Cooking Up Good Stories with Anne Wolfcale

4 min read

Anne holding a boule

Anne Wolfcale wants to emerge from the pandemic stronger than before. And, through her new role at Well Done Marketing, she hopes to bring a bunch of Indy’s best organizations with her.

That ambition is part of the reason Wolfcale, who grew up on the city’s north side, is our newest writer/producer. The rest is about her penchant for telling a good story and (let’s be honest) the fact that she’s a baker. (We’ve got a food-motivated staff.)

We sat down with Anne to learn more about her backstory, what led her to Well Done Marketing and, of course, her cookies, cakes, and caramels.

Q: You’re coming to WDM from the nonprofit world. What are the best parts about working in that sector?

A: I learned so much about the importance of using stories to build connections, and how to communicate on a really deep level about personal values. Because when someone gives their money, yes, they’re giving it to help other people, but they’re also giving it because they believe in a particular kind of better future.

Q: What advice would you give to nonprofit leaders looking to grow their donor bases—because, you know, who isn’t?

A: Right. The impression people have of any entity—an organization, foundation, or company—is built on the tiniest interactions. When my phone number was on one website as a contact, people would call me to donate but they also would tell me about small things that made them angry or sad or concerned. I realized that tiny personal interactions between people—or phone calls, or announcements—really affect how people think about organizations.

Q: You got into the nonprofit world through your volunteer role with Alpha Phi Fraternity. What led you to join Alpha Phi when you were in college at Northwestern?

A: I loved the women I met—they had such incredible ambitions—and they were funny and fun. I met my best friend on bid night, and we’ve been close ever since. I even became chapter president. But I think the thing that made it so impactful was becoming an educational leadership consultant after college. My biggest role was helping start a new chapter at Georgia Tech, but I also traveled to 17 states, presented workshops to thousands of women, and worked with volunteers across the country. My experience led me to work for their foundation as they launched their $45 million “Leading with Heart” campaign.

Q: What did you learn about women’s relationships through those experiences?

A: Women lead and support other women in very personal, inclusive ways. It’s a kind of support that gives us opportunities to take on challenges and get important experiences—at first through our friends—and test out leadership at important points in our lives. Then we take the skills we learn into the world, reach back, and bring forward other women.

Q: You traveled a lot with Alpha Phi. How’d you end up in Indianapolis?

A: I grew up in Meridian Hills, lived over by Holliday Park, and met my husband (Tyler Wolfcale) when we were in first grade. I had a crush on him, but he barely knew my name—you know, girls had cooties. Then he moved to Carmel with his family. But in 2010, when the Colts were in the Super Bowl and I was still traveling for Alpha Phi, we reconnected. I got stuck in a snowstorm in Maryland during the game, posted about it on Facebook, and he responded. When I returned for a weekend, we went on our first date. Now we live in a house in Broad Ripple that’ll be 100 years old in 2027!

Q: And is that where you’ve been this past year, during the pandemic?

A: Yes. It’s given me plenty of time to bake—cakes, cookies, and breads—and I made masks and mask chains, too. I sold the mask chains at Parkside Linen (1762 E. 86th Street). One of my former neighbors, from when I was growing up, owns it.

I also went through the interview process at Well Done and met such great people. I’m looking forward to getting started because I think there’s so much opportunity to help—a lot of organizations have been hurt this past year. I feel like we can do a lot of good work, helping them bounce back by getting the attention of the right people at the right moment.

Q: That’s exactly what we’re thinking! We’re also thinking about returning to our offices and, importantly, what we’ll eat when we get there. Can you help?

A: I’ll bring anything your hearts dream of! I have several excellent cookie recipes, several cakes, and I’m well known for my apple cider caramels. I’m also willing to make the claim that my pizza dough is the best in the business.