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Coffee and Conversation: Nonprofit Advocacy

Friday, August 18, 2017 9:30 am - 11:00 am  ET
In-person | Cleveland, OH

How does an organization begin to get involved in advocacy? What are the do's and don'ts? What are the best and most effective ways for nonprofits to advocate for their causes?  Join nonprofit and foundation representatives for a lively discussion of nonprofit advocacy today.

Today, thousands of nonprofits are discovering that advocacy can be part of a wining strategy towards meeting mission and solving social, economic and environmental issues in their communities. While emphasis has generally been placed on fundraising or growing membership; advocacy is consistently emerging as an essential component to being a successful nonprofit.  Here in Northeast Ohio, across the region and throughout the U.S. nonprofits are building their capacity in advocacy, identifying opportunities for alignment between their mission, local, state and federal policy, and sharpening their storytelling to bring voice and perspective to the issues that impact the people and communities that care for deeply.  

In parallel, foundations are embracing and investing more heavily in advocacy through grantmaking, collaboration, strategic partnerships; recognizing too that advocacy and policy change are instrumental towards tackling some of the BIG issues that foundations seek to solve. 

Foundation Center Midwest Director Teleange' Thomas will moderate a discussion of nonprofit advocacy.  Panelists include:

About the panelists:


Daniel Cohn moved to Cleveland a little more than two years ago after nearly 10 years of city-hopping along the east coast. He currently serves as Program Officer with the Mt. Sinai Health Care Foundation, where we develops and executes grantmaking strategies in community health and health policy. Before his return to Cleveland, Dan was Assistant Director of Cornell University's Center for Engaged Learning + Research, where he helped faculty and students channel their academic interests toward meeting community needs. He also worked in Boston and D.C. on issues related to food insecurity and economic development. His academic background is in public health and ethics, and he has spent a good deal of time facilitating workshops on racial identity development, racial micro-aggressions, and anti-racist practice for people throughout Upstate NY. In his spare time, he enjoys teaching yoga, sipping lattes, and holding friends’ hands while they get tattoos.


Marcia Egbert is The George Gund Foundation’s senior program officer for human services. Prior to joining the Foundation in 1998, she was vice president of the National Urban Policy Institute, a social policy analysis and lobbying firm in Columbus, Ohio. She also served as government relations director for the Cuyahoga County Commissioners and worked for the speaker of the Ohio House of Representatives.  She is active in a number of local, state and national organizations of grantmakers including the Early Childhood Funders Collaborative, Grantmakers Income Security Task Force; Funders Network on Reproductive Health and Rights, and the Public Policy Committee of Philanthropy Ohio. She is also a founding board member of the Health Policy Institute of Ohio. Egbert is a two-time alumna of The Ohio State University, having received both B.A. and J.D. degrees from that institution.


Amy Hanauer is the founding executive director of Policy Matters Ohio, which creates a more equitable, vibrant and inclusive Ohio through research, coalition building and policy advocacy. She has a master’s of public administration from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and a B.A. from Cornell University. Before starting Policy Matters in 2000, Amy did research and policy work in Wisconsin, Colorado and Washington D.C. In addition to running Policy Matters, Amy does research on work, wages, tax policy, energy policy and other issues. Amy is vice chair of the board of directors of the national think tank Demos, and serves on governing bodies for the national Economic Analysis and Research Network (EARN), and the national State Priorities Partnership. She also helps steer some economic vitality efforts in Cleveland. In America’s most important swing state, Amy provides a passionate voice about how to make an economy that works for all.


Judy Wright’s career has spanned the fields of community organizing, education and philanthropy, always with a focus on advancing social justice. Currently Judy serves as the Director for the Ohio Transformation Fund, a collaborative fund developed by national and local funders to make structural changes in Ohio's criminal justice system in order to improve safety and health in Ohio's communities. Most recently, Judy served as Program Officer for the Brush Foundation, a private family foundation focused on reproductive health, rights, and justice based in Cleveland, Ohio.Judy graduated from Northwestern University with a B.S., cum laude, in Education and Social Policy and earned a M.Ed at Cleveland State University with a focus on Adult Learning and Development. With an interest in popular education and transformational learning, Judy has conducted field research in Chicago, Cleveland, and Bolivia. Her research on popular education in Cochabamba, Bolivia, served as the basis for several published articles and presentations. Judy’s volunteer commitments include being a founder of the Cleveland Colectivo, a local giving circle committed to supporting innovative projects in the Cleveland area, the Board President of the Brush Foundation, and Social Action Chair at Beth Israel - the West Temple. Judy lives in Lakewood, Ohio, with her husband, Walter, and their children, Lila and Iris.

Space is limited.  Register using the links below or by calling 216-861-1933 x325. 


2235 East 55th Street
Cleveland, OH 44115



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