Friday, August 24, 2012

Compassion and Innovation Among Themes at Inaugural Black Philanthropy Summit

Christal M. Jackson, founder, Head and Heart Philanthropy Summit (3rd from right) surrounded by the summit's first co-hort (L to R) Tracey Webb, Deidra Jackson, Lidya Araya, Jacquie Hood Martin, Sharif Atkins, Adia May, Antoinette Latham, Shannon King Nash and Dr. Elsie Scott.

Martha’s Vineyard serves as backdrop to Head and Heart Philanthropy Summit

MARTHA'S VINEYARD, MA – On August 10-11, 2012, nonprofit executives, foundation leaders and philanthropists convened at the 1st Annual Head and Heart Philanthropy Summit at the Harborview Hotel for learning, professional networking and idea generation. The invitation-only summit is the brainchild of Christal M. Jackson, founder of Jackson and Associates Group, LLC, a boutique fund development and philanthropic consulting firm focused on serving the needs of high net worth individuals, athletes, elected officials, celebrities, faith-based institutions and community organizations.  Jackson shares, “The Summit was a concept that I have tossed around for about six years and finally it was the right time on so many levels to convene nonprofit practitioners to philanthropists. Given the serious issues facing our community we must begin to collaborate for greater impact to create systemic change.”

Presentations from those prominent in the nonprofit and philanthropic sectors provided attendees with an overview of the work being done to transform and strengthen communities: Garrick T. Davis, legislative director of economic and financial policy, National Urban League and Dr. Elsie L. Scott, president and CEO of the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation presented on the intersection of philanthropy and policy; Sherrie Deans, executive director of the Admiral Center shared insight on how the organization supports celebrities with being strategic in their philanthropic efforts; Joe Scantlebury, senior policy officer at the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation presented on the tools needed to build a successful foundation; and executives from J.P. Morgan Chase Private Bank's Philanthropy Centre, Erin Hogan, vice president, Atiya Weiss, vice president and Terry Woodard, managing director and senior banker, presented on the various financial vehicles that individuals and organizations can use to give and how its' division supports important issues such as education and health.

Sherrie Deans, executive director of the Admiral Center presented the session, "A Model of Philanthropy."

The first cohort selected to take part in the inaugural summit were: Lidya Araya, co-founder and co-producer, World Swirl Productions; Sharif Atkins, actor, USA Network’s “White Collar” and formerly of NBC’s ER; Susan Taylor Batten, president and CEO, Association of Black Foundation Executives; Daphne Doyle Benbow, Usher's New Look Foundation; Michelle Coffey, executive director, Lambent Foundation; Ebonie Johnson Cooper, founder,; Lisa E. Davis, attorney; Deidra Jackson, executive director, The Arts Emporium, Inc., and director of communications and governmental affairs for BASF Louisiana; Lloyd M. Johnson, Jr., founder, Minority Corporate Counsel Association and “Diversity & The Bar” magazine; Antoinette Latham, executive director, Vince Young Foundation; Darryl Lester, founder, Hindsight Consulting and Community Investment Network; Jacquie Hood Martin, founder, J. Hood &Associates; Adia May, founder and CEO, Zuri Entertainment; Yvonne Moore, executive director, Daphne Foundation; Shannon King Nash, president, Nash Management Group; Alex Richard Picou, managing director and senior banker, J.P. Morgan Chase Private Bank; Celeste Smith, senior private banker, J.P. Morgan Chase and board member, New York Women's Foundation; Sid Smith, founder and president, SRS Counsel, P.C., and general counsel, Syncom Venture Partners; Stacey Trammel, contributor,; Rica Triggs, executive director, Soledad O'Brien & Brad Raymond Foundation; Jackie Washington, founder, Atlanta Neuromuscular Diagnostics and Save Our Hands; Tracey Webb, founder, and The Black Benefactors; and Latesha Williams, sports and entertainment executive for LeBron James' marketing company, LRMR Management, LLC.

Celeste Smith, Adia May, Christal M. Jackson and Shannon King Nash

Lidya Araya, Michelle Coffey, Ebonie Johnson Cooper, Sharif Atkins and Antoinette Latham

On the evening of August 10th, the summit partnered with the Martha's Vineyard African American Film Festival (MVAAFF) for a screening of "Contradictions of Fair Hope," followed by an engaging discussion led by Rashad Robinson, executive director of Color of Change and S. Epatha Merkeson that focused on the impact of media on communities of color. See highlights from the screening here. The group gathered afterwards at Hooked restaurant for dinner and the MVAAFF after party.

Dr. Jackie Washington and S. Epatha Merkeson at the "Contradictions of Fair Hope" screening.

The first summit was a great success, and the dialogue continues among participants on how to best support one another to ensure philanthropic and non profit ventures supporting the African American community thrive. Plans are already underway for the Head and Heart Philanthropy Summit II that will convene mothers of professional athletes and entertainers in January 2013. Jackson states, “Next steps are to continue a series of invitation only convenings across the country...different cohorts all with the intent of helping people connect around a philanthropic agenda that will address the needs of the community. Next year, we will all gather for a celebration of accomplishments and further collaboration. Our launch was so successful and historic because we were able to cross sectors in a way that's never been done all in the name of philanthropy.”

Head and Heart Philanthropy Summit founder Christal M. Jackson

Sponsors included J.P. Morgan Chase and Hindsight Consulting.  For more highlights from the summit, view tweets from the #HHPS12 hashtag on Twitter, and the article "Black Philanthropy:  Why We Do What We Do" from

Photo credit:  Stacey Trammel/Buzzology

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