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Partner Highlight: Cassie Fowler

Posted by Social Venture Partners Portland

In this continuing series, we are highlighting Partners and why they are involved with the SVP Portland Partnership.

Continuing the SVP Partner legacy, Cassie Fowler follows in the footsteps of her father Pete, who joined SVP Portland more than 10 years ago, spurred on by a family friend’s admiration for SVP Los Angeles. Cassie and her father were both drawn to SVP’s values, model of philanthropy, and potential to make a significant difference.

Cassie was raised in Portland, Oregon, and graduated from the University of Oregon in 2019 with a degree in Public Relations. She works in marketing as a Project Manager at Starkey Consulting and, at 25, is the youngest SVP Portland Partner.

Q: How did you become involved with SVP?

A: I’ve been attending SVP Portland events with my dad since I was in high school and, since then, have looked up to the people in this organization and respect their dedication to impact in the community. By the time I moved back to Portland after college, my dad had moved out of the city, but he was still connected to SVP. I was unsure of the career path I wanted to pursue, and my dad encouraged me to join his partnership with SVP and dive into the community to make connections with smart people who shared my interest in working hard to make a difference.

Being an SVP Partner enables me to do this. As an organization dedicated to a multi-generational network, I was able to bring my own unique perspective to the table and enhance SVP’s mission of building community capacity for solving problems together, by investing a unique combination of funding, talent, and influence.

Q: What has been your engagement with SVP? What expertise do you bring and how have you been able to apply it to move our mission and goal forward?

A: I primarily work with the Marketing Team, contributing my social media, copywriting, and strategic thinking capabilities to write blog posts, compile media lists, and brainstorm events. As a writer, I’m always looking to engage my critical thinking skills to help highlight and share the work that SVP does in partnership with community. The capacity to do this digitally—and at an arm’s distance—has been critical throughout COVID-19’s changing landscape.

Q: Where do you hope to engage next?

A: The pandemic has really thrown a wrench into how connected we all feel to one another and the causes we choose to support. In the future, I want to be more hands-on with my engagement. As the world begins to open up, I look forward to getting to know the SVP network and nonprofit space in a more tangible way. While parts of the virtual ecosystem we’ve lived with the last year and a half will remain, there is so much potential to continue this values-driven work in person, as well.

Q: Are there ways that SVP has changed you?

A: SVP has forced me to find my voice and push me out of my comfort zone in a good way. I’m naturally shy and tend to be a fly on the wall when it comes to social events and gatherings. When I joined SVP, I had the opportunity to open up and connect with people who were excited to hear from someone in a younger generation and demographic. My work with staff and Partners presents me with the space and opportunity to contribute to meaningful conversations.

As I continue my work with SVP Portland, I can’t wait to see the other ways the organization amplifies my strengths and teaches me new ones. The journey is only beginning!

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