Monthly Reflection: The Blooms of Spring

Monthly Reflection: The Blooms of Spring

Kiran Ahuja

With spring in the air, the sun is more out and about—and so are we!

We’ve been working tirelessly to create change that matches the welcome change of the seasons. From advancing our commitment to equity to expanding philanthropy’s role in policy and advocacy, we have fully embraced our expanded role as an organization and as a member network. 

Highlights this month include:

  • Kicking off our Equity Speaker Series with Dr. Ibram X. Kendi, National Book Award winning author of Stamped From the Beginning: The Definitive History of Racist Ideas in America. More than 400 people packed Piggott Auditorium at Seattle University to hear Dr. Kendi discuss antiracism and explore a new vision and role for philanthropy—one that challenges deep-rooted discriminatory policies and actively works to dismantle racial inequities in society. Read key takeaways from board member and Raikes Foundation Executive Director Erin Kahn. And stay tuned for the next speaker in our series!
  • Publishing our Commitment to Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI), and elevating the role that Philanthropy Northwest can play in facilitating courageous conversations that help move the field to a place of deeper reflection and action. Our Commitment was developed and inspired by a long-term series of conversations with our board, staff and network members, who are increasingly interested in building equity into their work. It also acknowledges our growing body of programming—from our DEI CEO cohorts and Momentum Fellowship program to trainings and facilitated discussions for our members’ staff and trustees. We appreciate you joining us on the journey!
  • Assembling a delegation from our region to participate in Foundations on the Hill (FOTH)—an event organized each year by United Philanthropy Forum that enables us and our partners across the country to collectively advocate for issues important to the whole sector. It is increasingly important that foundations serve as both influencers and advocates, positioning ourselves as a resource and partner to government officials and policymakers on pertinent issues of the day. That’s why our FOTH delegation made it clear that ensuring a full and fair count in Census 2020 requires adequate resources and expertise by community leaders and organizations. We have also proudly joined the Funders’ Census Initiative Leadership Team to shepherd and support Census-strengthening efforts in our region. See photos from Senior Program Manager, Lyn Hunter.

As spring continues to bloom, I hope you will join us in rolling up our sleeves to dive into the ongoing work of collaboration and changemaking.

Just like the cycle of the season, there’s indeed more to come—including our annual conference in Boise, Idaho. Early bird registration closes soon, so reserve your spot today!