News and Insights

Meet Elyse Gordon: Dreamer, Geographer and Social Changemaker


Elyse Gordon | Joining Philanthropy Northwest as Program Manager for the Learning Network helped me combine my academic interests in Geography with my passion for strengthening the philanthropic sector. I also am a great believer in the power of place and truly admire the way by which Philanthropy Northwest honors the diverse peoples and places of our region while simultaneously encouraging connection and engagement between them. All in service to a better, more equitable tomorrow. I'm excited to help organize our annual conference, and can't wait to collaborate with you on its program and impact! more »

LGBTQ Visibility Matters: Share Your Stories, Strengthen Our Sector


Amy Pearson-Wales | LGBTQ visibility is deeply meaningful, but it can be difficult to achieve, even in the philanthropic sector. That’s why Emerging Practitioners in Philanthropy (EPIP), a partner organization of Philanthropy Northwest, recently launched Share Your Stories: LGBTQ Practitioners in “Mainstream” Institutions, a research project focused on better understanding the lived experiences of LGBTQ people working in non-LGBTQ philanthropies and philanthropic organizations. Help strengthen our sector by sharing your stories (anonymously).  more »

Starting a Foundation? Our Checklist Can Help


Ted Lord | When starting a foundation, resilience is often as important as ideas and talent. But even the most resilient among us will benefit from tools that help us see the forest through the trees without overlooking the basics. Such tools need not be complex. According to renowned author and surgeon, Atul Gawande, the humblest of tools—for example, making a process list to follow when completing a given task—can help us avoid error and get things right. That’s why The Giving Practice at Philanthropy Northwest developed the Foundation Start-Up Checklist. more »

Dear Members: Our Next Chapter Begins With You


Kiran Ahuja | Philanthropy Northwest's members are central to our work to promote a more resilient, equitable and inclusive future that honors our past, our people and our cultures regionally. As an organization, we believe that we are at our best when we embrace the future as an opportunity to do more in collaboration with you—our members. We've exciting programs and new initiatives on the horizon, but to have the most impact, we must first appreciate and recognize our strengths as a six-state network. That’s why the next chapter truly begins with you! more »

New Investing Resources, With Insights from Our Members and Experts


Rosalie Sheehy Cates | If you are an endowment manager, or an impact investor, we’ve two new resources for you! Now available for download: The Council on Foundations and Commonfund Institute's 2016 Study of Investment of Endowments for Private and Community Foundations as well as Philanthropy Northwest's Foundation Guide to Investing in Community Development Financial Institutions.

  more »

Project Neighborly thumbnail image

With New Grants, Whatcom Community Foundation #GivesThanks for Connection and Neighborliness


Alena Feeney, Momentum Fellow, Whatcom Community Foundation | Neighborliness fuels our mission as a community foundation. It also inspired us to lean into strengthening connections in our community through a small grants program called Project Neighborly, which seeks to catalyze inclusion, encourage collaboration, and inspire convesation with neighbors that might not ordinarily have the chance to connect. more »

ACTION ALERT: Tax Reform Proposals Threaten Charitable Sector - Contact Your Lawmakers Today


Meredith Higashi | Tax reform is at the top of the agenda on Capitol Hill, and philanthropy has a critical stake in key proposals moving through both the House and the Senate. Philanthropy Northwest is deeply concerned about the proposed reforms, and the dramatic impact they could have on the charitable sector. We urge you to contact your lawmakers today to help protect what matters. more »

Thank You for Making Our Annual Conference a Success!


Amy Pearson-Wales | Thank you to the more than 300 people who convened October 3-5 at our annual conference to share learnings and exchange ideas on this year’s theme of Leading Through Change!

Throughout the conference, attendees from more than 70 philanthropic organizations explored approaches as individuals and as community partners working to strengthen philanthropy’s impact in our six-state region. Discussions proved dynamic, informative and educational. Some were even difficult. But, guided by our commitment to creating space for all types of conversations—as represented by our attendee-curated Philanthropy Interrupted Talks—we leaned into the hard work of coming together to recognize and reflect on the challenges facing our communities and our sector in these increasingly divisive times. more »