Engaging funders in post-election discussions for more than 10 years!

Assessing the new environment in the aftermath of the elections and identifying new windows of opportunity to work strategically and collaboratively is essential to advancing the work of philanthropy and improving the lives of low-income families, workers and communities.

For more than a decade, EOF (formerly known as GIST) has hosted post-election briefings in partnership with fellow funder affinity groups to help funders better understand the outcomes of the national and state elections and what it suggests in terms of opportunities and challenges for the short-and medium-term.

Post-Election Virtual Funder Learning Series

December 2020 – February 2021

After careful consideration around health and safety, we have decided to shift this year’s Post-Election Briefing to become a no contact, high engagement virtual series of events. We are confident going all-virtual can still allow for powerful peer-to-peer collaboration and connections and may open the meeting to new possibilities, including greater access for those who may not have been able to join us in person.

We kick off the series with a short video featuring three philanthropic leaders who reflect on the post-election landscape and implications for philanthropy.

Philanthropy’s Road Forward Video
Foundations play an important role in informing the public debate, stimulating innovation, and supporting research and evaluation needed to understand the impact of policies and programs. Assessing the new policy and funding environment after the elections is critical as we build compelling and successful agendas for advancing our work to support low-income families, workers and communities. Given the extraordinary challenges of 2020 including the COVID-19 pandemic, economic crisis, national uprising for racial justice and threats to our democracy, how do we, as funders, need to show up in this moment?

Elena Conley, Mary Reynolds Babcock Foundation


Lisa Hamilton, The Annie E. Casey Foundation

Carla Thompson Payton, W.K. Kellogg Foundation

The series also includes severalfunder discussions taking place in December 2020 – February 2021.

Who Voted and Why and Implications for Social and Economic Policy
In this two-part program, public opinion and political strategists and national and state organizers will explore what the recent elections tell us about political participation, dialogue on the direction of the country, and the future of social and economic policy.

Part 1 — A Conversation with Public Opinion and Political Strategists
December 2, 2020 | 2:00-3:00 PM ET
Access the recording, slides and related resources here.

  • Jean Ross, The Bernard and Anne Spitzer Charitable Trust (Moderator)
  • Kevin Akins, Anzalone Liszt Grove Research
  • Matt Barreto, Latino Decisions
  • Terrance Woodbury, HIT Strategies

Part 2 — A Conversation with National and State Organizers
December 3, 2020 | 3:00 – 4:00 PM ET
Access recording link here.

  • Hahrie Han, SNF Agora Institute and P3 Lab, Johns Hopkins University (Moderator)
  • Dorian Warren, Community Change
  • Jennifer Epps-Addison, Center for Popular Democracy
  • Tram Nguyen, New Virginia Majority
  • Alejandra Gomez, Living United for Change in Arizona
Hosted by EOF in partnership with:

A National Reckoning on Race
December 17, 2020 | 2:00 – 3:00 PM ET
Access the recording link and resource list here.
The twin pandemics of COVID-19 and systemic racism have spurred a new moment of reckoning and national uprising for racial justice. Hear from funder colleagues on how they are responding to the call for action to build real power for Black communities and demand bold systems and institutional change in civic engagement, criminal justice, employment and social supports. Examples of collective action, individual foundation initiatives and centering grantmaking in racial equity will be shared.

    • Breechaye Milburn, Wellspring Philanthropic Fund (Moderator)
    • Will Cordery, Leverage Philanthropic Partners and Movement for Black Lives
    • Samantha Tweedy, Robin Hood
    • Aisha Alexander-Young, Meyer Foundation
Hosted by EOF in partnership with:

How Philanthropy Can Support Aligned Priorities in a New Administration: Building Partnerships For 2021 And Beyond
Join us for a series of conversations on ways the philanthropic sector can build partnerships with the Biden Administration.

Briefing 1: Ideas, Lessons, and Inspiration on How Philanthropy and the Administration Can Work Together
January 7, 2021 1:00 PM – 2:15 PM EST


Value-add strategies framework referenced during the briefing

IRS guidance on influencing legislation requested by attendees – see section 53.4945-2 (subsection (a)(3))

After the 2008 election of President Obama, there was a surge in interest, ideas, and even a growing infrastructure to facilitate strategic, intentional partnerships between the philanthropic community and the federal government. From big ideas and opportunities to small ways of working with agency staff to help policymakers quickly learn and engage on policy issues, philanthropy can play an important role in advancing shared ideas and policy implementation.

This webinar will kick off a series of conversations with an overview of the many ways the philanthropic sector can work, and build partnerships, with the new administration in the coming year and ways to approach these efforts. This briefing will cover a wide range of approaches for philanthropy to consider, such as: pooled and/or matching private investments around federal funding priorities; vehicles to help with specific staffing needs; and supports around convenings and facilitating learning conversations for federal staff.


  • Ana Marie Argilagos, President and CEO of Hispanics in Philanthropy; former Deputy chief of staff at the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, where she created the Office for International and Philanthropic Innovation
  • Sonal Shah, Founding Executive Director of the Beeck Center for Social Impact + Innovation
  • Tom Freedman, President of Freedman Consulting and former Senior Advisor to President Clinton
  • Nisha Patel, Creative Catalyst at Powered by Shakti LLC & former Director of the Office of Family Assistance at the Department of Health and Human Services.

Moderated by: Shelley Waters Boots


Presented by:

No Going Back — Building for a Better Future
February 4, 2021 | 3:00-4:30pm ET
Access the recording link here.

The COVID-19 pandemic and recession have exposed and deepened our current economy’s structural weaknesses and inequalities. Increasing political polarization, spiraling  economic inequality, conflict over who belongs (particularly along lines of race, ethnicity and national origin), and rising fascism are all putting our democracy at risk. Hear from funder colleagues on how they are supporting policy advocacy, organizing and civic engagement strategies to build a more inclusive and equitable economy and democracy. 

  • Laine Romero-Alston, Open Society Foundation (moderator)
  • Carmen Rojas, Marguerite Casey Foundation
  • Don Chen, Surdna Foundation


Hosted by: 


Many thanks to our planning committee for their time and leadership in shaping this funder learning series!
    • Cassandra McKee, Wellspring Philanthropic Fund and EOF Steering Committee member
    • Robb Gray, W.K. Kellogg Foundation 
    • Leigh Gibson, Robert Wood Johnson Foundation 
    • Julie Fernandes, Rockefeller Family Fund

2018 Post-Election Briefing

2018 Post-Election Briefing: Philanthropy at the Crossroads

November 27, 2018 | Washington, DC


Participant List

Speaker Bios

Presentations and Resources

Hosted by the Economic Opportunity Funders in partnership with: Asset Funders Network, Early Childhood Funders Collaborative, Funders’ Committee for Civic Participation, Grantmakers Concerned with Immigrants and Refugees, Neighborhood Funders Group’s Funders for a Just Economy.

2018 PEB Logos_11.20.18

2016 Post-Election Briefing

2016 Post-Election Briefing: Politics, Policy and Philanthropy

November 16-17, 2016 | Washington, DC


Participant List

Speaker Bios

Reading List

PowerPoint Presentations:

  • What Happened in the 2016 Election? – Understanding the Presidential Race and Losses Down the Ballot Analyzing the Impacts of Turnout, the Economy, Change, Racism, and Sexism, by Celinda Lake, Lake Research Partners.
  • Ballot Measures in the New Political Reality by Justine Sarver, Ballot Initiative Strategy Center – This PowerPoint presentation is available in the password protected members area of this web site. Not a member? Join EOF  – it’s free!
  • American Aspirations: Insights and Ideas for a Narrative about Shared Prosperity and Opportunity for All by Doug Hattaway, Hattaway Communications – To view this PowerPoint presentation contact Pete Tontillo, Research Associate, Hattaway Communications at ptontillo@hattaway.com.

Hosted by the Economic Opportunity Funders in partnership with the Early Childhood Funders Collaborative, Funders for a Just Economy and Workforce Matters.