Alumni Rocks answer the call!
The 2020 Alumni Phonathon was the most successful in school history! Our alumni callers raised the highest number of pledges and total dollar amount. We also had the most callers ever for the Phonathon – 98. All proceeds from the Phonathon go to the Trinity Annual Fund, which provides financial aid for our students.
Unlike years past when alumni callers would gather at Trinity to make their calls, this year’s Alumni Phonathon was conducted virtually over 15 nights from October 5 until November 11. Alumni were emailed the materials needed to call their classmates – a class roster, script, talking points, training video and spreadsheet for recording call results.
On their designated calling night, alumni logged into Zoom for a brief training session led by Trinity Foundation staff on how to record calls. Staff were also available for the duration of the calling nights for technical support and to answer questions. Callers returned their spreadsheet via email at the end of the calling night.
Alumni callers represented all decades in school history. For two hours they called classmates to ask them to contribute to the 2020-21 Trinity Annual Fund. They also spent time catching up with their classmates.
“This year’s Alumni Phonathon was definitely different,” said Director of Alumni Relations Travis Wagoner ’90. “Our alumni callers adjusted well to the new format and had a great time. “Callers reported that their classmates were very receptive to the calls. People have been cooped up for nine months, and they enjoyed a surprise call from an old friend.”
Unlike in years past when alumni callers would gather at Trinity on Phonathon nights, callers made their calls from home. This allowed for alumni who don’t live in Louisville to participate. Alumni from 11 states signed up – California, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Minnesota, North Carolina, Virginia and Texas.
“Attracting callers from across the country was a huge boost to the Phonathon,” said Senior Director for Development Brian Monell ’86. “We learned a lot from this year’s experience, and we will utilize our out-of-state alumni in the coming years. Next year, we hope to have a hybrid Alumni Phonathon, with callers gathering at Trinity and joining in virtually.”
Thank you to our dedicated callers who made this year’s Alumni Phonathon so successful. If you missed the call from a classmate and would like to make a gift, go to https://www.trinityrocks.com/trinity-foundation/make-a-gift-trinity-foundation/.
Alumni Phonathon Testimonials
Jim Sapienza ’81
President – Talenza
Santa Clarita, California
The 2020 Alumni Phonathon created opportunity out of crisis. The pandemic crisis rages on. The annual Phonathon opportunity was to move from the Alumni Hall cafeteria tables on campus to a remote team of callers.
As a supporter of education and healthcare and living in Southern California, I could think of no better way than to serve my duties as a newly installed Class Agent (1981) to utilize Zoom and phone technology to be a remote Phonathon fundraiser for current Trinity student financial aid.
The economic impact of the coronavirus has not been equitable. But by calling on our less impacted alumni in the Class of ’81, I welcomed the opportunity to encourage my classmates to financially support heavily impacted current students at Trinity. I am proud at the level of giving in 2020 by all who care about our younger brothers in need.
Tom Foerster ’67
Artist – Oil Painter/Retired Advertising Copywriter
Let’s face it – some people who are asked to participate in a phonathon look forward to it with all the enthusiasm of being condemned to the gallows. However, it turns out the organizers of the 2020 Trinity Alumni Phonathon knew what they were doing and made the experience something I really enjoyed.
The virtual meeting at the start of the each evening’s session allowed us all to see and get to know the guys from other classes who were giving their time that evening and to build an esprit de corps for the effort. The materials prepared for us made it simple to approach what, beforehand, you’d think would be outside each of our comfort zones – that is, calling up guys (many of whom we hadn’t spoken to for decades) and ask them for a contribution to the Trinity Annual Fund. And, then we embraced the actual experience of reconnecting by phone and engaging in interesting conversation with fellows whose lives had moved on from high school, just as each of ours had.
I came to realize the Class of 1967 classmates with whom I spoke share the same feeling I do, that we are the shoulders upon which today’s Trinity students stand, and we are honored to serve in that role. It was a reminder that we are all, in fact, Brothers for Life.
John King Jr. ’08
Business Development Manager – Republic Bank & Trust Company
This year was my first time participating in Trinity’s Alumni Phonathon, and it was an absolute blast. I got to speak to classmates I have not spoken to in years. I got to catch up and learn about what is going on in their lives. I also got the opportunity to connect with older alumni who were also taking time to participate by calling their classmates.
Trinity truly is home, and it felt great to help give back to a place that gave me so much. By contributing to the Trinity Annual Fund, we are giving kids an opportunity to be part of that home.
The Alumni Phonathon was a phenomenal experience, and I am very much looking forward to participating in the years to come.
Brian Biermann ’96
Director of Product & Business Development – Nurse Call
I had the opportunity to participate in the 2020 Alumni Phonathon and wanted to share my experience with others in the Trinity community.
Since graduating from Trinity in 1996, I have stayed in close contact with many of my classmates, mostly through social media, as I now live in Sarasota, Florida. When presented with the opportunity to reconnect and drive donations for the Annual Fund, it was a no-brainier.
I must admit I was quite nervous to call up classmates – some of whom I hadn’t talked to in years – and ask for a donation. However, after a brief training session, I felt up to the task.
As part of a preemptive strike, I sent a message to my classmates via our class Facebook page so they would be expecting my call, which seemed to help break the ice. Within the first few calls, I fell into a groove and started to enjoy connecting with many of my classmates. Many of us are busy trying to survive this crazy COVID-19 pandemic, working and being dads. It was a refreshing change from the recent stress of the election and global pandemic.
During the calls, one question I often asked was, “Are you still stay in contact with many members from our class?” One replied, “We just had a golfing weekend with several classmates,” while others to my surprise said, “No, not really anyone.” This had a profound impact on me and resulted in beginning plans for an all-class Zoom gathering as a way to reconnect.
The most humbling pledge came from a classmate who was recently laid-off as a result of the pandemic, but still felt compelled to donate so others could better afford the opportunity to attend this truly remarkable school.
In summary, I encourage fellow alumni to consider volunteering a few hours of your time to help support your classmates and Trinity. We were able to double our pledge donations from the prior year, and I was able to rekindle some friendships. Pretty awesome reward for a two-hour investment of time versus binge watching something on Netflix!
Live the Fourth, Take State, Swim like a Rock and BEAT ST. X!
Sam Burton ’11
Healthcare Benefit Advisor
I signed up for Trinity’s Phonathon because it seemed like a great way to stay involved and give back. I really enjoyed the positive exeperience I had getting to talk with old classmates while helping my alma mater. The education and brotherhood I had at Trinity is something I will take with me for the rest of my life.
For more information on ways your generosity can benefit Trinity High School, contact:
Trinity High School Foundation
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