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Date + Time

November 19, 2019 11:00am EST through November 21, 2019 2:00pm EST


Detroit, Michigan


Moving Forward Together: People, Power, and Justice


When we gathered for FCCP’s 2019 Convening, with critical questions facing our democracy, a powerful upswell of organizing and engagement helped reshape what appeared possible for 2020 and beyond. FCCP members and our extended philanthropic network stood at an inflection point: 2020 would mark a year of national elections and the decennial census, continued assaults against the rule of law, and critical policy battles being fought at state and national levels. Impacts from the year ahead would chart a new course for the country and fundamentally redefine who counts and has agency to shape the political agenda.

Thank you for joining up in November 2019 in Detroit. Together, we drew inspiration from past and present examples of people in the region organizing to overcome obstacles and achieve a better future for their community. In just two years, Michigan swiftly turned the page to become a leader in democracy reform and representation: thwarting gerrymandering, passing pro-voter ballot measures, mobilizing for the 2020 Census, and electing a wave of women to office.

Together, we examined the prominent dynamics that will shape our nation’s future: rising distrust in government and institutions to serve the needs of communities; challenges to voting rights; assaults on labor; the impact of money on politics; battles over racial, gender, and reproductive justice; anti-Semitism; Islamophobia; widening socioeconomic gaps; funding and engagement boom and bust cycles; census historically hard-to-count areas; and so much more.

FCCP brought together grantmakers, thought leaders, and changemakers in strategic dialogue. We discussed our challenges, learned from shining examples that are propelling our democracy and equitable participation, and identified opportunities for collaboration as we moved forward together to build a just and equitable democracy.

Registration and Lodging

Registration and room block information available here.

Agenda & Schedule Print Version

Tuesday, November 19

11:00 amRegistration Opens
11:45 amOrientation + Networking Lunch
11:45 amFunders Census Initiative (FCI) Leadership Team Working Lunch Meeting (FCI Leadership Team Members Only)
1:00 pm Conference Opening: Welcome & Why We're Here with FCCP's New Executive Director, Kristin Purdy
2:00 pm Plenary: Power and Resistance: The Peoples' Agenda for Michigan
3:15 pmCase Study: Reflections from Virginia on 2020 and Beyond
4:30 pmBreakout: Fix Democracy First
4:30 pmBreakout: Immigrant Power Building through Civic Participation and Census in 2020***
4:30 pmBreakout: 2020 Census: Innovative Strategies to Build Long-Term Power***
4:30 pmBreakout: Election Protection: A Collaborative, Integrated Approach to Year Round Protection and Expansion of the Right to Vote
6:00 pmReception
7:00 pmOpening Dinner + Keynote Speaker: Congresswoman Rashida Tlaib

Wednesday, November 20

8:00 amGeneral Breakfast
8:00 amFunders Committee Action Fund (FCAF) 501(c)(4) Breakfast
8:00 amAsk the Expert Corner (Census)
9:00 amPlenary: Race & Power in 2020
10:45 amBreakout: "Nor is it Neutral:" Funding Strategy & Practices for More Equitable and Inclusive Technology and Data***
10:45 amBreakout: Democratic Resilience - Countering Saboteurs from Russia to White Supremacists
10:45 amBreakout: Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders Take Center Stage: Boosting Community Capacity to Build Power in 2020
10:45 amBreakout: Building Power: Case Studies for Effective Year-Round Organizing for and by Young People of Color
12:15 pmGeneral Lunch
12:15 pmMoney in Politics Lunch
12:15 pmFunders Census Initiative Lunch
12:15 pmAsk the Expert Corner (Navigating Compliance in an Election Year)
1:45 pm Plenary: Advancing a New Narrative for Democracy & Social Movements
3:30 pmBreakout: Making the Invisible Visible: American Indian Civic Participation
3:30 pmIndependent Resource Generation: The Missing Element for Community Power Building
3:30 pmBreakout: Black Organizing in the South
3:30 pmBuilding Power through Rural Organizing, Advocacy, and Civic Engagement***
5:00 pmAsk the Expert Corner (Compliance + Census) + Open Time
6:00 pmReception + Dinner at the Museum for Contemporary Art Detroit

Thursday, November 21

8:00 amBreakfast
8:30 amFCCP Town Hall with FCCP's New Executive Director Kristin Purdy
9:45 amBreakout: Redistricting: Translating Community Power into Representation***
9:45 amBreakout: Hidden Figures: Uncovering and Addressing the True Costs of Public Life
9:45 amBreakout: The Assault on Bodily Autonomy + The Crisis of Democracy
11:30 amClosing Plenary: Moving Forward Together: People, Power, + Justice
1:00 pmBag Lunch + Depart

Convening Learning Goals

Participants will learn about:

  1. Effective organizing strategies to build power. How are our organizing models serving us to build effective long-term power for vulnerable communities? Where can technology integrate with organizing strategies and where is it posing challenges? We will discuss and debate different strategies related to building independent political power through a look at case examples, experimentation, and other research.
  2. Impacting 2020 + beyond. How can we balance working towards short-term wins with long-term change? We will ensure philanthropy is prepared for the 2020 election and the Census while providing a forum to discuss and learn about building infrastructure and capacity to propel long-term change that achieves an effective, inclusive, and accountable democracy.
  3. Centering racial equity. We will uplift the intersections of social justice issues with democracy, identities, politics, and movements. Analyzing how currents of misogyny, xenophobia, and nationalism are particularly impacting people of color, let’s discuss how we can empower communities to be able to gain power to counter present and future challenges. We will continue to develop promising practices that further integrate funding strategies, informed by the field and centered in racial equity, and move towards building a collective vision of justice.
  4. Shifting thinking + practices in philanthropy. With spaces for deep thinking, planning, and collaboration for funders, we will develop aligned strategies to adjust to new realities, opportunities, and challenges, and lean into points of tension. We will provide time with your peers to organize processes to follow-up after the Convening in order to continue generative conversations to lead to meaningful shifts in approaches to our collective work.
  5. Building community. Fostering an engaging, fun and inviting space for new and long standing members alike to come together in community and make meaningful relationships with peers.

2019 Convening Planning Committee

Florencia Gutierrez

The Annie E. Casey Foundation
Headshot: Julie Fernandes

Julie Fernandes

Rockefeller Family Fund

Melissa Beck

The Educational Foundation of America

Chera Reid

Kresge Foundation

Christian Arana

Latino Community Foundation

Erica Teasley Linnick

Open Society Foundations

Estevan Muñoz-Howard, Treasurer

Headshot: Trevor Ostbye

Trevor Ostbye

Cities Forward

Jesse Beason, Co-Chair

Northwest Health Foundation

Thank you to our Sponsors!




As with all FCCP events, the subject matter is strictly limited to non-partisan discussion as outlined in the agenda.