Quarterly Bulletin
June 24 2020



 A Message from Susan Taylor Batten
President and CEO, ABFE

Dear Colleagues,
 
I hope this edition of Member News finds you well. Without any doubt these are challenging times; so many of us are balancing hurt and mourning with the need to move forward in urgency as the country grapples with COVID-19 and the longstanding impacts of racism. At the same time, we celebrate the recent Supreme Court decisions to ensure nondiscrimination protections for LGBTQ people nationwide as well as the decision to continue the Deferred Action for Childhood Annual Program (DACA). These wins are due to the tireless work of grassroots leaders, advocates and funders and reminds us that the “arch of the moral universe is long, but it bends towards justice.” We at ABFE, have gathered strength and courage to continue to work nonstop to address the issues our communities are facing now more than ever.
 
As you have seen in our recently sent emails, we are tackling and responding to the current events on several fronts. In April, we quickly transitioned our in-person annual conference into a successful virtual gathering, which in light of the novel Coronavirus, ignited relevant conversations about our communities, our businesses, our Black-led organizations and nonprofits. Let me just once again thank those of you who participated and connected virtually during Harambee 2020.

Over the past month and a half, we have carried out two webinars that brought together 300 participants. The first of which focused on the urgency to support Black businesses in this time of crisis. Many of you know that we are keenly interested in how foundations can use their grantmaking and endowments to scale Black business as a strategy to build wealth; COVID-19 poses a threat to the survival of many of these operations. The second virtual meeting was an unprecedented effort for ABFE that engaged foundation professionals in the United States and Caribbean regarding philanthropy’s response to COVID-19. We know that this pandemic and other crises disproportionately impact people of African descent around the world. 
 
I hope America now better understands the Black community’s inability to breathe, whether the culprit is the policing system in our country or the disparate impact of COVID. It is within this context that ABFE joined with over 60 Black foundation CEOs to develop a set of recommendations for foundation and donor consideration to address anti-Black racism. Please do review the document below and join us along with regional and national partners to make this more than a statement, but an actual agenda.

Our long-term goal is to free Black people from disparate treatment that results in the racial disparities we see in COVID-19, police brutality and on almost every indicator of well-being. To get there, we must dismantle the structures that disadvantage and marginalize Black people as well as the false narratives about our communities that allow for continued inhumane treatment. This will lead to stronger Black communities. Philanthropy has a critical role to play and must step forward. 

Stay strong, healthy, and vigilant. 
Thank You to Everyone who participated in ABFE's 2020 Virtual Conference
Harambee 2020 was one of the first and largest virtual conferences for Black philanthropy. With more than 385 registered, even in uncertain times, ABFE made history with you.

During our three-day program, we received countless words of thanks from members as to why we matter and why the decision to push through with our conference was the right thing to do. This sentiment sums up the insights of so many others:

"This may not mean much, but I want you to know that there are tens, hundreds and thousands of [philanthropy] professionals of the like who have looked to ABFE as a guiding light. We see you. We follow your work. We are encouraged and heartbroken by the disparities in the Black community created and maintained by systemic racism and we are fighting with you and our ancestors. Whether explicitly or implicitly, we lift up and look to ABFE."

-Harambee 2020 Attendee

Our work has never been more essential. We urge you to continue to organize with your social networks, CBOs, grantees, funders, data holders, decision makers, and local and state initiatives to be sure they are focusing on the needs of our Black communities.

ABFE gives great thanks to you for your continued support and for the hard work that you do.

We appreciate you!
ABFE Updates
Black foundation CEOs statement for foundation and donor consideration to address anti-Black racism
ABFE Philanthropic Advising Services

Although COVID-19 has changed the way we have imagined the work, it has not stopped the work itself. ABFE is pleased to announce that we are now offering virtual module-based engagements that cover the content established in our Responsive Philanthropy in Black Communities framework.

The modules will continue to focus on: the shared definitions and key concepts for race, racism and racial equity; an understanding of a framework for effective and responsive philanthropy; tools that can be used by grant makers to support racial equity grant-making; and thoughts about how to apply a racial equity lens to your work ( and why it matters ).

If you are interested in learning more about our virtual offerings please contact Anthony Simmons, Director of Philanthropic Advising Services at asimmons@abfe.org.
ABFE Celebrated Juneteenth with an insightful blog by Kyumon Murell, ABFE's Program Coordinator, Racial Equity Grantmaking Program

Growing up, I did not know much about Juneteenth beyond surface level details. I first encountered the holiday in the summer of 2015 in Boston, MA. Looking back, I ironically learned more about my identity as an Afro-Caribbean man there than where I grew up - surely due to necessity, trial, and circumstance. I vividly remember beautiful Black folk dancing, music blasting, and eating more than my weight in grilled food. My ignorance to just how important the holiday is, can be reflected in a quote from an essay written by historian Elizabeth Hayes Turner: “The way it was explained to me… the 19th of June wasn’t the exact day the Negro was freed. But that’s the day they told them that they were free… and my daddy told me that they whooped and hollered and bored holes in trees with augers and stopped it up with [gun] powder… that would be their blast for the celebration.” The day holds huge importance for the Black community, and is one of the most important holidays in American history.
ABFE is proud to present the latest released report:

The Case for Funding Black-Led Social Change

Redlining by Another Name: What the Data Says to Move from Rhetoric to Action
By: Emergent Pathways, LLC prepared for ABFE: A Philanthropic Partnership for Black Communities December 2019

ABFE: A Philanthropic Partnership for Black Communities (ABFE), recently conducted a study to learn how leaders of Black-led social change organizations in the United States and U.S. Territories describe their interactions with institutional philanthropy. The research had two purposes. The first was to build a body of information on the health and well-being of existing Black social change infrastructure in this country. The second was to use this information to inform the future actions of the Black Social Change Funders Network (BSCFN), as well as to encourage philanthropic staff, consultants and trustees to change the ways they think and act with Black-led organizations and Black communities.

During this time of confinement, take some time to explore ABFE's Knowledge Center, featuring timeless resources like:

-Interesting fact sheets
-Valuable Connection -Past webinars
Member Spotlight
Veteran African American leaders in philanthropy gathered together at the SNAAP-ABFE Reception during the 2019 SECF 50th Anniversary Annual Meeting in Atlanta.
SNAAP 2.0 Organizing Committee Kick-Off

By Atiba Mbiwan
Executive Director
The Zeist Foundation
 
For more than a decade, the Southeastern Network for African Americans in Philanthropy (SNAAP) has participated in ABFE’s Black Philanthropic Network and it has collaborated with ABFE on several events, including co-sponsoring receptions at the Annual Meeting of the Southeastern Council of Foundations (SECF) in the fall season.

At the 2019 SECF Annual Meeting in Atlanta, which happened to mark SECF’s 50 th Anniversary, SNAAP and ABFE co-hosted a reception that featured remarks from SECF President & CEO Janine Lee, ABFE President Susan Batten and several other African American leaders. With more than 75 philanthropic representatives in the reception room at this November 2019 SECF gathering, a promise was made by SNAAP leaders in Atlanta that a new SNAAP entity – SNAAP 2.0 , would be created in the new year with a commitment to build a viable regional organization.

Since its birth in fall 2002, SNAAP was born with a regional vision but it remained an Atlanta based network of philanthropic leaders for almost 18 years. In 2020, the regional vision is starting to take shape thanks to folks stepping up to serve as volunteers on the SNAAP 2.0 Organizing Committee . At the first virtual convening in May 2020 there were representatives from 11 southeastern states (Virginia, N. Carolina, S. Carolina, Georgia, Florida, Alabama, Tennessee, Kentucky, Arkansas, Mississippi and Louisiana) and the U.S. Virgin Islands participating with enthusiasm.

For the remainder of 2020, the Organizing Committee members will continue communicating, coordinating and collaborating to build a SNAAP 2.0 organization that can rise up in 2021 to promote philanthropy in the African American community in the south and beyond!
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News From The Field
Investment management is overwhelmingly dominated by white men - and it's costing you money

June 19, 2020 
Article featuring ABFE's 2005-2006 Connecting Leaders Fellow Erika Davis

“It’s the norm—white men manage money, therefore they’re the ones who can manage money,” says Erika Davies, a researcher studying capital markets at Georgetown University’s Beeck Center. The impact of that racist bias was reflected in a 2019 study, which found that asset allocators managing capital for pension funds and foundations showed  bias against diverse investors  whose actual performance was highest.

“The other factor is whether or not those firms are even getting a chance to compete,” Davies continues. Outcomes of historical discrimination also make it harder for diverse-owned firms to meet certain seemingly neutral benchmarks used by allocators at large funds. Davies says the  racial wealth gap , for instance, makes it harder for diverse managers to attract enough investment from friends and family to meet minimum thresholds for assets under management, or AUM, required to win allocations from large institutional funds.
African-American Foundation Leaders Call for Action on Racism

June 12, 2020
PND by Candid

Sixty-four African-American foundation leaders have issued a  joint statement  calling on philanthropy to take action against anti-Black racism. 

Organized by  ABFE  (formerly the Association of Black Foundation Executives), the statement calls for the dismantling of "the structures (institutional policies and practices) that disadvantage and marginalize Black people as well as the false narratives about Black communities that allow for continued inhumane treatment." With the long-term goal of "[freeing] Black people from disparate treatment that results in the racial disparities we see in COVID-19, police brutality, and on almost every indicator of well-being," the statement outlines "a set of imperatives for ensuring the well-being of Black communities to guide the philanthropic community's response to the COVID-19 crisis" and police reform efforts.
PEAK Grantmaking Announces Satonya Fair as President and CEO
Known to many of us, and a leader in the grantmaking field, Satonya brings with her a decade of engagement with PEAK, from her longtime conference participation as speaker, sponsor, and co-chair, to her dynamic service on the Board and executive committee. Her contributions and her leadership have been integral to many of our successes, and to some of our boldest stands.

Satonya’s experience with the social sector, and its people, stands in tandem with her deep understanding of PEAK’s membership and mission. She has served as Vice President/Chief Philanthropy Officer at The Executive Leadership Council, as Director of Grants Management at The Annie E. Casey Foundation, and in management roles in community relations at Citi. Satonya earned her JD from the University of Cincinnati and her bachelor’s degree in psychology and political science from Miami University (Ohio). She is a graduate of the Career Pathways executive leadership program at the Council on Foundations and is a certified Prosci(R) Change Management practitioner. In addition, she is an active volunteer with many initiatives, including the Technology Association of Grantmakers and the Maryland Philanthropy Network.
ABFE'S Book Recommendation - By an African American Author
A book by David Maurrasse, Ph.D. – Founder & President
of Marga Incorporated

A comprehensive introduction to the field of philanthropy, Philanthropy and Society challenges the reader to think deeply about the role of philanthropic institutions in shaping and bettering the communities they serve and civil society as a whole.

While all agree that the function of philanthropic organizations is to maximize the impact of grant making, there is little consensus on how to do that. This book focuses on two trends that have emerged: strategic philanthropy and increasing diversity, equity and inclusion in philanthropy. Amidst persistent societal inequities, the proliferation of philanthropy leaves one wondering about the potential of this expanding industry to influence social change as well as include constituents beyond donors and their staff.

The book offers several case studies of different types of foundations from around the world that demonstrate several tactics used to develop plans that are both strategic and inclusive. Upper-level undergraduate and postgraduate students of philanthropy, as well as professionals, will come away from this book with a more nuanced and practical sense of the challenging questions the field of philanthropy faces, and the different ways they can be tackled.
Supporting the mobilization of resources to communities of color
Covid-19 Relieve Funds

The Black Resilience In Colorado Fund will distribute up to $1M in its first year. The fund will focus on the ways in which racial inequities have been heightened and deepened by the health and economic impact of COVID-19, as well as a recent wave of racial violence across the United States.

T he Brooklyn COVID-19 Response Fund prioritizes support for urgent needs in Black and other communities of color. They have  raised over $3 million for a racially just response to COVID-19 in our communities.

BET + United Way COVID-19 Relief Fund.  The health and financial devastation wrought by COVID-19 is disproportionately affecting African Americans.


Woods Fund Chicago - Welcomes Proposals for Movement Building for Racial Justice Fund - Deadline: July 13, 2020

Borealis Philanthropy Invites Applications for COVID-19 Collective Fund for Trans Communities - Deadline: Rolling

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