Appalachian Funders Network 2011 Gathering Proceedings paper


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Appalachian Funders Network 2011 Gathering Proceedings paper

  1. 1. Appalachia Funders Network2011 Gathering ProceedingsAppalachia Funders Network:Learning, Analysis, Collaboration2011 GatheringCharleston, West VirginiaJune 7-8, 2011
  2. 2. Appalachia Funders Network 2011 Gathering Proceedings Appalachia Funders Network The Appalachia Funders Network is a group of public and private grant-makers committed to fostering the development of an Ap- palachian economy grounded in existing assets and characterized by opportunity, diversity, and sustainability. Our work is focused in Central Appalachia, the region defined as the Appalachian counties of Ohio, Kentucky, West Virginia, Tennessee, Virginia, and North Carolina. Our ultimate goal is to ensure that Appalachia sustains its environment and culture, while bringing increased prosperity to the people and communities of the Region. The Gathering Over two days in June 2011, 62 people representing 52 organiza- tions working in Appalachia took part in the Appalachia Funders Network Gathering in Charleston, West Virginia. The Gathering included a day of learning about promising efforts and ideas, followed by a day of working together to increase collaboration among funders working in Central Appalachia. At the end of the gathering, we had a set of concrete strategies and innovations related to increasing collaboration among funders to build oppor- tunities for sustainable economic development in the Region. We plan to move forward on these strategies and innovations over the coming year and beyond.Appalachia Funders Network—2011 Gathering Proceedings ii
  3. 3. Executive Summary The gathering began with two keynote presentations. Earl Gohl, Fed- eral Co-Chairman of the Appalachian Regional Commission, empha- sized the importance of foundations, of the Appalachia Funders Net- work, and of collaboration among funders. Dr. Alison Davis of the University of Kentucky then presented data related to Appalachia’s economy, and outlined a framework for investing in infrastructure, civic engagement, leadership development, access to quality health care and education, and natural and built amenities as a sustainable way to transition to a new economy. We then participated in breakout sessions on the following topics: wealth creation in rural communi- ties, entrepreneurship, local food systems, health, energy, and exam- ples of increased impact through cross-sector partnerships. After these learning opportunities, we engaged in participatory exercises and group work focusing on understanding and planning for collabora- tion among funders. We laid out the process of collaboration: the prereq- uisites for collaboration, the process of collaboration, and the products of collaboration. We brainstormed the barriers to collaboration that we face as funders: philanthropic culture, capacity to collaborate, differences among funders, limited relationships, and a lack of a collective vision. Participants then identified five strategies for collaboration to build upon the successes of the Network to date, which included: • Identify and map philanthropic resources—to seek commonalities and discover partnerships. • Cultivate strong relationships—that provide the foundation for ef- fective collaboration. • Find common interests among organizational self interests—determine what value each organization will gain from collaboration. • Develop a common vision—frame a common set of goals among participating organizations. • Continue to develop the Appalachia Funders Network—recognize the importance of this effort. The Appalachian Funders Network will build on these strategies by im- plementing four innovations for collaboration, all of which are designed to help advance an agenda for sustainable economic development for a Region undergoing significant economic transition. We closed with a discussion of concrete next steps for making these innovations a reality.Appalachia Funders Network—2011 Gathering Proceedings iii
  4. 4. Contents Opportunities in Appalachia: Keynote Presentations .............................................................. 1 Opportunities in Appalachia ...........................................................1 The State of the Appalachian Economy .........................................2 Strengthening Appalachian Economies: Pre-Conference and Breakout Sessions .................................... 4 Wealth Creation in Rural Communities ..........................................4 Entrepreneurship .............................................................................4 Local Food Systems ..........................................................................5 Health ...............................................................................................5 Energy ...............................................................................................6 Increased Impact Through Cross-Sector Partnership .....................6 What’s Next in Philanthropy: Participatory Exercises and Group Work.................................. 7 The Process of Collaboration...........................................................7 Barriers to Collaboration .................................................................8 Strategies for Collaboration ..........................................................10 Innovations for Collaboration .......................................................12 Next Steps and Closing ........................................................... 14 Participating Funders .............................................................. 16 About the Appalachia Funders Network ............................... 17Appalachia Funders Network—2011 Gathering Proceedings iv
  5. 5. Keynote Presentations The first day of the gathering centered on promising ideas and ef- forts being developed and implemented to pave the way towards new economic opportunity. The gathering began with two keynote presentations that set the stage for the rest of our work. Later in the afternoon, smaller groups participated in breakout sessions on top- ics that members of the network had previously identified. The two keynote presentations are outlined below, followed by summaries of pre-conference and breakout sessions. Opportunities in Appalachia: A Federal Perspective Earl F. Gohl, Federal Co-Chair, Appalachian Regional Commission Earl Gohl began his presentation by emphasizing the importance of foundations in Appalachia’s transition to a new economy. He also emphasized the importance of the Appalachia Funders Network. He encouraged us to take our work to the next level by becoming more flexible, by collaborating more, and by stretching beyond our comfort zone. “This network is key,” he told us. “The more we strengthen it, the more we can make it work, the more we can make it a part of our “The more we active daily life, the better we’re all going to be.” collaborate, the Gohl called attention to the incredible richness in human capital stronger we make available across Appalachia, the countless people working each day to improve local communities across the region. He stated that our our networks, the challenge as funders is to figure out “how to energize the people, greater we will see a how to get them to push the envelope.” return on the capital Gohl told the story of a relatively small seed investment made by investments that we the Appalachian Regional Commission (ARC) in a community college’s communications system. From ARC’s seed grant, this make in the region.” communications system has grown into a multi-million dollar — Earl Gohl, Federal operation. His message for us was that “you don’t need to be the Co-Chair, Appalachian biggest funder in town to make a difference.” He also suggested Regional Commission that funders be patient, creative, and flexible—not to have all the answers, but to have all the right questions.Appalachia Funders Network—2011 Gathering Proceedings 1
  6. 6. Other aspects of Gohl’s presentation offered insight into some of the lessons learned through ARC initiatives. Among these is the impor- tance of treating innovative projects as a business investment. He urged funders “to take smart risks, to take a chance, to believe in the community; don’t just take the easy projects.” Gohl also recognized the importance of beginning to ask, “What do we, as funders, get in return for this investment?” Gohl’s keynote presentation set the tone for the rest of the confer- ence. He closed by stressing the need for collaborative partnerships within and beyond the Appalachia Funders Network: “The more we collaborate, the stronger we make our networks, the greater we will see a return on the capital investments that we make in the region.” A video of Earl Gohl’s keynote presentation can be found at: The State of the Appalachian Economy Alison F. Davis, PhD, Executive Director, Community and Eco- nomic Development Initiative of Kentucky and Associate Professor, Department of Agricultural Economics, University of Kentucky Dr. Davis began by outlining some of the challenges that we face. Appalachia has the lowest graduation rates, the highest disabil- ity rates, and the highest concentration of poverty in the US. The region also has a relative per capita income between 38% and 75% of the US average. Despite these challenges, there are several ways we can help Appala- chia transition to a new economy. One is to focus on long-term invest- ments in local communities (e.g., healthcare, education) rather than on spending (e.g., disability, welfare). We can also attract new businesses or industry by investing in people and making our communities more livable. Access to capital for small business development and inad- equate healthcare are major challenges in rural Appalachia and are disincentives for economic growth. Finally, regional opportunities for development and growth can be particularly effective and promising.Appalachia Funders Network—2011 Gathering Proceedings 2
  7. 7. Dr. Davis noted that in most Appalachian states, new jobs are more likely to come from existing business that grew or expanded rather than from new businesses. She also described patterns across Appa- lachia over the past ten years where high-paying manufacturing jobs have declined, to be replaced by growth in the other sectors. The larg- est economic growth across Appalachia has been in financial services, education and health services, and professional and business services. Dr. Davis closed with a framework for moving forward. She sug- gested that we invest in infrastructure, civic engagement, leadership development, access to quality health care and education, and natu- ral and built amenities—before we expect the jobs to come. This approach is not splashy, but it’s sustainable. The slides from Dr. Davis’s presentation can be viewed at the Appala- chia Funders Network’s website: http://www.appalachiafunders.orgAppalachia Funders Network—2011 Gathering Proceedings 3
  8. 8. Learning Opportunities: Pre-Conference and Breakout Sessions Wealth Creation in Rural Communities (Pre-Conference Session) Shanna Ratner, Yellow Wood Associates Wealth creation is a framework for understanding economic devel- opment that focuses on creating multiple forms of wealth that stick in local communities. It aims to create individual, social, intellec- tual, natural, built, political, and financial capital. Wealth creation focuses on strengthening value chains, supply chains that include producers, processors and distributors, and buyers. Wealth creation emphasizes using a systems approach to intentionally connect peo- ple, resources, and markets; making investments that create multi- ple forms of wealth; and developing new models of local ownership and control of investments and returns. Entrepreneurship Dr. Deborah Markley, RUPRI Center for Rural Entrepreneurship This breakout session highlighted a systems approach to promoting entrepreneurship across Appalachia. We need to foster an entrepre- neurial culture that has the ability to continually invest and adapt to new opportunities and challenges. To move towards this new culture, we need to change our conversations from traditional ways of doing business to a value chain approach, as outlined in the wealth crea- tion framework above. With a focus on helping entrepreneurs build businesses, not just start them, and providing evaluative tools to help measure successes and challenges along the way, we can bring about prosperity in Appalachia through entrepreneurial efforts.Appalachia Funders Network—2011 Gathering Proceedings 4
  9. 9. Local Food Systems Emerging Systems: Pam Curry, Marilyn Wrenn, and Carrie Traud, Central Appalachian Network Established Systems: Michelle Decker, Kathlyn Terry, Leslie Schaller, and Carrie Traud, Central Appalachian Network These sessions featured both emerging and established local food sys- tems from various regions across Appalachia. In each session, members of the Central Appalachian Network (CAN) reinforced the importance of developing local food systems as a means to improve quality of life, heal the land, and create wealth in rural Appalachian communi- ties. As a network, CAN is currently focusing on strengthening local food value chains. In local food systems, a value chain links supply (e.g., farmers) with markets (e.g., food buyers such as restaurants and supermarkets) through processing, aggregation, and distribution infra- structure and systems (e.g., from community kitchens to multinational food processing and / or distribution companies). The wealth creation framework (as outlined above) can provide a planning and measure- ment tool for strengthening local food value chains. Health Dr. Alison Davis, Community & Economic Development Initiative of Kentucky and U. of Kentucky Dr. Sarah Kercsmar, Kentucky Center for Smoke-Free Policy Ben Epperson, Healthy Kids, Healthy Communities Program of the Knox County Health Department Mary Witten Wiseman, Foundation for the Tri-State Community Presenters described an array of initiatives undertaken in Appala- chia to improve health in the region. Once again, the importance of systems change drove the conversation, which focused on learning how to link the public, private, and nonprofit sectors to address the underlying causes of poor health. Efforts to focus on systems change seek to build participation, encourage new participants, honor diversity, create shared vision and values, and build collabo- rations that utilize the assets and resources of the community. The establishment of benchmarks for progress and the measurement of results are a crucial element of this approach.Appalachia Funders Network—2011 Gathering Proceedings 5
  10. 10. Energy Jeff Fugate, Mountain Association for Community Economic Development (MACED) This presentation explored the challenges and opportunities that the energy sector offers to the Appalachian region in job creation and environmental stewardship. Two recent factors, the structural decline of coal and rising energy costs, have helped energy efficiency and renewable energy emerge as a potential economic growth sector. The presentation highlighted innovative programs and policy opportuni- ties for advancing the sector and creating jobs. By strengthening the energy efficiency and renewable energy value chain, Appalachia has an opportunity to benefit from rising residential, industrial, and com- mercial demand for renewable energy technology. Increased Impact Through Cross-Sector Partnerships Becky Ceperley, Greater Kanawha Valley Foundation Nelle Chilton, Greater Kanawha Valley Foundation Henry Harmon, Triana Energy Eric Morris, BB&T Rosemary Wagner, Region 7 Planning & Development Council Mike Masterton, Extreme Endeavors Dale Hawkins, Fish Hawk Acres, New Appalachian Farm & Research Center Members of this panel described cross-sector partnerships that have led to strong results in their target areas. The panel presentation and discussion offered gathering participants an inside look at how a business development initiative requires collaboration from enti- ties on multiple levels. In one panel, representatives from Charles- ton, West Virginia presented an overview of The New Charleston Initiative, a cross-sector collaborative focused on strengthening multiple sectors in the community at once. In the discussion part of the panel, we learned more about the process, successes, and chal- lenges of the different cross-sector collaborative efforts. * The presentation materials from each breakout session above, along with other resources are available at the Appalachia Funders Network’s website: http://www.appalachiafunders.orgAppalachia Funders Network—2011 Gathering Proceedings 6
  11. 11. What’s Next in Philanthropy: Participatory Exercises and Group Work The second day of the gathering was structured to engage network members in participatory exercises and group work focusing on understanding and planning for collaboration among funders. We worked with our peers to discuss barriers to collaboration, identify strategies to overcome those barriers, and brainstorm innovative actions based on these strategies. After the gathering, Rural Support Partners, the coordinators of the Appalachia Funders Network, analyzed the data from the gathering to summarize our collective understanding. The following summary is based on, and uses wording from, ideas generated at the gathering. The Process of Collaboration We began with an exercise to take a deeper look at the process of col- laboration and what it takes to collaborate. Each person was given a piece of a puzzle. To complete the puzzle, we had to find people with the other pieces to the puzzle. In the exercise, as in real life, everyone held an important piece of the puzzle; people needed to discover the others who had pieces of the puzzle that they lacked; and people had to navigate the human collaborative experience to make the puzzle whole. Participants offered the following reflections: The Prerequisites for Collaboration • Collective vision and goal—What are we trying to do together? • Information—What information do we have? What information are we missing? • Collaborators—Who are the people we need to collaborate with? • Puzzle piece—What is the piece of the larger puzzle that we each know and have to offer? The Process of Collaboration • Starts complicated—The beginning is slow, messy, and uncoordinated. • Is diverse and unique—There are many ways to collaborate. • Draws out personal gifts and roles—We begin to clarify our own and others’ role in the process.Appalachia Funders Network—2011 Gathering Proceedings 7
  12. 12. • Takes leadership—Individuals are needed to drive the process toward a collective goal. • Demands curiosity and innovation—What do we need, and how and where do we find it? • Gets easier—From chaos comes order. The Products of Collaboration • Common vision and goal—This is the finished product. • Strong relationships—Relationships are based on communication, trust, and respect. • Clarification of roles and gifts—We identify what each person and organization brings to the table. • Satisfaction of working as a group—We all realize that none of us could have done it alone. • Opportunity to celebrate—It’s not easy, but it’s worth it. Barriers to Collaboration Following the puzzle exercise outlined above, we examined the system of philanthropy to identify major barriers to collaboration. The barri- ers that we lifted up highlighted problems with the system of institu- tional philanthropy and can be clustered into the following categories: Philanthropic culture. Several aspects within the culture of institu- tional philanthropy limit collaboration among funders: • Bureaucracy. Institutional structures related to funding, federal regulations, internal regulations, and politics all work together to create the complex, rigid system in which we work. • Competition. We talked about competition among foundations for donors, a go-it-alone mentality among funders, and the com- petitive nature of our culture and economy. • Risk aversion. Pressures for short-term gains, fear of risk, the pre- dominance of short-term visions, and a lack of patience for investing in long-term visions make it hard to commit to long-term goals. Capacity to collaborate. Certain capacities are needed to collabo- rate, and these are not well-developed in our field: • Time. How do we collaborate when we’re all overwhelmed, when we just don’t have the time?Appalachia Funders Network—2011 Gathering Proceedings 8
  13. 13. • Money. Collaboration will cost money. Money is in short supply. Where will the money come from? • Education and information. We need information about network practices and targets for collaboration, and we need education on how to build collaborative skills. • Leadership. If we are to collaborate, we need to identify the peo- ple who will be leaders in this effort. • Measurement. The lack of shared analysis or evaluation systems is a barrier to collaboration. • Technology. We lack technological tools and infrastructure needed to collaborate effectively. Differences among funders. Differences in geography, culture, organizational practices, and local needs create barriers to collabo- ration. We lifted up two major points here: • Diverse funding priorities. The diversity of need in the areas that we serve results in programs and services that vary in purpose and scale. Individual funding priorities and internal grant-making systems also differ among funders. • Varying roles, skills, and assets. Individual organizations vary in their strengths and capacities. Limited relationships. A relative lack of meaningful relationships and trust among funders is a barrier to collaboration. Within this barrier, two key points emerged: • Lack of trust. A lack of trust among funders results from a lack of opportunities to build relationships, negative experiences from previ- ous collaborations, and the competitive culture in which we work. • Communication. The ability to communicate is a skill that is built over time. Lack of a common language, interpersonal and organi- zational differences, and an unwillingness to have the necessary hard conversations all add to the barrier of communication. Lack of a collective vision. The absence of a collective vision is an obvious barrier to collaborative work: • Lack of a road map. We lack a shared understanding of where we’re going and how we’ll get there; we lack a road map for achieving collective impact across Appalachia. • Lack of common ground. We need common ground, a common narrative, and common vision.Appalachia Funders Network—2011 Gathering Proceedings 9
  14. 14. Strategies for Collaboration Following our discussion of barriers to collaboration, we worked in small groups to formulate strategies to effectively work beyond and through these barriers. When we looked across all of our reflections, we found that our various ideas cluster coherently into the five strate- gies outlined below. Strategy 1: Identify and map philanthropic resources We plan to identify the purpose, interests, priorities, programs, capacities, skills, expertise, and assets of various funders that are operating in Central Appalachia. The idea is to map who is doing what across the region, seek commonalities among funders, and discover potential partners for collaboration. Concretely, this means creating a map of the philanthropic assets across the region by iden- tifying individual foundations’ funding priorities; identifying skills, expertise, and assets of individual foundations; and identifying com- mon interests among grant-makers. Strategy 2: Cultivate strong relationships As funders, we will carve out the time and space to share informa- tion with one another, develop stronger relationships, and build trust. By communicating with one another and sharing information, we can build the relationships and trust that are necessary to collab- orate effectively. Concretely, cultivating strong funder relationships includes convening in both formal and informal settings, learning from one another and sharing information, and setting a standard for communication. Strategy 3: Find common interests among our individual organizational self-interests If we’re going to work together, we need to be clear how any potential collaboration fits with the self-interest of our individual funding organizations. As potential collaborators, each of us needs to acknowledge, clarify, and name our organizational self-interest. We need to ask ourselves questions such as, “What value will I get from this transaction? For the amount of time and money that I put in, what will I get back?” We then need to find common interests among our individual organizational self-interests.Appalachia Funders Network—2011 Gathering Proceedings 10
  15. 15. Strategy 4: Develop a common vision In order to collaborate, we need to know what we are working towards. We need to develop a common vision and a common set of goals among Appalachian funders. Each of our grant-making organizations can continue to work autonomously, but we can also make sure that our individual efforts are aligned and strategically coordinated so that they add up to have significant collective impact across our region. A common vision implies that each of us will both offer and receive something as we work together towards a common purpose. Strategy 5: Continue to develop the Appalachia Funders Network We recognize the importance of continuing to develop the Appalachia Funders Network. This network is essential for strengthening relation- ships and building trust among grant-makers, disseminating useful information to grant-makers so that we all stay on the same page, and fostering coordination and collaboration. We may want to hire a coordinator and ask that coordinator to gather information, map as- sets, and help with strategic planning. Ultimately we need to engage in collective work to tackle issues that we prioritize as a group.Appalachia Funders Network—2011 Gathering Proceedings 11
  16. 16. Innovations for Collaboration After developing the strategies outlined above, we used these strategies to brainstorm innovative, concrete actions for moving beyond barriers to collaboration. The innovations we generated are outlined below. Innovation 1: Appreciative inquiry The goal of this innovation is to use an appreciative inquiry process to map funders’ assets, identify common interests, and develop a com- mon vision. Appreciative inquiry aims to discover that which is best and most alive in people, organizations, and the systems in which they operate. We envision designing an appreciative inquiry process and conducting interviews with network members. If we did this, we could have clarity on our common interests and common vision; we would begin naturally forming alliances; and we would develop collective ac- tion items with the financial resources needed to implement them. Innovation 2: Self-interest map The goal of this innovation is to identify the common interests among us that point to the most promising opportunities for collective im- pact. Concretely, we envision creating a map of the individual organi- zational self-interests among network members and then identifying convergence points for common interests. We then envision negotiat- ing shared strategies and measures for collective impact. If we did this, we would identify individual foundation capacities and com- mon interests among us. We would have clear strategies for collective impact. By working collectively, we would deepen and expand our impact and have the potential to inform policy. Innovation 3: for Appalachia Funders Network This innovation would be a website for funders focusing on Appa- lachia, a website similar to (an online dating website). The website we are envisioning would be a confidential web-based communication and collaboration tool for funders to exchange information, align resources and targets, and identify common in- terests. To make this a reality, we would need to find an appropriate technological tool, get technical assistance, and have commitment from network members to use and maintain the site. If we did this, we would have a space for sending out nascent project ideas, best practices, and evaluations of successful efforts.Appalachia Funders Network—2011 Gathering Proceedings 12
  17. 17. Innovation 4: Shared targets In this innovation, a group within the network would develop shared targets for strengthening rural Appalachia. The goal is to de- velop a common vision for our work across the region, to align and coordinate our work even as we continue to operate autonomously. We will develop ways to share what everyone in the network is doing. We will also develop mechanisms for sharing learning, best practices, and ideas for taking our work to scale. Finally, we will find funding support for developing shared systems of measure- ment. If we did this, we would see more effective and collaborative practices, better use of the resources that we have, and increased resources coming into the region. Bringing the innovations together The innovations above are interrelated. They all aim to develop a common set of interests and a common vision. They could also po- tentially fit together coherently. Concretely, an appreciative inquiry process could provide the information to develop a self-interest map of individual and common interests among network members. This could be maintained through a website similar to and used to identify shared targets and future collaborative efforts among network members.Appalachia Funders Network—2011 Gathering Proceedings 13
  18. 18. Next Steps and Closing Next steps We closed this gathering with a conversation about next steps for the network: • Continuing to host webinars throughout the year, which are a good way to get information and make connections, “It’s exciting to see • Continuing to meet physically once a year, the common interests • Having some funders-only conversations about our work together, • Figuring out ways for more of our board members to become among a diverse involved in the network, and • Looking for ways to implement the strategies and innovations set of funders. Our outlined above—an appreciative inquiry process and self-interest challenge now is map seem like logical first steps. to translate those common interests In closing into action to This was a different kind of conference. As in most conferences, we learned new information and made connections with one another. advance Appalachian But we also envisioned some new ways of working together in a transition.” coherent, coordinated, strategic way to support the transition to a new economy in Appalachia. — Sandra Mikush, Deputy Director, Mary We talked about barriers that make it hard for us to collaborate, then Reynolds Babcock Foundation we thought of ideas to overcome those barriers. We came up with some practical, feasible, doable ways that we can work together. Now we need to commit the time and money to make them a reality. As Earl Gohl told us when he opened the conference, “The more we collaborate, the stronger we make our networks, the greater we will see a return on the capital investments that we make in the region.” And as a member of our network commented in our dialogue about collaboration, “It isn’t easy, but it’s worth it.” Both of these statements ring true. It won’t be easy to develop a com- mon vision and coordinated set of strategies. We know that the process of getting there will be challenging, perplexing, messy, and slow.Appalachia Funders Network—2011 Gathering Proceedings 14
  19. 19. But we also know that it will be worth it. We realize that the scale and complexity of the challenges facing our communities require that we look to each other, and to other entities and sectors beyond this network, to pull together and catalyze enough resources to make progress on our vision of supporting the transition to a new economy in Appalachia. None of us can do it alone. We will have to work together. We can learn about each other’s priorities and assets, we can align and co- ordinate our independent efforts and actions, and we can continue to build and strengthen this network. By working together, with a common vision and a coordinated ap- proach, we believe that we can play a meaningful role in shaping Appalachia’s transition to a new, more sustainable, more locally prosperous economy.Appalachia Funders Network—2011 Gathering Proceedings 15
  20. 20. Participating Funders Appalachian Community Fund: Margo Miller Appalachian Regional Commission: Earl Gohl, Ralph Goolsby, Tom Hunter, Ray Daffner, BB&T Bank: Eric Morris blue moon fund: Stefan Jirka Cherokee Preservation Foundation: Dr. Susan Jenkins Claude Worthington Benedum Foundation: Mary Hunt-Lieving Community Foundation of Hazard & Perry County: Gerry Roll Eastern West Virginia Community Foundation: Amy Owen Federal Home Loan Bank of Pittsburgh: Laura Rye Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond: Jen Giovannitti Foundation for a Healthy Kentucky: Mary Jo Dike Foundation for Appalachian Ohio: Cara Brook, Joy Padgett, Michael Workman Foundation for the Tri-State Community: Mary Witten Wiseman Governor’s Office of Appalachia (OH): Karen Fabiano Heifer USA: Jeffrey Scott Kentucky Foundation for Women: Judi Jennings Kentucky Philanthropy Initiative: Mike Hammons Marguerite Casey Foundation: James Carlton Mary Reynolds Babcock Foundation: Dee Davis, Sandra Mikush Mylan Charitable Foundation: Christina Matlick New York Community Trust: Patricia Anne Swain Parkersburg Area Community Foundation & Regional Affiliates: Judy Sjostedt Region VII Planning and Development Council (WV): Rosemary Wagner Scioto Foundation: Kimberly Cutlip, Anne Marie Riffe Sugar Bush Foundation: Dr. Mary Anne Flourney The Allegheny Foundation: Mary Fant Donnan, Ava Fitzpatrick The Greater Kanawha Valley Foundation: Becky Ceperley, Nelle Ratrie Chilton, Rebecca Roth, Sheri Ryder, Ron Potesta The Ford Foundation: Wayne Fawbush Triana Energy Charitable Fund: William Henry Harmon U.S. Endowment for Forestry & Communities: Alan McGregor USDA Rural Development (WV): Bobby Lewis, Lisa Sharp West Virginia Development Office: James Bush West Virginia Grantmakers: Paul DaughertyAppalachia Funders Network—2011 Gathering Proceedings 16
  21. 21. About the Appalachia Funders Network The Appalachia Funders Network (The Network) is a group of public and private grant-makers committed to fostering the development of an Appalachian economy grounded in existing assets and characterized by opportunity, diversity, and sustainability. Our work is focused in Central Appalachia, the region defined as the Appalachian counties of Ohio, Kentucky, West Virginia, Tennessee, Virginia, and North Carolina. The current convergence of economic innovation, federal policy initiatives, expanded regional capacity, and regional and national funder interest offers unprecedented opportunities to • Deepen the impact and expand the scale of existing development efforts, • Support new innovative approaches to building wealth within the region, and • Leverage existing resources to further support Appalachia’s eco- nomic transition. Members of the Network have come together, in this time of eco- nomic, social, political, and environmental transition in Appalachia, for the purposes of • Strengthening relationships among grant-makers, • Expanding our knowledge and understanding of promising initiatives, • Fostering coordination and collaboration between funding organi- zations, and • Investing in high-impact opportunities. The ultimate goal of the Network is to ensure that Appalachia sus- tains its environment and culture, while bringing empowerment and increased prosperity to the people and communities of the region. Contact us: appalachiafundersnetwork@gmail.comAppalachia Funders Network—2011 Gathering Proceedings 17
  22. 22. Appalachia Funders Network Steering Committee • Becky Ceperley, The Greater Kanawha Valley Foundation • Ray Daffner, Appalachian Regional Commission • Wayne Fawbush, Ford Foundation • Terry Holley, East Tennessee Foundation • Mary Hunt-Lieving, Claude Worthington Benedum Foundation • Stefan Jirka, blue moon fund • Sandra Mikush, Mary Reynolds Babcock Foundation Appalachia Funders Network Coordinator Rural Support Partners Thomas Watson, Executive Director 775 Haywood Road, Suite K Asheville, NC 28806 Email: Web: This paper was developed and written by Rural Support Partners and published with assistance and funding from the members of the Appalachia Funders Network.Appalachia Funders Network—2011 Gathering Proceedings 18
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