Moving Philanthropy Forward Together

Our current initiatives aim to build unique, world-class programs and partnerships that advance more equitable and effective philanthropy. The Johnson Center seeks support to plan, implement, and launch these programs.

Competency-Based Badging Program

Competency-based credentials and hiring practices have been shown to increase staff diversity and retention, and support a field with combined mission and job-area expertise. The Johnson Center’s competency model for foundation program officers will create and support a new paradigm for equitable learning and hiring.

Donor Journeys Initiative

Every donor has a journey — and every journey deeply influences that donor’s values, strategies, knowledge, skills, and, ultimately, impact. In this time of great and generational change, we need to learn more about what goes into a successful path, and actively share these lessons with family donors of every sort.

Early Warning System for Nonprofits

Approximately 20% of nonprofits make it to their 20th anniversary. What drives a healthy sector, and how can we target capacity building and support so that more nonprofits thrive? We propose a three-phase approach to understanding nonprofits’ status, risk, and recovery to enable timely intervention and, ultimately, vibrant communities.

Ecosystem for Nonprofit Leadership

Nonprofits are eager to embrace a more diverse and inclusive ecosystem for board leadership. Yet progress toward this goal remains slow. We believe that a community-wide approach to increasing nonprofits’ capacity to foster inclusive boardrooms, and preparing more individuals to serve on boards, can effectively address this longstanding challenge.

Philanthropy Fellowship Program

With the Michigan Nonprofit Association and Council of Michigan Foundations, we envision a two-year fellowship to prepare the next generation of diverse leaders in our field. One year each of working in a nonprofit and a foundation will provide the broad grounding that drives strong leadership, no matter where fellows choose to make their careers.

Interested in supporting this work?

We are seeking philanthropic funding to pursue these projects. Connect with Teri Behrens to learn more.