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Racial Equity Action Institute

Watch our information session with past participants to learn more! 


Current and historical policies are driving dramatic inequality with rising and continued racial violence, hate, and intolerance. Now, more than ever we need to put emphasis on change and action within institutions and across sectors in order to operationalize racial equity.

The Racial Equity Action Institute was developed by Northern California Grantmakers (NCG) in 2019 to do just that. We have shifted our in-person Institute to a useful virtual experience with interactive convenings for those who want to advance REDI (Racial Equity, Diversity, Inclusion) within their institutions. One sector on its own cannot solve the challenges of racial inequities – this Institute connects racial equity specialists from philanthropy, business, government, and nonprofits.

Our second annual Institute kicks off in November 2020. During this eight-month, multi-sector training, participants will gain knowledge, lessons, and tools for developing actionable strategies in their institutions with field experts and each other. The curriculum centers racial equity with an intersectional framework that recognizes the ways race is shaped and informed by class, gender, sexuality, and ability. We recognize we can achieve more together and are pleased to partner with Southern California Grantmakers (SCG) this year to create solutions for our shared challenges in the Bay Area and Los Angeles regions.


Target Audience

When thinking about applying, consider the following:

  • You are responsible for the implementation of racial equity, diversity, and inclusion (REDI) efforts at your current institution and have a minimum of 2 years of overall experience working on these issues;
  • You understand your institution’s operations, systems, programs, and leadership structure, and have a level of influence/authority to introduce new ideas, programs, etc;
  • You embrace reflection and are open to being challenged/inspired by new/different ideas on practicing REDI work;
  • You seek a space to connect with others for support, to build relationships, and to problem-solve on REDI challenges.

Meet the 2019 Inaugural Cohort

The convenings support creating a community reflecting and learning from each other to craft approaches to the challenges of advancing racial equity, diversity, and inclusion, and building skills to create the conditions for change within our institutions.

1. Power of Community (Friday, November 6, 2020)

Build community and develop relationships with cohort members with a focus on defining shared language on racial equity, diversity, and inclusion (REDI) and how REDI is operationalized.  

2. Power of Reflection and Healing (Friday, December 4, 2020)   

Explore how personal and intersectional identities and oppressions based on ability, class, gender, race, and sexual orientation are experienced in our bodies.  Learn practices rooted in radical rest, trauma-informed approaches to healing, and tools for being resilient and avoiding burnout.  

3. Power of Systems Change (Friday, January 8, 2021)

Learn frameworks, strategies, and tools on how to engage with peers and leaders on making racial equity, diversity, and inclusion change in your institution on a systems level. 

4. Power of Culture (Friday, February 5, 2021) 

Learn how to create a Race Equity Culture in your institution that values and prioritizes racial equity, diversity, and inclusion from Equity in the Center’s Awake to Woke to Work framework.  

5. Power To Leverage Change  (Friday, March 5, 2021)  

Identify institutional levers for change and create the conditions for action to advance racial equity, diversity, and inclusion in your institution. 

6. Power of Communications (Friday, April 2, 2021) 

Learn how to frame narratives, use storytelling, and develop messages to make the case for racial equity, diversity, and inclusion in your institution. 

7. Power of Practice (Friday, May 7, 2021) 

Utilize an organizational assessment to develop a Racial Equity Action Plan. Share racial equity, diversity, and inclusion challenges in your institutions, explore strategies, and create solutions to address these barriers.  

8. Power of Collective Action (Friday, June 4, 2021) 

Refine Racial Equity Action Plans with implementation steps and timelines, reflect on the program experience, engage with REAI alumni, and discuss opportunities to work collectively in the future.  


The information below is specific to the 2020-2021 Institute. You can sign up to be the first-to-know when the next round of applications launch. 


There are eight virtual convenings (10:00 am - 3:00 pm) required as a part of REAI. All sessions will be hosted virtually.

  • Friday, November 6, 2020
  • Friday, December 4, 2020
  • Friday, January 8, 2021
  • Friday, February 5, 2021
  • Friday, March 5, 2021
  • Friday, April 2, 2021
  • Friday, May 7, 2021
  • Friday, June 4, 2021


  • Nonprofit and Government sectors: $1,500
  • Business and Philanthropy sectors: $2,500

If the cost of participation presents a financial barrier, please contact us to explore alternative options.

County Participation

At this time, we are only able to offer REAI to institutions that reside in NCG or SCG counties: 

Northern California Counties
Alameda, Contra Costa, Marin, Napa, San Francisco, San Mateo, Santa Clara, Solano, or Sonoma counties.
Please contact Alice Y. Hom ( and Daniel Lau ( with any questions.


Southern California Counties
Kern, Los Angeles, Orange, Riverside, San Bernardino, San Luis Obispo, Santa Barbara, or Ventura counties.
Please contact Erica Rey ( and Sequoia Thompson ( with any questions.
If you are located outside of these counties, please email us.

The deadline for the 2020 Institute has passed. Sign up below to be the first to know when we launch the 2021 Racial Equity Action Institute. 

Director of Justice, Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion | Tides


CEO | CARESTAR Foundation


Deputy Director of Development | Low Income Investment Fund


Manager CZI Community | Chan Zuckerberg Initiative


Managing Partner and Co-Founder | VIVA Social Impact Partners


Senior Philanthropic Advisor | Marin Community Foundation


Director of Equity and Wellness | Zuckerberg San Francisco General Hospital and Trauma Center


Director of Programs | May and Stanley Smith Charitable Trust


Workforce Contract Compliance Officer, Office of Economic Workforce and Development | City and County of San Francisco


Manager, Office of Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Belonging | City and County of San Francisco Human Services Agency


President and CEO | Fresh Lifelines for Youth


Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Program Manager, Employee Services Agency | County of Santa Clara


Senior Program Officer | Jim Joseph Foundation


Executive Director | Tandem, Partners in Early Learning


Operations and Program Manager | Levi Strauss Foundation


Director of Racial Equity Practice and Culture | The California Endowment


Senior Racial Equity and Policy Analyst | San Francisco Arts Commission


Director of Diversity and Training | Center for Excellence in Nonprofits


Senior Manager, Corporate Citizenship | West Region, Deloitte


Partner | Moss Adams LLP


Senior Loan Officer & Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Lead | Housing Trust