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D5 Newsletter, February 4, 2013

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Building the Movement: A Letter from the Director

The New Year comes with signs that change is on the horizon—and a renewed focus on diversity, equity, and inclusion in the national dialogue. President Obama opened his second term with a call to finish the unfinished work of Seneca Falls, Selma, and Stonewall. His words underscore the importance of the work you are doing to advance diversity, equity, and inclusion in philanthropy. While political leaders push (and, as appropriate, we push them) to ensure our government lives up to its founding values in the laws and budgets it passes, we have an important role to play to ensure philanthropy lives up to its commitment to advance the common good.


As we begin 2013, D5 continues the work to move the needle on our four priorities: Diverse Leaders, Foundation Action, Funding Diverse Communities, and Data & Research. We recently conducted a survey that confirmed your commitment to DEI and gave us valuable insights on how we can best provide support and resources for the important work you are doing. One such resource will be D5’s re-tooled website that launched today. Communications support and research findings will follow soon thereafter.


Your stories of progress inspire us and strengthen our partnership as we move forward. Let us hear from you.  Help us to build the movement!


Kelly Brown

D5 Launches Re-Tooled Website Today

Today, D5 launched a re-tooled website to create a richer learning environment for the field. The enhanced site is easier to navigate and offers a clearinghouse of tools and resources for philanthropic leaders interested in advancing diversity, equity, and inclusion. It also features news from the field, commentaries, and ideas for people who want to learn more. D5 staff and its communications partners made these changes based on best practices in web design, interviews with key stakeholders and a thorough analysis of previous site traffic to identify what information was most useful to people. Check out the renewed site:

Hafizah Omar Joins D5 Staff 

We’re pleased to announce that Hafizah Omar has joined D5 as its newest Administrative Assistant. Matt Ubrig, who previously held this position half-time, has moved into a full-time role at Rockefeller Philanthropy Advisors. Hafizah comes to D5 with extensive cross-cultural and multilingual experience, having worked most recently in Malaysia and Guyana for the Center for Independent Journalism, World Teach, and the Center for Public Policy Studies. Join us in welcoming Hafizah to the D5 team! You can reach her at

Our Work

Building the Movement
During the final months of 2012 and in early 2013, D5 continued to promote the movement and support D5’s goals related to Leaders, Action, Funding, and Data through public speaking engagements and social media.

Action: In mid-October, Leadership Team member Jeff Poulos and AAPIP-Boston chair Jessica del Rosario were invited to speak at a roundtable luncheon at FSG. FSG, a nonprofit international strategy consulting group whose clients include foundations and nonprofits, is looking at its own internal policies and practices related to DEI. Jeff and Jessica were able to share D5’s work and available resources.

Data: On November 7, 2012, Kelly Brown was the featuredguest blogger on Transparency Talk, the Foundation Center’s GlassPockets blog.  In her post, Kelly makes the case for the importance of collecting and sharing foundation data on diversity and equity as a pathway to impact. The Foundation Center’sReporting Commitment, an effort of 15 foundations to develop standardized data collection and reporting procedures, is an example of the field’s growing commitment to transparency.  Read more here.

Action: In December, ABFE hosted its second conference on inclusion in endowment investing, Casting a Wider Net: Know-How and Networks for Investing with Minority- and Women-Owned Firms, in New York City. Kelly represented D5 on a panel, and was joined by Tedd Alexander III, Trustee of the Baltimore Community Foundation; and Nadia Quarles, Office of Business Diversity at the University of Chicago. For more information on the session, see

Action: In December, the Council of Michigan Foundations hosted the culminating convening of its 2012 Peer Action Learning Network (PALN), an expert-led engagement series designed to strengthen foundations’ capacity in diverse and inclusive leadership, management, and grantmaking.  Stay tuned for details and lessons learned in an upcoming post on the D5 blog.

Action and Data: In January, D5 hosted two sessions at the Council on Foundations Family Philanthropy Conference in San Jose: Embracing Diverse Perspectives for the Common Good – How Do We Start? and a Learning Lab, D5 Coalition Data Findings on Diversity Programs, Policies, and Practices.  These fora gave family philanthropists an opportunity to learn about different on-ramps for engaging in DEI in their own foundations, and explore questions about what it means to do the work effectively.

Survey Results 

Thank you to everyone who participated in the D5 survey that was sent out in November. The response rate was high thanks to your support. The survey was designed to establish a baseline across the sector about perspectives and needs related to DEI, and to identify how D5 can be an effective partner. Results are still being analyzed, but preliminary findings indicate that the majority of respondents are engaged in DEI work in some way, and that there is a high demand for tools and supports to do the work. More comprehensive findings will be released in the weeks to come.

We Are Philanthropy – Chicago Diverse Donor Convening

A highlight of 2012 was the Diverse Donor convening, We Are Philanthropy, held in Chicago on November 15.  Co-hosted by D5 and Rockefeller Philanthropy Advisors, this gathering brought together diverse donors from the Midwest for a day of celebration and learning.  A new version of the film, I Am A Philanthropist, which features several donors from the Midwest region was debuted at the convening and can be found on the D5 blog. D5 is looking for additional “donor stories” to share with the field.  Let us know if you have or know of a story to share.

Our Projects in the Works

Communications Strategy: D5 partner Hattaway Communications recently completed a comprehensive D5 Communications Strategy after extensive research and testing of messages about diversity, equity, and inclusion with D5’s target audiences. Over the next few months, Coalition stakeholders will be given a copy of the accompanying Message Manual and will have several opportunities to receive training on how to communicate about DEI effectively with their peers.  Stay tuned for announcements on when and where trainings will take place. If you would like to convene your peers and colleagues to receive training, or for more information, contact Kelly Brown.

State of the Work 2013: This year’s report is slated for publication in early April to coincide with the Council on Foundations Annual Conference. It will include learning profiles of foundations engaged in different aspects of DEI and commentaries from thought leaders in the field.

Supporting Population-Focused Funds: The project committee is moving forward with plans to conduct an analysis of the PFF sector. Next steps call for a survey of and interviews with a sample of PFFs for their input into the analysis design and focus.

Scan of Programs, Policies and Practices: JustPartners, Inc. is continuing to conduct interviews with 15 foundations across the country about their DEI-related work. Early findings from the scan were the topic of a Learning Lab at the Council on Foundations Family Philanthropy Conference on January 27 in San Jose. Stakeholders will participate in a preliminary strategy session on March 7 to vet the first draft of the scan and discuss a preliminary dissemination and engagement strategy.

Upcoming D5 and Partner Events

Movement News —Recent Events, New Resources

  • On January 25, the Neighborhood Technical Assistance Clinic (NTAC) of Brooklyn, NY, hosted a dialogue on grassroots philanthropy that featured the D5/RPA film, I Am A Philanthropist.
  • The Foundation Center and the Open Society Foundations (OSF) recently released Where Do We Go From Here? Philanthropic Support for Black Men and Boysdocumenting the range of philanthropic activity directed toward promoting black male achievement. The report examines the grantmaking of more than 1,000 foundations. See D5’s blog for an informative post on the research by the Foundation Center’s Seema Shah.
  • Ange-Marie Hancock of UCLA’s new report for the Liberty Hill Foundation, Giving Black in Los Angeles, documents African-American giving in Los Angeles. A related post on the Stanford Social Innovation Review blog by Hancock is here.
  •  In December, Funders for LGBTQ Issues welcomed its new president, Ben Francisco Maulbeck.
  • The San Francisco Foundation’s Multicultural Fellows Program is a two-year, full-time program that aims to increase diversity in the philanthropic and nonprofit sectors. The Foundation will be posting application information in February on its website.
  • The Proteus Fund Diversity Fellowship is planning to launch its sixth cohort of Fellows in July 2013. The program is designed to bring talented people of color to the field of philanthropy. Further details and the application for the 2013-2014 Fellowship will be available on the Proteus Fund website after Friday, February 15, 2013. Questions can also be directed toTammy Dowley-Blackman, Director of the Proteus Fund Diversity Fellowship.

Take 5: Five Actions You Can Take Right Now
  1. Follow D5 on Twitter and Like us on Facebook! Twitter and Facebook can help promote awareness and support by linking extended networks.
  2. Send us dates for upcoming meetings, sessions or conferences that will be promoting or discussing DEI so we can let others know about them.
  3. Send us DEI resources in the form of consultants, trainings, manuals, or research that you believe have successfully facilitated diversity, equity, and inclusion.  We are mapping these efforts and resources to share with the field.
  4. Draft a guest blog showcasing your DEI work or goals. Share stories of your success and challenges to inspire others to act.
  5. Include a link to D5 on your website and show your support for this work! Go here!


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