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PEAK Grantmaking

PEAK Community

Dear members, this section is dedicated to celebrating you: your contributions to the field and professional news, the latest members to join you in this vibrant network, and the local chapter events connecting you.
Of course, PEAK wouldn’t exist without you, the 4,500 grants management professionals committed to improving the “how” of grantmaking. We are a member-led community, with an extraordinary group of 200-plus volunteers stepping into roles as board members, chapter officers, committee members, and more. Over 365 grantmaking organizations and consultants help power our work, and commitment to the profession, as dues-paying members. Collectively, we are advancing the grants management profession and changing the practice of philanthropy into the practice of principled grantmaking.
We thank you for the work and dedication demonstrated in these pages; our own work is dedicated, in turn, to you. We hope you are inspired to deepen your engagement with our community in 2020, and beyond.


Chapter Connections

PEAK Southeast hosted a two-day summit in Charleston, South Carolina last October. Day one found attendees making site visits to Old Chicora, a historic elementary school repurposed by the nonprofit Metanoia to house community-building services, and Fresh Future Farm, a nonprofit urban farm and grocery store. Day two focused on workshopping diversity, equity, and inclusion practices.

The Meyer Foundation hosted the PEAK Greater Washington, DC fall meeting in October, featuring a presentation on grantmaking legal compliance, followed by roundtables to discuss streamlining efforts around applications and reports, grants management system integrations, process workflows, and due diligence.

The newly-renamed PEAK Mideast (formerly PEAK Ohio) held a fall learning and networking day focused on sharpening core grants management skills like due diligence, applications, and reporting. Our thanks to host The Columbus Foundation and sponsor Osteopathic Heritage Foundation of Nelsonville.

PEAK Southwest hosted its first-ever mini-conference at St. David’s Foundation in Austin in September. Highlights included in-depth discussions on foundation effectiveness, the complexities involved in building positive relationships with grantees and recognizing the inherent power differential, and methods that funders can use to help grantees leverage data for their own learning and growth.

In October, PEAK Midwest held a daylong workshop in St. Louis centered around ways to tie grantmaking practices to organizational values throughout the grantmaking cycle, and to assess and develop the competencies outlined in PEAK’s Grants Management Professional Competency Model. Thanks to host Mid-America Transplant, members also had the unique opportunity to tour a first-of-its-kind on-site organ recovery facility, hear first-hand from the recipient of a donated organ, and help with preparations for the nonprofit’s 5K race that weekend.

PEAK Southern California closed out 2019 with their third networking Coffee Hour of the year at With Love Market & Cafe, a social enterprise that combines a for-profit cafe, market, and catering business with a nonprofit community center.

Board of Directors updates

First, we offer huge thanks to the 19 members of the PEAK Grantmaking Board for their leadership and service, and a special note of gratitude to outgoing board members Heather Peeler, Hope Lyons, Marc McDonald, and Rik Treiber.

This month, three candidates have been nominated to join the board (pictured, from left): Adam Sanders, Grants Manager, The Leona M. and Harry B. Helmsley Charitable Trust; Bridget DeLeon, Director of Grantmaking, The Char and Chuck Fowler Family Foundation; and Miyesha Perry, Director of Grants Management, Kenneth Rainin Foundation.

Current board members pursuing a second term include Kevin Bolduc, Janet Camarena, and Tim Robinson.

Vote in our online election this spring. Also, plan to attend our virtual Annual Membership Meeting on May 5, featuring updates from PEAK Grantmaking’s board and staff and ways to get involved, build your expertise, connect with peers, and elevate your grantmaking practice. 

Member News

Members, send your news to for our next edition!

  • Paige Granger (PEAK New York Chair) started a new position as Grants Manager at The Rockefeller Foundation.
  • Kevin Ryan is the new Director, Foundation and CSR at the Delta Dental Community Care Foundation.
  • Ursula Stewart (Past PEAK Board Member) is the new Grant Making Impact Advocate at
  • Lacey Sortman serves as both the new Grants Management Associate at James F. and Marion L. Miller Foundation and Grant and Program Coordinator at The Reser Family Foundation.
  • Errika Moore became the Senior Program Officer at Community Foundation for Greater Atlanta.
  • Hannah Kahn, Vice President, Grants Management Director at Arnold Ventures, received the Outstanding Foundation Professional Award from the Association of Fundraising Professionals Golden Gate.
  • Lori Perkins, Grants Manager, Ausherman Family Foundation is now a certified Standards for Excellence Licensed Consultant.
  • Deena Lauver Scotti is now Vice President of Program Administration at Missouri Foundation for Health.
  • Mark Suzman, currently Chief Strategy Officer and President of Global Policy and Advocacy at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, will take over as the Foundation’s Chief Executive.
  • Nichol Higdon will be the new Vice President of Finance and Operations at McKnight Foundation.
  • Qiana Thomason was named the new CEO of Health Forward Foundation.
  • Adam Cimino became the first Manager of Philanthropy and Foundation Operations at the new Visa Foundation in San Francisco.
  • Nora Mitnick became Grant Information Systems Manager at The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.
  • Kimberly Canfield is the new Grants Manager at The James Irvine Foundation.
  • Shirley Hamilton has a new position as a Program Assistant at the Argosy Foundation.
  • Amber López Gamble was promoted to Director of Grants Management at The California Wellness Foundation.
  • Deb Debbaut (PEAK Midwest co-chair) was named the 2019 Outstanding Alum of Iowa Western Community College.
  • Fernanda Kuchkarian (PEAK Florida Vice Chair) was promoted to Program Director at the Health Foundation of South Florida.
  • Sam Caplan founded his own consulting venture, New Spark Strategy.
  • Sarita Michaca became the Vice President, Grants Management in Global Philanthropy at JPMorgan Chase Foundation.
  • Mallory Womble (PEAK Southwest Program Chair) was promoted to Grants Manager at American Jewish World Service.
  • Elizabeth Donohue became Manager, Grants at Peter G. Peterson Foundation.
  • Andrew Brown (PEAK Greater Washington, DC Co-chair) has been promoted to Grants Manager at the Meyer Foundation.
  • Edgar Villanueva has been promoted to Senior Vice President of Programs and Advocacy at the Schott Foundation.
  • Kelli Rojas (PEAK Rocky Mountain Co-chair) was promoted to Director of Data and Operations, Rose Community Foundation.
  • Neeta Boddapati was promoted to Senior Program Officer at Grand Victoria Foundation.

Announcing our 2020 chapter leaders

PEAK Delaware Valley

Nicole Saunders, Connelly Foundation

Linda Musumeci, American Philosophical Society

PEAK Florida

Ashley Heath, United Way Suncoast

Fernanda Kuchkarian, Health Foundation of South Florida

PEAK Greater Washington, DC 

Andrew Brown, Eugene and Agnes E. Meyer Foundation

Alecia Parker, Administrative Office of the Courts, Maryland

PEAK Mideast

Kristen Summers, Saint Luke’s Foundation

Sheiron Sanchez, Sisters Health Foundation

PEAK Midwest

Deb Debbaut, Iowa West Foundation

Tara Havlicek, Mitsubishi Electric America Foundation

PEAK Minnesota 

Tracy Lamparty, The Jay & Rose Phillips Family Foundation of Minnesota

Dorothy Wickens, McKnight Foundation

PEAK New England

Lisa Colaninno, The Travelers Companies

Susan Bouchard, Agnes M. Lindsay Trust

Kyrstin Thorson Rogers, Proteus Fund

PEAK Northeast

Paige Granger, The Rockefeller Foundation

Indya Hartley, The ELMA Philanthropies Services

PEAK Northern California

Tamara Radcliffe, Sobrato Family Foundation

Debra White, California Humanities

PEAK Pacific Northwest

Alisha Templeton, The Ford Family Foundation

Jody Marshall, Meyer Memorial Trust

Alexia Cameron, Medina Foundation

PEAK Rocky Mountain 

Kelly Costello, Temple Hoyne Buell Foundation

Kelli Rojas, Rose Community Foundation

PEAK Southeast

Amy Hall, Georgia Power Foundation

Jenny Morgan, Robert W. Woodruff Foundation

PEAK Southern California 

Christina Thompson, The California Endowment

Nicole Larsen, The Ralph M. Parsons Foundation

PEAK Southwest

Hannah Rabalais, Kleinert Foundation

Mallory Womble, American Jewish World Service 

See the full slate of 2020 chapter officers at