Taking A Stand: A Growing Trend for Foundation Leaders

Foundations have long taken a role as "neutral conveners" around controversial issues. Many foundation leaders, however, are taking strong stands on critical issues in their communities (e.g. education, health, police brutality, and more). Is this a new trend? What are the benefits and pitfalls? During this webinar, several foundation CEOs who chose to speak up on controversial issues share their experiences around what these efforts have meant for them and their organizations.

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As society continues to struggle with issues such as police-related violence, housing inequalities, health care reform, and threats to national and international security (just to name a few), philanthropy has been challenged to re-evaluate its long held role as convener to potentially adopt a different role in serving the public good.

During this webinar,  you will hear from three leaders within the philanthropic sector who have helped shift their organizations from the role of funder and convener towards a more active and vocal role as partner and advocate on some of these issues. Dr. Sherece West-Scantlebury discusses the challenges, successes, and opportunities that arose when the Winthrop Rockefeller Foundation took a stand on education. Rev. Starsky Wilson shares how, in the aftermath of Ferguson, the Deaconness Foundation was able to take a stand and use a racial justice lens on the issues of housing and violence in the state of Missouri. To round out the discussion, Dr. Robert K. Ross of The California Endowment shares his insights regarding the work his organization has done as they take a stand in building healthy communities for all Californians. 

Speakers include:

Dr. Robert K. Ross
President and CEO
The California Endowment

Sherece West-Scantlebury, Ph.D.
President and CEO
Winthrop Rockefeller Foundation

Rev. Starsky D. Wilson
President and CEO
Deaconess Foundation

Moderated by:

Aaron Dorfman
Executive Director
National Committee for Responsive Philanthropy



Connect with Council Staff

Karon Moody Harden

Vice President, Programs and Peer Engagement

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