Foundation Blog

Clarify, Communicate, and Engage: Insights about Trustee Engagement in Design Thinking

by Patrick Troska, Executive Director In January, our Foundation lead a workshop at the Minnesota Council of Foundation’s annual conference. The session was entitled “From Empathy to Strategy: Co-Designing Grantmaking with Community.”  It was our attempt to tell our story of using Design Thinking or Human Centered Design  to work with the community to co-create a new set of Foundation priorities and grantmaking strategies focused on North Minneapolis.  This blog […]

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Taking the First Steps to Student-Driven Learning

By Amanda Janssen, Executive Director Rêve Academy What happens when students are trusted to navigate their own learning? That’s the question we asked Phillips Family Foundation when we proposed the testing of a new teaching methodology in North Minneapolis. Luckily, they were just as interested in the answer as we were. But I hadn’t expected to see investment-ready business ideas after two days of work, such as: • A business accelerator that specializes […]

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Community Assets Require Community Investments

by E. Coco, VISTA Program Manager It is far too easy to fall into the familiar trap of focusing on deficits. It is particularly easy in philanthropy, where we can intellectualize and debate realities that we as people have often never had any direct, personal experience with. In 2016, the Phillips staff heard loud and clear that identifying assets and lifting up the inspiring resilience of communities on the Northside […]

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100 Years Old and Here for Good

By Sarah Stoesz, President and CEO of Planned Parenthood Minnesota, North Dakota, South Dakota The Foundation has supported Planned Parenthood of Minnesota, North Dakota, South Dakota as well as Planned Parenthood of Los Angeles with operating grants since 1974. Women lined up down the street and around the block in a neighborhood of Brooklyn, NY on a gray October morning 100 years ago.  They lined up to get a pamphlet […]

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“Change Happens at the Speed of Trust”

by Patrick J. Troska, Executive Director It’s not entirely clear to me who coined that phrase.  A Google search was inconclusive, although Stephen Covey wrote a book entitled “The Speed of Trust” in 2006, so maybe he gets credit. Regardless, this phrase became the centerpiece of the Foundation’s work in 2016 to overhaul our funding priorities and refocus our grantmaking in North Minneapolis.  It served as a critical lesson that […]

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Call for Ideas– Corrections and Frequently Asked Questions

Call for Ideas and Proposals Student Success and Creative Ownership in North Minneapolis CORRECTIONS AND FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS The Foundation released two Call for Ideas documents on August 29th, 2016.  This document corrects several errors in those documents and addresses a number of questions that have subsequently been posed to staff. We hope this is helpful to all prospective applicants.  Please contact us to discuss your proposal ideas, or to […]

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One Big Gem and Silver Threads: A Legislative Session Wrap-Up

by Dane Smith, President of Growth & Justice The headline and summary paragraph in the Star Tribune’s editorial page wrap-up of the 2016 legislative session captured the dismal conventional wisdom about the anticlimactic end of negotiations for a legislative special session. Under “A Sorry Finish to an Unproductive Session,’’ the editorialists opined that Gov. Mark Dayton’s decision to end negotiations means “no tax relief, no building projects (bonding) bill, no […]

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Seeking Your Ideas on Student Success and Creative Ownership in North Minneapolis

Today, the Foundation has released two separate “Calls for Ideas and Proposals” Student Success in North Minneapolis Creative Ownership in North Minneapolis PLEASE NOTIFY anyone and everyone who may be interested in either of these two areas or those who are doing work in either area. With these calls, we are asking for innovative ideas and your best thinking to accomplish these two brand new areas of focus for the […]

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Proposal Submission Instructions

Proposal Submission Instructions Go to https://phillipsfamilymn.smartsimple.com. Click on “Register Here” in the bottom left corner of the “Welcome” box. Answer the Eligibility Quiz question. Note- your work must be in one of the 7 metro counties listed or you are not eligible to submit. Complete the registration information. The fields with the red asterisk are required.  The IRS does not allow us to consider individuals at this time; you must […]

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The Beginning Adventures of a New Cohort

by Jay Klyman, VISTA Leader Greetings readers! This is Jay Klyman writing. I am the new VISTA Leader for the 2016-2017 cohort of C3 Twin Cities! Emma Olson is off to graduate school at the University of Minnesota through the Humphrey School of Public Affairs. We at C3 wish her all the best and I feel so lucky to be, as they say, “standing on the shoulders of giants”. Even […]

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