Council Events

Past Events

We are pleased to invite New York City-based funders to join the Council on Foundations, the SDG Philanthropy Platform and Philanthropy New York at the 92nd St. Y on March 18th to discuss how work already underway in New York City supports the universal Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

This Quarterly Member Update focuses on two major bodies of work. During the first portion of the update, conversation will focus on the Council’s public policy Guideposts, which are the framework for our policy work. These Guideposts have informed the development of the 2016 Philanthropy Platform, and are previewed during the discussion. The second half of the discussion is a preview of programming for the 2016 Annual Conference. This year’s focus on The Future of Community will provide the field with a forward-looking view of the issues that will shape our work for years to come.

Attending Foundations on the Hill in April? Curious about how the fast-paced, animated, and often complex political environment can trickle down to influence your work? Wondering about whether tax reform will ever happen and, when it does, how these changes will impact philanthropy? During this webinar, you will hear how current debates here in our nation’s capital affect the work you do in your community. Experts discuss how what's happening on Capitol Hill could impact foundations, along with what is and is not on the radar screen of policymakers in Washington.

Hosted in partnership with GuideStar, this webinar will discuss the various ways data standards are already improving the grantmaking process for both funders and grantees. Conversation will also address how foundations can participate in these initiatives and promote a better information system for the sector.

Last time, Winter Storm Jonas launched a furious blitz and knocked us off our game. But after a brief huddle, we're back to the line of scrimmage for the first Legal Lunch Series of 2016. Attorneys Suzanne Friday and Bryan Del Rosario will team up to tackle several legal issues that your organization is or may experience. Take a timeout and join us Thursday, February 11 at 1 PM EST.

Before you engage with policymakers, it is important to have a solid understanding of the legal rules that apply. This webinar covers the fundamentals of how, when, and to what extent different types of foundations can engage with policymakers, their staff, or candidates running for public office. Through dynamic hypotheticals, speakers discuss what advocacy activity you as a foundation can do, what your staff can do, and what your grantees may do with your support.

In partnership with Guidestar, this webinar features Council on Foundations attorneys Suzanne Friday and Bryan Del Rosario as they review some fundamental issues associated with board governance. Topics include: 1) board structure (size and composition); 2) the role of committees and the board’s ability to delegate; and 3) the necessary policies and procedures every board should adopt. The value of diversity in foundation boards are also be discussed.

Investors are facing one of the worst starts to a calendar year on record. Volatility in China, rising interest rates in the US, and falling oil prices have all contributed to the markets’ unease. The ongoing correction has seen stock prices tumble more than 10% from their most recent peak, and many are wondering if 2016 will have more drops in store. At the same time, many experts believe that the US economy remains fundamentally strong and that recent turbulence could pass.

The Council policy and legal staff answered FAQs and other questions about the IRA Charitable Rollover.

As we approach the end of the year, join Council Leadership as we take a look back at some highlights from 2015 and take a look forward at what’s on the horizon for 2016. Discussion will cover the multiple ways in which the Council has fostered community among philanthropic leadership and how our members have played an integral role in building community within their own neighborhoods.

The Council on Foundations, Northern California Grantmakers, and SDG Philanthropy Platform are excited to host a meeting in San Francisco on December 15, 2015 to discuss how ongoing work by funders in California supports the newly announced universal Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

This webinar will provide an overview of the new National Resource Network (NRN) and explore how place-based foundations can bring these resources to Mayors and local governments. The NRN is a new partner consortium, funded by a $10 million grant from the Department of Housing and Urban Development, that helps cities comprehensively tackle their toughest economic challenges. Hear how you can bring experts from NRN to assist local leaders to identify practical solutions, adopt best practices, and build the strategic partnerships needed to marshal public and private sector resources for economic growth and prosperity for all. The NRN works closely with HUD and the White House Council on Strong Cities, Strong Communities.

The Council on Foundations and the SDG Philanthropy Platform are excited to host a meeting in Little Rock on December 10, 2015 to discuss how the work already underway across Arkansas supports the newly announced universal Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

This gathering is ideal for newly appointed member CEOs (less than 3 years in position) and member CEOs considering retiring and charged with succession planning. In an intimate setting, the CEO retreat provides participants an opportunity to learn from one another, share specific challenges, develop connections to colleagues, and discuss how to successfully steward an organization through what are, by definition, difficult transitions. The retreat will be intimate -- with informal networking time, carefully facilitated peer-to-peer engagement, relevant experts and honest conversation.

Join the Council for a quick 30-minute update on end-of-year congressional activity that will impact your work. Hear the latest on the state of play from our seasoned Capitol Hill consultants, and learn how you can take action on the charitable “tax extenders,” including the IRA Charitable Rollover, through our 5 Minutes for Philanthropy advocacy campaign.

Council legal pilgrims Suzanne Friday and Bryan Del Rosario cordially invite you to an autumn harvest celebration: Part 2 of the 4 planned "Legal Lunch" webinars on Thursday, November 19 at 2 PM EST.

Immigration reform is a hot topic on the national scene as the 2016 presidential election looms. While no consensus legislation has emerged on Capitol Hill to date, our guests will discuss how funders can play a role in educating policymakers on the impacts of pro and con policies. Get an update on federal Executive Branch actions to implement the President's 2014 Executive Order that focused on cracking down on illegal immigration at the border; deporting felons, not families; and accountability through criminal background checks. Explore what funders can do to promote sensible policies that insure fair treatment of immigrants and their families.

Foundations have long taken a role as "neutral conveners" around controversial issues. Many foundation leaders, however, are taking strong stands on critical issues in their communities (e.g. education, health, police brutality, and more). Is this a new trend? What are the benefits and pitfalls? During this webinar, several foundation CEOs who chose to speak up on controversial issues share their experiences around what these efforts have meant for them and their organizations.

Working with some of the top finance professionals in philanthropy, the Council is organizing a special summit for c-suite executives who oversee finance and investments and have an interest in leveraging their investments in new and exciting ways. The TIAA-CREF Institute is sponsoring the one and a half day event to be held in the heart of Manhattan’s Financial District. During the meeting, participants will have access to sessions to help them develop proactive, intentional and effective finance and endowment management strategies.

In partnership with Guidestar, this one-hour webinar covers the common areas of risk for charitable organizations and how risk can result in organizational and (potential) personal liability for officers, directors and employees. Included is a discussion and review of how liability is often based in state law, and how directors and officers insurance can help protect the organization. The discussion is led by Council on Foundations attorneys Suzanne Friday and Justin Aiken.

The Foundation HR Alliance is a newly-established forum for private foundations to connect and have ongoing dialogue around human resources issues of great importance: compensation, benefits, performance management, talent management and leadership.

The Healthy, Hunger-Free Act of 2010 authorizes funding for federal nutrition programs including: the national school lunch and breakfast program; the nutrition program for women, infants, and children; and other child and adult food care programs. This legislation expired on September 30 and the programs are currently under scrutiny by Congress. In this Policy Preview, the Food Research and Action Center will give an overview of Congressional deliberations and a prognosis for passage. Hear perspectives from peer grantmakers and experts about the importance of federal investment in child nutrition and how it will impact foundations' work on these issues.

Join us for a webinar on October 21st about the SDG Philanthropy Platform, aimed at helping philanthropy better engage in global development and the SDGs. Hear from partners and funders working on the new online platform SDGfunders.org, which will track philanthropic spending towards the MDGs and SDGs, as well as provide resources for funders working on issues related to the SDGs.

Foundations use a variety of models in managing their investments. But given the pursuit of higher risk-adjusted returns, many foundations are exploring different ways to access the expertise they need and to manage increasingly complex investment portfolios. During this webinar, we explore the results from the Council on Foundations-Commonfund Study of Investments, which provides data on how private and community foundations are using professional staff, consultants, managers, to oversee their investments. We also take a closer look at the increased use of outsourced chief investment officers (OCIOs) by a number of institutions, and the considerations that boards and investment committees must make before pursuing this path.

Operating endowments can provide stability and long term sustainability for community foundations. They can also provide resources that enable community foundation leaders to play a stronger leadership role in the community and direct resources to the most pressing issues facing the community. Developing and executing an endowment building campaign brings its own complexities and challenges and can often require a different engagement strategy with potential donors. Join this conversation with respected development and community foundations leaders with firsthand experience building operating endowments as they provide an overview of operating endowment campaigns and an analysis of a successful campaign.