Updates from the Weingart Foundation

Message from Our Board Chair, Monica Lozano

As chair of the Board of the Weingart Foundation, I invite you to view this video for an update on the search process for the next President and C.E.O.of the Weingart Foundation.

As we’ve shared, the Board is committed to conducting a search process that is transparent and inclusive. For that reason, we retained Koya Partners’ Managing Director, Michelle Bonoan, to lead the search on our behalf. We feel that the input from board, staff, and external stakeholders are fully represented in the President and C.E.O. Candidate Profile which you can find here.

Webinar: You’re Invited to Learn More about Demographics via Candid

The Weingart Foundation is a proud supporter of Demographics via Candid. This initiative enables nonprofits to share their demographic data one time on their Candid profile, where it can be accessed and reviewed in an open and transparent way for all users with the consent of non-profit participants.

Join us on March 12, 2024 at 11am PST for a webinar featuring

  • Ann Mei Chang, CEO, Candid
  • Dr. Akilah Watkins, President and CEO, Independent Sector
  • Cat Clerkin, Ph.D., Associate Vice President of Research & Insights, Candid
  • Joyce Ybarra, Interim Vice President, Programs, Weingart Foundation
  • Huilan Krenn, Director of Learning and Impact, W.K. Kellogg Foundation

The Weingart Foundation Names Dana Henry As Its First Director of Black Justice and Healing

Working with the Weingart Foundation’s Leadership, Henry will manage the Foundation’s strategy to address the generational inequities and racism faced by the Black community in Southern California

February 27, 2024 (Los Angeles, CA) The Weingart Foundation, a private grantmaking foundation that partners with communities across Southern California to advance racial, social, and economic justice, names Dana Henry its first Director of Black Justice and Healing. In this newly created role, Henry will collaborate with community stakeholders, funder colleagues, and public sector partners to lead the Foundation’s extensive work to address the generational inequities and racism faced by the Black community in Southern California and support community-driven solutions for justice and healing.

“Dana Henry is a dynamic and values-driven leader who brings extensive experience working directly with Black-led and serving nonprofit partners to address anti-Black racism,” said Joanna Jackson, interim president and C.E.O. of the Weingart Foundation. “Dana’s unwavering commitment to strengthening pathways for Black leadership and Black-led organizing to advance multiracial movements makes her a tremendous asset to our Black Justice and Healing work.”

Guided by the Weingart Foundation’s mission, Henry’s work strengthens support for Black-led initiatives and organizations that work to dismantle structural racism while increasing overall wellness and joy in Black communities. Specifically, as Director of Black Justice and Healing, Henry co-leads a multi-sector collaborative in Los Angeles County with community-based partners, building upon the recommendations of the Committee for Greater L.A.’s Black Experience Action Team report to improve the material conditions and outcomes of Black Angelenos.

“The Black Justice Healing work is deeply personal to me,” said Dana Henry, Director of Black Justice and Healing at the Weingart Foundation. “The generational harm that racist and unjust systems have caused families like mine serve as a reminder of just how critical it is that we come together to transform these systems and help communities heal. I look forward to building on the strides we’ve made, along with our nonprofit partners, to build opportunities for Black communities to thrive.”

With over 20 years of experience, Henry has dedicated her career to expanding opportunities for Los Angeles’ most vulnerable children, youth and families. She first joined the Weingart Foundation as a Program Officer in 2020, leading the Foundation’s grantmaking and broader funding strategy in South Los Angeles and previously worked with the Weingart Foundation’s partner, Communities In Schools. She holds a bachelor’s degree in American Literature from University of California, Los Angeles.

ABOUT THE WEINGART FOUNDATION
The Weingart Foundation is a private, nonprofit grantmaking foundation that partners with communities across Southern California to advance racial, social, and economic justice for all. Our vision is a dynamic and effective social change sector that is creating equitable systems and structures needed to achieve justice. Founded in 1951, the Foundation has to date granted over $1 billion to organizations, strengthening their efforts in human services, housing, health, education, and community power building. In addition, the Foundation builds networks and collaboratives with philanthropic, public sector, and community leaders to advance equity and justice together.

Reflecting on a Year of Growth and Continued Commitment to Equity

Dear Friends,

As we look back at this year, we reflect on a year of growth and continued commitment to building power and movements for equity and justice throughout Southern California. We are proud to work alongside our nonprofit, philanthropic, and community partners to advance a bold and inclusive agenda for racial justice in our region.

We also recognize that this year has brought tremendous pain, trauma, and violence, both regionally and across the globe. We are proud to stand with our nonprofit partners who welcome people experiencing trauma with open arms and offer support. We stand with all those struggling for freedom, wherever they may be. We stand with all those demanding an end to violence and war. We stand with all those who are calling for peace.

We have significant work before us and much to look forward to in the year ahead. Undergirded by key values of courage, partnership, and trust, we enter the new year with optimism and hope as we build on the progress of 2023.

As we look ahead, we want to take this opportunity to celebrate our nonprofit and impact investment partners. In fiscal year 2023, the Foundation’s grants and impact investments totaled more than $88M – over $38M in grants and $50M in impact investments. Of our 174 grantees, 22% are first time partners. The size of our grants averaged $200K, often a catalytic investment for many emerging community partners.

In this report, we’ve highlighted just a few examples of organizations and funds that are leading critical work that advances equity, inclusion, and justice, especially in communities most impacted by racism. You’ll read about Swap Meet Justice, a coalition of immigrant rights organizations that is bringing an array of services to migrants in Ventura County; Cancel the Contract, a multi-racial coalition aimed at ousting Sheriff deputies from school campus and calling for increased investment in youth programs in the Antelope Valley; and Starting Over, an organization led by formerly incarcerated people addressing the multifaceted needs of people experiencing homelessness in the Inland Empire.

Using our own voices as racial justice leaders, we proudly endorsed the groundbreaking research and report by the California Task Force to Study Reparation Proposals that details the compounding and ongoing harms experienced by Black Californians. As a Foundation committed to addressing structural racism and the legacy of anti-Blackness, long-term investment in Black leadership and organizing in Black communities is a core part of our grantmaking including through collaborations like our $5 million commitment to the California Black Freedom Fund.

We want to thank our partners for their bold and courageous work. We look forward to continuing to build on our progress together in partnership with community leaders, movement builders, and collaboratives to realize a shared vision of a just and equitable Southern California for all.

Together for justice,

Monica Lozano
Board Chair

Joanna Jackson
Interim President and CEO

In Case You Missed It

Earlier this year, we launched our third cohort of the John W. Mack Movement Building Fellows Program. Named after the late civil rights leader and former Weingart Foundation Board Member, the program aims to strengthen and develop current and emerging movement leaders to lead social and racial justice work that results in a more just and equitable Southern California region. You can meet the 2023 Fellows here. We also created a short video about the John W. Mack Movement Building Fellows program featuring some of our fellows and Elisa Sloan Perry, the program’s lead designer and facilitator:

Supporting communities most impacted by systemic racism is a crucial part of our commitment to equity. This Los Angeles Times article by Corie Brown captures how philanthropy is evolving to address systemic inequities: Wealthy L.A. philanthropists loosen grip on donations, shifting money toward social justice.

As part of our series introducing our board members, we recently shared this inspirational video of Dr. Bob Ross where he shares his career journey and why he volunteers with the Weingart Foundation:

Message from Weingart Board Chair, Monica Lozano

Earlier this fall, our former President and C.E.O., Miguel Santana transition into the role of President and C.E.O. of the California Community Foundation, one of our long-standing partners in philanthropy. At the time of his departure, the Board named Joanna Jackson, our VP of Programs, interim-C.E.O. and I am pleased to say that the transition has been a smooth one.

The Weingart Foundation remains steadfast in its commitment to racial justice centering power building, strengthening communities and pursuing equitable and just systems in partnership with you.

Today I’d like to provide an update on the search process for the Weingart Foundation’s next CEO. We are committed to a search process guided by our core values of justice, equity, and service to community.

Our board has met multiple times since Miguel’s departure and after issuing an RFP and interviewing a number of firms, we have contracted with Koya Partners to manage the search on our behalf. We were impressed by their long-standing equity-informed practices, as well as their familiarity with Weingart having worked with us over the past few years. Michelle Bonoan, will be the lead partner for this search.

The board has challenged itself to a process that is inclusive and transparent. We will seek input from staff, grantee partners and community and that input will inform the final C.E.O. profile and how we identify and source candidates.

We pledge to communicate frequently and to share what we’re hearing along the way. We will take the time necessary to ensure we have listened intently, deliberated appropriately, and acted in the best interests of the Foundation. While the final decision lies with the board, we believe this comprehensive and inclusive approach aligns with our values and your expectations of us.

On behalf of the board of directors of the Weingart foundation I thank you for your partnership and look forward to engaging closely with you as we embark on this journey together.

Sincerely,

Monica Lozano
Weingart Board Chair

The Weingart Foundation Advances Racial Justice by Investing Over $9.1M in Social Justice Nonprofits Across Southern California

Funds support organizations building civic and political power in communities most impacted by historic injustice

OCTOBER 16, 2023 (Los Angeles, CA) — The Weingart Foundation, a private grantmaking foundation that partners with communities across Southern California to advance racial justice, awarded $9.1 million to 42 nonprofits that provide direct services, build community power, and promote systems change strategies to meet their missions. In step with the Weingart Foundation’s commitment to support organizations led by Black, Indigenous, and People of Color, 88% of the nonprofits that received grants this cycle are led by BIPOC leaders.

“Through our intentional and ongoing efforts to operationalize our racial justice mission, we are increasingly evolving our grantmaking in support of organizations that are part of larger social justice movement efforts,” said Joanna S. Jackson, interim President and CEO of the Weingart Foundation. “Our partners work intersectionally, across issues and regions, to increase power and justice for historically marginalized communities. From supporting youth organizing to building racial solidarity, we’re proud to stand with our nonprofit partners in our joint efforts to dismantle racist and unjust systems.”

The Weingart Foundation invests in cross-racial solidarity building as part of ongoing efforts to eradicate anti-Black racism. For instance, a number of Weingart’s partners in South LA, a priority region for the Foundation, have a longstanding track record of strengthening relationships between Black and brown communities and organizing these communities to advance justice. This includes Dignity and Power Now, an anchor organization advocating for the reinvestment of public dollars away from the carceral system and into community-based systems of care. Another example of an organization strengthening ties and collaboration between Black and brown communities is the Brotherhood Crusade which works with Black and Latino youth, including young people that are system-involved or living in poverty, and creates more opportunities for young people and their families to thrive.

In an effort to increase investments to Indigenous and Native American communities, the Weingart Foundation made a $1.5M grant over three years to First Nations Development Institute supporting a pooled fund designed to strengthen and bolster tribal organizations and communities in California. In this cycle, the Weingart Foundation also provided grants to Native Americans in Philanthropy to advance equitable philanthropy; California Tribal Families Coalition for advocacy, legal support and coalition building. These efforts are part of an ongoing strategy to deepen the Foundation’s work with Native American organizations.

Also of note, the Weingart Foundation provided a significant investment to 10 organizations led by and serving Asian and Pacific Islander (API) communities. This includes support to the South Asian Network a longstanding Weingart partner that provides programs in domestic violence, health and civil rights; United Cambodian Community that advocates for housing rights in Long Beach’s Cambodia Town; API Equality-LA, one of the few organizations that specifically serves the API LGBTQ community in the Greater LA area; and to the AAPI Equity Alliance, a coalition that includes many Weingart partners, that empowers the AAPI community through civic engagement, capacity building, and policy advocacy.

As these examples show, the majority of Weingart’s partners work on a number of intersectional issues and often in coalition to further their racial justice missions. While many of the Weingart Foundation’s nonprofits partners funded during this cycle are long-standing partners, Weingart program officers continue to foster new relationships as they identify opportunities to further advance racial equity.

“We’re proud to see the tremendous work of our nonprofit partners and their collaborative efforts to advance systemic change in communities most impacted by injustice,” said Monica Lozano, Board Chair of the Weingart Foundation. “We look forward to our continued partnership as we work together to build a more just and inclusive future for Southern California.”

For a full list of the Weingart Foundation’s September grants, please click here.

ABOUT THE WEINGART FOUNDATION
The Weingart Foundation is a private, nonprofit grantmaking foundation that partners with communities across Southern California to advance racial, social, and economic justice for all. Our vision is a dynamic and effective social change sector that is creating equitable systems and structures needed to achieve justice. Founded in 1951, the Foundation has to date granted over $1 billion to organizations, strengthening their efforts in human services, housing, health, education, and community power building. In addition, the Foundation builds networks and collaboratives with philanthropic, public sector, and community leaders to advance equity and justice together.