Nonprofit Capitalization: Taking the Plunge Together

On March 26, the Philanthropy Forum at GSPIA welcomed five key thinkers in nonprofit capitalization strategies to it’s the Future of Philanthropy in Uncertain Times lecture series. The event brought together funders, nonprofit leaders, and evaluation experts to discuss the role of impact investing in an organization’s growth and impact.

Chuck Harris set the stage by describing his leadership in overseeing pay-for-success grantmaking strategies at the Edna McConnell Clark Foundation. Tamar Bauer, chief policy and government affairs officer at the Nurse-Family Partnership, with Michele Ridge, former first lady of Pennsylvania and board member of NFP, discussed the organization’s use of impact investment to impact hard-to-reach populations, such as tribal communities. Dan Cardinali, President of the national dropout-prevention leader Communities in Schools, discussed impact through growth and innovation, and how the pay-for-success model has led to better outcomes. John Martinez of MDRC discussed the role of evidence-based program design and evaluation strategies in leading funders and nonprofit leaders alike to the best solutions to the nation’s most intractable problems, and how impact investment strategies can complement that process.

To close the session, Gregg Behr of the Grable Foundation and Leon Haynes of Hosanna House provided local responses to panelists’ comments. A lively question-and-answer session with the audience of 75 attendees followed.  The event marked the second of a two-part series jointly presented by the Philanthropy Forum at GSPIA and Grantmakers of Western PA about impact investing strategies. To view a video of the event, click here. To see the slide deck from the event, click here.

Unpacking Impact Investing: What It Is and How It Can Fuel Social Innovation

On January 28, 2015, The Philanthropy Forum at GSPIA partnered with Grantmakers of Western PA, The Forbes Funds and the Greater Pittsburgh Nonprofit Partnership to host a panel discussion about impact investing. Kim Dempsey, Deputy Director of the Social Investment Practice at the Kresge Foundation delivered a live lecture at the University Club. Christine Looney, Senior Program Investment Officer of the Ford Foundation, joined via teleconference. Their slides are available here. A YouTube video of the presentation is available here.

The event was attended by 150 individuals from the University, nonprofit, foundation and general interest community. Two local respondents, Matt Zieger of The Forbes Funds and Paul Burke of Inquiri offered responses to the presenters and grounded the topic in a Pittsburgh context. The Philanthropy Forum and Grantmakers of Western PA will offer a second panel discussion about impact investing on March 26, 2015.