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? Some of the answers might be philosophical, ethical, equity- or values-based, others might be quantifiable, statistical, evidence-based, but every nonprofit organization must find its own answers to these questions.
Building Resiliency, Recalibrating Mission, and Deepening Impact
As nonprofit organizations continue to adapt to the profound effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, strategic planning, collaborative relationships with board members, and a strong path forward is essential. Our panel of esteemed CEOs described their leadership journeys, shared how they have navigated their organizations to solid ground during the pandemic, and reflected on what is ahead for our sector. Attendees came away from this program understanding leadership principles that leverage change to advance mission and empowered to contribute to an organizational culture that overcomes challenges and articulates a clear, bold vision for the future.
Brenda B. Asare, President & CEO, Alford Group
Greg Cameron, President and Chief Executive Officer, The Joffrey Ballet
Jamal Malone, Chief Executive Officer, Ada S. McKinley Community Services
Bela Moté, Chief Executive Officer, the Carole Robertson Center for Learning
Last year as the COVID-19 pandemic swept the globe and racial and social inequities were exacerbated and brought into the national spotlight, we nonprofit warriors “pivoted” and navigated “uncharted waters” during “unprecedented” times, while kindly asking our colleagues to “please unmute yourself.”
Although I always jump at the chance to reference Friends – “PIVOT! PIVOT!” – I’m happy to say these overused words and phrases are mostly behind us, mostly. (Plus, there are less cringe-worthy and more productive ways to reference Friends. Read on and you’ll see.)
MacKenzie Scott, author and philanthropist and Dan Jewett, educator and philanthropist announced this week another round of grants to 286 organizations across the country, totaling $2.74 billion. Scott granted 384 organizations funds totaling $4.2 billion in late 2020.
STATEMENT FROM BRENDA B. ASARE, PRESIDENT & CEO, THE ALFORD GROUP
Alford Group applauds MacKenzie Scott and Dan Jewett for their transformational contribution to the nonprofit sector. At an important time in our nation’s history as we take on social injustice, work to dismantle systemic inequities and create a world where ALL people can thrive, MacKenzie Scott and Dan Jewett are leading the way with their generosity.
We are proud of our clients and other worth organizations who are receiving these gifts and empowering change in communities across the country. Congratulations on being recognized for the deep impact being made every single day and the strategic pathway forward as you activate and strengthen a more just world for ALL people. Alford Group is proud to be your partner today and into the future.
It is not lost on me that Scott’s and Jewett’s announcement comes on the same day as the release of the Giving USA 2021 Annual Report on Philanthropy. The new report announced an all-time high of giving for the year 2020 at $471.44 billion, with 88% coming from individuals. The power of giving by individuals has fueled the nonprofit sector for generations and Alford Group is excited for our collective future together.
As we ask ourselves: Now What? What do we do in this ever-evolving “new normal?” It’s time to take action. Here are the five actions to take today.
As a consultant with Alford Group and former development professional with more than 30 years’ experience in the nonprofit sector, when my colleagues and I see what is happening all around us, we regularly ask “How might we have the most positive impact with our clients? How can we improve our work so that our clients can better serve their participants, members, families, patients, students, children and youth?”Continue reading “Board Members and Nonprofit Leaders: It’s Time.”
Organizations have been in constant flux to respond to 2020. Your organization likely implemented crisis response plans quickly after the onset of COVID-19. These response plans may have transitioned into scenario plans to navigate the ongoing crises of this year and/or your organization made substantial pivots or even pauses to your organization’s strategic plans. As the non-profit sector continues to respond to the devastating realities of the pandemic and our country’s social and racial injustices, Alford Group elevates four specific elements that will strengthen your implementation and positioning for success, if embedded into your planning processes – crisis, scenario or strategic.
The world has transformed in the last 6 months. A global pandemic, national social movements to create a just and fair society, environmental crisis after crisis – the list goes on. How do you plan for the future? What do you prioritize and what do you set aside? How do you anticipate what things will be like in the coming year? These are all good questions that no one has the exact answers to – but there is a lot we DO know. In this webinar, we will share with you 4 elements that every organization can use to strengthen its planning. A panel of experts discussed how they are using these 4 elements in leading their organizations through crisis response, scenario and/or strategic planning.
Alexis Cooke, Senior Consultant, Alford Group
Jamie Phillippe, Vice President, Alford Group
Felicia S. Davis, President and CEO, Chicago Foundation for Women
Darrin Goss, President and CEO, Coastal Community Foundation of South Carolina
Rachel Krinsky, Executive Director, LifeWire
Michele Stauff, CFRE, Executive Director, Million Dollar Round Table Foundation
Recently, Alford Group and Columbia Bank co-hosted the presentation of the 2019 Giving USA data and hosted a panel of Pacific Northwest funders and philanthropists to discuss the findings and relate them to the current realities of giving in the region. The full recorded webinar, including 2019 data and panel discussion, may be found here.
Giving USA, published by the Giving USA Foundation, is part of the Giving Institute which is comprised of leading consulting firms including Alford Group. Celebrating 65 years, this report is the longest running and most comprehensive and authoritative report on charitable giving in the United States.
The Mid-Hudson Valley Association of Fundraising Professionals presents an action-packed webinar that will discuss how to assess your current culture and address building a positive culture of inclusion in the workplace.
MODERATOR: Brenda B. Asare, President & CEO, Alford Group
PANELISTS: Freddimir Garcia, Northern Regional Director for Diversity, Inclusion and Community Engagement, Westchester Medical Center
Inaudy Esposito, Executive Director, Orange County Human Rights Commission
With the current events of the past five months, the world is learning how to overcome the discomfort of talking about race and are having some real courageous conversations on how we can move forward together to create lasting change for people of color. This change will create a ripple effect where others who have been marginalized will benefit and increase their ability to thrive as well – no one is left behind.