Latest News

September 1, 2015

Jason A. Atkinson, Filmmaker and Former Oregon State Senator | Nearly 300 miles long, flowing from southern Oregon to northern California, the Klamath River has been a source of conflict between conservationists, tribes, farmers, fishermen, and state and federal agencies for generations. My new film, with support from the M.J. Murdock Charitable Trust and other Pacific Northwest funders, examines this complicated history and documents the largest river restoration project in U.S. history. This unique case of collaboration, in a place most Americans can't find on a map, is a prime example for the rest of the country to follow. more »

August 31, 2015

Kristen Holway, Senior Manager, Learning Practice | Philanthropy Northwest and Dr. Lori Pfingst of the Washington State Budget & Policy Center recently hosted a discussion about Washington's budget and the progress the state is making towards creating a prosperous future for all. A new report from the Washington Budget & Policy Center maps six areas: economic security, education, healthy people and a healthy environment, community development and trust, good jobs, and revenue generation. An overarching theme is that people of color are being left behind, and we emerged with four ideas on how funders can accelerate progress. more »

August 27, 2015

Social Justice Fund Northwest's board of directors has announced that Zeke Spier, the foundation's executive director for the past five years, will leave the role at the end of this year. He will be succeeded by Mijo Lee, associate director, in January. "Zeke will continue to advance the Giving Project model nationally by working with other organizations interested in launching projects of their own. He is currently working with three foundations and will explore new opportunities for Giving Projects as well as other ways to support social justice philanthropy around the country," writes Jessan Hutchison-Quillian, board chair. more »

August 25, 2015

Paul Kim, Member and Donor Program Associate | Growing up in Los Angeles, one of most diverse cities in the world, I was constantly reminded of the importance of embracing our differences. Before coming to Seattle and joining Philanthropy Northwest last month, I spent four years in Thailand, where I had the opportunity to experience even greater disparities between indigenous peoples, migrant workers, women and the ruling majority. Along the way, I've learned that being a good educator means being a good student. Effective teaching is about listening, questioning, being responsive and open-minded. It’s about reaching out to others and encouraging interaction and responses. I look forward to applying these lessons to my new role at Philanthropy Northwest and learning more from our network of indigenous, rural and urban community leaders, social entrepreneurs, funders and partners. more »

August 25, 2015

At its August program meeting, Meyer Memorial Trust awarded 17 grants and two program-related investments (PRIs), totaling just over $3.2 million for organizations working across Oregon. more »

August 25, 2015

Gloris Estrella, Program Associate | All I knew about Seattle was based on watching too many episodes of "Grey’s Anatomy." All I knew about philanthropy was based on watching too many commercials about sponsoring orphans in Africa. But two years ago, I got accepted to the University of Washington's Evans School of Public Affairs and decided to move across the country, leaving my family and friends in New York City, to earn my master's degree in public administration. When I started my job search, I felt strongly that my career should involve addressing social inequities experienced by people like myself. My new role at Philanthropy Northwest includes working directly with community foundations in Washington, managing this growing network and developing ways to make communities across the state more equitable, inclusive, resilient and vibrant. I'm learning more as I help organize the upcoming Washington Community Foundations Convening and Local Matters: Washington. more »

August 24, 2015

Jarrad Aguirre, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation | As a MD/MBA student, I am very familiar with Gates Foundation initiatives to eradicate polio and malaria, among other infectious diseases. It is not uncommon in the classroom or the hospital for medical students and physicians to comment on the latest developments of these important efforts. So, naturally, when I got an internship with the foundation, everyone asked me: Where in global health will you be working? To their surprise, I explained I would be working with the Washington State team. What excited me most about the foundation was not polio or malaria — but rather the burgeoning emphasis on social determinants and health in here in the Pacific Northwest. As my internship comes to a close, I am more excited than ever by this opportunity. more »