GMN2017-Block B Sessions

Monday, March 20, 2017, 1:30-2:45pm


The Art of Compliance: Effectively Communicating Complex Grantmaking Concepts

LEARNING TRACK: Effective Practices
LEVEL: General
GMN2017 #GMcompliance


  • Christine Morissette, Director, Grants Administration, Silicon Valley Community Foundation
  • Damon James, International Grants Administration Officer, Silicon Valley Community Foundation
  • D. Lea Rauscher, Vice President, Grants, Gifts and Compliance, Silicon Valley Community Foundation

This session will focus on effectively communicating complex concepts to various stakeholders in order to streamline grantmaking practices, ensure compliance, and promote understanding and engagement. As a community foundation, we are uniquely positioned to work with audiences who have a variety of needs and different levels of investment in the process, including donor advised fund holders, corporate donors and their employees, domestic and international grantees, program officers and the executive team. In order to facilitate effective grantmaking, grants managers must often educate stakeholders on grant compliance, roles and responsibilities of participants in the process, and grantmaking practices and procedures.

Attendees will be presented with tools and techniques for making complex compliance concepts accessible to various audiences, empowering colleagues to be grants management ambassadors, and deepening grantees’ understanding of the due diligence process.

Examples of successes and challenges will be reviewed, and the session will include a discussion of the risks and benefits of certain stakeholders’ level of involvement in the process. Specific examples may include: the participation of third parties, such as the employees of corporate donors, in the international vetting process to breakdown language barriers and promote cultural awareness; working with colleagues to craft messages for fund advisors and donors about grant compliance; and communicating with the executive team about the value of your processes and approach to grants management.

Belief Alignment for High Performing Teams

LEARNING TRACK: Effective Practices
LEVEL: Intermediate
#GMN2017 #teamwork @thebeliefcoach


  • Wendy Watson-Hallowell, The Belief Coach, BeliefWorks

Why is it that some projects and people are easy and satisfying to work with and others are not? Even when our small team is focused on “doing good,” what is it that makes certain efforts succeed and others struggle, sputter or bomb out? Why do some of our best laid plans never come to fruition? If team members have expectations that are out of alignment with the shared goals of the team, the odds of success go down significantly. The limiting beliefs that we hold about ourselves and each other, and the goals we seek to achieve, are often unconscious and play out in ways that keep us and the team we are part of from our full potential. When our expectations of ourselves and the rest of the team are aligned with our shared goals, things happen easily and quickly and generate new ideas and energy in everyone involved.

Participants will

  • Assess the alignment of their team
  • Use simple strategies to clarify mutual purpose and behaviors to support it together
  • Shift limiting beliefs that keep team members stuck in unproductive behavior
  • Set limits, establish clear expectations
  • Create a safe environment in which to solve problems when the heat is on

Beyond Direct Grants: Legal Structures for Philanthropic Funding

LEARNING TRACK: Compliance & Effective Practices
LEVEL: Advanced
#GMN2017 #GMlegal


  • Cathy Manovi, Grants Officer, Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation
  • Sasha Abrams, General Counsel and Secretary, Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation

This session addresses legal options for funding charitable projects and appropriate structures to optimize charitable work. Discussion will include direct grants, re-granting structures, fiscal sponsorship and fiscal agency, contracts, and program-related investments.

Participants will

  • Learn grant structures and funding vehicles for achieving large-scale, multiparty outcomes
  • Recognize when a direct grant, joint venture, collaboration, fiscal sponsorship, or fiscal agency makes sense
  • Learn how private foundations strengthen programmatic work with direct charitable activities
  • Discover how program-related investments fill the gap to support socially valuable work, and why foundations use them and related operational practices

Case Study in Implementing a New System

LEARNING TRACK: Hot Topics, Skill Building, and Technology
LEVEL: Intermediate
#GMN2017 #GMsoftware


  • Allison Gister, Director, Grants & Knowledge Management, Conrad N. Hilton Foundation
  • Rebecca Smith, Senior Consultant, 1892 consulting

Is something changing…in your foundation? Who you gonna call…Change Busters!

Whether you are thinking of new technology, new processes, or even new staff, join the Change Busters for a case study on how one foundation implemented a large-scale change, and the pitfalls they experienced or managed to avoid. In this interactive session, participants will review a business school-style case study describing various project challenges, specifically around staff training and launch. The case will discuss common issues such as managing expectations, increased workload, and senior leadership support.

Participants will

  • Learn how one foundation moved through these challenges to successfully launch a new system
  • Gain concrete strategies for addressing change management in your organization

Connecting Practices to Values-Based Grantmaking

LEARNING TRACK: Effective Practices
LEVEL: General
#GMN2017 #GMvalues


  • Elizabeth Myrick, Principal, Elizabeth Myrick Consulting LLC
  • Stacie Smith, Senior Mediator, The Consensus Building Institute
  • Toby Berkman, Associate, The Consensus Building Institute

Grantmaking practices are some of the most public, and sometimes the only, expression of a grantmaker’s values—what the grantmaker cares about, how it sees the world, and its orientation toward its nonprofit partners— that grantseekers experience. All grantmakers have values whether in an explicit statement or implicit in how they talk about and approach their work. Despite this, grantmaking practices (what they do) are not always as aligned to what grantmakers say they value as they could be, and many have never considered that a connect between the two exists.

GMN is engaging the field in a broad and deep conversation that directly connects how grants get made to a grantmaker’s core identity and values, in order to help identify opportunities for increased alignment and improved practices.

Leading from the Middle: From Grants Management to Knowledge Creation

LEARNING TRACK: Skill Building
LEVEL: General
#GMN2017 #GrantsManagers


  • Janet Camarena, Director, Transparency Initiatives, Foundation Center
  • Rachel Kimber, Grants Manager, Arcus Foundation
  • Bonnie Rivers, Associate Director of Grants and Records Management, Carnegie Corporation of New York
  • Jason Schumacher, Program Manager, Tableau Foundation

Despite widespread recognition from foundations that sharing lessons learned about is vital to the sector’s effectiveness, such sharing is still far from being the norm. Many of the sector’s hard-earned lessons are captured by foundations in the evaluations they fund, commission, require from grantees, and produce themselves. But our collective failure to systematically and openly share these lessons as part of the larger grantmaking process has resulted in the current state of spotty access and fragmented transparency. Grants managers are often in the position of collecting evaluations and reports as part of their role, and some are experimenting with new tools and processes to better scale the sector’s knowledge. Attend this session to become inspired by colleagues who have successfully shifted their role from data processors to knowledge brokers and creators.

Participants will

  • Learn about open knowledge principles
  • Become informed about emerging experimentation in creating a culture of evaluation, learning, and sharing among peer foundations
  • Become familiar with different technologies that can promote greater sector openness
  • Get recommendations for how grants managers can play an important role in scaling the sector’s knowledge

Owning the Room – at Ease in the Spotlight: A Focus on Nonverbal Communication

LEARNING TRACK: Skill Building
LEVEL: General
#GMN2017 #nonverbalcomms


  • Katrin Blucker Ludwig, Community Grants Manager, Methodist Healthcare Ministries of South Texas
  • LaShonda Barnett, Manager, Dallas Women’s Foundation

Actors do it all the time – use body language to own the room and exude confidence. In a one-on-one or a group meeting, how we enter the room, stand, sit, and speak has an unconscious effect on those around us as well as ourselves. This session will present scientific studies and provide simple modifications each of us can make in our body language to demonstrate confidence. Participants’ activity will include emulating some of these behaviors including “taking the stage.”

Participants will

  • Learn and identify nonverbal signals
  • Achieve power posing for confidence
  • Practice nonverbal skills (handshake, entering a room, power pose, etc.)


LEARNING TRACK: Partner Sponsored Session | Technology
LEVEL: General
#GMN2017 #foundantusers @Foundant


  • Daren Nordhagen, President, Foundant
  • Sammie Holzwarth, Product Implementation Engineer, Foundant

Whether you are a current user of Foundant Grant Lifecycle Manager (GLM) or are interested in learning more about our Online Grants Management solution, we invite you to attend this session.

Participants will

  • Get a walk-through of the most recent GLM release information
  • Have a chance to ask questions about GLM and Foundant

Those who are not yet users of GLM will get a chance to see how Foundant interacts with our clients and hear directly from our users about how they use the system.