Jason Franklin Ph.D.

Dr. Franklin was appointed in June 2015 as the W.K. Kellogg Community Philanthropy Chair at the Johnson Center for Philanthropy, to which he brings a background in grantmaking and donor education, nonprofit strategy and leadership, social entrepreneurship, and community organizing and advocacy. As holder of the nation’s first endowed chair focused on community philanthropy, he engages in research, teaching, service, and thought leadership to explore and advance the field, nationally and internationally. This includes work exploring (1) how we give better together through networks and vehicles for collective giving and (2) how we strengthen our giving practices to communities we care deeply about, both place-based and communities of identity. He is a leading voice in the field on issues of collective giving, social justice philanthropy, and broader trends in charity and social change and a regular commentator in the media on these topics in publications ranging from the New York Times, ABC News, and Wall Street Journal to the Chronicle of Philanthropy, NonProfit Times, Alliance Magazine and more.

In addition to his work as the Kellogg Chair, Dr. Franklin is a Visiting Fellow at Stanford University’s Center on Philanthropy & Civil Society and a strategic advisor to the Peterffy Foundation and several individual donors. He serves as board chair of the Proteus Fund, co-founder and co-chair of the Solidaire Donor Network, and on the boards of WiserGiving and the Michigan Alliance. He is also an advisory board member of the Chartered Advisors in Philanthropy Program, Amplifier, Our LGBT Fund at the Grand Rapids Community Foundation, and the Movement Voter Project. He is a member of the Democracy Alliance, Threshold Foundation and their High Impact Documentary Funding Circle, and WINGS: Worldwide Initiatives for Grantmaker Support where he co-chairs their Academic Affinity Group.

Prior to his appointment as the Kellogg Chair, he served as Executive Director of Bolder Giving, an organization that inspired people to give big & take more risks with their philanthropy and which was credited by Melinda Gates as an inspiration for the billionaire Giving Pledge. He received his PhD in Public Administration from New York University’s Robert F. Wagner Graduate School of Public Service where he also held an appointment for ten years as an award-winning adjunct professor teaching about philanthropy and social change. He has also previously worked for the 21st Century School Fund, the Rockefeller Foundation’s Next Generation Leadership Network housed at NYU’s Research Center for Leadership in Action, the Lower Manhattan Cultural Council, and White House Office of National AIDS Policy. An active impact investor and serial social entrepreneur, he co-founded Oregon Students Supporting Education, the Multnomah Youth Commission, IAM LLC (an urban brownfield development firm that won the 2004 Goldman Sachs Global Social Venture Competition), Give OUT Day, the New York Social Justice PAC, Funding Queerly, and the Solidaire Donor Network. He has been recognized as one of the top young leaders in philanthropy by the Chronicle of Philanthropy, New York Observer, Grand Rapids Business Journal, and Advocate Magazine and for his commitment to social justice philanthropy with the New York Urban League’s Ann Kheel Award and the Shirley Chisholm Light of Freedom Award from Community Voices Heard.


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