WESTCHESTER COUNTY – The non-profit landscape may have changed since the United Way of Westchester and Putnam first launched its first Not-For-Profit Leadership Summit back in 2002 with keynote speaker Hillary Clinton, but the need for new strategies to sustain non-profits in an era of shrinking government support is greater than ever.
Non-profits are looking for ways to re-energize and redirect their efforts. The good news, according to one of this year’s keynote speakers, is that while trust in government and the media is declining, the public’s perception of non-profits continues to climb.
“When we launched the Not-for-Profit Leadership Summit with the Westchester Community Foundation 15 years ago, the idea was to provide non-profits with the tools needed to propel their organizations into the future, and that is still true today,” said Alana Sweeny, President and CEO of United Way Westchester Putnam. “Hillary Clinton, who was then our Senator, was our first keynote speaker, and her message is just as important and vital as it was back then.”
This year’s Not-for-Profit Leadership Summit will be held on Monday, May 1 from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Doubletree Hotel Tarrytown and features breakfast and luncheon keynote speakers, morning and afternoon breakout sessions and a networking reception. Participants will have a choice of sixteen breakout sessions with topics ranging from social media strategies and creating a buzz for your non-profit to how to use data and how to build an effective board of directors, among others.
Both keynote speakers will address how non-profits can adapt and thrive in the current culture.
The breakfast keynote, Ilsa Flanagan, Director, National Reframing Initiative
National Human Services Assembly, will discuss her organization’s strategy to reframe the conversation around non-profits. According to Flanagan, research shows that the public is turned off by the traditional perception of non-profits as charities in support of the needy and responds more favorably to a positive image of an organization that adds value to the community.
Non-profits have a unique opportunity to capitalize on their elevated stature in the current climate, according to luncheon keynote David Birdsell, Marxe Dean and Professor at Baruch College’s Austin W. Marxe School of Public and International Affairs. Birdsell, a highly-respected political commentator, says polling data shows that unlike elected officials and the media, the public still believes in non-profits’ ability to implement change.
“Now more than ever, non-profits need a reboot to adapt to changing priorities,” said Carlene Gentilesco, COO of United Way of Westchester and Putnam. “I think they will find inspiration and practical solutions from our keynote speakers and from the presenters at the many breakout sessions offered throughout the day. It’s a chance to learn, refresh, network and share best practices.’’
The Leadership Summit is underwritten in part by the TD Charitable Foundation. Gold Level supporters include the Westchester County Local Development Corporation and Con Edison. Corporate sponsors are: Atlantic Westchester; Goldstein Hall Attorneys at Law; Robert Half Company; Bright Energy Services; CS Plus; Rose and Kiernan Inc.; Non-profit sponsors are: The Arc Westchester; Association of Development Officers; Fordham University – Westchester Campus; Mutual of American; Non-profit Westchester; Helene & Grant Wilson Center for Social Entrepreneurship at Pace University and NPCC.
There is a $35 non-refundable event fee for a nonprofit’s initial reservation. Each additional participant from the same organization is $30. Walk-in registration is $45, space permitting. Sponsorships and vendor tables are also available.
The Doubletree Hotel Tarrytown is located at 455 S. Broadway, Tarrytown, NY 10591. For more information, please call the Summit Hotline at 914-997-6700 x706.
For more information visit www.uwwp.org/summit.shtml