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Experiential Experts Podcast: Executing a Philanthropic Event During
the COVID-19 Pandemic

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For the first episode of Experiential Experts, hosts Lorre Crisswell, VP, Group Account Director and Holly Zalenski, Account Director, spoke with Aimee McGranahan, whose mission is to support shadow warriors and their families. The foundation she works for supports these families through the various fundraising events they host. 


“We bring in headliner entertainment, and we host an event. It is ‘invite only,’” McGranahan said. “We call ourselves the ‘ungala.’ We’re beer, barbeque and concert. One of the unique features that we do is a call out to the intelligence community and defense community to do a battle of the bands. It’s really interesting to see how many talented musicians exist in this community.”

While these events feature some big-name talent, McGranahan said that it was an essential part of the mission to raise funds for these families that the event is something unique to draw interest. “To date, we’ve given $3.6 million to our benefiting charities, which are the CIA Officers Memorial Foundation, the Special Officers Warrior Foundation, and the Defense Intelligence Memorial Foundation.” But, like any event during the past year, planning an event for the foundation in 2021 was no easy task due to the ongoing pandemic. McGranahan said they did work through the challenges to host a successful event this past April.


Listen to the full podcast below:


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