2018 Post-Election Briefing

2018 Post-Election Briefing for Grantmakers: Philanthropy at the Crossroads
November 27, 2018 | 9:00-5:30pm

FHI 360, Academy Hall, 1825 Connecticut Avenue, NW, 8th Floor, Washington, DC

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November 27, 2018

8:30am Breakfast


Welcome and Introductions

  • Anna Wadia, Senior Program Officer, Future of Work, Ford Foundation
9:30am Taking Stock and Looking Ahead
Working in small groups, participants will identify pressing concerns and strategies as we look ahead to 2020.


Philanthropy's Road Forward
Foundations play an important role in informing the public debate, stimulating innovation, and supporting research and evaluatin needed to understand the impact of policies and programs. Given the opportunities and challenges before us, how do we as funders, need to show up in this moment?

10:45am Break
11:00am Unpacking the Mid-Term Elections
A panel of experts will explore what the recent elections tell us about political participation, dialog on the direction of the country, and the future of social and economic policy. Participants will also engage in a discussion on implications for philanthropic investments and agendas.
  • Michael Laracy, Senior Fellow, The Annie E. Casey Foundation and GIST Steering Committee Member (Moderator)
  • Jennifer Epps-Addison, Network President and Co-Executive Director, Center for Popular Democracy
  • Matt Morrison, Executive Director, Working America
  • Henry Olsen, Senior Fellow, Ethics and Public Policy Center
12:30pm  Lunch


Concurrent Breakout Discussions - Round 1
Several concurrent breakout sessions will be offered to dig deeper on post-election opportunities and challenges and implications for philanthropy.

Good Jobs, Supports for Work and the Changing Economy
Join GIST and Funders for a Just Economy for a discussion about the impact of the elections on economic security and workers rights and what will be in play at the state and federal level. Participants will explore what messages resonated with voters and what this tells us about moving public and political will, with an eye toward longer-term strategy. Participants will also have the opportunity to share and seek advice for advancing their work.

  • Manisha Vaze, Senior Program Manager, Funders for a Just Economy, Neighborhood Funders Group (Moderator)
  • Ceilidh Gao, Staff Attorney, National Employment Law Project
  • Alexis Anderson-Reed, Executive Director, State Voices

Womens’ Work: Understanding How the Women’s Wealth Gap Impacts Multiple Generations
We’ve all heard of the gender pay gap, but the women’s asset gap is less well-understood. Join the Asset Funders Network and the Early Childhood Funders Collaborative to explore the women’s wealth gap across the lifespan. We’ll learn about the numerous factors -including women’s caregiving responsibilities- that affect their ability to accumulate important assets like emergency savings, college savings for their children, home ownership, and retirement. Two-thirds of mothers are either sole breadwinners, primary breadwinners (earning as much or more than their partners) or co-breadwinners. The economic security of families rests on the shoulders of women than ever before. This is a particularly big concern for single women and women of color. For example women own only 32 cents for every dollar owned by single men. Just under a quarter of all children live in families headed by a single mother, so the women’s wealth gap impacts multiple generations.
We’ll discuss how funders can support policies that build families’ wealth and well-being.

  • Jhumpa Bhattacharya, Vice President for Programs and Strategy, INSIGHT Center for Community Economic Development
  • Surina Khan, Women’s Foundation of California
2:45pm Break


Concurrent Breakout Discussions - Round 2
Several concurrent breakout sessions will be offered to dig deeper on post-election opportunities and challenges and implications for philanthropy.

Race, Class and Government: New Narratives on the Economy
Narratives shape not only how we think about social and economic challenges but what we think the solutions might be. “Narrative change” has become a key buzzword in philanthropy, but what do we mean by “narrative change”? And do we have an aligned strategy for the long-term work of bringing it about in ways that will address stubborn, and often invisible, barriers to policy progress? To help us answer these questions, the Center for American Progress (CAP) and Lake Research Partners will share key learnings and new insights from their narrative change work. CAP is in the midst of a narrative project on the role of government designed to help move the conversation on a range of economic issues. They will share the preliminary findings of their hot off the presses message research, as well as qualitative findings from a survey of grassroots leaders identifying barriers, opportunities, and the infrastructure needed to build and disseminate a coherent narrative on the role of government. Lake Research Partners is part of a multi-phase project led by Demos, Anat Shenker-Osorio (ASO Communications) and Ian Haney López (author of Dog Whistle Politics), to build an effective new narrative on race, class, and democracy. As part of this project, Lake Research Partners helped design and implement a national survey to field test a range of narratives to explore how to engage simultaneously around race and class. Here, for the first time, is empirical data that supports a unifying race-forward message, while showing the benefits of calling out dog-whistle racism for what it is: a divide-and-conquer strategy that creates distrust and undermines belief in government. Join us to learn about these timely new efforts, opportunities to educate the public on what is coming down the pike, effective civic engagement strategies as we look ahead to 2020, and what funders are doing and learning in this space.

  • Cassandra McKee, Program Officer, Wellspring Philanthropic Fund and GIST Steering Committee Member (Moderator)
  • Melissa Boteach, Senior Vice President, Poverty to Prosperity Program, Center for American Progress
  • Rebecca Vallas, Vice President, Poverty to Prosperity Program, Center for American Progress
  • Jonathan Voss, Vice President, Lake Research Partners

Breaking the Cycle, Building Long-Term Immigrant Political Power

Immigrant and refugee communities are in the policy crosshairs at the municipal, state, and federal level, from racial profiling and voter suppression to ramped-up immigration enforcement and policies aimed at reducing immigration by Muslims and people of color. In the wake of these unrelenting attacks fueled by a racist and divisive agenda, building long-term political power in immigrant and refugee communities has never been more important. Discuss the role and impact of the immigrant vote in the midterm elections. Learn about a year-round effort to engage and mobilize Muslim voters. Be inspired by an effort that brings New Americans into the political process by training them to run for office. And discuss how investing in long-term immigrant political engagement and empowerment promotes the inclusion of immigrants and other marginalized communities—and rebuild our democracy.

  • Shireen Zaman, Program Director, Security & Rights Collaborative at the Proteus Fund (Moderator)
  • Wa'el N. Alzayat, Chief Executive Officer, Emgage
  • Sayu Bohjwani, Founder and President, The New American Leaders Project
  • Tom K. Wong, Associate Professor of Political Science, University of California, San Diego
4:15pm Break


Reflections and Next Steps
Participants will share key take-a-ways and consider next steps. What will I do as a grantmaker to incorporate what I have learned? What can we, as philanthropy serving organizations, do to support you?


Closing Remarks

  • Anna Wadia, Senior Program Officer, Future of Work, Ford Foundation
5:30pm Adjourn