Thursday Breakout Sessions:

Pre-Conference Networking Lunch

Session I | Session II

Friday Breakout Sessions:

Session III | Session IV | Session V

Breakout Sessions

Thursday, October 12

Shop Talk: Optional Networking Lunch: 11:30 - 12:00 p.m. (registration opens at 11:00)

Every nonprofit activity area has its own lingo. And sometimes it feels good to talk with other folks who understand you. Join us and have a chance to use your favorite jargon and nonprofit slang. During this optional networking lunch, tables will be divided by nonprofit activity area, so you may spend time getting to know other folks doing similar work. Whether the arts, education, social services, environment, health or other areas – come talk shop.

For the last few years, you’ve been asking MCN to offer lunch at the start of our Annual Conference. We heard you. This year, we’re making lunch an optional “add on” to the conference. Buy a box lunch via the conference registration process or eat lunch ahead of time and just come to network. Either way, we hope you’ll spend a few minutes enjoying lunch and networking before the opening keynote.

If you bought a box lunch when you registered, stop at the registration table to get your nametag and ticket. Then, anytime from 11 – 11:30 a.m., bring your lunch ticket to the table inside the ballroom to pick up your box lunch. Meals must be purchased ahead of time.


Breakout Sessions I: 2:15 - 3:30 p.m.

Communicating Across Differences: Impact of Implicit Bias
Track: Diversity and Inclusion
In our increasingly more diverse communities, learning to communicate across differences is more important that ever. Every one of us comes to the table with our own history and expectations which impact our biases. Understanding these biases can help us to be better employers, employees and community members.
Valerie Jensen, president, Azon Consulting

Let's Have Fun Reading Financial Statements!
Track: Finance, Operations and HR
In this interactive session, we will review how the three primary financial reports (The Statements of Position, Activities and Cash Flow) work together. Then we will analyze actual financial statements, reading between the lines to see what they can tell us about the health of their organizations. We will focus particularly on the Statement of Position.
Megan Genest Tarnow, principal, The Mobius Group

Meet Your Development Team – Your Board!
Track: Fundraising
For small and medium sized nonprofits that don’t have paid development teams, creating a fundraising board is not optional—it’s essential. In this workshop, you’ll learn about the range of approaches organizations take to board fundraising, plus: what to look for in new recruits, how to set expectations early, how to hold board members accountable, and how to create an atmosphere of success. We’ll also address common internal hurdles and your best responses to the top four rationales of reluctant fundraisers. All of our examples are taken from our nonprofit board experience.
Nancy Brown, brand strategist, and Joanne Kosciolek, vice president of development & external affairs, Project for Pride in Living

Minneapolis and St. Paul Sick and Safe Leave Ordinances
Track: Finance, Operations and HR
The Minneapolis and St. Paul sick and safe time ordinances took effect on July 1, 2017. The requirements of these ordinances are complex and challenging. Adding to these challenges, various governmental entities seek to limit or change the implementation of the laws. In this session, we will provide an overview of both ordinances and analysis of the latest developments from the cities, the courts and the legislature. We’ll discuss how employers affected by these ordinances should coordinate existing leave policies with the new municipal requirements. Our discussion will include leave entitlements, operation of the paid leave provisions of the ordinances, notice requirements, specifics of St. Paul’s and Minneapolis’ administrative guidance, coordination issues with employer policies and other leave laws. The session will provide a valuable opportunity to discuss how to manage these and other applicable employment laws from a strategically-oriented human capital risk management perspective.
Keith Friede, area vice president, talent & organization development, Great Lakes region practice leader, Arthur J. Gallagher & Co.

Proving Value: Show & Tell Your Organization's Impact
Track: Marketing, Communications or Technology
Nonprofit organizations are continually met with the demand to prove their worth to their donors, their funders and the audiences they serve. In today’s nonprofit climate, how can your organization move beyond traditional measurement models to convey the broader impacts of your work? Experts from Ecotone Analytics and Background Stories will present an overview of their approach to helping organizations better understand and communicate their social and environmental impacts through quantitative research, data analysis and visual storytelling. In addition, Better Futures Minnesota will share how they apply the social return on investment (SROI) model in their nonprofit organization. Participants will gather insights on how to prove their organization’s value through the use of social benefit analysis and visual communication.
Thomas Adams, president & C.E.O., Better Futures Minnesota; Arlene Birt, visual storyteller & information designer, Background Stories; and Tim Roman, co-founder & partner, Ecotone Analytics

So, What’s Your Story?
Track: Marketing, Communications or Technology
What does a museum have in common with a homeless shelter? How does mentoring urban youth relate to job training for rural Native Americans? We like to say that the charitable sector promotes the common good, but what does that mean, exactly? Traditionally we have told stories around what we do – education, environment, health, racial equity, etc. But this approach suffers from a persistent problem: It reinforces the idea that “good” is tied specifically to the kind of work one is involved in. In this session, we’ll explore shifting the narrative in a way that emphasizes commonalities rather than differences. From dignity to agency to purpose, we’ll look at eight different “goods” that tie our sector together – and offer a unifying, positive message for divisive times. You’ll leave with fresh ideas for telling your own story in a way that generates passion among donors, volunteers, policy makers and media gatekeepers.
Robert Jones, vice president, engagement & communications, Independent Sector

Successful Leadership Transitions: Which Strategy for Your Organization?
Track: Leadership and Governance
The nonprofit sector is seeing more turnover at the leadership ranks than at any time in its history. Founders are retiring. They are being replaced by leaders from other nonprofits, creating yet another leadership gap. And some of these positions are being filled from outside the sector. Some transitions to a new leader are executed more smoothly than others. In this session, containing case studies, participants will gain some practical knowledge on what contributes to effective leadership transitions—including successful exit and on-boarding strategies, and the role of current board and staff.
Brad Ballinger, principal, Cincinnatus and Susie Brown, executive director, Hennepin County Bar Association

Tackle Diversity Engagement With Participatory Evaluation Practices
Track: Evaluation or Programming
This session will present a useful framework for engaging staff in organization-wide diversity and inclusion discussions by incorporating data-based decision making practices into the process. The panelists will lead a discussion around using evaluation to support organizational needs and an institution’s experience of seeking to generate participation and engagement in charged discussions. The Minnesota Historical Society used elements of the Team-Based Inquiry (TBI) evaluation process to facilitate an institution-wide Diversity Engagement Initiative. TBI is designed to: (1) help museum professionals use data to improve their products and practices, (2) foster effective teams and learning organizations, (3) and build the capacity of professionals and organizations to conduct front-end and formative evaluation. Using the TBI cycle of Question, Investigate, Reflect, and Improve, an internal team gathered feedback from staff and volunteers focused on current hiring practices, organizational community and communication, and how to thoughtfully and intentionally move forward.
Sheila Brommel, evaluation manager, Minnesota Historical Society; Sarah Cohn, principal consultant, Aurora Consulting; and Chris Taylor, chief inclusion officer, Minnesota Historical Society

Breakout Sessions II: 3:45 - 5 p.m.

Building Intercultural Infrastructure Within Your Organization
Track: Diversity and Inclusion
Join the Minnesota Coalition for the Homeless (MCH) staff and IDI qualified administrators in exploring the Intercultural Development Inventory (IDI) tool, an assessment of individual and group intercultural competency. Learn how the IDI impacts the work we do, and how it can enhance your organization’s ability to build relationships in diverse environments, work across differences and contribute to your success. We will explore the assessment, dive into the different orientations, as well as apply it specifically to your organizations. Additionally, there will be the opportunity to review how MCH has benefitted from the IDI assessment as we build new partnerships and explore how we can include you moving forward.
Eden Fauré, administrative assistant and Kirsten Rokke, communications director, Minnesota Coalition for the Homeless

Is Social Enterprise Right for your Nonprofit? Unrelated Business Income Overview
Track: Finance, Operations and HR
Did you know that nonprofits sometimes need to pay income taxes? The purpose of this workshop is to obtain an understanding of unrelated business income (UBI) and how/when it might apply to your nonprofit’s ventures. Attendees will gain an understanding of the distinctions between taxable and nontaxable income and some of the income tax implications of UBI activities. By the end of this session, attendees will be able to better understand how their current and potential revenue streams fit under UBI regulations and the general guidelines of how such revenue will be reported on their corresponding tax return. Don’t let the compliance faction of unrelated income/social enterprise intimidate you. By understanding what some of the reporting requirements and regulations are, you can diversify your organization’s revenue streams while maintaining your exemption. And know the right questions to ask and have answered prior to engaging in a new revenue stream.
Michael Peterson, tax manager, Wipfli LLP

Leading with Theory of Change
Track: Leadership and Governance
A theory of change is a powerful tool that helps an organization articulate the connection between its programs and its mission, using the language of outcomes. It’s an organization’s story of how and why the world will be different because of what it does. A theory of change is an argument for why you exist and why you are effective. Because of this, a theory of change has important implications for the leadership of an organization – both staff and board. In this session, we explore what a theory of change is, how an organization can use a theory of change, and the implications of a theory of change for staff and board leadership. This session will include a combination of presentation, examples from a theory of change project at Urban Boatbuilders, discussion and take-away resources.
Al Onkka, principal consultant, Aurora Consulting and Marc Hosmer, executive director, Urban Boatbuilders

Mapping and Traveling a Nonprofit Career Path
Track: Leadership and Governance
Nonprofit professionals are oftentimes drawn to mission-driven work due to the desire to “do good” or “find meaning” in their work. That passion does not always come with implicit knowledge of what that career might look like. In addition, nonprofits frequently do not have resources to support meaningful career exploration and skill building for their employees. This session provides a tangible system by which nonprofit professionals can identify the direction they might want to take their career in terms of roles and mission interest, but also ideas as to how they can actually follow the path identified. Managers and mentors will learn specific tips and tools to how they can support their employees in mapping a career path. The session will also review data on what young nonprofit employees in the Twin Cities say they need for their professional development.
Lindsay Bacher, program developer, Amherst H. Wilder Foundation and Joel Bergstrom, vice president, executive recruiter, CohenTaylor Executive Search Services

Matrix Map Program Self-Assessment: Real World Implementations
Track: Evaluation or Programming
Full-blown program evaluation can be more time consuming and expensive than many small organizations can afford. The Matrix Map is a self-assessment tool for staff and volunteer leaders to utilize in analyzing relative mission impact and allocation of resources toward current programs and services. Hear about two implementations of the Matrix Map with organizations of 8-18 staff members and dig into the details of how you might implement the Matrix Map in your organization. Come away with a practical approach that, while not an extensive program evaluation, does provide decision-makers with a solid picture of what is, and a base for determining what could be in terms of furthering your mission and wisely allocating your resources.
Angie McKinley, director of programs and Mary-Margaret Zindren, executive vice president, American Institute of Architects-Minnesota

Mission > Message > Make It Happen
Track: Fundraising
The work and impact of nonprofits is complex. This can be overwhelming for nonprofits, especially in an era where great storytelling is becoming more and more of a defining quality of successful nonprofits. This session busts through what feels like a mountain to climb and into a simple process that can be drafted during the session. Nonprofits are story-makers. Every day they interact, influence and impact people. They will learn how to not only tell a great story but make it easy for others to share their story. The session will help attendees understand how to tell a story so people are intrigued to give and volunteer. Each attendee will understand when to ask and what to ask. They will also learn what tools they need to engage and equip their followers to share their story well.
Dave Sena, lead strategist, Bold Leading and Rob Swiers, executive director, New Life Center

The Nonprofit Responses to Civil Liberties Under Stress
Track: Public Policy
Travel bans, voter fraud panels and the quiet theater dismantling of civil rights offices across the federal government – there is no doubt that there has been a sea change for civil rights in this administration. What is the appropriate response to this new reality? During this time of deep social, economic and political divisions, nonprofits have an important role to play; but what role is that? How does this new dimension inform the mission and activities of nonprofits? Join MCN for a panel discussion to hear how organizations can meet this challenge and hear ideas for ways to strategize your response.
PH Copeland, equity organizer, American Heart Association; Jaylani Hussein, executive director, Council on American-Islamic Relations Minnesota; Jana Kooren, public education and communications director, ACLU of Minnesota; amd Rebecca Lucero, public policy director, Minnesota Council of Nonprofits

Productive Fear: Start Righting Your Fundraising Universe
Track: Fundraising
This will be a witty, warm and thought-provoking session that will unite participants around concerns we all share when it comes to fundraising and our drive to do better. It will spark creativity and introspection by calling out the silly things we let stand in our way and gradually moving to the more complex money-raising challenges nonprofits most need to resolve. Productive Fear blends psychology, inspiration and analysis to bring about order, action and best of all – energy. It’s a system for change; from comfortable questions to pose during initial conversations with prospective funders to real-world ways to engage a variety of board members, volunteers and staff in the process. The presenter will share her seven step system to make your fears productive and nudge your fundraising world in the right direction.
Barbara Harrington, principal, Sponsorship Plus

Trauma-Informed Evaluation: Creating Positive Outcomes While Assessing Outcomes
Track: Evaluation or Programming
Evaluation, from the very idea of it to the specific questions you ask, can be a sensitive subject, especially when working with clients who have experienced individual or historical trauma. Yet evaluation is critical for securing funding, improving programming and effectively targeting limited resources. From design through data collection to reporting, how do you conduct a useful evaluation that minimizes burden, promotes inclusion and mirrors the values and intent of your organization’s work? This session will provide considerations for an evaluation that is supportive of clients who have experienced trauma, values your participants’ time and knowledge, and helps your organization to improve and sustain its work. Participants will also discuss equity-based evaluation and tips for evaluation with specific cultural groups and communities.
Laura Schauben, research scientist III, Amherst H Wilder Foundation, Wilder Research

Friday, October 13

Breakout Sessions III: 8 - 9 a.m.

Building Organizational Capacity for Great Impact
Track: Leadership and Governance
Organizational capacity has been a matter of discussion and study in the nonprofit sector for more than 20 years. The last few years has seen a resurgence of the topic particularly from foundations looking to focus their investments in projects that will result in long-term sustainable success for their fundees. This session will provide a brief overview of the theory behind organizational capacity. We will then break down organizational capacities into functional areas (dimensions) within the organization and look at those dimensions from the following perspectives: (1) How to assess your organization’s levels of capacity. (2) How to strategically tie dimensions of capacity to your organization’s mission, vision and goals. (3) How to leverage technology to help you understand and build capacities to enable your organization to create greater impact relative to your mission. (4) How to report to stakeholders the impact of their capacity building efforts.
Chris Hanson, co-founder & C.E.O., thedatabank, gbc

Enhance Your Team Performance
Track: Leadership and Governance
Leading your team is one of your greatest priorities. As a leader in the workplace, it is also one of your greatest challenges. Join this session if you are leading a team through change, complex projects or daily tasks. This session aims at helping you understand a high performance team that leads to bursts of creativity and productivity. Learn how to maximize the benefits of your team through the elements of diversity, workforce planning and measurement.
Rachel Kraemer, independent consultant and trainer

Financial Wellness for Nonprofit Employees
Track: Finance, Operations and HR
Financial stress impacts every area of a person’s life. Research has proven that financial stress is a prime cause of personal stress, which affects both the health and the productivity of your employees. The nonprofit community in Minnesota does a great job caring for the people we serve in our communities, but how are we caring for ourselves and our employees’ financial wellness? Educating your employees on how they can gain control over their own financial security can be a driver for personal and organizational success. How are you engaging your employees in their own financial wellness? How are you assisting them when they have a financial emergency?
Terri Banaszewski, vice president business development, Sunrise Banks; Ron Elwood, supervising attorney, Legal Services Advocacy Project, Legal Aid in Minnesota; and Cate Rysavy, senior director, Financial and Employment Services, Lutheran Social Service of Minnesota

Insights on Scale and Access from the Smallest Museum in St. Paul
Track: Innovation
Small is mighty. The Smallest Museum in St. Paul is a micro-gallery community arts project that demonstrates the principle that scaling a project to be easily do-able may likely be part of its success. Small takes fewer resources. Small is a strategy that works and still gets a big return on social good. Sometimes keeping your project, evaluation methods, or budget quite small can force you to be focused on what is really relevant. Come reflect on how scaling your project to be small(er) may actually open access for more people to participate.
Shannon Forney, creative consultant, Next in Nonprofits and founder, Smallest Museum in St. Paul

Unmasking Your Stories: Art, Advocacy and Awareness
Track: Marketing, Communications or Technology
Encouraging clients to tell their stories is an important part of what nonprofits do. This session will highlight an innovative project that uses mask-making to effect individual, organizational and systemic change. Minnesota Brain Injury Alliance (MNBIA) staff traveled Minnesota, providing opportunities for more than 1000 brain injury survivors, caregivers and professionals to create masks that depicted their relationship with brain injury. Through MNBIA staff, clients and excerpts from a film, participants will learn how the project not only inspired individuals to express their story in new ways and empowered them to use their story to advocate for resources and supports for themselves and their community, but also how to apply art to further the message of their organizational mission and to engage new communities.
Bradley Donaldson, associate director of operations and Archie DuCharme, volunteer, Minnesota Brain Injury Alliance

Using Stories to Evaluate Your Work
Track: Evaluation or Programming
This session will explore the Most Significant Change (MSC) methodology and how organizations can use less traditional monitoring and evaluation tactics to both engage stakeholders and collect data. Structuring MSC on the right domains can shed light on complex program dynamics and outcomes that more traditional approaches may not capture. This session will engage participants to use monitoring and evaluation both as a tool for capturing and reporting results, but also to reflect on and adapt programming.
Jill LaLonde, executive director, OneVillage Partners and Jill Lipski Cain, senior research analyst, The Improve Group

Winning Grants in Uncertain Times
Track: Fundraising
Nonprofits who rely on grants, especially government funding, are facing an uncertain future. As the need for grant funding increases across the region, how can your organization stand out? This session will teach you how to leverage funding opportunities and secure new and increased grant revenue amidst a changing philanthropic landscape.
Christine Schwitzer, managing director and Ellen Davis, senior managing associate, Fox Advancement

Breakout Sessions IV: 11 a.m. - 12:15 p.m.

Creating an Authentic Workplace Culture: A 10-Step Program
Track: Finance, Operations and HR
It’s no longer just about having a positive culture. To truly be an employer of choice, employees need to see authenticity and consistency from the top down. If you asked five of your employees to describe your culture, would you get five different answers? Would they mirror your answers? Shouldn’t we all see the same wonderful attributes? In this session, we’ll explore how to ensure authenticity permeates our culture, review the impact of 10 key cultural criteria and strategize how we can transform our workplace. In this competitive market for qualified employees, we must reflect authenticity and consistency in our: values, leadership, accountability, respectfulness, communication, problem solving, collaboration, integration of staff, performance management and ensuring we hire and retain only the right people. It’s time for a critical cultural analysis and an action plan to move your organization forward.
Arlene Vernon, president, HRx, Inc.

Data Literacy for Leaders
Track: Evaluation or Programming
From Netflix to mobile devices to the daily paper, data is all around us—but not all data are equal. More and more data are available, used in more and more ways, across political, professional and community contexts. This session combines the latest insights from philanthropy, research and leadership development to equip you to stay ahead of the curve. Data newbies will become conversant in data pitfalls and possibilities, while data pros will take a step back to consider the big picture.
Kristell Caballero Saucedo, community innovation associate, Bush Foundation and fellow, Ron McKinley Philanthropy Fellowship; Victoria Ford, program associate, Wilder Center for Communities; and Ruth Hamberg, research associate, Community Indicators Consortium

A Graphic Re-visioning of Nonprofit Overhead
Track: Finance, Operations and HR
Most nonprofit leaders agree we need a new way to communicate about the true costs of our programs and the vital importance of strong organizational infrastructure. But we have not yet developed a simple, consistent message when sharing our view with potential supporters and investors. We are stuck with old terms and old images. How we visualize our understanding of nonprofit structure and programs shapes the overhead debate. By providing a simple visual guide, we can help transform the way we talk about, picture and ultimately fund the core mission support that is at the center of all sustainable nonprofits.
Curt Klotz, vice president of finance and C.F.O., Propel Nonprofits

How to Create Shareable Content
Track: Marketing, Communications or Technology
It can be a mystery why some articles are shared often, and others fall flat. When you spend hours carefully crafting every word of your next post, it can be frustrating when it only gets a few visits and very little traction on social media. Afterwards you might be thinking, “This is really important - why doesn’t anyone care?” The good news is you don’t have to feel like you’re shooting in the dark anymore. Even very small organizations can have a big presence online with the right strategies. In this session we’ll explore what makes content shareable and where to find content your audience will love. You’ll also have the chance to examine scenarios to put your new knowledge into practice. By the end of this session, you’ll know how to create posts your audience can’t wait to share so you can grow your network online.
Rebecca Reynandez, digital marketing strategist, Spring Media Strategies

Identity and Professional Development: Supporting Early-Career Professionals of Color
Track: Diversity and Inclusion
As managers and leaders in the nonprofit sector, we know that recruiting and retaining early career professionals of color is a major area of weakness – especially for white-led organizations. In this session, we’ll unpack some of the roadblocks, challenges and excuses we make when thinking about recruiting and retaining talent in the nonprofit sector. We won’t just unpack the barriers – we’ll focus on best practices and tools to effectively provide identity-specific support. Coaching, mentorship and networks are an access point to professional growth, jobs, collaborations, partnerships and more. We’ll explore how to help early-career professionals of color (as well as those that claim other marginalized identities) access the networks they need to remain in the sector, build their careers and contribute to their organizations.
Gordon Goodwin, GARE Midwest regional project manager, Center for Social Inclusion; Cori Lin, community partnerships coordinator, Powderhorn Park Neighborhood Association; Diane Tran, founder, Minnesota Rising and LOCUS; and Lance Witzig, vice curator, Minneapolis Hub of Global Shapers

Managing Leadership Transitions in a Changing Landscape
Track: Leadership and Governance
With many possible changes on the horizon, what are you doing to effectively manage transitions in your agency? Whether it be an executive leader or board transition, merger, spin-off or major programmatic change, they all impact staff, donors, participants and our local communities. Change is constant, but the strategies and systems you use to manage a transition will determine your level of success. During this panel discussion, you will hear key learnings from CEOs and board chairs whose organizations have undergone major transitions. Participants will also hear from search consultants, change consultants and nonprofit leaders about the strategies and tools they’ve used to successfully manage a transition, identify solutions and build capacity within their agencies.
Cheryl Jensen, managing partner, Strategic Consulting & Coaching; Karina Forest Perkins, C.E.O., The Wayside House; and Anne Rizzo-Donovan, founder and principal, Rizzo | Executive Search

Nonprofits and Federal Policy
Track: Public Policy
All the details nonprofits need on federal policy – what’s actually going on? And why is it so essential that nonprofits engage on federal policy? We’ll walk through the process, where we are on budget and look at what’s next for tax reform, healthcare changes, civil rights and how it all relates to Minnesota state policy. Of course, we’ll look at how all of this impacts nonprofits and the communities we partner with to collaboratively build strong, thriving communities. Be prepared to get nerdy with terms and charts and some clear next steps for nonprofits!
Rebecca Lucero, public policy director and Corinna Turbes, federal policy campaign coordinator, Minnesota Council of Nonprofits

Open Space Facilitation: Share Your Ideas and Questions!
Track: Innovation
So here you are, at Minnesota’s largest nonprofit conference, along with fellow nonprofit colleagues from all dimensions of the sector. Do you wish you could sit down with all the people you’re meeting and talk about the ideas and questions you have? Do you wonder how other nonprofits are managing social media? Or how your colleagues are handling board relationships? Bring your own questions, thoughts and ideas to this session. In Open Space facilitations, several rounds of simultaneous conversations are held, in which the topics of the individual conversations are determined by the participants themselves, who also choose which conversations to attend. Open Space enables diverse groups to make progress on complex issues while supporting passionate participants to create and plan action steps. Join us for this Open Space session to engage with your colleagues in a relaxed, energizing and creative environment about the topics that matter most to you!
Elise Chambers, program director and Laurie Whipple, operations director, Conflict Resolution Center

What Could Possibly Go Wrong? Managing Collaboration Risks
Track: Leadership and Governance
Risk is part of the ecology of effective nonprofit organizations – and partnering opportunities bring additional risks. A board or C.E.O. that is too risk averse may do as much damage over time as those that are reckless. This session draws on recent research to explore three categories of risk nonprofit organizations may face: preventable risks, strategic risks and external risks. Participants also will consider how risk factors escalate with enhanced levels of collaboration. Board and staff participants will share and practice ways to remove, reduce or reframe the impact of risk on their organizations, joint ventures and stakeholders.
Susan Estee, executive director, Second Harvest North Central Food Bank and Cyrus N. White, principal, The South Cabin Group

Breakout Sessions V: 2:30 - 3:30 p.m.

Building Community Capacity With Action Teams
Track: Innovation
Community-wide changes cannot be adopted and sustained without the input and support of residents, and local businesses and organizations. Our session discusses the importance of aligning priorities across sectors in order to build and sustain a culture of health and wellbeing. Participants will also learn how efficient and long-term impact can be achieved by leveraging existing community strengths and resources. With examples from the Heart of New Ulm Project we will demonstrate the importance and impact of issue-driven action teams. Case studies will provide an engaging opportunity for participants to observe the process of capacity building, and how programs and efforts go from research to community-owned. Lastly, we will describe and provide examples and tools for organizing, implementing and evaluating community-based action teams.
Derek Hersch, health promotion and grants specialist and Cindy Winters, project manager, Heart of New Ulm Project, Minneapolis Heart Institute Foundation

How Does Measurement Fuel a Movement? An Interactive Discussion on Social Justice, Equity and Evaluation
Track: Evaluation or Programming
There’s been a lot of activity around social justice and equity in the past few years, especially right here in Minnesota. Join this session to learn about trends and resources on the intersection of equity, who controls data and information, and who gets to determine involvement in communities and policies. We will use this session to share research findings. Then we will engage the group through an interactive discussion on how we all can uncover, diagnose and work towards equity. We will share strategies we’ve used to measure social movements and campaigns. As a group, we will consider questions such as, what have we learned so far, how do we measure success, what’s working and where do we see social justice and equity heading?
Fayise Abrahim, organizing and training director, Voices for Racial Justice; Karla Benson Rutten, founder and C.E.O., Benson Rutten Innovations LLC; Kayla Meyers, research analyst, Kate Noble, senior research analyst, and Becky Stewart, chief practice officer, The Improve Group

Nonprofit Responses to a Changing Federal Landscape
Track: Public Policy
Join this session for a frank discussion about ways that Minnesota's nonprofits are impacted by changes taking place in Washington, D.C. Whether your nonprofit is impacted by the tenor of discourse coming from D.C., executive orders coming from the White House or laws emerging in Congress - this session will provide an opportunity to discuss ways that nonprofits are reacting, preparing their communities and managing their organizations for change.
Mahamed Cali, executive director, Somali American Radio and Jon Pratt, executive director, Minnesota Council of Nonprofits

Rebranding on a Budget
Track: Marketing, Communications or Technology
You’ve heard that it’s important for nonprofits to have a strong brand, but how do you get one without paying for an expensive design process? In this session you will learn from OneVillage Partners and Students Today Leaders Forever about how they got creative with budget and built new partnerships. Having a brand audit done by a neutral third party before beginning the design phase is essential, and these two organizations can share tips and tricks that worked for them. Then learn more about how jabber logic has made it affordable to rebrand on your own through classes at ImpactHub. Once you see how it works, we’ll show you how to do it yourself, including introducing you to free online tools that can help you choose fonts and a color palette. You’ll leave the session with a simple template that you can use to create brand guidelines for your own organization.
Dana Altendorf, director of development and communications, OneVillage Partners; Amanda Cashman, co-executive director, Students Today Leaders Forever; and Amee McDonald, co-founder, jabber logic

Refreshing Your Workplace
Track: Finance, Operations and HR
Everyone deserves to look forward to coming to work each day, to doing their best possible work and being part of a healthy, respectful and highly functional work team. Attendees of this session will leave with enhanced clarity and strategies to allow everyone to do their best work, including intentionally utilizing management and staff meetings to maximize the effectiveness of each individual, and work teams collectively. The importance of understanding and buy-in for organizational goals, roles and process will be highlighted, including discussion of strategies and timing for when and how to share changes that may impact future operations and staffing. Participants will discuss and practice approaches that can improve interest, enjoyment and buy-in at management and staff meetings as well as on a daily basis, building on tangible, simple practices to facilitate respect, trust, improved communication and productivity.
Don Gault, founder and principal consultant, Building Peaceful Community

So You Want to Be An Executive Director?
Track: Leadership and Governance
Are you curious about what it takes to be an executive director? Are you considering applying for an executive director position? Are you afraid to make the leap from a role of comfort that you know well? During this session, Cheryl will share her expertise on what you will need to do to develop the essential skills and competencies necessary to lead a high-impact organization. Lisa will share her experiences, having just made the leap to executive director after many years in a number two role at local nonprofit organizations. She will share her biggest challenges, how to effectively work with the board, her biggest wins and things she wished she knew beforehand. She has been in your shoes and wishes she had been able to attend a session like this first.
Lisa Jacobson, executive director, HOPE 4 Youth and Cheryl Jensen, managing partner, Strategic Consulting & Coaching

Take the Next Step Towards Diversity, Equity & Inclusion
Track: Diversity and Inclusion
For an organization to be truly successful, a variety of experiences and perspectives must be present at all levels of the organization. Yet, 86% of nonprofits supported by Charities Review Council were unable to meet our Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Accountability Standard®. Organizations shared a need for a tool that was affordable, focused on organizational development (versus individual training), and self-administered. In this session we’ll go deep on the Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Toolkit, what you’ll learn about your organization by using it and why this work is important to be a successful nonprofit.
Kris Kewitsch, executive director, Charities Review Council and Kate Downing Khaled, managing director, Imagine Deliver

What's The Big Deal? Talking Mergers
Track: Finance, Operations and HR
During times of change, options to create greater sustainability and longevity are fully considered by nonprofits. No sector is more gifted at making the most of an opportunity. When is it strategic to consider a merger? What rationale generates synergies that lead organizations to align themselves and their work toward merging? How do you know it will work? What risks are involved? Hear from colleagues with experience as they share what they learned. Bring your questions.
Kate Barr, president and C.E.O., Propel Nonprofits; Karen Reid, executive director, NeDA Neighborhood Development Alliance; and Tim Schmutzer, executive director, PHASE, Inc.