Rural Funders of the Southwest Gathering

Rural Funders of the Southwest Gathering

Tuesday, May 16, 2017 - 2:00pm to Wednesday, May 17, 2017 - 11:30am CDT
Austin, TX
St. David's Innovation Center, Austin, TX
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2:00 p.m. Tuesday, May 16 until 11:30 a.m. Wednesday, May 17

St. David’s Innovation Center
1303 San Antonio Street
Austin, TX 78701

Register by May 2, 2017 

Join colleagues from around the region for our inaugural gathering about rural funding in the Southwest. This meeting is meant to provide funders that fund (or want to fund) in rural Southwest communities a chance for peer learning and networking. At the meeting, funders will have the opportunity to learn and share with one another about their work in rural communities and learn from experts in the field. The gathering will be followed by an optional working lunch. 

Staff and trustees of grant-making, philanthropic organizations are welcome to attend. Membership in Philanthropy Southwest is not required and non-members attend at the same price as members.


Tuesday, May 16, 2017

2:00 p.m.  Welcome and Introductions

2:30 – 3:45 p.m. Demography of Rural Landscape - At this first gathering of Rural Funders of the Southwest, we will kick off our discussions with a presentation on the demographics of the rural areas of our region.  Steve Murdock of the Hobby Center for the Study of Texas at Rice University will provide an overview of demographic change in the region, and of rural areas in particular and the implications of these changes for the 6 pillars of Community Development: economic development, education, housing, health & wellness, community leadership and quality of life. 
Speaker:  Steve Murdock, Director, Hobby Center for Study of Texas, Rice University

4:00 – 5:15 p.m. Community Leadership - Leadership is key at the organizational, community, and regional levels.  As we consider the pillars of eonomic development, health, housing, and quality of life through a rural lens, how can private philanthropy partner effectively and respectfully with rural leaders to maximize collaboration and move communities forward?   Is there a role for developing local leadership capacity and grooming future leaders?  We will explore those questions and more during this session.  
Speakers: Wynn Rosser, President & CEO, T.L.L. Temple Foundation, Lufkin, TX; Adrianna Cuellar Rojas, President and CEO, United Ways of Texas, Austin, TX.

5:30 p.m.        Networking Reception – Please join us for cocktails and appetizers immediately following the Tuesday afternoon session.
6:30 p.m. -     Optional Dine-arounds - Area restaurants provide culinary options while offering participants an opportunity for deeper discussions around our common goals.

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

8:30 – 9:45 a.m How -To Rural Philanthropy Days - Is RPD for You?
Since 1991, the goal of Colorado Rural Philanthropy Days (RPD) has been to bring more financial resources into rural areas by connecting rural nonprofits with grantmakers and other funders, and teaching nonprofits how to deliver services and collaborate more effectively.  Inspired by the success of the Colorado effort, a group of Texas funders held the first RPD event in West Texas in 2011 on a biennial schedule.
Could RPD be right for your community?  In this session, a longtime participant in Colorado RPD and one of the organizers of the West Texas RPD effort will talk candidly about their experiences with RPD:  how to get started, what challenges to expect, what they’ve learned about working in rural places, and how to build a successful conference.
Speakers: Tim Schultz, President and Executive Director, Boettcher Foundation, Denver, CO; Michelle Monse, President, Carl B. & Florence E. King Foundation, Dallas, TX.

10:00 – 11:15 a.m. Community Engagement for Closing Broadband Gaps - Broadband creates opportunities for communities to improve lives.  Unfortunately, rural communities often lack access to transformative broadband-based technologies due to low population density, geographic and other barriers. This enlightening session will cover broadband fundamentals and provide context to the relationship between access, adoption, and use. Attendees will learn how a variety of partners can unite to transform the local digital environment, using the proven “community engagement” model pioneered by Connected Nation, a national leader in helping rural communities achieve their technology goals. Join us as we explore the powerful role that philanthropy can play to make a positive impact on communities through improved broadband.
Speakers: Speakers: Chris Pedersen, Vice President of Development and Planning for Connected Nation, Bowling Green, KY;  Ellen Ray, Director of Grants and Strategic Initiatives, Still Water Foundation, Austin, TX; Rick Rhodes, Office of Rural Affairs, Trade and Business Development, Texas Dept. of Agriculture

11:15 - 11:45 a.m. Break

11:45 a.m. - 1:30 p.m. Working Group lunch and discussion (optional)

Doubletree Suites by Hilton Hotel Austin
303 W. 15th Street
Austin, TX 78701
(512) 505-4067
A block of rooms has been secured. Please click here to make your reservations. You may also book your reservations by calling (800) 222-8733. Be sure to mention group code PSW .  The room block pricing closes on April 25, 2017.  

Please Note:  This program is not intended to be an opportunity for solicitation of any kind, including solicitaion for business, fund management, or grants.  

Resources can be found in the attachments below.

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