On Monday night, the Institute for Nonprofits shared its vision for social sector organizations being prepared to meet the grand challenges of our communities. Hosts Kristin and John Replogle and Ginger and John Sall set a magnificent table for this convening of nonprofit, business, government, and university leaders to connect share their passions for enhancing capacity and leadership in social sector organizations.
Richard Clerkin, Executive Director, said, “We will know we are successful in working towards our mission when 1) Nonprofit and social sector leaders successfully address the 5 Leadership Challenges that guide our work; 2) Nonprofit organizations are leaders in reaching across sectors and sparking collective action to focus the attention of government and business colleagues on the common good; and 3) Our students, the future leaders of nonprofit and social sector organizations, are globally engaged citizens able to leverage their multidisciplinary and engaged learning to address the grand challenges of our communities.”
During the evening, guests interacted with Institute for Nonprofit Student Ambassadors around the Five Leadership Challenges that guide the Institute’s work; Align mission, methods, and resources; Earn the public trust; Balance individual interest and the common good; Capitalize on opportunities associated with diversity; and Move beyond charity to systemic change. Conversations around these challenges engaged guests to share their insights about how they have seen these issues successfully resolved in their own work with social sector organizations.
Guest at the dinner also learned about the history and importance of the Institute to North Carolina from Barbara Goodmon, who was instrumental and very generous in helping found the Institute and has continued to play a major role in its development over the past twelve years. Provost Warwick Arden shared how the Institute sits in a very sweet spot in helping NC State achieve its strategic goals; it is a hub of multidisciplinarity that brings together expertise from all 10 colleges to help social sector organizations address their grand challenges and it enhances student success by providing them with engaged learning experiences. Leigh-Kathryn Bonner, a Nonprofit Studies Minor alumna, shared her love of NC State and of how the Institute helped her develop Bee Downtown, her social enterprise focused on spreading urban beekeeping. Humanities and Social Sciences’ Dean Jeff Braden closed out the evening by emphasizing the important impact the Institute can have not just across North Carolina but potentially across the globe.
The importance and power of connecting was central to the gathering. In order to strengthen the capacity of social sector organizations to solve our grand challenges, ideas, resources and support must be scaled through the collective action of leaders across sectors. The Institute for Nonprofits is proud to be part of a growing and dynamic community committed to this critical endeavor.