growth stage. They were getting more grants, but many of these grants only paid for 80% of the work, and Don was getting nervous about their cash on hand.

When Loan Officer Allison Wagstrom met with Don, she told him that they were financially sound and didn’t need to worry, but Don needed a peace of mind. “So in some ways, it was nice to get the reinforcement, that we are not screwing things up and the fact that we caught this early is a good thing.” Don stressed that when a nonprofit has a surplus, no one asks any questions, but when a nonprofit has an operational deficit for a couple of years, it’s a different story. After closing the line of credit, Allison attended a board meeting to help Don and his Board of Directors review their audit to understand the language and to simply know what information to pay attention to.  Since that meeting, Allison has also helped Don prepare their budget and utilize dashboards to communicate their financial goals.

Photo Credit: 2012 © Michal Daniel