In case you’ve missed the news, we have a new location and date for the 2017 GIH annual conference. We’ll be in Boston, Massachusetts June 21-23, 2017. The Call for Proposals is open. Now is the time to send us your fantastic ideas for breakout sessions, films, site visits, and the tech café!
2017 is GIH’s 35th anniversary, and leadership is on our minds. In the 35 years since we were founded, the landscape of health philanthropy has changed dramatically. Hundreds of new foundations have been created, channeling billions of dollars to U.S. communities. Meanwhile, the United States has become increasingly diverse and is confronted with growing levels of inequality. The Affordable Care Act has improved access to health care for many, but millions of Americans still lack vitally needed coverage. Health grantmakers are at the forefront of responding to these challenges—what does it take to do so effectively? What does it mean to be a health leader today?
We chose Lead, Listen, Inspire as the 2017 conference theme to call attention to essential qualities of effective grantmakers, who are called upon to:
Lead. Today, more than ever, funders are asked to provide leadership on a vast array of health issues. By collaborating with a wide range of allies in and outside the health sector, providing grants and other forms of financial support, advocating for change, and championing innovation, foundations are helping drive lasting improvements in health.
Listen. Exceptional leadership requires being a good listener. By engaging with community residents, advocates, policymakers, health professionals, researchers, and other stakeholders, funders strengthen philanthropy’s credibility, relevance, and impact. Meanwhile, developing strong networks and authentic relationships can lead the way to strategies and programs that are more likely to succeed.
Inspire. Foundations are uniquely positioned to inspire hope, courage, and action. Their talented staff, independence, and resources enable them to engage with a variety of partners, resolve conflicts, and motivate change.
We invite you to help shape Grantmakers In Health’s 2017 annual conference. Suggest programming and bring your voice to the dynamic discussions that are a hallmark of the nation’s largest gathering of health grantmakers.
I’d like to offer my heartfelt thanks to Aetna Foundation, Inc.; The California Wellness Foundation; The Colorado Trust; Connecticut Health Foundation; Robert Wood Johnson Foundation; and The Jacob & Valeria Langeloth Foundation, whose generous grants covered the hotel penalty GIH incurred when the conference was relocated from Charlotte, NC. Thanks also to all the funders who wrote to share their thoughts about the decision. It is a pleasure to be part of such a vigorous and thoughtful field!