Section 3: What Keeps You Up at Night?

Section 3: What Keeps You Up at Night?

Is there a more specific topic on your mind? These resources are categorized by a handful of topics you may find relevant to your company’s DEI work. Applying an equity lens to our work allows us to take a step back and examine our actions from another perspective, highlighting areas for improvement. That’s why it’s essential to observe the ways in which the following topics and more appear in our everyday work in the philanthropic sector.

Table of Contents

“I don’t know where to start”


From Alford Group: Culture of Equity Assessment


Awake to Work to Work: Building a Race Equity Culture


How to Begin Equity Work in Your Organization with Little or No Money – Resource Collection and Webinar Series


Communication Guidelines for a Brave Space


What if I say or do the wrong thing?


A Therapist On The Right Way To Apologize When You Say Something Racist


Afraid to Talk About Sensitive Topics at Work? Read this Guide First


You’ve Been Called Out for a Microaggression. What Do You Do?


What Not To Say To Someone Who Has Experienced Racial Trauma


What If I Say the Wrong Thing? 10 Tips for Culturally Effective People


Embedding DEI into your strategic plan


Addressing Diversity and Inclusion: Going Beyond the Benchmark


DEI Strategic Planning Toolkit


Actualizing a Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Strategy


Getting your board “on board”


From Alford Group: Culture of Equity Assessment


From Alford Group: Board Toolkit


From Alford Group: Board Members and Nonprofit Leaders: It’s Time.


Your boardroom sets the tone


AFP ICON 2021: Creating an Equity-Forward Board Culture


Beyond the Board Statement: How Can Boards Join the Movement for Racial Justice? (Part One)



Engaging donors of color

Diversity and Donors. First Day Podcast from The Fund Raising School (Lilly Family School of Philanthropy)


Engaging Donors of Color. First Day Podcast from The Fund Raising School (Lilly Family School of Philanthropy)


The sgENGAGE Podcast Episode 201: Building Cultural Competency to Understand Your Donors


npExperts: The Great Reset – Equity chapters


From Alford Group: Demographic Donor Scan


DEI in the workplace: For employers


From Alford Group: Find Your Path to a More Inclusive Workplace Culture


The Bias of ‘Professionalism’ Standards


Our Authentic Selves and Doing Diversity Right


Personnel Strategies in the Face of Impossible Choices


19 Questions for Leaders Who Are Serious About Racial Equity


What Has — and Hasn’t — Changed Since “Dear White Boss…”


DEI in the workplace: For employees

Why and How to Prioritize DEI at Your Organization


How to Start an Affinity Group at Work, According to Real People Who Did It


How to Hold Your Company Accountable to its Promise of Racial Justice


How Coworkers Can Help


Racial Equity in Philanthropy: Using White Privilege for Good


Holding yourself and others accountable


Equity in Development: Be Radically Intentional to Change the Lived Experiences of Diverse Fundraisers


Talk the Talk: Strengthening Your Organization’s Diversity Statement


A Guide to Indigenous Land Acknowledgement


From Alford Group: Simple Commitment Slide



Section 1: What Everyone Needs to Know



Section 2: Common Pitfalls to Avoid

Section 2: Common Pitfalls to Avoid

Section 2: Common Pitfalls to Avoid

Doing this work can at times feel unfamiliar and uncomfortable – but that means you’re doing it right. These resources are aimed at those who may be starting this journey and want to gut-check their DEI plan, as well as those who have been engaging with DEI work for a while but may have hit a road bump and want to know how they can avoid similar issues in the future.

Table of Contents

Being inactive

Verna Myers: How to overcome our biases? Walk boldly toward them


From Alford Group: Creating a Culture of Equity: Taking Action


npExperts: The Great Reset – Equity chapters: Moving into the New Normal with Intention


Lacking cohesive structure in your plan

From Alford Group: Culture of Equity Assessment


From Alford Group: Be a SMARTIE: An Equity-Foward Approach to Goal Setting


Having a singular view

What is intersectionality?


For a more detailed, longform view: The Intersectionality Wars


Intersectionality in the Workplace isn’t a ‘Nice to Have’ — it’s Essential


Being satisfied with tokenism

Monday Morning Reset: Why Tokenism is Killing Your Diversity Efforts


The Big Idea Series: Advancing Black Leaders – an article series on how DEI efforts can better serve Black employees


‘Checkbox Diversity’ Must Be Left Behind for DEI Efforts to Succeed


The Small Nonprofit Podcast: Dismantling Tokenism with Trish Mandewo


Reacting when issues arise rather than leading with vision


From Alford Group: Diversity in Fundraising: Making a Long-Term Commitment


How to Integrate Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion into Everyday Operations


The Hidden Cost of DEI Work and What to Do About It



Section 1: What Everyone Needs to Know



Section 3: What Keeps You Up at Night?

Capital Campaigns: The 4 Things You Need to Have in Place Before You Launch

Online Webinar

Planning a capital campaign? There are four components you need to have in place before you launch a special campaign for a significant capital project and/or major endowment effort.  Continue reading “Capital Campaigns: The 4 Things You Need to Have in Place Before You Launch”

Demystifying Cryptocurrency: How Crypto Giving Works and Why It’s Important

Online Webinar

More and more, donors are giving through crypto giving.  This dialogue presents the opportunity to engage this growing segment of philanthropists. This webinar will lead you through what it is, why it’s important and how to use it. Hear from a panel of experts who will share their stories of working with donors to support the causes they care about through this source of giving.

Continue reading “Demystifying Cryptocurrency: How Crypto Giving Works and Why It’s Important”

Strength-Based Messaging: How to Accelerate Impact Through Inclusivity

Online Webinar

Organizations in the nonprofit community have been leaders when it comes to diversity, equity and inclusion – and yet much of the language used in fundraising communications has stemmed from needs-based messaging. This webinar makes time to elevate and uplift the work of nonprofits and the communities served through strength-based messaging. Continue reading “Strength-Based Messaging: How to Accelerate Impact Through Inclusivity”

Year-End Giving: Reach the Next Level in Fundraising Results

Online Webinar

Do you want to take your internal operations to the next level – and raise more money? Especially with year-end giving upon us, the answer for most development professionals is “Yes!” This session will walk you through year-end campaign best practices and highlight how you can improve your internal operations to accelerate fundraising this year and beyond. Learn how to strengthen systems, save time and money, and ultimately raise more dollars to have a greater impact on the communities you serve.

Continue reading “Year-End Giving: Reach the Next Level in Fundraising Results”

Fundraising Operations: Take Your Organization to the Next Level

By Mary Hackett, Vice President

It’s that time of the year again. The leaves are changing colors, the aroma of pumpkin spice is in the air and year-end giving is once again upon us.

Continue reading “Fundraising Operations: Take Your Organization to the Next Level”

Five Practical Steps to Diversify your Board of Directors

By JoAnn Yoshimoto, Senior Consultant

Before we plunge into the practical “how-to” ideas, let’s consider a few often-ignored questions: Why are we even having this conversation? Why does board diversity matter? Continue reading “Five Practical Steps to Diversify your Board of Directors”

Donald A. Cooke Joins Alford Group as Vice President

CHICAGO, July 20, 2022 – Alford Group is pleased to welcome Donald A. Cooke, Vice President effective July 20, 2022.

“We are very pleased to welcome Don Cooke to Alford Group,” said Brenda B. Asare, President and CEO of Alford Group. “He brings decades of experience in nonprofit management and significant expertise in fundraising with foundations and grant-making organizations. His knowledge and leadership in the national nonprofit community is tremendous and will significantly benefit our clients across the country.”

Throughout his career, Cooke has had hands-on experience in major gifts, multi-million-dollar campaigns, grant-making, board governance and leadership development. He has expertise in establishing fundraising best practices, relationship-building and collaborative leadership.

Most recently prior to Alford Group, Cooke served for 17 years as the Senior Vice President for Philanthropy of the Robert R. McCormick Foundation. His responsibilities included providing strategy, oversight and leadership to the Foundation’s grant-making programs in democracy and civics, communities, education, violence and justice reform, veterans affairs, and special initiatives. He supported race equity training, including with colleagues from other foundations.

Prior to his leadership position with the McCormick Foundation, Cooke worked at the Franklin Institute Science Museum in Philadelphia, serving as director of the Fels Planetarium, vice president for external affairs, and acting museum director. He subsequently headed up fundraising and marketing at the Philadelphia Orchestra and at Chicago’s Field Museum. In these roles, he has raised over $1 billion (including running six capital and endowment campaigns).

“I am excited to join the highly-respected and innovative team at Alford Group,” Cooke said. “I look forward to bringing my expertise and experience to support nonprofits and accelerate their impact across the country. More than ever, it’s a critical time to focus on creating a better world for ALL people, and having worked diligently to promote equity and inclusion, I am particularly pleased that Alford Group holds equity-centered practices as a core value.”

Cooke serves his community in a number of ways. He is an author and frequent lecturer and has served on several nonprofit boards, including the USO Board of Governors (and Chairman of the Midwest region), Chicago Council on Global Affairs, Chairman of Forefront and Illinois Joining Forces. He has been honored by Forefront and the Association of Fundraising Professionals.

About Alford Group

Alford Group is a national, full service consultancy serving nonprofits in nearly every state in the country. Since our founding, we have partnered with over 3,000 nonprofits to accelerate their impact and advance social change. Together, we’re building a world where possibilities are endless and reflect the best of who we are as humans. Alford Group is a Black-owned and -led consultancy, and a proud WBENC-certified women’s business enterprise. Follow us on Twitter and LinkedIn.

Read Donald A Cooke’s full biography here.


Giving USA: What Lies Ahead for Philanthropy in America

By Araceli Duran, Business Development Associate

Alford Group hosted a webinar that looked at some of the key findings from the new Giving USA report and invited expert panelists to discuss the current state of giving in the country. Continue reading “Giving USA: What Lies Ahead for Philanthropy in America”

Giving USA: What Lies Ahead for Philanthropy in America

Webinar | June 29, 2022

The events of 2020-2021 have forever changed the nonprofit community and philanthropy. While they have been unprecedented on so many fronts, the generosity of the American people has been at an all-time high.

Continue reading “Giving USA: What Lies Ahead for Philanthropy in America”