The goal of the Philanthropic Initiative for Racial Equity (PRE) is to increase the amount and effectiveness of resources aimed at combating institutional and structural racism in communities through capacity building, education, and convening of grantmakers and grantseekers.

PRE Publications

Take a moment to view publications published by PRE. Click on one of the icons to the left to be taken to our publications page.


Wednesday, April 30, 2014 Berkley, CA 11:30- 1:00PM

From Transaction to Transformation: Why a Structural Racialization Analysis is Essential for Challenging Global Corporate Power

While most progressives recognize linkages between race, income equality and corporate power, too often strategies fail to explicitly incorporate a structural racialization analysis or adequately develop campaigns that frame issues in ways that effectively engage communities of color, buffer against wedges or achieve wins that actually impact those most affected by much of the misalignment of resources and our stated values. This session will provide a mix of compelling and clear analysis of structural racialization and the historic and contemporary ties between race/corporations, along with example of organizing efforts utilizing this frame in the US and in connection with global partners to achieve deeper transformation and not simply limited transactional changes.

Presenters: john powell, Haas Institute for a Fair and Inclusive Society Taj James, Movement Strategy Center; Saru Jayaraman, ROC-United and Food Labor Research Center. Moderator: Lori Villarosa, Philanthropic Initiative for Racial Equity

May 20 - 22, 2014, Nashville, TN

Grantmakers Concerned with Immigrants and Refugees

2014 National Convening: Immigrants, Philanthropy, and America's Future: Learning from the U.S. South

From rural towns to sprawling metropolises, the face of America is changing. Recent demographic shifts have been especially pronounced in the U.S. South, where foreign-born migration is at a historic high. As with the country as a whole, immigrants in the South have invigorated declining communities, spurred economic growth, and reversed negative population trends. But with change also come challenges, some anticipated and some unforeseen. GCIR's 2014 National Convening will consider how philanthropy can address these challenges and the opportunities they present. It will highlight the latest issues and trends in the field, effective funding strategies, and innovative program and policy models from this dynamic region, as well as other sites across the country.

Tuesday, May 20, 2014, 3:30-5:00PM

Navigating Race & Immigration: A Roadmap for Funders

This interactive session will explore strategies for navigating sometimes challenging, but critically important conversations on immigration, race, and the nation's shifting cultural identity. As funders, what are strategies and tools we can use to effectively navigate these issues to advance immigrant integration and positively impact all members of our communities?

Presenter: Rinku Sen, Race Forward; Facilitator: Lori Villarosa, Philanthropic Initiative for Racial Equity

June 6 - 8, 2014, Washington, DC

Joint Affinity Group Unity Summit

A conference for JAG partners, their members and stakeholders to create shared strategies for advancing equity, assess equity work, and develop a new vision & plan for collaboration.

Saturday, June 7, 2014 Washington, DC 9:30- 10:30AM

Academy 1: Philanthropic Initiative for Racial Equity

Our Change, Our Voices
"History teaches us that change is often made when an organized segment of those most affected, leading in solidarity with allies, disrupt business as usual." Building on this quote from Makani Themba, this session will present a mix of national and local examples of communications and culture shift strategies to work effectively across identity lines, build movement and advance racial justice from the perspectives of leaders in the field at different levels, as activists and as funders. And critically, it will share concrete tools for funders seeking to increase their impact and affect policies that will truly improve the lives of all.

Presenters: Rinku Sen, Race Forward and Makani Themba, The Praxis Project ; Moderator: Lori Villarosa, Philanthropic Initiative for Racial Equity


April 7 - 8, 2014, Detroit, MI

Detroit Bankruptcy and Beyond: Organizing for Change in Distressed Cities

The Damon Keith Center for Civil Rights at Wayne State University Law School, Haas Institute for a Fair and Inclusive Society at UC Berkeley, and Metropolitan Organizing Strategy Enabling Strength (MOSES) invite you to Detroit Bankruptcy and Beyond: Organizing for Change in Distressed Cities.

Registration info

Including a funder strategy session hosted by PRE on April 7. Please contact us for additional information.

Thursday, November 21, 2013 Jackson, Mississippi

Implicit Racial Bias: A Practical Guide to Unlocking Racial Anxiety & Advancing Justice

Neighborhood Funders Group Convening 2013

National attention on racial justice setbacks on Voting Rights, on the verdict in the Trayvon Martin case, and more have brought increasing discourse on the issues of implicit racial bias and its impacts on people's actions and decisions. Much of the discussion has been in relationship to research, communications and increasingly now moving to legal implications and policy, but what does this mean for community organizing? How do organizers develop campaigns that both factor in implications of implicit bias and ideally chisel away at the structures that perpetuate the negative, criminalizing, and dehumanizing views about people of color, and in particular African-American and Latino young men and boys? What are some concrete examples of community organizing lessons that can tackle structural racism at both explicit and implicit level? Starting with the South, but clearly moving beyond, join us for a highly interactive and iterative session among researcher/advocates and organizers at the early stages of exploring how to work more effectively in this non-post-racial time.

Speakers: Rachel Godsil, American Values Institute;Derrick Johnson, One Voice Mississippi;Gihan Perera,Florida New Majority; Lori Villarosa, Philanthropic Initiative for Racial Equity (moderator).

November 18-20, 2013 Jackson, Mississippi

Mississippi Delta Learning Tour

Neighborhood Funders Group Convening 2013

The Mississippi Delta Learning Tour is open to all funders, regardless of participation in the NFG convening. We encourage attendance by funders who fund worker rights, workforce development, and economic justice/economic development at local, regional or national levels; fund in the South; or are interested in learning more about how the legacy of the Southern civil rights movement influences present-day efforts for social, economic and racial justice on a national level. .

October 3, 2013 Grand Rapids, Michigan (closed meeting)

Racial Equity in Organizations


Moderator: Jennifer White, NPR State of Opportunity; Vicki Rosenberg,Vicki Rosenberg & Associates and Lori Villarosa, PRE.

May 6, 2013 Chicago, Illinois 12:00 PM - 2:00 PM


Donors Forum Large Conference Room, 208 S. LaSalle, Suite 1535

The inability to talk about race effectively is a hallmark of the 21st century. And yet, inequity is designed into many of our systems. As we make grants in a multicultural, multi-lingual world with shifting demographics, how do we as grantmakers not only join the dialogue about race, but move it forward confidently? How do we discuss issues of race and racism with grantseekers, with peers, and with trustees in a way that deepens shared understanding and increases our impact? What are the questions we should ask ourselves in order to ensure our work helps to change the sector?


Colleagues from the Peer Network for New Grantmakers and exchange facilitated by Lori Villarosa, Philanthropic Initiative for Racial Equity.

March 27, 2013 St. Paul, Minnesota

Coffee Conversations: All Things Diversity, Equity and Inclusion

Bush Foundation, 332 Minnesota Street, Suite East-900, St Paul, Minnesota, 55101

How can we help create the conditions within our foundations for safe exploration and profound learning on issues around race? At this gathering, we will examine the use of courageous conversation as a strategy to move toward greater diversity within our organizations. Jennifer Ford Reedy, president, Bush Foundation, will open our meeting by sharing Bush Foundation's efforts around diversity. We will then hear from Lori Villarosa, executive director, Philanthropic Initiative for Racial Equity, on how to introduce a discussion of race within an organization. Lissa Jones, director of diversity, equity and inclusion, Minnesota Council on Foundations, will facilitate a dialogue on how each of us can lead in courageous conversations.


Jennifer Ford Reedy, president, Bush Foundation ; Lori Villarosa, executive director, Philanthropic Initiative for Racial Equity (PRE)

March 22, 2013 Chicago, Illinois 9:00 PM - 11:00 PM


Donors Forum Large Conference Room, 208 S. LaSalle, Suite 1535

The 2010 Census awoke much of the U.S. new the new multicultural reality. Then the 2012 Presidential election sealed it. Demographics are changing and a new majority is rising. The inability to recognize and thoughtfully examine this shift is a liability. So, what does this mean for grantmakers today? For nonprofits?


Lori Villarosa, Executive Director of the Philanthropic Initiative for Racial Equality and Kelly Brown, Director of D5, a five-year coalition to grow diversity within the philanthropic community, will provide an overview of the current landscape, trends on the horizon, and nuts and bolts to enhance your understanding of the field and practice.

For full details on all events, visit our news page.


The Applied Reseach Center is now Race Forward: The Center for Racial Justice Innovation

Published by Race Forward: The Center for Racial Justice Innovation, in January, 2014, Moving the Race Conversation Forward aims to reshape and reform the way we talk about race and racism in our country. PRE Advisory Board member Rinku Sen is Race Forward's Executive Director.

Save the Date for Race Forward's 2014 Facing Race National Conference November 13 - 15, 2014 in Dallas, TX.

Funders are encouraged to both attend and to consider supporting travel scholarships for their grantees to attend the largest national, multi-racial gathering of leaders, educators, journalists, and activists on racial justice.

PRE Advisory Board member john powell shared his thoughts on King's Evolving Dream, in a Martin Luther King Day blog post for the University of California, Berkeley: Center of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion's blog.

Julie Quiroz, PRE Advisory Board member and Senior Fellow at the Movement Strategy Center reflected on 2013's Inspiring Movement Moments.

In her piece The Invisible Walls of Race on the Uptown Magazine website in August, 2013, PRE Advisory Board member and President of the Center for Social Inclusion Maya Wiley used examples of inequity in availably of public transportation, quality grocery stores and sub-prime lending to illustrate the ways in which structural racism impacts communities of color and has replaced the more visible forms of interpersonal racism.

In her August, 2013 blog post, PRE Advisory Board member and President/Executive Director of the Paul J. Aicher Foundation/Everyday Democracy Martha McCoy discussed The Kind of "Race Talk" That Can Transform our Country.

In 2013 PRE Advisory Board member Julie Quiroz contributed to the development and launch of Our Healthy Alliance, a Roadmap and Movement Strategy Center collaboration. This assessment tool is designed to foster strategic alliances for social justice and is tailored to alliances that want to make social change and build social change movements.

Published in May, 2013 by the Aspen Institute Roundtable on Community Change where PRE Advisory Board member Keith Lawrence is the Co-Director, Ten Lessons for Taking Leadership on Racial Equity distills ten lessons for how to take leadership on the difficult topic of race in America. Based on their ten years of work in this arena, the document is intended to suggest strategies to people willing to take up the challenge of promoting racial equity and inclusion.

In September, 2012 PRE published Critical Issues Forum: Mobilizing Community Power to Address Structural Racism, the fourth volume of a series that aims to deepen the discourse around important progressive racial justice issues within philanthropy.

Our nation and broader global community are at a turning point where need and great potential could meet in important ways for social and racial justice movement building if we are able to maximize the intellectual, cultural and financial resources available. But do we have the will to really invest in what it will take? Are we learning from our practice - the successes and the missteps? Are we valuing the right components- and evaluating the right markers? What do we need to build a truly egalitarian, multiracial democracy?

To help explore these issues, PRE engaged some of the field's top thinkers to share their wisdom about lessons they are learning in their community organizing work, as well as candidly acknowledging the struggles that remain, and identify questions yet to be fully answered. We convened well-respected leaders, issued a call for papers, received a number of impressive abstracts that were competitively reviewed by a diverse and thoughtful committee. The result is a journal of several essays and interviews intended to provoke greater conversation and action to bridge work on community organizing and civic engagement with the work to combat structural racism.

We are now eager to engage you in the conversation over the coming months. The full publication as well as individual articles can be downloaded here and we encourage you to share all or the most relevant parts with your colleagues and other networks.

Significant changes in the past two decades have generated both momentum and urgency, especially at the intersection of race and organizing. We hope that sharing the successes and challenges experienced by a variety of community organizations not only opens a dialogue, but also provides a floor plan for new strategies.


PRE commends Funders for LGBTQ Issues for its publication Common Vision Guide to Structural Change Grantmaking . It is intended to help foster conversations and contribute to the building of resources and tools about grantmaking that advance fundamental change in society. PRE was pleased to be among the co-sponsoring partners and advisory committee members for the Common Vision Project, and we encourage grantmakers to share reactions as this interactive web-based tool seeks to grow and evolve.