Institute for Nonprofit Practice Brings 25+ Philanthropists to Advise Nonprofit Leaders

Regional foundation representatives coached professionals in Tufts-affiliated program on their pitch

April 7, 2017

Needham, Mass.: Representatives from over 25 of the region’s most prestigious philanthropic organizations have shared their time and expertise with current and emerging nonprofit leaders attending the Institute for Nonprofit Practice’s certificate programs.

“Effective fundraising is a critical skill for nonprofit leaders, yet one we are rarely afforded the opportunity to practice and hone,” said Yolanda Coentro, President and CEO of the Institute. “These sessions provide our students with a unique learning opportunity: to meet and receive live, honest, and direct feedback from the region’s most prominent and influential funders without the pressures of having money on the table. We are so grateful to the many representatives of the foundations and corporations who played a key role in coaching our students in the art of communicating their stories of impact,” said Coentro.

In affiliation with the Jonathan M. Tisch College of Civic Life at Tufts University, the Institute’s certificate programs provide comprehensive and academically distinguished training to nonprofit executives, managers, and emerging leaders. Across its programs, nearly 150 students attended Funders’ Days this year, met in small groups with funders, delivered their pitches and received coaching to strengthen their approach. “Talking with the funders  pushed me to sharpen the language I use to talk about my work in a way that I would not otherwise have done,” said Cate Johnston, Associate Director of Program Quality at Raising a Reader Massachusetts. “It also served as a humanizing experience to remind me that funders care as much as I do about the families and communities we are serving.”

Funders similarly value the experience as a way to directly support the strength and sustainability of nonprofits and to gain insight into a wide range of the important work taking place across the sector. “I’m so glad to have attended another Funders’ Day class this year. While supporting leaders in their learning, I also get the chance to connect with and learn about organizations making a real difference in our communities,” said Noreen McMahon, Senior Director of Programs at Highland Street Foundation. “These special opportunities are one great example of how the Institute’s approach is strengthening leaders and nonprofits in a big way.”

The list of participating philanthropic partners follows:

  • Amelia Peabody Charitable Fund
  • Amelia Peabody Foundation
  • Barr Foundation
  • Blue Cross Blue Shield Rhode Island
  • CVS Health
  • Delta Dental
  • E for All
  • Grantmakers Council of Rhode Island
  • Greater Lowell Community Foundation
  • Harvard Pilgrim Health Care Foundation
  • Highland Street Foundation
  • Hyams Foundation
  • Klarman Family Foundation
  • MFS Investments
  • Theodore Edson Parker Foundation
  • Pawtucket Credit Union
  • Rhode Island Foundation
  • Saab Family Foundation
  • Social Innovation Forum
  • Social Venture Partners
  • State Street
  • The Boston Foundation
  • The Henry Luce Foundation
  • The Philanthropy Connetion
  • United Way of Massachusetts Bay and Merrimack Valley
  • United Way of Rhode Island
  • van Beuren Foundation

About the Institute for Nonprofit Practice

The Institute for Nonprofit Practice seeks to transform communities by equipping the most promising nonprofit leaders with the skills, confidence and resources they need to make their organizations effective, innovative, and sustainable. It pursues this mission through year-long programs for executives, middle managers, and high potential emerging leaders. Since 2007, the Institute has engaged nearly 1,000 students through its programs in Boston, Lowell, Providence, and Cape Cod and the Islands.