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Muscular Dystrophy Association Reviews

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Muscular Dystrophy Association President & CEO Steven M. Derks
Steven M. Derks
83 Ratings
  • 9 people found this helpful

    The good, the bad, and UGLY

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    Former Employee - Fundraising Coordinator in Houston, TX
    Former Employee - Fundraising Coordinator in Houston, TX

    I worked at Muscular Dystrophy Association full-time (less than a year)


    MDA is very frugal with money, and definitely uses it to serve our communities to the fullest. I was always proud to tell people that 77 cents of every dollar helped people fighting muscle disease.

    Mda is a fantastic cause, muscular dystrophy is a terrible thing, and Mda is truly making a difference in the lives of people living with als, duchenne, SMA, and other diseases.

    The benefits are amazing. You are fully covered medically. They just switched time off to PTO though and that was a bummer.

    I was blessed to have great fellow fundraising coordinators at my location that worked hard and supported each other.

    At the end of my term, I felt very appreciated by higher up management (national office). I am thankful they noticed our office worked hard under such harsh conditions.


    Time: In large cities, like houston, you will work many many many weekends. You will work late, and you will work hard. I know all offices are not this intense. The houston office had WAY too many projects and not enough staff making it difficult to succeed. This stretched the office thin. You will work long hard hours most of the year with little compensation. They offer summer hours, which is so appreciated, but many times we worked late on those days. If you have an event until midnight, you can come in at 10. There is no money compensation.

    Leadership: Our office had a huge transitional year, and it hasn't recovered. The staff is brand new and there is no direction or teaching on how to run events well. Everything is assumed. Management did not know how to explain projects well and there were LOTS of miscommunication. Tasks that should take 2 hours took days and the small things were sweated and the big things were forgotten. We all had to teach ourselves through trial and error. I believe that to still be the case today. They have started to offer webinars etc which are helpful, but in reality, if your leadership in the office is non existent, your office will tank. That happened at ours.

    Respect: I have never been treated with such condescending remarks in my career life. There is no appreciation or affirmation from management. The office moral is lacking greatly. I was not told once by our ED that I was doing a great job. There was also a lack of respect to our families, sponsors, and volunteers. Money was put before relationships and it was very obvious when I started here. I cannot describe how many times I have been yelled at, hung up on, or told "it's that time of year" by people that have supported MDA in the past. It's an embarrassment and needs to be fixed. Sponsors literally run away from our management because they hound them money questions instead of asking them his they are doing. It is awkward and humiliating.

    Communication: Communication is lacking. All management has different ideas on how to do things so projects never get done in an efficient matter. I have done so many projects over because of miscommunication or lack of communication. We would stay late at work with nothing to work on because they had not communicated tasks etc. To the team.

    Bullying: if you were different, you were bullied until you would just quit. I saw this happen to 4 people in the year I was with MDA. They would make remarks about your clothing, your car, your personality, and they would give you low jobs to do.

    Human resources has stepped in recently which I am thankful for. But I would NOT recommend this job to anyone as of now. A lot has to change and a lot of time needs to pass before this will be a stable working environment. I went into such great detail because I truly feel bad for people that will be stepping into this toxic environment.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    There has to be a management change for this office to get better. People are leaving after working for 3 months, the people need to change. I do appreciate national noticing that there is an issue and are trying to resolve it. But I think there needs to be more appreciation for the fundraising coordinators. When numbers and projects are really bad, call fundraisers too, not just managers who throw us under the bus.

    Doesn't Recommend
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