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IDEA Breakfast – December 13, 2018

December 13, 2018 | 7:30 am - 9:00 am

Cost: $20 for members and $30 for non-members
RSVP required.

About the IDEA Breakfast Series

AFP Minnesota’s IDEA (Inclusion, Diversity, Equity and Access) Breakfast Series invites nonprofit executives of color to share stories of leadership, fundraising, and how they navigate the sector as a person of color. The series is part of AFP-MN’s goal to make the fundraising profession more inclusive with greater representation in the sector at all levels of leadership.

The IDEA Series is specifically designed to benefit current and aspiring fundraisers of color; however the series is open to everyone interested in participating and learning from this conversation.

Presentation – Inclusive Fundraising Teams: A Listening Session

In the 2017 report, Race to Lead, Sean Thomas-Breitfeld and Frances Kunreuther make clear that the reason people of color are leaving the sector – and the fundraising profession for that matter – is due to organizations and the way they manage, recruit, promote, and engage people of color in the field.

This panel discussion will serve as a listening session in the experiences and systems that impact fundraisers of color in organizations throughout the Twin Cities. How do individuals’ backgrounds and cultures inform their work? What are key barriers to bringing someone’s personal and cultural identity into fundraising? How has organization culture helped or hindered individuals in that effort?

This session will speak to the management acumen and cultural competence organizations must have to support a diverse fundraising team. It will also serve as a guide for fundraisers of color who are entering the field and navigating organizations that may or may not have that competence.

Come enjoy a light breakfast and a deep discussion about how nonprofit organizations can support and grow diverse fundraising teams and all the strengths they possess.

Light breakfast of coffee, fruit, and pastries will be served.

Please share this event broadly with your network, especially your POC connections.


Mikisha Nation, Executive Director, Teach for America – Twin Cities

Mikisha Nation

Mikisha Nation brings 15 years of experience in corporate, government, and nonprofit leadership to her role as Executive Director of Teach For America’s Twin Cities region. She most recently served for two years as Executive Director of the youth development program, Breakthrough Twin Cities. During her tenure at Breakthrough she helped double the number of kids and aspiring educators served by the program. Prior to serving at Breakthrough Twin Cities, Mikisha spent four years as a senior business partner at Target.

Mikisha’s focus is to ensure that the Twin Cities region grows the base of resources and partnerships necessary to develop and sustain our diverse leadership pipeline and engage and catalyze its growing alumni force to drive change inside and outside of the classroom.


Mala Thao, Philanthropic Advisor, St. Paul and Minnesota Foundations

Mala Thao

Mala Thao has been in the nonprofit sector for almost 20 years.  She currently is a Philanthropic Advisor at Saint Paul & Minnesota Foundations.  She loves working with families on their family philanthropy.  Prior, she enjoyed fundraising for American Red Cross Twin Cities, Washburn Center for Children, Indian Land Tenure Foundation and many other exciting nonprofits.  Mala is a current board member at Headwaters Foundation for Justice and a former Advisory Council Member to The Governor’s Council on Faith and Community Service Initiatives.  She also founded the Hmong Women’s Giving Circle, the first Hmong giving circle in the nation.


Lana Barkawi, Ph.D., Executive and Artistic Director, MIZNA

Lana Barkawi

Lana Barkawi, Ph.D. is executive and artistic director of Mizna, a multidisciplinary Arab arts organization based in St. Paul with a mission to be a space for Arab and Arab American film, literature, and art. She serves as the publisher ofMizna: Prose, Poetry, and Art Exploring Arab America, the only journal of Arab American literature in the country, and oversees Mizna’s Twin Cities Arab Film Festival, among the largest and longest-running Arab film festivals in the country. Her interest in fostering a local, national, and international space for Arab and Muslim art and community has brought Mizna in partnership with many artists and organizations to present creative work that creates change. She has served on grant panels for the Knight Foundation, the National Endowment for the Arts, the Minnesota State Arts Board, and the Metropolitan Regional Arts Center. She is a member of the board of directors of St. Paul’s Cultural STAR Program.


Trista Harris, President at FutureGood (Facilitator)

Trista Harris

Trista Harris is a philanthropic futurist and nationally known as a passionate advocate for leaders in the philanthropic and nonprofit sectors. Trista’s work has been covered by the Chronicle of Philanthropy, Forbes, CNN, the New York Times, and numerous social sector blogs. She is also the co-author of the book “How to Become a Nonprofit Rockstar” and the upcoming book “FutureGood”. She is a President of FutureGood, a consultancy focused on helping visionaries build a better future.

She has spent her whole career dedicated to the social sector, starting with a job as a summer parks assistant at the age of 15. Before starting FutureGood, Trista was President of the Minnesota Council on Foundations, a vibrant community of grantmakers who award more than $1.5 billion annually. Prior to joining MCF in 2013, she was executive director of the Headwaters Foundation for Justice in Minneapolis, and she previously served as program officer at the St. Paul Foundation.

Trista has been certified in strategic foresight by Oxford University, earned her Master of Public Policy degree from the Humphrey School of Public Affairs, University of Minnesota, and her Bachelor of Arts from Howard University. She is a board member for the Association of Black Foundation Executives. Trista served on the Minnesota Super Bowl Host Committee and the Governor’s Council on Law Enforcement and Community Relations, which was convened after the shooting of Philando Castile. She is a passionate national advocate for the social sector using the tools of futurism to solve our communities’ most pressing challenges.



December 13, 2018
7:30 am - 9:00 am
Event Categories:
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AFP Minnesota


Register online:
$20 for members and $30 for nonmembers
Onsite Registration?
Yes, additional $10


Neighborhood House at the Wellstone Center
179 Robie Street East
Saint Paul, MN 55107
+ Google Map

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