Community Foundation Helps Tackle ‘Unconscious Bias’ In Local Philanthropy

July 1, 2020
Community Foundation of Broward Vice President Sheri Brown (middle row on the left) helps lead an online discussion about overcoming unconscious bias in local philanthropy.

Racial bias can seep into every sector of our community, including local philanthropy.

To explore opportunities for more equality in local giving, Community Foundation of Broward Vice President Sheri Brown recently helped lead a video conference organized by the local chapter of the Association of Fundraising Professionals.

Representatives from the Urban League of Broward County, Pride Center of Equality Park, the Aspen Leadership Group and more joined Sheri in this online discussion of “unconscious bias” – attitudes or stereotypes that affect actions and decision making.

For philanthropic organizations, unconscious bias can affect everything from who gets hired to who receives a grant.

Participants in the video conference discussed how prioritizing diversity in the leadership and makeup of philanthropic organizations – from who serves on the board to which employees get promoted – can help overcome unconscious bias.

“You have to look at who is invited to the table,” said Sheri, who oversees the Community Foundation’s grantmaking. “It has to be a table filled with diversity. A reflection of the community we are trying to serve.”

The group discussion also focused on the need for more outreach to better understand community challenges. How more engagement and collaboration, not just more money, are key to creating real change. And how setting measurable goals can help make local philanthropy more inclusive and equitable.

Opportunities to learn and foster new thinking, like this online discussion, are key to finding solutions to the racial injustice that has plagued our country and our community for far too long.

The Community Foundation will not sit on the sidelines during these critical times, when there is a renewed outcry across the country to overcome inequality and injustice. We are taking part in local and national conversations to help find answers. We are committed to building new collaborations that bring real change. Philanthropy, like all sectors of our community, must be a part of the solution.

Contact Information

For more information about the Community Foundation of Broward, contact or 954-761-9503.

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