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Improving Prospects for Immigrants

BY Amy Dominguez-Arms
Amy Dominguez-Arms
As Director of the California Democracy program, Amy leads strategies aimed at i
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| Apr 23, 2014

Among the current efforts to improve prospects for the nation’s immigrants, I’m struck by the number of unusual alliances forming across sectors. Toward the common goals of expanding opportunities for immigrant families and strengthening our communities, we're seeing business people working closely with nonprofits, conservative faith leaders coordinating with student groups, labor groups connecting with law enforcement.

A terrific example of such a partnership may be found in the National Immigration Forum’s Bethlehem Project. The Bethlehem Project works with employers to coordinate citizenship assistance at the workplace. A recent article in the Los Angeles Business Journal provides insight into what they have been able to achieve in collaboration with employers in California and across the nation.

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Experiments with Voter Outreach & Technology

BY Connie Malloy
Connie Malloy
Connie Galambos Malloy is Senior Program Officer for the California Democracy pr
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| Apr 07, 2014

To complement our ongoing civic engagement efforts, the James Irvine Foundation and its grantee partners are launching ambitious nonpartisan voter outreach and mobilization efforts for 2014’s primary and general elections. A March 25th convening marked the launch of Irvine’s Voter Outreach & Technology (VOTE) Initiative, a set of field experiments across eight counties, conducted by nine organizations. These organizations will use targeted data analysis and new mobilization strategies, enabled by technology, to encourage voters from traditionally underrepresented populations to make their voices heard.

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Nomination Deadline Extended to April 9

BY Catherine Hazelton
Catherine Hazelton
As a Senior Program Officer for the California Democracy program, Catherine is e
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| Apr 04, 2014

You’ve asked and we are pleased to oblige – Irvine is extending the deadline for the Leadership Award nominations. Originally set for today, the new deadline is Wednesday, April 9. So take the weekend, but then please do submit your nominations by Wednesday!

The $125,000 James Irvine Foundation Leadership Award advances the work of individuals and pairs who are implementing innovative and effective solutions to significant state issues. Nominees may be working in any field - such as education, health, public safety, economic development or the environment - and in the public, private or nonprofit sector. We seek nominees who have demonstrated inclusiveness and leadership in their fields and whose work is ready to be shared with policymakers and other practitioners The nomination process is easy. We’ll ask you to provide a few details about the nominator and nominee as well as a short narrative about the nominee’s work. For the narrative, please include the following elements:

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Foundational Knowledge: Technology as Partner

BY Ekta Chopra
Ekta Chopra
Ekta Chopra is Irvine's Director of Technology, leading the Foundation’s use of
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| Apr 03, 2014

Editor’s Note: Foundational Knowledge is an occasional series on News & Insights, providing three bullet points on a topic of interest to Irvine’s partners and grantees.

Technology is changing the landscape of the social sector and continues to be a key to success in social change. But resource challenges and lack of technology expertise often serve as a hurdle in making this change happen for non-profits.

Here are three things that social sector leaders can do to make technology a partner, not just a resource, in bringing social change:

  • Do your work in the cloud
    Working in the cloud allows you to become nimble and agile, making collaboration simple. Examples of tools for this include:

  • Leverage video chats to build face-to-face connections
    Tools like Skype, FaceTime & Google Plus Hangouts offer multiple free ways to conduct online meetings and webinars.

  • Support training for accidental techies
    There are many online options for e-learning, as well as locals groups like Meetup.com that offer technology topics and general education for non techies in non-profits.

You don’t need to make big investments to leverage technology in this journey of social change.

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Arts Grantees Talk about Engaging and Adapting

BY Josephine Ramirez
Josephine Ramirez
As Arts Program Director, Josephine is leading the implementation of a new grant
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| Apr 02, 2014

When we made our first grants in the New California Arts Fund in December, we knew we were asking these grantee-partners to learn with us how to successfully engage a broader and more diverse community of Californians---a process that calls for transforming and sustaining a new way of thinking and operating as arts organizations. We’ve already been inspired by the creative ideas and plans that the grantee-partners have been developing. We asked a few of them to talk about what they are excited about as they begin this journey. Watch this video to find out more; I hope you find them as inspiring as I do. The organizations in this video do not represent all of our NCAF grantee-partners. We plan to produce more videos through the course of this project to share the full range of voices and grantee-partners.


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In the News: March 2014

BY Thuy Nguyen Kumar
Thuy Nguyen Kumar
As Communications Project Manager, Thuy provides project support for a broad ran
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| Apr 01, 2014

In March 2014, the following published articles mentioned the work of the Foundation or our grantees:

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Spotlight on 2014 Leadership Award Recipients

BY Catherine Hazelton
Catherine Hazelton
As a Senior Program Officer for the California Democracy program, Catherine is e
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| Mar 28, 2014

The 2014 Leadership Award recipients are making headlines. In the month since the awards were announced, media outlets across the state have been highlighting the work of these extraordinary individuals and pairs advancing innovative solutions to some of California’s biggest challenges.

The Los Angeles Daily News featured an op-ed by Susan Burton describing how A New Way of Life Reentry Project has helped hundreds of formerly incarcerated women rebuild their lives in Los Angeles.

Recipients Dr. Nadine Burke Harris and Suzy Loftus of Center for Youth Wellness were the focus of a San Francisco Chronicle article for developing effective responses for children affected by significant adverse childhood experiences.

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The Next Generation of Arts Leaders

BY Jeanne Sakamoto
Jeanne Sakamoto
Jeanne Sakamoto has worked at Irvine since 2004 and helps oversee many of the Fo
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| Mar 26, 2014

Editor's Note: In 2010, the Hewlett and Irvine foundations partnered to support organizations that are cultivating the next generation of California arts leaders through professional development, networking, and mentorship. At the time, our CEO Jim Canales posted this letter describing our interest in supporting next generation leaders. As we share an independent assessment of that initiative, we thought we'd bring the assessment to life with reflections from two initiative participants.

Face of the Past – by Josh Russell

I know I am going to sound like an old man, but back in 2007, the idea of an emerging leader was barely a blip on the arts radar. After the idea of "next generation leadership" was introduced at a meeting at the Hewlett Foundation, I asked seven of my friends who worked in the arts to explore what we could do. I was motivated by a few different things:

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Irvine Board Approves $5.5 Million in Grants

BY Thuy Nguyen Kumar
Thuy Nguyen Kumar
As Communications Project Manager, Thuy provides project support for a broad ran
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| Mar 17, 2014

The James Irvine Foundation Board of Directors approved $5.5 million in grants at its quarterly meeting last week. Of the 10 approved grants, seven grants are within Arts, two grants are within California Democracy and one is in our Youth program.

Here are some highlights of the new grants:

Exploring Engagement Fund for Larger Organizations — The Arts program made grants to six organizations totaling $3.6 million within the Exploring Engagement Fund for Larger Organizations. These grants will support experimentation by each organization on how to increase arts engagement in a new or deepened way.

Voter and Civic Engagement — Our California Democracy program made grants to two organizations as part of the Voter and Civic Engagement priority. One grant, for $800,000, went to Strategic Concepts in Organizing and Policy Education to support voter mobilization and civic engagement activities among 500,000 voters across 12 California counties.

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An Update from Irvine Board Chair Greg Avis on CEO Search

BY Greg Avis
Greg Avis
Greg Avis is chair of the board of The James Irvine Foundation. Avis is a Foundi
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| Mar 17, 2014

In our efforts to find the next Irvine Foundation President and CEO, both the search committee and our consultants Spencer Stuart have spent recent months talking with staff, the board, Foundation partners, and thought leaders in California. As result of this work, we now have available the completed position and candidate specification. You may find that posted on our website.

Spencer Stuart is beginning the candidate development process at this time. Please feel free to contact Spencer Stuart if you would like to nominate a candidate, or self-nominate, via the following This e-mail address is being protected from spambots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it

While respecting the confidentiality involved in any such process, we will continue to provide updates here when available.

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Aaron Pick
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Alex Barnum
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Amy Dominguez-Arms
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Angela Glover Blackwell
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Anne Stanton
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Anne Vally
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Catherine Hazelton
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Connie Malloy
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Ekta Chopra
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