10 Questions or Less is a feature here on the Forum’s Forum in which we get to know regional association staff members a little better—their work, what drives them, and more. This week, George Espy, President of Ohio Grantmakers Forum. If you would like to suggest someone for a profile through 10 Questions or Less, contact Dan Brady.
As the architect of the Four for the Forum campaign, how do you think this initiative will change the Forum network? How has it changed the network already?
Three years ago, the strategic planning committee re-affirmed our roots by articulating the concept of the Forum as an interconnected “network” of regional associations. For a while, and for reasons that made sense at the time, the Forum had emphasized its own independence as a separate organization that provided support etc. for the RAs. The “forum as network” concept took us back to where we began and reasserts the primacy of the Forum network, with the Forum staff serving as the coordinating and connecting hub. If the Forum network is going to accomplish its mission of leadership and service we are going to have to rely on the “sweat equity” from the regionals, since we won’t have the staff to do it for us. The “Four for the Forum” campaign was simply an attempt to reinforce the network concept in a concrete way. How are we doing? If you compare volunteer activity across the network today vs. what it was a few years ago, we will find good reason to celebrate. By sharing time and resources, we are well on our way toward realizing the aspiration of becoming a vital, interconnected, national network of regional associations. Continue reading