Women's Collective Giving Grantmakers Network


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Darla Moore Speaks: Reflections From A Business & Philanthropic Trailblazer

On Thursday evening, Oct. 15, legendary business and philanthropic dynamo Darla Moore kicks off the Women’s Collective Giving Grantmakers Network (WCGN) 2015 National Leadership Forum.

Darla Moore, until 2012, was Vice President of Rainwater, Inc., a private investment company, is Founder and Chair of the Palmetto Institute, a nonprofit think tank aimed at bolstering per capita income in South Carolina, and Founder and Chair of The Charleston Parks Conservancy, a foundation focused on enhancing the parks and public spaces of the City of Charleston. 

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Plenary Speakers

Fire Starters: A Candid Conversation with Three Women Founders of International Nonprofits

Three inspirational founders -- Molly Barker, founder of Girls on the Run International and Red Boots Coalition; Nancy Brinker, founder of Susan G. Komen; and Colleen Willoughby, founder of Washington Women's Foundation, WCGN, and Global Women's Philanthropy -- share stories about their work and answer questions from expert interviewer and WCGN Board Member Dianne Chipps Bailey. She’ll also welcome questions from the audience.

What does it take to ignite and fuel a social movement? Over lunch on Friday, October 16, three leading nonprofit founders share the stage to recount how they created and sustained their powerhouse organizations.

Who’s Afraid Of Philanthropy?

How to talk the about transformational work we do by embracing our roles as practitioners of philanthropy. A chat with Kerry Sullivan, President, Bank of America Charitable Foundation, about the meaning of philanthropy and why the word is so important to our cause as smart, strategic investors in our communities.

We’ve Come A Long Way, Ladies: WCGN Highlights 2015 

WCGN Chair Virginia Mills fills us in on the latest WCGN happenings, including our strong growth rate, confirming what we already know: Collective giving is one of the hottest movements in philanthropy! Plus, we’ll announce our Transformational Spotlight Award winners and honor collective giving founders from throughout the country. And you won’t want to miss a mind-blowing performance by a young, local writer. 


Board Governance: Leading or Managing?

Collective giving boards are unique. Savvy tips from Washington Women’s Foundation (Seattle, WA) President Beth McCaw about building a strong board, cultivating volunteer leadership, and developing effective strategies for board evaluation. 

Beth McCaw, President, Washington Women’s Foundation (Seattle, WA)

The Power of One to the Power of Many: The Women’s Giving Alliance’s Advocacy Journey

Top leaders from Jacksonville’s Women’s Giving Alliance tell their inspirational story. 

Dale Clifford, Second Vice President, Women’s Giving Alliance (WGA, Jacksonville, FL)

Sandy Cook, Women’s Giving Alliance (WGA, Jacksonville, FL)

Moving Toward Advocacy – From Issue-focused Grants to Public Policy: Two Views

There are many creative ways to leverage your group’s influence through advocacy. Two seasoned practitioners explain how they launched strong advocacy programs in their own communities.  

Moderator: Felice Joyce, board member, Spirit of St. Louis Women’s Fund (St. Louis, MO)

Leigh Hartmann, Chair, Member Stewardship Committee, San Diego Women’s Foundation, (San Diego, CA)

Jennie Eblen, Member Steering Committee, Women for Women (Asheville, NC) 

What’s the Skinny on Endowments?

Whether you’ve already created an endowment or are considering it, don’t miss this informative panel of experts. Each one of them has been instrumental in creating an endowment for her local collective giving group. Panelist will cover the waterfront of endowment issues from start to finish, including building member support and managing endowment assets.

Moderator: Kathy Frost, Past President, Spirit of St. Louis Women’s Fund (St. Louis, MO)

Suzanne Lierz,  President, Women’s Charitable Foundation (Boise, ID)

Robyn Parker, Vice Chair, Women’s Fund El Dorado (Placerville, CA)

Jenny Berg, Member and past board President, Impact 100 (Cincinnati, OH)

Transformational Strategic Planning: Shaping The Second 10 Years 

After a successful first 10 years The Women's Impact Fund (Charlotte, NC)) sought to build on the momentum. They adopted a comprehensive strategic plan outlining specific steps to expand WIF’s sphere of influence throughout the surrounding community. Three WIF leaders explain the hows and whys of their exciting new strategic plan.  

Carolyn Meade, Immediate Past President, Women/s Impact Fund (Charlotte, NC)

Octavia Seawell, co-chair, Strategic Planning Task Force, Women’s Impact Fund (Charlotte, NC

Anne Essaye, Incoming Chair, Women’s Impact Fund (Charlotte, NC) 

Family Dynamics and Philanthropy: Tips for Talking to Your Family About Giving

Practical advice for bringing the next generation into the philanthropic fold. The focus will be on harmonious family decision-making, strategies for setting objectives, and managing the inevitable challenges that arise when families work together. 

Jennifer Winstel, Women’s Impact Fund (Charlotte, NC)

Joanne Cohen, Vice President of Philanthropic Services,

The Community Foundation of Northeast Florida, Women’s Giving Alliance (Jacksonville, FL) 

Suzanne Bledsoe, Merrill Lynch/US Trust

Bringing the Conference Home: Best Ways to Capitalize on What You’ve Learned, the People You’ve Met, and the Tools You’ve Discovered at WCGN’s Fifth National Conference

You’re all fired up after spending three days with your peers in collective giving! Two experienced WCGN board members share ideas for keeping the conversation going long after you’ve left the Queen City. They’ll provide tips for tapping into WCGN’s online resources, help you get the most out of your WCGN membership, and include pointers for taking conference learning and inspiration back to your hometown membership.

Laura Midgley, Board Member, Washington Women’s Foundation (Seattle, WA)

Rebekah Bonde, Board Chair, Impact Austin (Austin, TX)

What’s In Your Technology Toolbox? Tech Solutions That Make Sense

Jump into the conversation! We want to know what tech tools you use and how they  help. Using technology just for technology’s sake isn’t practical in the nonprofit world where money and human resources are limited. Join us and share your own best practices, discover what works for other groups, and discuss solutions that are practical, scalable, and cost-effective. 

Maureen Romito, President, Impact Pas Vegas, (Las Vega, NV)

Celia Canfield,  Co-President, Impact100 Sonoma (Sonoma, CA)

Diana Katz, Co-Founder and Member, Giving Circle of HOPE (Reston, VA)

Innovative Grantmaking from Concept to Pilot Program

After 12 years of successful grantmaking, Impact Austin leaders found that growing nonprofit organizations need more than large-scale grants for programming: Nonprofits need infrastructure support for long-lasting success. Impact Austin is helping meet that need with its newest annual grant focused on strengthening nonprofits’ infrastructure. Impact Austin founder Rebecca Powers and executive director Donna Benson-Chan explain this new approach, including the positive feedback they’ve received. 

Moderated by Rebekah Bonde, President, Impact Austin (Austin, TX)

Panelists: Rebecca Powers, Founder, Impact Austin (Austin, TX) and 

Donna Benson-Chan, Executive Director, Impact Austin (Austin, TX)

Grant Assessment & Impact: The Checks Have Been Cashed, Now What?

Once a grant is  awarded, pairing an assessment committee member with the grant-winning organization is an effective way to track your investment from implementation to conclusion. Our presenter will show how to manage accountability, how to troubleshoot when problems arise, and she'll explain simple ways to keep your general membership in the loop about grant outcomes and their impact on the community.

Moderator: Felice Joyce, Spirit of St. Louis Women’s Fund, (St. Louis, MO)

Presenter: Emelia Stephenson, Grants Assessment Chair, Greenville Women Giving, (Greenville, SC) 

Leveling the Playing Field – Ensuring Equity in Grantmaking

This roundtable will focus on the why behind the how. Our presenters will lead a discussion about their organizations’ commitment to fairness as it shaped their decision-making as grantmakers and why equity in grantmaking enhances member experience and community trust. Participants will be asked to share their organization’s core values. One goal of this session will be to gather this information to promote fairness in our collective giving organizations and finally report back to WCGN.

Linette Liebling, Grants Chair, The Philanthropy Connection (Boston, MA) 

Peggy Shapiro, Co-chair,  Baltimore Women’s Giving Circle (Baltimore, MD) 

Bronwyn Belling, Past President/Assistant Webmaster, Anne Arundel Women Giving Together (Annapolis, MD)

Social Media: Techniques You Can Use Now!

Charlotte social media expert Richard Sexton demonstrates five easy tools to use when your tech budget is zero.

Richard Sexton Founder & Principal, OmniMarketing2020

It’s All About Connecting! Creative Initiatives to Involve and Engage New AND Experienced Members

Join Penny Wald, Baltimore Women’s Giving Circle (Baltimore, MD) (450 members) and Joanne Wetherell, Wood River Women’s Foundation (Ketchum, ID) (280 members) as they explain how they’ve successfully increased member engagement, retention, and participation in a variety of innovative, creative ways.

Sandy Cook, Past President, Women’s Giving Alliance, (Jacksonville, FL)

Joanne Wetherell, President, Wood River Women’s Foundation (Ketchum, ID) 

Penny Wald, Baltimore Women’s Giving Circle (Baltimore, MD)

Bigger IS Better! Growing Your Membership Now and into the Future

Membership pros from two top WCGN collective giving groups explain how to build a robust membership growth plan.  

Donna Broderick, Treasurer and President-elect, Impact 100 (Cincinnati, OH)

Jenny Berg, Past –president, Impact 100 (Cincinnati, OH)

Janet Roberson Sumner, Co-Chair, Greenville Women Giving (Greenville, SC)

Fellows Programs:  A Strategy for Membership Outreach

Women's Giving Alliance's (Jacksonville, FL) Stephanie Cost, Program Coordinator of the Delores Barr Weaver Fellows Program, joins Sue Dubow, co-president, Impact100 Philadelphia (Philadelphia, PA) to explain how the program works. Plus we'll hear from fellows from Jacksonville, Philly, and Boston, where this innovative program got its start.

Sandy Cook, Past President, Women’s Giving Alliance, (Jacksonville, FL) 

Stephanie Cost, Women’s Giving Alliance (Jacksonville, FL)

Sue Dubow, Co-president, Impact100 Philadelphia (Philadelphia, PA)

Getting a Seat at the Table: Creating Strategic Partnerships to Strengthen Grantmaking and Increase Visibility

Partnering with others helps spread the word about your organization’s work while elevating its position within the larger community. Ideas from two of WCGN’s most established collective giving grantmakers about innovative ways to form partnerships that raise both your community profile and your effectiveness as influential philanthropic leaders with clout.

Laura Midgley, Board Member, Washington Women’s Foundation (Seattle, WA),  Immediate Past Board Chair, WCGN

Sue Priester, Co-chair, Greenville Women Giving (Greenville, SC), Board member, WCGN

Cultivating the Next Generation: Programs to Engage Young Philanthropists

How is your organization engaging the next generation of young philanthropists? Come to this roundtable conversation prepared to share your successes and/or listen to how others approach bringing the young people to the philanthropy table.

Kathy Frost, Nominating Chair, Spirit of St. Louis Women’s Fund, (St. Louis, MO)

Donna Benson-Chan, Executive Director, Impact Austin (Austin, TX)

Communications Planning To Increase Your Effectiveness

Communicating effectively is the key to our organizations’ ability to increase membership, engage members, and increase brand awareness, but many of us struggle to do this successfully. San Diego Women’s Foundation (San Diego, CA) and The Philanthropy Connection (Boston, MA) share their organization’s communications plans, what they’ve learned, and how their work improves the their organizations’ effectiveness. Join us for a panel discussion and share your own experience improving communications in your organization. 

Maureen Romito, President Impact Las Vegas (Las Vegas NV)

Marla Felcher, President/Co-Founder, The Philanthropy Connection, (Boston, MA)  

Tracy Johnson, Executive Director, San Diego Women’s Foundation (San Diego, CA)

Working Simply to Live Fully

Overwhelmed? Stressed out? Frazzled? In this session, you’ll learn how to overcome the guilt and its cousin named “should” that hijack your time and your life. Master simple, powerful strategies to take control of your to-do list and calendar so you can work simply and live fully. 

Carson Tate, Author and Productivity Consultant



First 2,000 Days of Life

North Carolina has long been an acknowledged leader in early learning. Sarah Shifflet, an independent consultant specializing in nonprofit issues joins Joanne Stratton Tate, Head of School at Charlotte Bilingual Preschool, a nonprofit serving Spanish speaking families, to explore the topic of early learning, a fast moving field of education now in the national spotlight.

Claire Tate,  Co-Founder, Women’s Impact Fund and Board Chair, Charlotte Bilingual Preschool

Sarah Shifflet, Children's Advocate and Board Member - Smart Start of Mecklenburg County, Charlotte Bilingual Preschool

Joanne Stratton Tate – Head of School, Charlotte Bilingual Preschool

Human Trafficking: An Ugly Issue in a Beautiful City

Straight talk about an issue that is bedeviling community leaders all over the U.S. and abroad from Kimlanie Ford, Assistant US Attorney for NC and Lily Pad Haven founder Carla Tweddale, a nonprofit that provides safe housing for survivors of human trafficking.

Sarah Byrne, Conflicts Counsel at Moore & Van Allen, PLLC

Kimlanie Ford, Assistant US Attorney for NC

Carla Tweddale, founder of Lily Pad Haven



Writing Your Philanthropic Biography

A Charlotte consultant shows you how to pen your own philanthropic bio, and in the process, uncover clues to help you along the path toward your true philanthropic potential.

Karla Williams, Consultant

Hilliard Studio Method Band Sculpt Class, Barre, and Pilates Exercise Class

The Hilliard Studio Method is a powerful, transformative 60-minute workout that pushes clients to their respective edge by incorporating weights, intense isometric positions, floor and barre work safely and efficiently. Open to all levels.

Liz Hilliard, owner and creator of Hilliard Studio Method (HSM)

Southern Cooking Demonstration – Bring a Taste of the South to Your Next Event

Nonprofit leaders know that great food is always a draw. Full-service caterer Porcupine Provisions has prepared food and drink for numerous  high-end fund-raising events. Co-owner Leslie Schlernitzauer’s cooking demonstration will make your mouth water and she’ll leave you stocked with recipes and ideas for your next event. (Limited space)

Leslie Schlernitzauer, Porcupine Provisions

Philanthropy at Work: Uptown Museum Bus Tour

Join this exclusive tour to get a first-hand look at what local philanthropy has built. Spearheaded by The Foundation for the Carolinas, philanthropic investment in arts and culture has helped revitalize Charlotte’s downtown, inspiring standing ovations from citizens and community alike. Experience a collection of the some of the best museums in the Carolinas. The excursion includes visits to the: 

  • Bechtler Museum of Modern Art
  • The Foundation For The Carolinas
  • The Harvey B. Gantt Center for African-American Arts+Culture
  • Levine Museum of the New South
  • Mint Museum Uptown

Bus Seating is limited.

A warm thank you to our member presenters!

Plus Affinity Groups to help you connect to leaders who share your interests!

Contact us • info@wcgn-network.org
Women's Collective Giving Grantmakers Network • WCGN • EIN # 46-3953482
We support the creation, development, and expansion of women's collective giving nationwide.
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