a group of children and adults, seen from behind as they walk across Black Pond's bridge

Our Strategic Plan: 2014-2017

Our Mission: Leslie Science & Nature Center educates and inspires children and adults to discover, understand, and respect their natural environment.

Our Vision: Leslie Science & Nature Center is a highly respected science and nature center that enables individuals and communities throughout Southeastern Michigan to establish lifelong connections with the natural world and encourages efforts to support and protect it for future generations.

During the winter of 2013-14, LSNC welcomed our community’s input through a public town meeting and a survey requesting their feedback on LSNC’s site, and programs, as well as general thoughts. We received wonderful input about what we currently do well, areas we could grow, and areas in which we could evolve. We then met as a full staff and Board to review this feedback, articulate our vision for LSNC, and determine our focus areas for the next three years. We proceeded with a committee composed of board and staff to develop the strategic plan we present here. This plan is intended to take us from September 2014 to August 2017.
Our Strategic Plan is a living document, and as such will reflect adjustments over the next three years, as we attain resources and find ways to best support our targeted goals. We will notate updates to this public document with a most recently updated date at the bottom. Any questions may be directed to our Executive Director, Susan Westhoff, by emailing susan@lesliesnc.org or calling 734-997-1075.

GOALS

1. Realize full onsite and outreach program potential based on community needs.

2. Secure and maintain required financial resources and management strategies to ensure fiscal integrity and organizational sustainability.

3. Continue to build an exemplary team of dedicated, passionate, and skilled individuals in a positive and productive work environment.

4. Enhance the physical and structural site to provide optimal use for visitors, staff, and animals.

5. Develop and implement an integrated branding and marketing plan that supports LSNC as the premier science and nature center in Southeastern Michigan.

1. Realize full onsite and outreach program potential based on community needs.

1.1 Strategy Define and prioritize our target community audiences, including those we currently serve and those we would like to serve, and develop and deliver programs that meet their diverse needs.
1.2 Strategy Research and implement systems and tools for measuring program quality.

2. Secure and maintain required financial resources and management strategies to ensure fiscal integrity and organizational sustainability.

2.1 Strategy Evaluate financial needs for existing programs, analyze current income streams. Develop strategic targets for each revenue source.
2.2 Strategy Determine and continually assess realistic goals for unearned income from individuals, foundations, governmental, and corporate sponsors.
2.3 Strategy Continually monitor financial status and set up management protocols in line with best practice standards to ensure fiscal integrity and organizational sustainability.

3. Continue to build an exemplary team of dedicated, passionate, and skilled individuals in a positive and productive work environment.

3.1 Strategy Employ staff that meets established high standards and qualifications and reward or acknowledge appropriately.
3.2 Strategy Develop, mentor, and encourage employee professional growth.
3.3 Strategy Continue to cultivate a culture that promotes creativity and performance excellence and ensures people feel valued and respected for their contributions.

4. Enhance the physical and structural site to provide optimal use for visitors, staff, and animals.

4.1 Strategy Maintain and foster a healthy partnership with the City of Ann Arbor, particularly regarding facility and grounds use and needs.
4.2 Strategy Research and create a comprehensive Master Plan for the LSNC physical site integrated with an interpretive site plan.
4.3 Strategy Enhance the visitor experience by providing resources required for best access to program, site information, and comfortable, self-guided exploration of our site.

5. Develop and implement an integrated branding and marketing plan that supports LSNC as the premier science and nature center in Southeastern Michigan.

5.1 Strategy Establish an identifiable brand that is recognized throughout Southeastern Michigan and increases participation in our programs.
5.2 Strategy Develop and implement an integrated marketing plan, including the use of diverse media sources, for identified target markets in Washtenaw County and Southeastern Michigan.
5.3 Strategy Build strategic relationships with other organizations to foster increased recognition and participation in LSNC programs in communities throughout Southeastern Michigan.

Updated October 2014