Guiding a Minnesota Nonprofit Through Turbulent Times
October 26, 2021
Mankato-based MRCI has provided employment programs and day services to individuals with disabilities since 1953. With multiple business units and an annual revenue of more than $100 million, MRCI is one of Minnesota’s largest nonprofits. We began partnering with MRCI in 2017.
In early 2020, MRCI was in the midst of transitioning to a more sustainable community-based service model. Then COVID-19 struck, and government shutdowns forced MRCI to cease operations. This put the nonprofit in a rocky position.
Thankfully, MRCI was able to secure a Paycheck Protection Program loan and other emergency funding. But MRCI’s leaders didn’t feel like they were out of the woods. In addition to the complicated reporting requirements of the various relief programs, they were faced with the overwhelming challenge of continuing their service-model transition in a changed marketplace.
As CEO Brian Benshoof said, “We were in unchartered waters.”
We know MRCI’s business through and through. In fact, we know it so well, our audit team was able to uncover an additional $50,000 in revenue by pinpointing a mistake in the organization’s Extended Employment Program audit in 2018.
With this perspective, we understood MRCI’s need to not only survive but also to achieve long-term sustainability for its clients and staff. Our forward-thinking CPAs jumped right in to advise MRCI’s leaders in managing cash, paying bills, securing funding, and meeting reporting requirements. We often served as a sounding board to help MRCI’s leaders feel confident in their chosen path.
MRCI came out of 2020 in a better place: as a more financially sustainable and efficient organization. Thanks to the support of the Abdo team, MRCI celebrated its first day as an exclusively community-based service provider on January 18, 2021.
“In turbulent times, it’s critical to have someone on your team who can answer this question: Are we doing this correctly?”
—Brian Benshoof, MRCI CEO
5,000 people empowered by MRCI each year
250 people employed by MRCI
100% of MRCI’s services are now community-based