SECFs 51st Annual Meeting: Leading the Way

An Online Event: November 11-13, 2020

 Start Date - End Date

November 11, 2020 - November 13, 2020

Early Bird Discount Deadline

Wednesday, November 11, 2020

Registration Deadline

Wednesday, November 11, 2020

Are You Ready to Lead the Way?
Register Today for SECF's 51st Annual Meeting

Today, more than any other time in recent memory, our communities, region and nation are calling out for leadership.

An ongoing, deadly pandemic has turned lives upside-down, devastated our economy and stretched many of the organizations philanthropy supports to the breaking point. A long overdue reckoning on racial justice has shown the work of undoing centuries of systemic racism can no longer wait.

We cannot meet in person, but we must come together however we can. The moment demands it. Philanthropy must lead the way – but how?

We will explore this question, and many more, at SECF’s 51st Annual Meeting: Leading the Way.

Join us November 11-13, 2020, for an online event that will bring Southern philanthropy together in new ways while delivering the powerful speakers and sessions that have made the Annual Meeting the region’s premier philanthropic event for over 50 years!

Highlights of this year’s agenda include:

Powerful Keynote Speakers
Dr. David Williams
Harvard professor and
health equity expert
Richard Rothstein
Author, The Color of Law
Susan Taylor Batten
President & CEO, ABFE
Diverse & Dynamic Sessions, Including:
Storytelling for
Social Change
Courage in
Giving Community
Voice to Grantmaking
Race, Place &
Systemic Inequities

And more - View the Full Agenda!

Networking & Connection

The Annual Meeting will take place on a powerful virtual event platform that will create new opportunities to connect with colleagues. Later this year, SECF Members will also gain access to a new mobile app that will enhance the Annual Meeting experience!

For more information or questions regarding this event, please contact Quincy Kelly, SECF's meetings and planning consultant, at or at (404) 524-0911.

Registration Fees

Price Description Amount
Member - Full Registration $450.00
Member, Day 1 (Wednesday) Only $150.00
Member, Day 2 (Thursday) Only $150.00
Member, Day 3 (Friday) Only $150.00
Non-Member - Full Registration $500.00
Non-Member, Day 1 (Wednesday) Only $175.00
Non-Member, Day 2 (Thursday) Only $175.00
Non-Member, Day 3 (Friday) Only $175.00

Schedule of Events

Wednesday - November 11
10:00 am - 11:15 am
  Opening Celebration & Keynote: Dr. David Williams
The 51st Annual Meeting will begin with remarks from Dr. David Williams, an internationally recognized social scientist focused on social influences on health. His research has enhanced our understanding of the complex ways in which race, socioeconomic status, racism, stress, health behaviors and religious involvement can affect physical and mental health. The Everyday Discrimination Scale that he developed is the most widely used measure of discrimination in health studies. He has been invited to keynote scientific conferences in Europe, Africa, the Middle East, Australia, South America and across the United States.
12:00 pm - 1:00 pm
  Post-Keynote Reactions & Reflections
Following our Opening Keynote from Dr. David Williams, he will join us as we explore the issues and questions he raised and reflect on philanthropy’s role in promoting community health and the social factors that influence it.
1:00 pm - 2:15 pm
  Race, Place, and Systemic Inequities
Societal inequities disproportionately affect every aspect of life in our communities. For Black, indigenous and people of color (BIPOC), racial inequities result in poorer health outcomes, a staggering racial wealth gap, and a criminal justice system defined by a need for reform. The cultural, historical, and economic legacy of slavery and codification of racism means that these inequities are particularly prevalent in the Southeast. In a region that is rapidly diversifying and with most Southern states expected to demographically shift to majority BIPOC populations by 2050, the South cannot ensure future economic growth without creating more just and equitable systems that provide a path to prosperity for all its citizens. And as the South goes, so goes the nation.

This session will discuss:
  • How have existing systems been framed by racist policies and structures?
  • How can philanthropy help address the historical and cultural roots of racial inequities in communities throughout the Southeast?
  • What is the role for philanthropy in creating equitable solutions?
  Courage in Practice: Engaging with Risk in Our Grantmaking Amid a Changing World 
How has your grantmaking practice shifted since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic? What has changed for your nonprofit partners and the communities they serve? 2020 will be remembered as a year of unprecedented challenges and change, calling on philanthropy to collectively boost its risk tolerance, shift standards in funding decisions, and reconcile the ways our current practice helps or hinders the resiliency of nonprofits. Once a sense of normalcy returns, which practices will be preserved? How can we support our nonprofit partners to do more than just survive this crisis, but, instead, thrive?

Through group discussions and case studies from the field, attendees will explore their foundation’s relationship with risk, spotlighting opportunities for creativity and adaptation, and sharing tools to support these shifts. Participants will leave having made a commitment to at least one strategy that will enable them to evolve their own practices, armed with a digital toolbox for continued learning and exploration.
  Economic & Market Update
Experts from Truist’s Foundations & Endowments Specialty Practice will review a particularly turbulent year for the markets while also providing a look at factors that will affect performance in 2021 and beyond. This session is essential for finance professionals and other staff and trustees charged with managing foundation investments and endowments.
3:00 pm - 4:00 pm
  Wellness & Networking
Throughout the Annual Meeting, we will offer a variety of activities that give attendees a chance to relax, form deeper connections with colleagues or unwind with games, entertainment and more! We’ll announce more details on these events soon!
5:00 pm - 6:00 pm
  Concurrent Receptions
Join us at a variety of receptions for Annual Meeting attendees! You’ll be able to chat with peers in an informal setting and move between receptions throughout the hour. Grab a snack, pour yourself a drink and join us! Receptions include:
  1. New Members & First-Time Attendees
  2. Hull Fellows & Hull Alumni
  3. President’s Reception (invitation only for SECF supporters)
Thursday - November 12
10:00 am - 11:15 am
  SECF Business Meeting & Morning Plenary: Richard Rothstein
Following brief updates on SECF’s financials and governance, as well as the election of new trustees, we will welcome to our virtual stage Richard Rothstein, author of the bestselling book The Color of Law: A Forgotten History of How Our Government Segregated America, which recovers a forgotten history of how federal, state, and local policy explicitly segregated metropolitan areas nationwide, creating racially homogenous neighborhoods in patterns that, Rothstein argues, violate the Constitution and require remediation. Rothstein has spent years documenting the evidence that government not merely ignored discriminatory practices in the residential sphere but promoted them. The impact has been devastating for generations of African Americans who were denied the right to live where they wanted to live and raise and school their children where they could flourish most successfully.
12:00 pm - 1:00 pm
  Post-Plenary Reactions & Reflections
Following our Morning Plenary, Richard Rothstein will join attendees for a discussion of the issues raised in his remarks and in his book, The Color of Law.
1:00 pm - 2:15 pm
  Giving Community Voice to Grantmaking
More and more, funders are looking to include the communities they serve in their grantmaking processes. This session will explore the strategy of participatory grantmaking and giving decision-making power about funding decisions to those foundations aim to serve.

The session will explore the Southern Black Girls and Women’s Consortium, a collective of funders, activists and community leaders working to advance the movements for Black girls and women in the Southeast. The consortium is creating an infrastructure for regional grantmaking and movement-building by providing resources to locally-based organizations that work directly with Black girls, including those outside of traditional nonprofit organizations. The consortium has a community-informed grantmaking strategy with women and girls serving as advisors and grants panelists throughout the process.
  Place Matters
Across the American South, growing movements focused on equity, economic development, history, and the arts are converging to build social capital, engender civic pride, connect neighborhoods, support health and safety, grow social justice, and nurture a sense of belonging.
  Foundation Life: Building Organizations Where All Can Thrive
What contributes to a hospitable and equitable foundation environment? What practices promote long- term effectiveness in the field? We’ll hear stories from two philanthropy professionals who experienced significant workplace challenges that undermined their ability to serve effectively and thrive personally. We’ll also hear about the intentional evolution of these same two foundations where governance and administrative changes over time resulted in healthier workplaces for all. With regard to our country’s most recent challenges, panelists will also speak to their adaptive strategies around workplace health and effectiveness during the pandemic and engaging challenges and opportunities around racial justice and equity within their offices, boardrooms, and communities. This session is designed for foundation trustees and leaders who seek governance and staff practices where people and professionals can thrive.
3:00 pm - 4:00 pm
  Wellness & Networking
Throughout the Annual Meeting, we will offer a variety of activities that give attendees a chance to relax, form deeper connections with colleagues or unwind with games, entertainment and more! We’ll announce more details on these events soon!
4:00 pm - 5:00 pm
  Celebrate, Socialize & Sip
Pour yourself a drink, grab a snack and join with other Annual Meeting attendees for an hour of casual conversation and connection! This event is a chance for all attendees to come together, reconnect with old friends and begin making new ones!
Friday - November 13
10:00 am - 11:15 am
  Storytelling for Social Change
Storytelling is more than a communication tactic. It is a powerful methodology that can be used to mobilize change and inspire a new future. The session will explore the ways philanthropy can use storytelling as a tool to bring understanding to complex issues, create strong partnerships, and meet their mission. Participants will learn how to tell their story through lively, organic, and spontaneous activities.
  Equitable Evaluation: Valuing the Experiences and Expertise on Both Sides of the Equation
Traditional evaluation approaches often come with inherent power dynamics that can elevate funders as the sole experts and undervalue the voices, expertise and experiences of grantee organizations and the communities they serve. Recent years have seen a paradigm shift and the field is pushing for equitable evaluation: more inclusive methods that place equity at the core of the work, are culturally relevant, and honor the input of grantmakers and grantees at every stage of the evaluation process.

Join us as we discuss principles of equitable evaluation, learn why it’s critical for foundations to adopt these practices, and hear how colleagues in the field are already successfully applying equitable evaluation and what they are learning.
  The Mentorship Way
At some point on the philanthropic journey a mentor can help lead the way, but how do we develop meaningful mentorship relationships that are mutually beneficial? This session will explore the art and the science of creating mentorships that matter.
12:00 pm - 1:00 pm
  Wellness & Networking
Throughout the Annual Meeting, we will offer a variety of activities that give attendees a chance to relax, form deeper connections with colleagues or unwind with games, entertainment and more! We’ll announce more details on these events soon!
1:00 pm - 2:15 pm
  Closing Keynote: Susan Taylor Batten
The 51st Annual Meeting will wrap up with inspiring remarks from Susan Taylor Batten, president and chief executive officer of ABFE, a membership-based philanthropic organization that advocates for responsive and transformative investments in Black communities. Batten has led the organization’s philanthropic advising and programming on responsive philanthropy in Black communities for foundation leaders, donors and aligned partners.
2:30 pm - 3:30 pm
  Post-Keynote Reactions & Reflections
Following her Closing Keynote, Susan Taylor Batten will stay with us to offer further insights and answer questions from Annual Meeting attendees.


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