Los Angeles: Beyond the Glamour, a Showcase of Philanthropic Innovation

Grantmakers from around the country to tour regional improvement projects during Council on Foundations Annual Conference
Thursday, April 26, 2012
Arlington, VA

Next week, more than 1,100 philanthropists, grantmakers, and foundation representatives will experience firsthand the cutting-edge, innovative reforms taking place in the Los Angeles area as a result of strategic grantmaking. The region serves as both the backdrop for the 2012 Council on Foundations Annual Conference and a model city for philanthropy in action. The conference features 12 off-site learning sessions that will highlight local philanthropic projects impacting education, community environmental revitalization, economic development, the arts, immigration, and family services.

WHAT: Council on Foundations Annual Conference
WHEN: April 29-May 1, 2012
WHERE: JW Marriott L.A. LIVE, 900 West Olympic Boulevard, Los Angeles, CA 90015 
HOW: Members of the media should request press credentials from Ashley Mills. Meeting locations will be provided when credentials are granted.                  

The descriptions and times of each off-site session are as follows:

Pacific Standard Time: Art in LA 1945-1980 (Saturday, April 28 10 a.m.-4 p.m.): This session will bring participants to the Getty Center in Brentwood for a presentation on Pacific Standard Time: Art in LA 1945-1980, the unprecedented art collaboration among more than 60 cultural organizations across Southern California. Participants will meet with initiative organizers and hear firsthand about the exhibitions, programs, marketing, PR, development and lessons learned during Pacific Standard Time as a model for other regions.

About the GRAMMY Museum (Sunday, April 29, 9:30-11 a.m.): The interactive tour will give grantmakers the chance to be completely immersed in the experience of creating and recording music.

Early Childhood Education in Los Angeles: From Practice to Policy (Sunday, April 29, 2-4 p.m.): Gwen Walden, lead consultant for the LA Partnership for Early Childhood Investment, will lead a discussion among the city's leading advocates for early childhood education about dealing with state budget cuts and their impact on education and child care. The session will take place at Para Los Niños Family Learning Complex, near Skid Row, where some of Los Angeles' poorest children receive high-quality education, family support, and mental health services to build a life beyond poverty.

Making the Promise of Green Jobs a Reality: L.A. Stories (Sunday, April 29, 2-4 p.m.): Grantmakers will visit an electrician training center to witness the training and jobs being created due to the construction of the new transit rail line. The tour will proceed to a clean tech site where participants will hear from trainees in the Department of Water and Power who are working on a new initiative to weatherize homes. This initiative is made possible by LAANE, the Program for Environmental and Regional Equity at USC (PERE), and its allies that specialize in addressing the issues of the working poor. The final stop on the tour will offer the opportunity to see a weatherized home in downtown LA created through this partnership.

Urban Revitalization Through Historic Preservation: Walking Tour of Downtown L.A. (Monday, April 30, 9:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m.): Grantmakers will experience how the preservation of historic buildings helps refresh and revitalize urban centers. During the tour of the downtown Los Angeles area, participants will hear from the Los Angeles Conservancy, the leading preservation group in the United States, as well as Ken Berenstein, manager of the city's Office of Historic Resources. The tour will include stops to view the exteriors of significant sites in Los Angeles' historic downtown, as well as visits inside several key buildings and theaters in what was once the city's entertainment epicenter.

Effective Corporate Social Responsibility—Creating Capacity Pipeline and Solutions—One Animated Example (Monday, April 30, 10 a.m.–noon.): Attendees  will see firsthand how Inner City Arts, funded by the DreamWorks Animation Charitable Foundation, provides at-risk youth with arts education and helps them develop the skills needed for jobs in the creative sector. A panel of speakers will share insight regarding the origins, implementation, and effectiveness of the partnership.

Economic Development and Environmental Impact: Los Angeles' River Revitalization (Monday, April 30, 10 a.m.-12:30 p.m.): The L.A. River is a place-based legacy investment impacting nearly every social, environmental, and economic issue of importance to the health and sustainability of the city. The tour will make stops to showcase the home of a future restaurant and public space, a $40 million green park project, a multimodal bicycle, equestrian and pedestrian bridge design, as well as a section of land that will be used to widen the river. As grantmakers tour portions of the river—whichPresident Obama identified as one of seven waterways in the country to direct national resources in the Urban Waters Federal Partnership—community, government, and environmental leaders will share real-time victories and challenges to this river transformation.

Immigration and Changing Demographics (Monday, April 30, 10 a.m.-2 p.m.): Grantmakers will have the opportunity to tour South Los Angeles, an area that has changed from a predominantly African-American population to a diverse Latino and African-American community. The tour will stop at local organizations that are helping the community to achieve justice and racial equality, such as Strategic Concepts in Organizing and Policy Education, which builds grassroots power to eliminate the structural barrier to social and economic opportunities for the poor and disenfranchised communities.

Education Organizing in Boyle Heights (Monday, April 30, 1-3:30 p.m.): 
Inner City Struggle organizes youth and parents from East L.A. high schools and middle schools. Participants will take a tour of Esteban Torres High School, the first new high school to be built in the area in more than 85 years. After the tour, attendees will hear from student leaders about the challenges and successes they have faced in the education reform movement.  

Environmental Justice and LA's Ports (Monday, April 30, 1-4:30 p.m.): Grantmakers will join representatives from the Liberty Hill Foundation, USC Environmental Health Sciences Center, East Yard Communities for Environmental Justice, and Los Angeles Alliance for a New Economy on a tour of the frontline communities impacted by the movement of goods from the port of Los Angeles to the rail yards in the Southeast part of the city. The group also will hear from emergency room resident Dr. John Miller about the ports' impact on the harbor communities and the health of the residents who experience disproportionately high rates of asthma, cancer, and exposure to toxic pollutants. Attendees will then travel the truck route used to haul containers from ports to a local rail yard and see various schools and communities, including a unique residential community offering transitional housing for homeless veterans, families, and youth affected by massive amounts of pollution.

Skid Row: The Real Deal (Monday, April 30, 1-4:30 p.m.): This tour will give participants the opportunity to see the changes being made to help the homeless as a result of cross-sector partnerships between philanthropic and government organizations.

Off the GRYD: Ending Gang Violence Through Community Resiliency and Youth Development (Monday, April 30, 9:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m.): Grantmakers will learn how L.A.'s Gang Reduction and Youth Development program has helped reduce gang membership and violence. During a tour of Alma Family Services, and the Los Angeles Intervention Training Academy, moderated by Deputy Mayor Guillermo Cespedes, participants will hear a presentation by former gang members and meet with youth and families impacted by gang violence.