2015 Ron McKinley Philanthropy Fellows Announced

December 16, 2014

Today MCF announced the 2015 Ron McKinley Philanthropy Fellows. The Fellowship, launched as a partnership with the Bush Foundation in 2013, prepares high-potential individuals from underrepresented communities for careers in philanthropy.

Fellows are employed by MCF and placed at participating foundations for three years. This year’s Fellows will join the Bush Foundation, the Headwaters Foundation for Justice or The Minneapolis Foundation, where they will start on January 12, 2015.

“For foundations to remain credible partners, their staff must reflect the shifting diversity of communities,” says Alfonso Wenker, MCF’s director of diversity, equity and inclusion. “These leaders bring strong community relationships that will help position their host sites for the future.”

2015Fellows2Meet the 2015 Ron McKinley Philanthropy Fellows:

  • Allison Johnson (pictured, middle) is a community organizer with Beacon Interfaith Housing Collaborative, where she has worked across the Twin Cities to build support for affordable housing and stronger communities. She will join the Headwaters Foundation for Justice.
  • Aya Johnson (right) is currently a community representative in the United States Congress focusing on immigration, foreign affairs, unemployment and outreach to communities of color. She has also served as a domestic violence advocate in St. Cloud and Blaine. She will join the Community Innovation team at the Bush Foundation.
  • Adrian Mack (left) is presently the program and curriculum director of STATURE, a leadership program designed to guide Minneapolis youth toward academic and career success. He also participates in several initiatives to engage the broader African American community. He will join the Bush Foundation’s Community Innovation team.
  • Patrice Relerford (second from right) is now the institutional support coordinator and grantwriter at People Serving People, a family-oriented shelter that provides emergency housing and community services to help homeless families achieve stability and reconnect with the community. She began her career as an education reporter at the Star Tribune and will join the Community Impact team at The Minneapolis Foundation.
  • Avi Viswanathan (second from left) has served as the campaign director for HIRE Minnesota, a campaign working to achieve racial equity in employment. He lives with his family on the East Side of St. Paul where he is engaged in many community activities and has served on the Dayton’s Bluff Community Council. He will join the Leadership Programs team at the Bush Foundation.

“I’ve seen firsthand how poverty and inequality erode communities,” says Fellow Patrice Relerford. “Through this fellowship, I believe I can better understand disparities by asking the tough questions to find solutions. For example, why does our region continue to have such glaring academic achievement, employment and home ownership gaps between whites and people of color?”

About the Ron McKinley Philanthropy Fellowship
The Fellowship is dedicated to the late Ron McKinley, a longtime member of the philanthropic and nonprofit communities who embodied justice and equity and worked tirelessly throughout his career to ensure that those from underrepresented communities were afforded equal access, opportunity and the resources necessary to fully participate and be heard.

Applications for the 2016 Ron McKinley Philanthropy Fellowship will be open in fall 2015. Learn more at http://www.mcf.org/about/philanthropy-fellowship or contact Alfonso Wenker, MCF’s director of diversity, equity and inclusion, with any questions.

Photo credit: Anna Min, Min Enterprises


Charitable Giving is Up in Minnesota

December 4, 2014

Screen_Shot_2014-12-03_at_4.16.17_PMToday, MCF released our new Giving in Minnesota research, the most comprehensive analysis of charitable giving in the state. It shows that individuals, foundations and corporations gave $5.7 billion in 2012, a 2-percent increase in total giving over 2011.

Individual giving went up to $4.1 billion in 2012, while grantmaking by foundations and corporations in Minnesota declined by 6 percent to $1.6 billion. Other highlights include:
Education Receives the Most Grant Money
Screen_Shot_2014-12-03_at_4.15.16_PMAs has been true historically in Minnesota, education received the largest share of grant dollars (29 percent) of eight subject areas tracked. Education was followed by human services (23 percent); public affairs/society benefit (16 percent); arts, culture and humanities (13 percent); and health (10 percent).

Half of Grant Dollars Stay in State

In 2012, 48 percent of Minnesota grant dollars went to organizations and programs serving the state. Forty-seven percent was distributed to groups serving other parts of the U.S., and 6 percent supported international causes. Corporations tend to distribute grants more widely than other types of grantmakers.

Check out the full report on our website, and see today’s featured stories on our research in the Star Tribune and Pioneer Press.


Watch Highlights from Today’s Realities | Tomorrow’s Opportunities

November 12, 2014

The 2014 MCF Annual Conference is in the books! We’re very grateful to the hundreds of Minnesota grantmakers who joined us to discuss how we can seize new opportunities to have the most impact in the communities we serve.

If you couldn’t join us, or would just like a refresher on the learning and discussion that took place, don’t miss these great video highlights. First, a two-minute glimpse at the entire experience, start to finish:

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Then watch the full keynote from Stacy Palmer, editor of The Chronicle of Philanthropy, on What’s Next: 10 Realities and Opportunities facing philanthropy in the coming years:

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Enjoy!


Movin’ On Update

October 15, 2014

1_281536_2014-09-29-14-09-01-738Construction at MCF’s soon-to-be new home is coming along quickly! Things are going so well that we’ve bumped up our move-in date. You’ll find us in the Tractorworks building starting on December 1. (Remember, that’s in the North Loop at 800 Washington Avenue North.)

While the construction crews do their work, we are plotting out how things will look inside. One project includes scanning a bunch of old photos and soliciting new ones from members in order to create a mosaic of Minnesota’s philanthropic community that will greet you when you come in. We can’t wait to show you the finished product!

0_226863_2014-09-26-17-05-11-678We also have several capital project sponsorship opportunities available, that offer members the chance to help us make our space the best it can be. We’re very grateful that these are getting picked up quickly, with two still available:

  • Kitchen Break Room: A  place to start and continue conversations before and after programs or gather for a quick meeting or a casual meal.
  • Huddle Spaces (2 available): Two cozy conversational seating areas will provide the perfect locations for staff and members to easily work together or have a private talk.

If you’re interested in a sponsorship, contact Maria Salas.

Stay tuned for future updates and the grand unveiling!


Fast Forward: Chris Cardona on Accessible Philanthropy

October 7, 2014

Screen Shot 2014-04-23 at 12.09.07 PMThe newest episode of MCF’s Fast Forward podcast featuring big thinkers in philanthropy is up!

In this episode, Alfonso Wenker sits down with Chris Cardona of TCC Group. They kick off their discussion with the three levels of accessible philanthropy Chris has seen grantmakers employ:

  1. Consult stakeholders about their decisions
  2. Integrate these communities into the decision-making process
  3. Get community involvement in the initial design process
Chris Cardona

Chris Cardona

The two go on to discuss the best entry point into this culture of accessibility, getting buy-in from leadership, and why equity and inclusion are such important concepts in discussions about diversity.

Listen to the podcast now! Then subscribe on iTunes or plug the RSS feed into the program of your choice.

Grantmakers, if you like what you hear, be sure to join us October 31 for Today’s Realities | Tomorrow’s Opportunities, MCF’s annual conference. Chris Cardona is one of the several prominent local and national speakers you’ll interact with throughout the day!


Subscribe to Fast Forward on iTunes

August 29, 2014

ff1Full, in-depth interviews with big thinkers in philanthropy are now available on the Fast Forward podcast! Subscribe through iTunes or plug the RSS feed into the podcast subscription software of your choosing.

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  • Interested in hearing from Trish Tchume of the Young Nonprofit Professionals Network on the work she’s done with Emerging Practitioners in Philanthropy to address power dynamics in the field? Have a listen.
  • Want to hear from Phil Buchanan of the Center for Effective Philanthropy on the tools grantmakers can use to build and maintain effective practices? Now you can!
  • Ready to know more about the Margaret A. Cargill Foundation and its approach to disaster relief? Listen to Mark Lindberg on the foundation’s focus on lower-attention events and its belief in the power of local communities to self-organize.

Once you’re done listening, don’t forget to subscribe so you’ll get every episode as they publish! Next month you’ll hear from Mary Jane Melendez of General Mills Foundation.


We’re Moving!

August 25, 2014

photo-3In mid-December, we’re relocating the MCF offices to the TractorWorks building in Minneapolis’ North Loop neighborhood. Our new digs are on the 7th floor at 800 Washington Avenue North. We’re excited and we hope you will be too!

Last week we held our first staff meeting in the unfinished space, which gave us all a chance to look around and make heavy use of our imaginations. The space is rough right now, but by move-in day it will be very welcoming and comfortable.

photo 4Our new accommodations were designed with our members in mind. The convenient location and easy parking will make a quick stop between meetings possible, while we hope the multiple gathering spaces, drop-in offices, state-of-the-art board room and comfy furnishings will ensure that you stick around.

As construction progresses, we’ll post pictures here to keep you in the loop.


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