State of Nonprofits and Philanthropy Summit

Event Attendees

Hosted by the Caster Family Center for Nonprofit and Philanthropic Research, this informative day of research and practical learning opportunities will help guide San Diego's nonprofit and philanthropic leaders in creating, implementing and evaluating innovative and collaborative strategies for the future.


2017 State of Nonprofit and Philanthropy Summit

October 20th, 2017


Thank you to the 225+ people who attended the 2016 Summit on June 28. We had a great day filled with outstanding presentations and invigorating conversations about key topics important to our nonprofit sector.

In the morning, we discussed the key findings from our annual State of the Nonprofits and Philanthropy Report, describing the capacity, contributions and overall economic health and well-being of San Diego’s nonprofit and philanthropic sector. The report is a compilation of our quarterly State of Nonprofits Index and other nonprofit research, including a survey based on the perspectives of local nonprofit leaders.

Following the report presentation and discussion, we convened a series of professional development and dialogue workshops designed to encourage collaboration and action.

Town Hall Meetings:

Real Talk about Real Costs and Nonprofit Overhead

The notion -- still held by many government funders and others in philanthropy -- that overhead is "bad" and unnecessary is one that hurts nonprofits and the work that nonprofits do. Philanthropy cannot respond to the profound shifts affecting the social sector by continuing business as usual. Similarly, nonprofits cannot achieve their full impacts without funding for operating costs such as staffing, insurance, accounting, training, and technology.

Two parallel efforts in California are addressing these issues. In philanthropy, San Diego Grantmakers partners with other grantmaking associations on The Real Cost Project, a statewide initiative to increase the number of funders that provide real-cost funding. The Real Cost Project encourages a focus on outcomes and how funders want their grant dollars spent to achieve those outcomes. On the nonprofit side, the California Association of Nonprofits (CalNonprofits) is leading The Nonprofit Overhead Project, educating nonprofits about overhead (with an emphasis on the new Office of Management and Budget (OMB) rules for government reimbursement), and advocating on the importance of operating costs to government and other grantmakers. 

Session Summary

Nonprofit and Funder Conversations: Finding Better Ways to Work Together

  • Sue Pyke, Associate Director, Rancho Santa Fe Foundation
  • Greg Anglea, Executive Director, Interfaith Community Services

How do we build trust and strengthen relationships between nonprofits and funders? This question has been at the center of several productive roundtable discussions that have been facilitated at the North County Philanthropy Council this year. In this interactive session, panelists will share what they have learned from the collective wisdom of these conversations (which apply beyond North County to all of the greater San Diego region). They will also speak from experience about the relationship their organizations have developed by working together to provide the North County Senior Connections program.

Session Summary

Exceptional Governance

Join Janine Mason and Don Stump from USD’s Kaleidoscope of Governance Award committee as they facilitate a far-reaching conversation with past Kaleidoscope Award winners and you about what it takes to be an exceptional board, what they have learned along their journeys, and how they practice exceptional governance today. 

Session Summary

Government and Nonprofit Sector Partnerships

  • David Graham, Deputy Chief Operating Officer, City of San Diego
  • Salvatore Giametta, Chief of Staff, San Diego County Supervisor, District 4, Ron Roberts office
  • Sue Reynolds, President and CEO, Community Housing Works
  • Abdi Mohamoud, Executive Director, Horn of Africa Community

Partnerships between local government and the nonprofit sector are essential to effectively deliver vital public services in our San Diego communities. Join the panelists for an insider’s view of how the City of San Diego and County of San Diego approach their relationships with nonprofit organizations, including funding requests, the RFP (Request for Proposal) process, how to navigate these partnerships, and how to communicate and work together to achieve the best results. You can also have the opportunity to share your opinions and get your questions answered in this interactive discussion.

Session Summary

Minimum Wage and Workforce Development in the Nonprofit Sector

The new California law that increases the minimum wage to $15 per hour has been a contentious subject of debate among nonprofit leaders and others across the state. Many nonprofit leaders are in favor of the increase because it has the potential to improve the lives of many low-income individuals and the communities they serve. However, other nonprofit leaders are concerned about how the wage increase will impact their organization’s budget and long-term sustainability. 

Join the panelists for a dialogue about the facts, benefits, and challenges with a minimum wage increase, new overtime regulations, and other workforce and economic development issues facing nonprofits in our San Diego communities. 

Session Summary

Professional Development Workshops:

From Data to Donors: Visualizing San Diego Philanthropy

  • Janet Camarena, Director, Transparency Initiatives, Foundation Center

More than 1,400 foundations have given more than $530 million in support of San Diego-based recipients since 2010. Attend this session to learn how to use Foundation Center’s new Foundation Maps database and preview the forthcoming new and free Foundation Stats: California. This session will show you how to use these tools to dig into the data to identify grantmaking patterns and trends in San Diego, learn about leading donors, recipients and program areas in the region, and map your network and identify prospects (near and far) who are funding efforts similar to your own.

Impact Investing & You: The What, Why, and How of Accessing Other Types of Capital 

  • David Lynn, Investment Manager, The Price Group; Chair, San Diego Grantmakers
  • Elenore "Nelli" Garton, PhD, Senior Principal, LeSar Development Consultants; Chair, San Diego Impact Investors

There's a lot of talk these days about impact investing and the myriad of terms: Program Related Investments (PRIs), Mission Related Investments (MRIs), Loans, Pay-For-Success (PFS), Social Impact Bonds, Subsidiaries and Hybrids, and Capital Stacks… really, everything besides grants and donations. Yet many questions remain, such as: What can impact investing do for you? Does it make sense for your organization? How will it help you grow and achieve more of your mission? Is it worth the headache? How do you go about using these forms of capital? What are the shifts you would need to make to be competitive? Join the speakers for a discussion around the what, why, and how of accessing these new instruments in the world of philanthropy and nonprofits.

Reimagining Your Board: A Case Study of Radical Transformation

Do you ever think to yourself: I love my board, but I wish they would…

  • Take their job more seriously
  • Better understand the challenges we’re facing
  • Think about our work more strategically
  • Leave if they don’t have the energy for our work
  • Know how to connect us with resources

This workshop will walk you through the process of reimagining a board of directors by describing the rebirth of the Dreams for Change board. You will learn how Dreams for Change radically transformed its board into a high impact governing body in a few short months. 

Understand and Change Your Business Model in 60 Minutes

  • Jan Masaoka, CEO, California Association of Nonprofits

Too often program goals are discussed separately from financial means, although we all know that both must be discussed together. Jan Masaoka will present the methodology for doing so from the book she recently co-authored, Nonprofit Sustainability: Making Strategic Decisions for Financial Viability. The result is a fresh look at choosing the mix of programs, earned income, and donations that will be sustainable for your organization. When presented at last year's Stanford Social Innovation Review conference for nonprofit executives, it was the highest rated session.

The Inner Work and Inclusion in Community Leadership

Description forthcoming

The Cultural Mindset: Leadership Development and Multiculturalism

As we work in an ever-increasing diverse and interconnected world, culture at the local and global levels impacts all organizations and their leaders. This session highlights the role culture plays in leadership and organizations. It provides participants with tools to develop a cultural mindset that allows them to take culture into consideration and work more effectively with diverse cultures at the local and global levels.

Thank You To Our Media Sponsor

   San Diego Business Journal

Thank You To Our Lead Sponsors

     Bank of America Logo    

     HealthWay Trust of California

Moss Adams LLP


Thank You To Our Supporting Sponsors

     Cox Communications Logo   

    Polito Eppich

Thank You To Our Contributing Sponsors

Abe Farag Family Foundation

San Diego Grantmakers

San Diego Nonprofit Association

Thank You To Our Scholarship Sponsor

Thrivent Financial