Funding Strategies to Accelerate Power-building Cohort is a new offering within NCG's Communities of Practice. This cohort is a 4-part learning and collaboration series that will help philanthropic grantmakers sharpen their power-building strategies by engaging in 501c(4) funding and complementary 501c(3) funding. A core premise is that these types of grantmaking strategies (which NCG calls “c4- aligned funding”) can accelerate movement building and systems-change goals, strengthen our democracy, and advance racial equity.
I’ll be the first to acknowledge that I’ve arrived as NCG’s CEO on the shoulders of many others that came before me. Two of the strongest shoulders belong to my first professional mentor and a heavyweight in philanthropic circles, Joe Brooks. During my seventeen years as a work partner and friend at The San Francisco Foundation and then PolicyLink, I learned more from him than I could ever adequately describe. He had a habit of saying things that were increasingly profound the more you thought about them. One of those sayings was, “how much do you need to know to act?”, often dropped in a setting surrounded by other foundation colleagues where he was about to propose bold action to engage some of the Bay Area’s most vexing social challenges
NCG’s membership is made up of grantmaking organizations, government agencies, philanthropic partner organizations and individual consultants, donor advisors and donors. We have over 200 organizations in our membership, representing $3.5 billion of funding in Northern California.
Last year in July 2021, NCG hosted a conversation with trans women of color leaders and queer/trans funder advocates–including the Akonadi Foundation, Borealis Philanthropy, Funders for LGBTQ Issues, Horizons Foundation, and Solidaire–to highlight trans leadership and dispel myths that BIPOC trans leaders and their organizations were being adequately resourced, even in the Bay Area.
Northern California Grantmakers. We are led by a whose North Star is racial equity internally and externally. We listen to our members, movement groups, and other stakeholders to consider an intersectional racial analysis for a more equitable future. We fully acknowledge that how we do what we do matters.
The Build Back Better Act has the potential to help the nation grow, as framed by the White House, “from the bottom and middle-out" by providing families with funding for childcare, expanding access to affordable housing, education, and health care, and enforcing tax laws on the extremely wealthy.
I’ll confess – the other day it was a bit hard to get out of bed and start the day. It was the middle of the week, a pile of Zoom meetings awaited, and the covers felt especially fresh and comfy.