How to Get $200B Off the Sidelines

As a working mom with four kids under seven, I’ve learned to adjust the expectations I have for motherhood. My energy and focus is on maintaining what I’m already doing — not adding more — as much as I’d love to get really creative in how I show up as a mom. When you’re stretched thin, big ideas generally aren’t on the table. In the nonprofit and philanthropic sector, whether you’re a trusted advisor or staff to a donor, or even a donor yourself, you might find yourself in an annual cycle of wanting to try new things and invest in new areas, and then realizing that your plate is full: you need to continue to maintain relationships with your grantees, evaluate your current impact, and get dollars out the door. Where will you find time for that new and promising seed of an idea?

To solve impossible problems, we need to fail more—a LOT more

I started 2022 with an impossible goal—a goal that felt so unlikely, so totally implausible, that it was laughable in its audacity. I wrote it on my whiteboard and stared at it. “I do not know how to do this,” I thought.  My natural tendency as a (recovering?) perfectionist when faced with something I don’t know […]

Philanthropy’s blind spot for the well-being of mothers

This month, I returned from maternity leave after having my third child in October. With my first two children, I went back to work after about eight weeks. This time around, I was able to take nearly double that amount of time. For all my pregnancies, I’ve had access to midwifery care outside of the […]

3 Guidelines for Summer Learning in the COVID Era

Before any reports came out detailing the extent of the academic impact of the pandemic on students, education leaders were already looking to summer learning programs as a key intervention to help students make up for lost instructional time. In Indianapolis, I had the opportunity to work with the United Way of Central Indiana (UWCI) and The Mind […]

Defining the problem is the key to long-lasting change

In America, we tend to believe that enough money can fix any problem. Who hasn’t sat around thinking, “If I had unlimited resources, I could absolutely solve this problem!”? But we all know in reality, it just isn’t that simple.  While philanthropists don’t have unlimited resources, they’re certainly in the business of using money to […]