Effective Philanthropy

We help donors and foundations nationwide adopt best practices and engage with peers and practitioners in the field. We can tailor our research, knowledge, and training to your needs. Common areas of support include professional development, customized training curricula, strategy and evaluation services, and grantee capacity building. Learn more about our services for foundations and donors.

Strong Nonprofits

We help nonprofit organizations strengthen their teams, tools, and thinking for better impact. Our one-on-one consultation services, trainings, and technical assistance are designed for organizations of all sizes and in all stages of growth. Areas of support include fundraising, governance, strategic planning, collaboration, and more. Learn more about our services for nonprofits.

Informed Community Change

We guide nonprofits, foundations, institutions, and neighborhood groups in using data to do good. Our customized tools and research services collect and interpret national and local data. Working with our partners, we share this original research for use in awareness building, local and regional decision making, program evaluation, and more. Learn more about our community data and research services.

Resources for Learning

Not sure where to get started? Request a consultation.
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  • Online Tools

    • LearnPhilanthropy

      A marketplace of knowledge, tools, and connections for newcomers. Navigate the field, learn with peers and thought leaders, and improve your grant making.

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    • Our State of Generosity

      An online platform to share Michigan’s philanthropic history. Discover milestones that made the state a leader, and get tools for effective philanthropy.

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    • Community Profiles 2.0

      Explore housing and economics data in Grand Rapids with this interactive mapping and demographic snapshot tool.

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    • VoiceKent & VoiceGR

      An annual community survey designed uniquely to connect demographics with opinions and perceptions of Grand Rapids and Kent County residents.

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    Johnson Center Blog

    • Photo: Mariah (student intern)

      A Student’s Take on What Philanthropy Really Means

      A Student’s Take on What Philanthropy Really Means by Mariah Otlewski, Communications & Engagement Intern, Spring/Summer 2018 In August 2015, I finished packing up my childhood room, said goodbye to my dog, and drove west to my new home — Grand Valley State University. I came from a small town

    • Let’s Stop Talking About Leadership

      Let’s Stop Talking About Leadership by Tory Martin “We’re constantly questioning ourselves. Are you working hard enough? Are you organized enough? Are you the leader these times require?” Tamir Novotny, executive director of Emerging Practitioners in Philanthropy (EPIP), looked out over the crowd of 200 or so young professionals who

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