Tag: The Advisory Board Company

This project is starting a conversation through art

ARTS/CULTURE | Videos of Georgia Avenue community members are being projected into windows as part of the “Crossing the Street” empathy building project. The initiative, funded by the DC Office of Planning and the Kresge Foundation, intends to create conversation between residents in a rapidly gentrifying DC neighborhood. (CityLab, 11/17)

…A workshop offered in conjunction with the installation by the local artist and activist Holly Bass asks participants to consider the question: What does it mean to be a good neighbor in a rapidly changing community?

“When people talk about cultural preservation, they usually mean protecting a building or monument, but I’m more interested in the human side of culture—the vibe of the city, the social values of the people who live here,” Bass said in a statement. Valentine, who’s involved in the local senior center, organizes stroll-and-chat outings to bring folks from different ethnic groups together. “I have an old saying that I wouldn’t go across the street for a program, but I’d go around the world for a relationship,” he says in the video.

The Washington Business Journal released its 2016 Corporate Philanthropy Award winners and we’re happy to announce a few of our own have made the list! (WBJ, 11/17)

– Our members were interviewed for the “Spotlight on corporate social responsibility”:

  • Katy Moore, WRAG’s Managing Director of Corporate Strategy, discusses the job market for CSR professionals.
  • Lindsey Frederic Buss, World Bank Group’s Senior Officer of Community Connections, discusses the Measure4Change program, which helps nonprofits measure the impact of their work.
  • Maritha Gay, Kaiser Permanente’s Senior Director of External Affairs, discusses how a CSR strategy can help improve the health of a community.

– Check out the complete list of top corporate givers.

-Congrats to the WRAG members who ranked in the top 10 by regional giving in the large business category:

1.Wells Fargo
4. Capital One Financial Corporation
6. Northrop Grumman
8. CareFirst BlueCross BlueShield
9. PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP

-Congrats to the WRAG members who ranked in the top 10 by volunteer hours in the large business category:

1.Deloitte LLP
3. IBM Corp
6. Booz Allen Hamilton
7. PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP
8. The Advisory Board Company
9. Capital One Financial Corporation

-Tim Lee, Lever Fund board member, discusses how the Fund finds and invests in the most effective nonprofits – and announces its investment in three D.C.-area organizations. (LinkedIn, 11/17)

-Grantmakers for Effective Organizations launched a new publication to share stories of why organizational culture matters, with input from GEO members and other leaders of grantmaking organizations.

EVENT | The Community Foundation for the National Capital Region is launching a new initiative to create living-wage careers to help low-wage workers in the region. Join them on December 12, 2016 from 8:30 to 11 as they share a new report on the state of middle-skill IT and Healthcare talent in our area. More information here.

Social Sector Job Openings

BUILD Health Challenge Executive Director | de Beaumont Foundation – New!
Director of Development and Communications | Washington Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights and Urban Affairs – New!
Manager of Communications | Do Good Institute, University of Maryland
Brand and Impact Manager | The Community Foundation for the National Capital Region
Senior Advisor | Grantmakers for Effective Organizations
Development Manager | ACT for Alexandria
President & CEO | Delaware Grantmakers Association
Senior Program Manager, Community Benefits | Kaiser Permanente

Hiring? Post your job on WRAG’s job board and get it included in the Daily! Free for members; $60/60 days for non-members. Details here.

Community Calendar
To add an event to WRAG’s community calendar, email Rebekah Seder. Click the image below to access the calendar.

So we can all agree the Wonderbread Factory looks pretty cool, but did you know the story behind it’s architecture


Friday roundup – Feb. 16 through Feb. 20, 2015

– Rachel Tappis, the associate director of community impact for The Advisory Board Company, gave us some insight into what she has learned so far as a participant in the Institute for Corporate Social Responsibility, and why she can’t wait for the next session. (Daily, 2/19)

– The Washington Business Journal features a profile of each of this year’s Minority Business Leader Awards honorees. Congratulations to Rosie Allen-Herring of United Way of the National Capital Area, Terri Copeland of PNC, and WRAG Board member, Debbi Jarvis of Pepco, on a well-deserved honor! (WBJ, 2/20)

– In her latest post, WRAG president Tamara Copeland shared some great news concerning the Community Wealth Building Initiative (Daily, 2/18)

High-poverty schools need better teachers, but getting them there won’t be easy (GGW, 2/20)

– A new map was released showing the changes in reading proficiency for third graders in the District from 2007-2014 (WCP, 2/19)

– Upon his departure from Montgomery County Public Schools, former Superintendent Joshua Starr gave his thoughts on his time with the district in this exit interview. (WAMU, 2/15)

Metro failed to notify fire officials that radio alarms weren’t working (WaPo, 2/19)

– A government advisory committee has developed new recommendations for American diets that includes eating less processed and red meats to reduce the negative impact on the environment. The Department of Health and Human Services and the Agriculture Department may use the recommendations to inform the next version of their Dietary Guidelines later in the year. (WaPo, 2/19)

Maryland Environmentalists Want to Get Serious About Rising Sea Levels (WAMU, 2/19)

Brown Bag Discussion: Financial Capability, Financial Literacy, and Economic Asset Building (WRAG members)
Monday, February 23, 2015  12:00 PM – 2:00 PM

Funders’ Roundtable of Montgomery County: Investing in Our Neighbors With Special Needs from Cradle to Career (The Funders’ Roundtable is a networking group exclusively for donors, foundations, and companies interested in giving in Montgomery County, MD)
Thursday, February 26, 2015  12:00 PM – 2:00 PM

Find out who police in one city have issued a warrant for in connection with the cold weather. 

– Ciara


Disparities follow many into retirement

We hear a lot of talk about racial wealth disparities among America’s current workforce, but another, less-buzzed about piece of the puzzle is the racial retirement savings gap that is leaving many aging Americans without a safety net. (WaPo, 2/18)

White families had over $100,000 more in average liquid retirement savings in 2013 than African American and Hispanic families, according to an analysis done by the Urban Institute, which released a series of charts illustrating wealth inequality in America. That difference has quadrupled since 1989, when white families had $25,000 more in average retirement savings than minorities.

In terms of ratios, white families went from having five times the average savings held by minorities, to having between seven and 11 times the average amount.

CSR | Rachel Tappis, associate director of community impact at The Advisory Board Company and current Institute of CSR participant, shares why she is already excited for session two in March! (Daily, 2/19)

HOMELESSNESS | Opinion: The New York Times feature, “Room for Debate,” examines multiple approaches to tackling the issue of homelessness through the eyes of leaders and researchers in the field. Here, you can read the perspectives of each debater on how best to approach homeless services. (NYT, 2/19)

More cities have adopted a homeless policy which might seem like common sense – give homeless people housing. Proponents say it saves money over time and is more humane. Opponents call it a naive approach to a complicated problem, which also costs too much.

Is giving homeless people homes more effective and sensible than making them stay in shelters or on the street?

– The Montgomery County Planning Board unanimously voted to bring a 21-unit transitional housing project to Silver Spring, MD. (Gazette, 2/19)

– The District’s Office of GLBT Affairs (newly retitled as the Office of LGBT Affairs), the D.C. Department of Health, along with the help of a private research organization, are joining forces to conduct a comprehensive health survey that seeks to inform health advocacy initiatives geared toward the LBGT community. For the first time, data will also be collected on transgender individuals. (Daily, 1/23 and Washington Blade, 2/18)

Why LGBTQ Seniors Need a Housing Strategy of Their Own (CityLab, 2/18)

– The end of third grade is an integral benchmark for future student success in math and reading. For that reason, the Annie E. Casey Foundation and DC Action for Children’s DC KIDS COUNT project takes a look at the District’s neighborhoods where third graders made the largest gains in reading between 2007 and 2014, and the areas that saw the largest decline. (WCP, 2/19)

– Nation’s high school graduation rate ticks up for second year in a row (WaPo, 2/12) You can also see the 2012 graduation rates for the region.

PHILANTHROPY/NONPROFITS | Grantmakers for Effective Organizations has released their new digital publication, Strengthening Nonprofit Capacity, with guidance for funders on how to design an impactful approach customized to their grantees. (GEO, 2/5)

The Academy Awards are coming up! Someone has sifted through each of this year’s nominations to find out what’s worth watching so you don’t have to. Or maybe you should just watch them all. It’ll be far too cold to go outside anytime soon anyway!

– Ciara

Legal loopholes threaten the rights of tenants in the District

Washington City Paper reveals how loopholes and legal jargon in laws designed to protect residents have continuously threatened the rights of tenants in the District. One law, in particular, is often scrutinized to the benefit of property owners, causing some to fear that tenant rights are slowly crumbling. (WCP, 2/12)

The Tenant Opportunity to Purchase Act, passed in 1980, is at the heart of the District’s efforts to protect tenants from landlords who seek to displace them. The essence of the law is simple: Before an owner sells a building, she or he must give the tenants a chance to buy it themselves. The reality is much more complex. Basic questions of definition—what’s a sale? what’s a fair price?—have taken TOPA (as it’s known) to the courts and back so many times that 35 years after the law’s enactment, still no one really knows what it means.


TOPA isn’t the only area where the city’s well-intentioned housing laws have failed to prevent tenant displacement and rising rents. The core mechanism for fighting these trends is the city’s rent-control law. In theory, it should limit rent increases in apartment buildings constructed before 1975, which comprise the majority of D.C.’s rental housing stock. In practice, due to exceptions built into the law, landlords have capitalized on rising demand by pushing tenants out via lucrative buyouts and replacing them with much higher-paying renters, or by petitioning the city for rent hikes far beyond the usual limits.

But TOPA is the statute whose ambiguities are most routinely plumbed by lawyers, challenged by tenants, and decided by the courts.

– On their blog, the National Committee for Responsive Philanthropy explains why the national Get on the Map campaign, in which WRAG is participating, is critically important for the social sector, and especially so for funders who invest with an equity lens. (NCRP, 2/12)

Related: WRAG members looking for more information on how to participate in Get on the Map to contribute to WRAG’s own Foundation Maps platform can join the first of three “how to” webinars today at 2pm.

Opinion: In an effort to bring greater accessibility and an abundance of opportunities to people around the world, a group of foundations including Open Society, are pledging to become key players in the fight over net neutrality. Here’s why they think more philanthropists should get on board. (Chronicle, 2/11)

Capital One has selected two nonprofits in the District to receive grants as part of their dFund initiative that helps nonprofits encourage clients to become successful in the digital economy (WBJ, 2/12):

Per Scholas will receive $25,000 to develop a training program to help low-to-moderate income adults launch and navigate cybersecurity careers. The Mentoring Center is getting a $75,000 to launch a D.C. chapter of BlackGirlsCode, a non-profit organization focused on introducing programming and technology to a new generation.

– Clean Decisions, a new D.C.-based business co-owned by The Advisory Board Company‘s Graham McLaughlin, is helping returning citizens transition from prison to outside life by connecting them with recurring jobs cleaning kitchens at area businesses. (WCP, 2/10)

NONPROFITSThe World’s Top 10 Most Innovative Companies of 2015 in Not-For-Profit (Fast Company, 2/2015)

FOOD | In the ever-shifting landscape of food retail, a recent Washington Post blog reports that some of our country’s largest food makers are selling less packaged, processed foods in grocery stores. They’re selling more of them to low-income consumers in dollar and discount stores at higher per unit prices. At the same time, DC Central Kitchen offers a guide to improving healthy food offerings at corner stores based on their success in the District. (WaPo, 2/7 and DCCK, 2/11)

ARTS | Check out Washington City Paper‘s 2015 Spring Arts Guide that includes recommendations for museums, theater and much more here. (WCP, 2/2015)

TRANSIT | Maryland is #4 in the nation in transit ridership (GGW, 2/11)

EVENTS | Grants Managers Network is celebrating their 10th Annual Conference March 16-18 in National Harbor, MD. More than 60 sessions, plus expanded networking time, are on the agenda, which includes learning tracks on effective practices, outcomes/evaluation, compliance, and data intelligence, among others. To learn more and to register before the early bird rate ends, click here!

This Valentine’s Day, you may just have to save up to buy a box of chocolates.

– Ciara

For The Advisory Board Company’s Graham McLaughlin, the Institute for CSR offers immediate benefits

Late last week, WRAG held the first class for the Institute for Corporate Social Responsibility, in partnership with Johns Hopkins University. CSR leaders from our region and far beyond gathered for the first two-day session of the year-long program. Below, The Advisory Board Company’s Graham McLaughlin, a member of the inaugural class, shares thoughts on the first session.

By Graham McLaughlin
Director, Community Impact
The Advisory Board Company

With an incredible slate of speakers, faculty members who could teach both the practicalities of the work as well as big picture concepts, and participants from well-known global and regional companies, the bounce in my step as I walked to Johns Hopkins for day one of the inaugural Institute for CSR wasn’t just from the two cups of coffee I’d needed to fortify myself against the cold.

When I learned during introductions that our classroom had previously been the headquarters of the East German embassy, and therefore, due to their desire for secrecy cell phone signals would be unavailable, my appreciation for this opportunity to now truly take a step back from the day-to-day grew even further.

Below, I’ve listed a few takeaways from our (uninterrupted) focus on “The Business of CSR,” the first of four two-day sessions across the year, but my main takeaway from the session, and why I’m so grateful to have participated, was that while we may not have been able to share cell phone transmissions with the outside world, the openness by my fellow participants to share both their successes and challenges was incredibly valuable.

Rarely do we as CSR leaders get to engage in nuanced, thoughtful discussions on how to build a vision and execution strategy that will yield the greatest social and business impact.  Due to lead faculty member Tim McClimon’s brilliant facilitation, high quality speakers who were told to be provocative in order to push our thinking in different areas, and the expertise of fellow participants, we were able to have these types of discussions from basically 9-5 each day, leading me to have some immediate ideas for improving our “Community Impact” program as well as ways I need to alter my thinking to position us to drive greater impact in the medium-long term as well.  Below are three highlights relevant for any program:

Where There is No Vision, the People Perish

This biblical quote is courtesy of guest speaker Michael Smith, Director of the Office of Social Innovation, as he pushed our group to “be fearless.”  Thinking big and outside of normal paradigms is necessary to drive transformative change in society and your business.  It’s also critical to have a clear vision of what success looks like, what it takes to accomplish, and why your firm is uniquely positioned to execute on this transformative vision.

No Man is an Island…and the Same Principle Holds for CSR

CSR must be integrated into the business, and we as leaders are the ones who must make that happen.  Guest speaker Dane Smith, head of FSG’s North American consulting practice, emphasized shared value as a way to scale social impact and business outcomes.  Jon Spector, President of the Conference Board, outlined how to make the business case for CSR initiatives to your CEO.  In both cases, a critical point was that CSR is not a siloed division in the company, but rather an ethos imbued into the decision-making of the organization.

Multiply your Impact through Partnership

Depending on the size and reach of your company, you may be able to create a program that yields significant impact without deep and varied partnerships.  However, to fulfill your total potential impact, your company must become a force multiplier for good, not just partnering with organizations. As guest speaker Jennifer Kim Field from the UN Foundation put it, your company must “curate” these partnerships so they go from transactional to transformational.  Creating these types of partnerships requires discipline- in selecting partners, in communicating effectively, and in measuring impact- but yields significant reward for the extra work.

In addition to The Advisory Board Company, the Institute’s inaugural class includes representatives from the BP Foundation, Freddie Mac, the Freddie Mac Foundation, the International Monetary Fund, Washington Gas, Bank of America, Pepco, the Community Foundation for the National Capital Region, Hilton Worldwide, IBM Corporation, Booz Allen Hamilton, Kaiser Permanente, Lincoln Financial Group, CareFirst BlueCross BlueShield, Deloitte, and the Verizon Foundation.