We are Relaunching Our Search for the Next President of Funders for LGBTQ Issues
January 26, 2021
I write to you today from a place that looks very different from the place we were when I first announced that Funders for LGBTQ Issues was embarking on a leadership transition process. The COVID-19 pandemic, racial justice uprisings, and the turbulent political landscape have radically transformed all of our lives. As you can imagine, the challenges of the past year also impacted our search. Our staff and board faced new demands and candidates navigated the search process at a tremendously unpredictable moment. As a result, our Leadership Transition Committee and Board of Directors decided to pause the hiring process until we could resume with more certainty and momentum. While challenges ahead may remain, I am pleased today to formally relaunch our search process for the next president of Funders for LGBTQ Issues.
Our ability to adapt to changing circumstances and embrace this modified plan was possible thanks to our very capable and committed staff and their ability to rise to this occasion. With seven years on staff and deep connections to the sector, Kristina Wertz continues to lead our network as the Interim President. She is working with our talented team to leverage the power and capacity of our network to respond to these historic times. Our longest-serving staff member, Marvin Webb, was elevated to Senior Vice President of Finance and Administration and continues to work closely with the staff and board to ensure we are in a solid financial position – no small feat during this moment of economic uncertainty. Our board of directors remains active as ever and has full confidence in this team to steer the organization in the months ahead.
I am eager to return to the process of selecting the next leader of this powerful network of aligned foundations committed to enhancing the well-being of LGBTQ communities, promoting equity, and advancing racial, economic and gender justice. The Leadership Transition Committee is grateful to those candidates who shared their energy and motivation for leading our network last year during a difficult moment to engage in a search process. We look forward to welcoming applications from individuals interested in leading the next chapter of our work. Applications will be accepted on a rolling basis until the position is filled.
Amid so much uncertainty and turmoil, I appreciate what our team and network accomplished together last year. While 2020 was challenging, it was also a year of witnessing movements transform pain into power at a profoundly inspiring scale and depth. Out of these struggles, a clear call emerges for philanthropy. The year ahead invites us to transform ourselves to meet the need and match the momentum of movements. This is our grounding for our work in 2021. I look forward to welcoming our new leadership and joining you all in taking on the challenges and opportunities that lie ahead together.
Chair of the Board
Funders for LGBTQ Issues
Message from the Chair of the Board – February 24th, 2020
Dear Funders for LGBTQ Issues Community,
As many of you know already, Ben Francisco Maulbeck will be stepping down from his role as President of Funders for LGBTQ Issues this summer, after nearly eight years of outstanding leadership. I want to extend my deep gratitude for Ben’s leadership of our network. His contributions to our organization and sector are numerous and widely felt. I look forward to the opportunities to come together with the staff, board, network, and our extended community to celebrate Ben’s many accomplishments and incredible spirit. Please stay tuned for more information on our plans to honor his leadership.
After a successful tenure overseeing extensive growth and impact, Ben is leaving the organization in exceptional shape and in a prime moment for a successful leadership transition. The organization’s revenue is strong, including multiple multi-year general operating support grants, record-setting membership dues, and a growing stream of earned income from event registrations and training fees. Not counting Ben, the staff collectively has about 40 years of experience at Funders. The board is also strong, made up some of the leading funders in LGBTQ philanthropy who center racial, economic, and gender justice.
More than anything, I believe the board and staff’s commitment to our values-driven and supportive culture, which Ben was instrumental in establishing, is what will carry the organization through this moment of change.
Since Ben shared this news with our community in December, we have begun a collaborative leadership transition process. Ben and I have worked closely with the board and staff to plan a smooth transition. Our leadership transition committee, composed of both board and staff representatives, have been hard at work with the support from the talented team at Strategies for Social Change, a leading organizational capacity-building firm with expertise in leadership transition. They bring extensive networks in social justice philanthropy and advocacy and we are pleased to have a firm so deeply aligned with our values leading our search and transition process.
After three months of listening, reflecting, and visioning, I am pleased to share the official leadership profile describing the qualities and experience we seek in the next President of Funders for LGBTQ Issues. Today marks the start of our national search to cast the widest net possible. Please share this profile with your networks and help us identify our next leader.
Throughout this process, it is critical that we also recognize the perspectives and rich insights from our network. We have already received great feedback from our 2020 membership survey. If you have not already, please consider sharing your feedback here.
I also invite you to share any recommendations or feedback with the Leadership Transition Committee throughout this process by emailing [email protected].
As with any significant change, this transition will not only present many unknowns and emotions, but also new opportunities that I know we will all welcome and embrace. As I look to the months and years ahead, I am inspired by all that this network has accomplished to improve the lives of LGBTQ people and all that we will continue to do. As you know, we have much to do in our sector, and in the world, to ensure all people and communities live with dignity and joy. I am up for the challenge because I know we are in this together.
Chair of the Board
Funders for LGBTQ Issues
P.S. We just extended the deadline to participate in our 2020 membership survey! If you are a member and have not already completed the survey, we would love to hear from you!
Our Leadership Transition Committee and our consultants from Strategies for Social Change have been hard at work on our executive search these past several months. As you can imagine, the search is taking longer than expected given the context of the COVID-19 pandemic and related challenges. Our board chair Rickke Mananzala will share more detailed updates with you on the search in September.
Ben Francisco Maulbeck’s last day as president of Funders for LGBTQ Issues is August 28th, 2020. The board of directors has appointed Kristina Wertz as Acting President of Funders for LGBTQ Issues, effective immediately.
Read more in Ben’s final update as President of Funders for LGBTQ Issues, available here.