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Making an Impact: Strategy & Evaluation in Grantmaking

June 16 @ 12:30 pmJune 17 @ 4:30 pm EDT

Making an Impact: Strategy & Evaluation in Grantmaking

A two-day, intermediate course for program officers with three or more years of experience

Impactful grantmaking relies on the ability of foundation staff to develop, implement, manage, and advance clear strategies that effectively connect the mission of the foundation with grantee work.

Join us to explore and discuss with peers how to develop and improve your grantmaking strategy through two key tools: theory of change and equitable evaluation.

This course combines theory and practice in a collaborative, tabletop exercise. Attendees will apply their learning throughout the two days to create a theory of change and a framework for evaluation based on an authentic issue from the sector. The exercise includes analyzing how strategy and evaluation can be developed, implemented, and managed with clarity to mitigate the impact of implicit bias and systemic inequalities, empower grantees through capacity building, and create relevant internal and external learning opportunities.

Individual Price:  $750
Group Price (2 or more):  $720 per participant
TGS Alumni:  $720
(use promo code TGSALUM30)

Instructors: Tait Kellogg & Rory Neuner
Format: Virtual
Deadline to Register: June 1

Please Note: This course is limited to 24 participants. Due to the interactive nature of the sessions, they will not be recorded for later viewing.

Meeting Dates & Times

This course takes place over two days. Participants will meet virtually on Thursday, June 16 from 12:30–4:30 p.m. and again on Friday, June 17 from 12:30–4:30 p.m. (ET).

Day One (June 16) – Developing Strategy and Theory of Change:

  • Theory of Philanthropy: equity in philanthropy, power dynamics, and risk tolerance
  • Developing a strategy for various levels: foundation, initiative, program
  • Developing a theory of change

Day Two (June 17) – Implementation, Evaluation, and Learning:

  • Role of evaluation and the learning cycle
  • Evaluation design: equitable evaluation, approaches, focus, and management
  • Learning cycle: developing a learning culture, using evidence to inform strategy

Who should attend this course?

This intermediate-level course is designed for foundation program officers with three or more years of experience. If you do not fit this profile but are interested in attending, please email tgs@gvsu.edu before registering.

Cancellation & Refund Policy

This course may be subject to cancellation if it does not reach the minimum number of registrants. In the event of a cancellation, you will be notified at least two weeks before the course start date and will be offered a full refund or the option to transfer your registration to another Johnson Center offering. Refund requests for any other reason must be made at least two weeks prior to the start of the course.

Photo of Tait Kellogg
Tait Kellogg, Ph.D., teaches mission-driven teams how to learn from data through consulting as The Evaluation Coach. She holds a doctorate in sociology from Tulane University, a master’s in postsecondary education from Columbia University, Teachers College, and a bachelor’s degree from Millsaps College. She previously served as the director of research at Higher Ed Insight and as a data analyst at the Woodward Hines Education Foundation. Her passion for participatory approaches to evaluation was born when she became a foundation data analyst and wondered: How do we know if what we are doing is “working”? Learn more about Tait.

Photo of Rory Neuner
Rory Neuner, M.P.P., joined the Barr Foundation as a learning officer in 2020 to bolster the Foundation’s learning and evaluation efforts. She supports efforts to gauge the Foundation’s impact and support ongoing learning. In addition, Rory supports Barr’s sector effectiveness work, focusing on efforts that aim to strengthen the region’s nonprofit and philanthropic infrastructure. Prior to her work in philanthropy, Rory spent six years as a public policy consultant, working across sectors on transportation, mobility justice, environmental, and health policy issues. Learn more about Rory.


June 16 @ 12:30 pm EDT
June 17 @ 4:30 pm EDT
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