Gulfport’s seeking close to $12 million for a new senior center.
June Johns

AARP could donate $1 million to help Gulfport build a new senior center.

At the March 15 Gulfport City Council meeting, Hartsook – the fundraising company the City hired in November to do just that for a new senior center – gave an update on its fundraising efforts.

Hartsoook Executive Vice President Jason Wood said the company’s fundraising efforts, which the City hopes will raise between $4.5 million and $5 million, include asking AARP for a $1 million donation and a possible naming rights deal with another large donor.

Those naming rights, Wood said, would also entail a potential honorary chairmanship title for the donor.

“Our hope is to have that committed by the end of April,” Wood said.

Hartsook’s efforts focus on raising private funds for a new $11.6 million center.

When the City hired Hartsook five months ago, it also hired two other firms to raise the money for the new senior center. The City pays Hartsook $12,000 per month, plus expenses, to get private contributions for the new center. By the contract, Hartsook’s fees will not exceed $184,000.

Two other firms, Shumaker Advisors and Thorn Run Partners, the city hired, will raise state and federal money for the center. The City pays those firms $2,500 and $6,500 per month, respectively.

The City plans to pay the three firms $300,000 in total.

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