Sunday, November 22, 2009

ARNOVA: Fund for our Economic Future

David Abbott, CEO of the George Gund Foundation spoke during Thursday evening's plenary session about the Fund for our Economic Future, a collaboration of over 70 philanthropists & organizations in Northeastern Ohio created to revitalize businesses and bring new jobs to the region. This collaboration has been going on since 2004 and has raised over $90mil.

David's speech was inspiring and honest. He spoke about how the fund is working balance its collaboration efforts and mission fulfillment of of supporting business growth, talent development, and inclusion activities. David explained how the fund is growing and changing rapidly including in this stage of the work it is:
  • showing signs of traditional foundation behavior
  • working to balance group decision-making & personal egos
  • interacting in meaningful ways
  • holding a real mirror to itself
This fund truly exemplifies a learning organization. I hope it has many successes as it continues to support revitalization in Northeastern Ohio. As David said during his speech, "[successful] collaboration is striking a balance between individual and collective action."

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