Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

The Council on Foundations is pleased to announce the application period for its flagship leadership development program, Career Pathways, is open now through October 31, 2016. Through Career Pathways, the Council seeks to increase the number of candidates from diverse backgrounds in the leadership pipeline and develop a generation of diverse leaders who are committed to the principles of diversity, equity, and inclusion within their own organizations and the broader philanthropic sector.

In the United States, LGBTQ History Month is celebrated during the month of October. It is an annual observance of LGBTQ history, and the history of the gay rights and related civil rights movements. LGBTQ History Month was first celebrated in 1994. Among the early supporters and members of the first coordinating committee for LGBT History Month was Council on Foundations Board Member and Arcus Foundation Executive Director, Kevin Jennings.

National Hispanic Heritage Month is observed each year from September 15 to October 15. During this time, we celebrate the histories, cultures and contributions of American citizens whose ancestors came from Spain, the Caribbean and the Americas. The observation started in 1968 as Hispanic Heritage Week under President Lyndon Johnson. In 1988, under President Ronald Reagan, it was expanded to cover a 30-day period starting on September 15.

I started this blog post earlier in the month to recognize June as Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Queer (LGBTQ) Pride Month, but the tragedy in Orlando rightly caused the Council and my blog post to change course. As June comes to a close, it seems fitting to celebrate the LGBTQ community and the steps which our society has taken on its journey toward full equality.

The Council on Foundations is pleased to announce that Floyd Mills has been named its Vice President of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion, a new position intended to advance the Council’s work to promote inclusiveness as a fundamental operating principal in philanthropic organizations. The Council affirms diversity in its many forms, encompassing, but not limited to ethnicity, race, gender, gender identity, sexual orientation, age, economic circumstance, class, disability, geography, and philosophy.

A year and a half before the historic US Supreme Court ruling ended discrimination in civil marriage rights for same-sex couples, foundations and nonprofit leaders of the LGBTQ movement came together to address a concern: While many activists anticipated the legal victory, many also worried that the larger movement for LGBTQ equality would lose momentum in the wake of a win—potentially leaving important issues unaddressed.

In this week's Washington Snapshot: Annual Conference & Philanthropy Week Highlights; IRA Charitable Rollover Bill Introduced in House; Ways & Means Tax Policy Committee Holds Second Tax Reform Hearing; Clarifying Permissible Distributions for IRA Charitable Rollover; Constitutional Liberties at Risk in States; D5 Coalition Co-Chairs Share Update on Diversity in the Sector; White House Hosts Council Members for Roundtable on Outcomes and Evidence; and more!

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.

It’s an ever-clear sky today. Just as it was in 2001. And yet ever-clear and jet trails slicing September blue-skies then are now reminders, important ones, of the events of 9/11 and the losses and learnings we have experienced since.