session descriptions

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Cultivating Alumni Networks
Breakout Session 2 (1:15pm - 2:30pm)
Co-facilitated by Vicki Johnson and Christine Lai

This session is a facilitated roundtable on building successful alumni networks to enhance the quality, reach and impact of fellowship programs.  The session will begin with a brief presentation on some examples of successful alumni networks and promising practices on developing alumni leaders. The group discussion will focus on organizational challenges to coordinating and maintaining alumni initiatives, and ideas on how alumni can be effectively tapped to contribute to recruitment, programming, brand awareness and program evaluation.

Facilitator Bios:
Vicki Johnson

Founder and Director,
Vicki is the Founder and Director of, the leading online source for information on professional and academic fellowships, with a member base of more than 34,000 fellowship seekers and career advisors. In 2012, she established the International Fellows Network which provides opportunities for fellowship alumni to meet and network across programs and disciplines. The IFN holds regular events in San Francisco, Washington, DC, New York City, and Berlin, Germany. Vicki is an alumna of the New York City Urban Fellows Program, the German Chancellor Fellowship, the Scoville Fellowship, and Fulbright New Zealand.  

Christine Lai
Chief of Staff, Delivering Happiness

Christine Lai is a cross-sector collaboration catalyst, connecting ideas, passions, and people for positive social change. She most recently served as Chief of Staff for Delivering Happiness, an organization creating more successful, sustainable company cultures. She was selected as a 2012 ProInspire and StartingBloc Fellow and has experience in education, hospitality, and sports. Christine is a yes-mad (a.k.a. global citizen) and loves spending time enjoying good company, conversation, and cuisine. She is inspired and invigorated by communities and bringing people together to do epic things.

Equity Incorporated: The role of fellowship programs in creating a more diverse and equitable social sector
Breakout session 1 (10:45am - 12:00pm)
Co-facilitated by Yolanda Alindor and Dionne Galloway

Fellowship programs play a critical role in challenges facing the social sector around diversity, equity, and inclusion. This breakout session will focus on how fellowship programs focus on diversity, equity, and inclusion with staff, leadership, and program participants. Specifically, how are fellowship programs approaching diversity, equity, and inclusion when it comes to recruiting, selection, training, and compensation? What are the components of a successful DEI effort within a fellowship program? Is yours inclusive, not just in design but also in execution? What strategies work to foster more inclusive environments? This isn’t just about improving the numbers but also about developing competencies in all program participants around understanding equity, understanding identity, and understanding how together we can build a more diverse and inclusive social sector.

Facilitator Bios:
Yolanda Alindor
Organizational and Professional Development Officer, The San Francisco Foundation
In her role at The San Francisco Foundation, Yolanda leads in-house organizational development efforts and directs The San Francisco Foundation’s Multicultural Fellowship Program. Over 30 years old, the program nurtures the development of racially and ethnically diverse cohorts for leadership positions with a focus on social justice. From 2009-2012, she led The San Francisco Foundation’s Community Leadership Project, providing capacity-building resources and training to organizations working in low-income communities of color. Prior to 2006, Yolanda was an independent organization development consultant specializing in strategic planning, board governance and meeting facilitation with a focus on community-based and social change organizations. She has an M.A. in Communication from Stanford University and a B.A. in Political Science from California State University Hayward.

Dionne Galloway
Director of Leadership Development Programs, ProInspire
With over 10 years of experience in the social and private sectors, Dionne owns responsibility for ProInspire’s programs that help enhance the quality and capabilities of leadership within individuals and organizations. Dionne was a 2013 ProInspire Fellow, serving as Operations Manager at City First Enterprises, a Community Development Finance Institution; and City First Homes, a leading affordable housing organization. With a diverse career path that includes work as a Marketing Director in residential real estate and as a Communications Specialist with the American Federation of Government Employees, Dionne is excited to use her experience and expertise to support the groundbreaking work of ProInspire. Dionne graduated from Howard University with a B.A. in Journalism (concentration in advertising) and a minor degree in graphic design.

Maximizing Cross-fellowship Collaboration for Talent Recruitment and Marketing
Breakout session 1 (10:45am - 12:00pm)
Co-facilitated by Julie Horowitz and Elliot Luscombe

While all of our programs attract talented applicants, most of us also reject many applicants, and many of us are looking to increase the quality and quantity of “best fit” applicants. At the same time, many of us also have alumni seeking career advancement opportunities, which could include another fellowship. In this session, we will share best practices, successes and challenges, and explore ways that collaboration might help us reach our individual and collective goals. Our session will include two breakout sessions: one will focus on social media and how to maximize our marketing efforts; the other will explore how and when to best steer applicants and alumni to other fellowships. Our overall objective is to explore how we can best work together in our recruitment and talent marketing work, to ensure that we capture and maximize talent interested in social impact work, and steer talent to “best fit” fellowship opportunities.

We kindly request that participants in this session bring the following data or be prepared to speak to it: 
- Recruitment marketing data or insights
- Overall applicant numbers
- Trends in applicant source ("How did you hear about ____________ organization?")
- Applicant rejection policies
- Alumni numbers and trends in activity/career advancement (e.g. average years of work experience, types of roles they are filling or seeking)

Facilitator Bios:
Julie Horowitz
Senior Vice President, Growth Partnerships, Education Pioneers
Julie is responsible for identifying and developing new channels and partnerships to attract and place talent in the education sector. Prior to this role, Julie oversaw recruitment, admissions, and placement for EP’s Fellowship programs, and also served as a strategy consultant to the organization.
Julie came to EP with nearly two decades of leadership and management experience in education, across sectors.  Highlights include serving as Chief External Affairs Officer for New Leaders; as Executive Director of the Young Women's Leadership Network; and as Chief of Staff to the Deputy Chancellor for Operations at the New York City Department of Education, under Chancellor Joel Klein. During her time at the NYC DOE she was in the inaugural cohort of The Broad Foundation's Residency.
A product of the New York City public schools, Julie began her career as a teacher in NYC and Cape Town, South Africa. She holds a B.A. and an MBA from Yale University. After business school, she worked as an education industry analyst on Wall Street, and then held business development positions for two private education companies. Early in her career she was a Fulbright scholar in South Africa and an Urban Fellow in NYC government. Julie lives in Washington, DC with her husband and two daughters.

Elliot Luscombe
Associate Director, Fellowship Recruitment and Outreach, Education Pioneers
Elliot Luscombe brings his background in social work, youth development, and program management to his role at Education Pioneers. He previously worked as a consultant with various non-profit organizations and the New York City Department of Education, focusing on design, implementation, and management of out-of-school time programs for adolescents in over 20 middle and high schools. Elliot holds a Bachelor’s of Arts in Communication from Stanford University as well as a Master’s in Social Work from the University at Albany, State University of New York.

measure for measure: evaluating impact
co-facilitated by chaka booker and lori severens

Evaluating the impact of investments in leadership development is an ongoing challenge, but the ability to both measure and tell the story of impact is critical. This session is an interactive opportunity for fellowship managers and funders to share evaluation methods, assessment tools, and successes and challenges. We'll look at both quantitative and qualitative methods that can measure not only the impact of leadership development efforts on the trajectory of each leader but also the short- and long-term impacts on the organizations and communities served. The session will be grounded in a survey of selected leadership programs as well as available research from the field. Each participant will be encouraged to contribute her/his own experience to the conversation, creating a peer learning environment.

Facilitator Bios:
Chaka Booker
Managing Director, The Broad Residency in Urban Education

Chaka oversees all aspects of the Residency program including recruitment, selection, placement and professional development. Previously, Chaka served as senior director of recruitment and selection for The Broad Residency. Before joining the Center, he was founder and director of A+ Services, a tutorial company operating within Los Angeles Unified School District, and then director of education for Star Inc., a provider of after-school enrichment, curriculum development and supplemental education services. Chaka earned bachelor’s degrees in economics and psychology from the University of California, Los Angeles and an MBA from Stanford University's Graduate School of Business.

Lori Severens
Assistant Director for Leadership and Design, Ascend at the Aspen Institute

Lori manages the Ascend Fellowship, a values-based leadership program for diverse, established leaders committed to breaking the cycle of poverty. Previously, she co-designed two leadership development programs for US and global leaders. Prior to joining Ascend, she worked in international development with USAID and as a consultant to United Nations agencies and the African Development Bank in Africa, Asia, and the Middle East. Lori received her B.A. in history and Spanish from Mary Baldwin College and her M.A. in international relations and economics from The Johns Hopkins University School of Advanced International Studies.

Nonfat Double Vanilla Extra Shot Fellowship: What learning experience is best for your fellows?
Breakout session 2 (1:15pm - 2:30pm)
co-facilitated by abby saloma and david styers

"Everyone thinks of changing the world, but no one thinks of changing himself."- Leo Tolstoy
No two leadership journeys are same, so how do you create a Fellowship program that is multi-faceted and customizable to meet each leader’s needs? Come engage in a conversation about the Presidio Institute Fellows program and the Schusterman Fellowship to explore different components of blended learning to empower fellows to shape their own experience. Discover what success looks like with individualization, and bring your own questions to help your leadership development program create broader impact on your Fellows and thus ultimately on the communities they serve.

Facilitator Bios:
Abby Saloma
Senior Program Officer, Schusterman Family Foundation

Abby believes that individual change drives organizational change and that leaders are at their best when they are leading from “the inside out.” That is why she is thrilled to oversee the Schusterman Family Foundation’s leadership initiatives – including its flagship Schusterman Fellowship – designed to develop and support individuals who are leading social change. Abby has worked in the for-profit and nonprofit sectors, including five years as the Senior Director of Marketing and Communications for BBYO. She also served as the Executive Director of Street Sense, a DC-based nonprofit focused on educating the public about issues of poverty. Abby holds a B.A. from Penn State, an M.A. from George Washington University and a certificate in Leadership Coaching from Georgetown. She lives in Takoma Park, MD with her husband and two boys.

David Styers
Manager of Program and Business Development, Presidio Institute, San Francisco

David has an extensive background working on the forefront of nonprofit and civic engagement in volunteer and leadership development. Since 2014, he has developed and implemented Presidio Institute executive education programs to provide transformational experiences that inspire, encourage, and empower leaders to make positive impact in their communities. David has also spent the past nine years serving as a Senior Board Governance Consultant for BoardSource. Previously, he served seven years each as senior director at the Points of Light Foundation and as a program manager at the League of American Orchestras. David holds a degree in English and religion from Wake Forest University and lives in El Cerrito, CA.

The value of place-based fellowships
breakout session 1 (10:45am - 12:00pm)
co-facilitated by Shelley Danner and Vu Le

How do you impact a city through a fellowship program? Through an interactive discussion, the facilitators will share about Challenge Detroit and Rainer Valley Corps fellowship models. The group will discuss the value and strategy of developing talent that is invested locally, how cross-sector partnerships can catalyze collaboration, how to participate in community engagement, how to build awareness and change perspectives of a city, and how to create jobs and stimulate the economy through fellowship programs.

Facilitator Bios:
Shelley Danner
Program & Strategy Director, Challenge Detroit

Shelley Danner is Program Director at Challenge Detroit, where she designs and oversees programmatic aspects of the fellowship model and supports strategic planning, partnerships and operations for the organization. Previously, Shelley spent seven years in Washington, DC as a consultant with Accenture. Shelley is a 2011 Starting Bloc Fellow, a 2014 Marjorie S. Fisher Fellow, a 2016 IDEO U Impact House Fellow, and a 2016 delegate to the Salzburg Global Seminar for Young Cultural Innovators. Shelley is passionate about design thinking, education and leadership, sustainable cities, the arts, and travel. Shelley holds a B.S. in Business from Miami University in Ohio and completed a leadership coaching graduate certificate at Georgetown University.

Vu Le
Executive Director, Rainier Valley Corps
Vu Le is the Director of the Rainier Valley Corps, a Seattle-based organization promoting social justice by developing leaders of color, strengthening organizations led by communities of color, and fostering collaborations between diverse communities. RVC just launched a place-based leadership program where emerging leaders of color are placed into grassroots organizations led by and serving communities of color. Vu’s passion to make the world better, combined with a low score on the Law School Admission Test, drove him into the field of nonprofit work. Known for his no-BS approach, irreverent sense of humor, and love of unicorns, Vu has been featured in dozens, if not hundreds, of his own blog posts, which you can read at

Un-conference: A collaboration space
facilitated by Kristen Lucas

At gatherings like the Impact Fellowships Summit, amazing chatter happens in the hallways: topics that are on your mind but for which there aren’t formal sessions, subjects that we’ve run out of time to talk about, sparks of connection with others that you want to explore further. Using Open Space Technology, a methodology that has proven successful in conferences worldwide, this session offers the opportunity to meet and talk with others about topics of specific interest to you and your organization; learn from other people’s work; dig in to questions you want to explore; share your ideas and lessons learned; and build relationships. It’s like a potluck dinner, where we’ll set the table and you bring the food! To learn more about Open Space Technology, you can watch this video ( or read this description (

Facilitator Bio:
Kristen Lucas, Senior Program Manager, ProInspire
With over 10 years of experience in the education and nonprofit sectors, Kristen leads the ProInspire Fellowship program and Alumni Engagement. She has strategic and operational responsibility for the Fellowship, including recruitment, selection, and matching of talent with ProInspire Partners, and building and facilitating the professional development curriculum. Prior to joining ProInspire, Kristen worked for Teach For America, expanding organizational capacity for teams and building competency by expanding the organization’s identity- and values-based leadership development programming. Kristen holds a B.A. in Psychology from Penn State University. Outside of work, Kristen enjoys gardening, cycling, and practicing yoga.

Summit debrief 
Facilitated by libbie landles-cobb

In this session, participants from each of the breakout sessions will report back to the broader group on discussions they had. In particular, we will ask a representative from each session to share:
·     What were the most powerful 1-2 takeaways the group had from the discussion?
·    What, if any, next steps did the group discuss and how might others get involved?

Facilitator Bio:
Libbie Landles-Cobb
Manager, The Bridgespan Group

Libbie is a manager in The Bridgespan Group’s San Francisco office. She has worked with a variety of nonprofits, national networks, and foundations on issues of strategy and organizational development. As part of Bridgespan’s Leadership Practice, she leads research on what is required to effectively develop the nonprofit leaders. She also is a facilitator and coach in Bridgespan’s leadership development program, Leading for Impact. Libbie is co-author of "Boosting Nonprofit Performance Where it Counts" (2014) and “The Leadership Development Deficit” (2015), both published via Stanford Social Innovation Review.

other summit facilitators:

Gina Palmisano
Director of Alumni Engagement, Youth For Understanding

Gina joined the YFU team in September 2014, returning to the United States after spending over four years abroad.  Her background in International Business and Marketing from George Washington University served as a launching point for her work in Mongolia, Singapore, and Germany. Prior to joining YFU, she worked in both the nonprofit sector, running a leadership and intercultural exchange organization, and in the private sector, with roles in global and regional sales with DHL. As the Director of Alumni Engagement, Gina is currently working on a comprehensive program to serve over 50,000 constituents who now reside in the USA and beyond.