Trust-Based Philanthropy Session #2: Unrestricted Funding, Doing the Homework, Streamlined Paperwork

Open to: 
Full Members (free) & Non-Member Funders (free)
Tuesday, July 20, 2021
12:00pm to 1:30pm CDT
Online Zoom Meeting
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Register now for "Session #2: Unrestricted Funding, Doing the Homework, Streamlined Paperwork" by following this link to our Trust-Based Philanthropy Project partner page!

Each session will be 90 minutes -- including 60 minutes of presentation and 30-minute breakouts hosted by participating PSO partners. In the breakouts, attendees will have an opportunity to reflect on what they’ve learned and identify a next step to explore or adopt trust-based practices. 

Program Description

Trust-Based Philanthropy is being embraced by a growing number of foundations as a way to alleviate power imbalances between funders and grantees while fostering more productive and informative relationships. In this three-part series for grantmakers, participants will learn six principles of trust-based philanthropy and what they actually look like in practice. Participants will explore how foundations and grantees benefit from a trust-based approach, and will have a chance to consider some practical next steps to build more productive and balanced funder-grantee relationships.  Participants may register for all or part of the series by selecting the sessions that may resonate.

Session 2: In this deep dive session, we will explore the nuts and bolts of the first three trust-based principles: 1) multi-year, unrestricted funding as a strategy to build long-term relationships and support nonprofit self-determination; 2) doing the homework to expand our understanding of the organizations and issues we support; and 3) simplifying and streamlining applications and reports in service of relational approaches that build trust and mutual accountability. Since there is no one-size-fits-all approach to these principles, this session will spotlight three foundations' stories of embracing these principles -- including the steps they have taken to embrace these practices, how they’re bringing the staff and board along, and what they are learning as a result.


Philip Li, President & CEO, Robert Sterling Clark Foundation

Philip Li is the President & CEO of the Robert Sterling Clark Foundation. Prior to joining the foundation in 2016, Phil served as the Chief Operating Officer at The Century Foundation, a public policy think tank, and before that at the Brooklyn Community Foundation, where he helped the organization convert from a private foundation to a public charity. For four years he led the philanthropic practice at Changing Our World, a nonprofit consultancy and prior to that he worked with the Annie E. Casey Foundation on two of its leadership development initiatives. Phil served as the Executive Director of the Coro New York Leadership Center, a nonprofit that trains and develops individuals interested in public affairs for four years.  He started his career at Merrill Lynch and finished it rating junk bonds at Moody’s Investors Service. Phil is co-chair of the Leadership Funders Group and a member of the Steering Committee of the Trust-Based Philanthropy Project. He currently serves on the boards of Grantmakers for Effective Organizations, United Philanthropy Forum along with two family foundations, and is a past chair of Philanthropy New York, the regional association of grantmakers in New York City.  A graduate of the University of Pennsylvania, Phil has a BA in Economics and Biology and an MBA from The Wharton School in Finance and Strategic Planning.  

Holly Bartling, Senior Program Officer, General Service Foundation

Holly is a Senior Program Officer at the General Service Foundation, where she manages the Building Voice and Power program, a movement building portfolio that supports organizations working at the intersection of racial, gender and economic justice. She is also responsible for GSF investments in leadership development. Prior to working at GSF, Holly spent nearly a decade directing training initiatives for social change leaders; first with Central American activists through the Washington Office on Latin America, and later with human rights activists in an intensive sabbatical program at Columbia University. She discovered her passion for channeling and leveraging resources for grassroots organizing while teaching a course in fundraising at Columbia that paired grassroots human rights activists with graduate students that helped raise several million dollars from foundations. She found a true home for this passion when she joined the General Service Foundation.  She holds a Master’s Degree in Human Rights and Economic Development from Columbia University and a Bachelor’s Degree in International Relations from Stanford University. Holly and her family love living in the San Francisco Bay Area and hightail it to the beach any chance they get.

Brandi Yee, Chief Programs Officer, ACT for Alexandria  

As the chief program officer, Brandi Yee oversees ACT’s philanthropic and community investment initiatives, including the Capacity Building Grants Program, IMPACT: Innovation + Philanthropy, LEAD, and Spring2ACTion. She is passionate about strengthening the nonprofit sector and advising donors on strategic and effective philanthropic giving, and engaging them in the work of local nonprofits.Prior to ACT, she worked with Workforce Organizations for Regional Collaboration (WORC) and Goodwill of Greater Washington, opening the Arlington Career Campus of Goodwill that offered bank skills and hospitality skills job training programs, English classes, and GED courses on-site. Prior to working in the nonprofit sector, Brandi worked with undergraduate students as a career consultant at the George Mason University School of Management and as a recruiter with User Technology Associates, Inc., a government contractor. Brandi has an M.S. in Organizational Learning from George Mason University and a B.A. in Rhetoric & Communication and Sociology-Organizational Studies from the University of California, Davis. Brandi is a member of the Diaconate and Women’s Leadership Council of Grace Presbyterian Church-DC and is a founding board member of Girls on the Run – DC.


Thank you to the Trust-Based Philanthropy Project for sponsoring this series, and our peer regional associations Grantmakers of Oregon and Southwest Washington, Grantmakers of Western Pennsylvania, Connecticut Council on Philanthropy, Philanthropy Colorado and the New Mexico Association of Grantmakers for partnering with us to develop this program series.