There’s a saying within foundations that your jokes will never be funnier and your hair will never look better than when you’re talking to a grantee. Simply put, there can be many aspects of a foundation that are imposing or intimidating to nonprofit professionals and this can have a huge impact on how staff from foundations and nonprofits interact with each other. This poses a significant challenge to building trust as staff rarely make room for candid conversations, expressing their truth, and being their authentic selves. The grantee-grantor relationship is inherently designed to create imbalances of power. This is not an aspect that will go away, what matters is recognizing this challenge and taking the steps to mitigate the adverse effects.
Join us in this engaging panel discussion led by three former grantmakers and experienced nonprofit professionals, Jill May, Stacy Stout, and Amy Stockero. Having been on both sides of the funding equation, these leaders will be provided the space to reflect on their approaches for diffusing power, what worked and what didn’t. You’ll gain insights into what runs through a grantmaker’s mind when they consider the concept of power dynamics and an understanding of the language and tactics to overcome the obstacles that this imbalance places between developing trust.
Jill May serves as the Director of Lending Programs at Grand Rapids Opportunities for Women (GROW). With nearly 20 years of experience in nonprofit management, holding an emphasis on corporate relations and economic development, Jill is a lifelong nonprofit professional. Before joining GROW, she served as Interim Executive Director of the Traverse City Area Chamber of Commerce. Jill has held fund development positions at The Right Place, the Urban Institute for Contemporary Arts, the American Cancer Society, and Catholic Charities of West Michigan.
Stacy Stout is the Assistant to the City Manager with the City of Grand Rapids to support city neighborhood capacity building initiatives, such as the Neighborhood Match Fund, the annual Grand Rapids Neighborhood Summit, and the Neighborhood Economic Connections grant designed to increase resident leadership and power. Stacy serves on the City’s Racial Equity Here (REH) cohort team connected with the Government Alliance on Race and Equity (GARE), and brings a strong racial equity and community empowerment lens to the work, pulling on her lived experience and training as a former Michigan team member at the W.K. Kellogg Foundation, Dean of Students at Burton Middle School with Grand Rapids Public Schools, and as the former Education Director at the Hispanic Center of Western Michigan.
Amy Stockero was named the Development Director for the Humane Society of West Michigan in December 2018. Most recently, Stockero was the assistant director of annual giving at Grand Valley State University. Previously, Amy has worked for the Grand Rapids Public Museum, including as its annual fund director, as well as at WGVU Public Media and the W.K. Kellogg Foundation. She holds a B.A. in political science from Central Michigan University and a master’s degree in public administration from the Middlebury Institute of International Studies at Monterey in California.
935 Baxter St Se
Grand Rapids, MI 49506
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