MONDAY, MARCH 4TH (Pre-Conference)


1:00-5:00 PM | The Welcome Intensive: An Introduction to Mission Related Investing
Open to Welcome Intensive Registrants. Please note that this training is not suited for investment professionals.

1:00 PM | Welcome Intensive (Agenda TBA)
Organized with Pathstone Federal Street and Veris Wealth Partners

The Welcome Intensive introduces participants to the concept of mission-related investing in an expert-led, small group setting. This program is geared towards asset owners who are new to mission-related investing and offers a unique opportunity to dive into the Confluence community with a cohort of new peers and allies.

This half-day training will be led by Patricia Farrar-Rivas, CEO, Veris Wealth Partners and Jeff Scheer, Director, Pathstone Federal Street. The facilitators will lead an afternoon discussion group about fiduciary duty, engaging investment advisors, and other topics critical to new mission-related investors. The Welcome Intensive will conclude with a special dinner hosted by the facilitators and Confluence staff.

Participants in the Welcome Intensive are also encouraged to attend the Learners Institute on Tuesday, March 5th.


5:00 - 6:30 PM  |  Break


6:30 - 8:30 PM  |  Welcome Intensive Dinner (open to the Welcome Intensive cohort)


6:00 - 9:00 PM |  Gratitude Dinner (by invitation only)

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TUESDAY, MARCH 5TH (Pre-Conference)


7:30 - 8:30 AM  |  Breakfast & Registration


9:00 AM-12:00 PM | Practitioners Institute - Awake, To Woke, To Work
Open to Confluence Practitioner Member Delegates Only

9:00 AM | Welcome Remarks

9:10 AM | Keynote
Angela Glover Blackwell, Founder in Residence, PolicyLink

Angela Glover Blackwell, Founder in Residence, started PolicyLink in 1999. Under Angela’s leadership, PolicyLink gained national prominence in the movement to use public policy to improve access and opportunity for all low-income people and communities of color, particularly in the areas of health, housing, transportation, and infrastructure. Prior to founding PolicyLink, Angela served as Senior VP at the Rockefeller Foundation. A lawyer by training, she gained national recognition as founder of the Oakland (CA) Urban Strategies Council. From 1977 to 1987, Angela was a partner at Public Advocates. Angela is the co-author of Uncommon Common Ground: Race and America’s Future (W.W. Norton & Co., 2010), and she authored The Curb Cut Effect, which was published in the Stanford Social Innovation Review in 2017. As a leading voice in the movement for equity in America, she is a frequent speaker at major conferences and a commentator for some of the nation’s top news organizations. Angela serves on numerous boards, and she also advises the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve as one of 15 members of its Community Advisory Council.

Plenary Discussion


9:00 AM-12:00 PM | Learners Institute
Open to all Pre-Conference Delegates

9AM | Selecting an Advisor
Organized with the Jessie Smith Noyes Foundation

This session will explore strategies that foundations can take to assess, manage, and collaborate with values-aligned investment advisors. We will hear from foundations with distinct missions and investment priorities, to learn from their experiences and answer the question, “how can the practices and culture of an advisor or fund manager embody the values of a foundation?” Panelists will share their distinct processes for evaluating their own needs, identifying service providers, and collaborating with their chosen advisor. Speakers will also provide resources and practical tips for foundations looking to change the way they collaborate with their advisor.

Speakers

  • Rini Banerjee, Interim Executive Director, Jessie Smith Noyes Foundation

  • Additional speakers to be announced


10:00 AM | Concurrent Sessions (Choose One)
Open to all Pre-Conference Delegates

10:00 AM | Ins and Outs of Carve Outs
Organized with Cornerstone Capital Group

Carve-outs are an increasingly popular way for mission investors to explore new practices. While a gradual, educational, and incremental strategy is often advisable, investors must also consider a methodical approach to ensure that investments provide meaningful outcomes and measurable performance. This session will explore the considerations in choosing a carve-out strategy through the eyes of experience.

Speakers

  • Rebekah Saul Butler, Co-Executive Director, Grove Foundation

  • Giulia Christianson, Senior Associate, World Resources Institute

  • Craig Metrick, Managing Director, Cornerstone Capital Group

  • Dan Chu, Executive Director, The Sierra Club Foundation

10:00 AM | Divest or Engage: From Fossil Fuels to Gun Stocks
Organized with Trillium Asset Management

When an industry or specific company does not align with an investor's values, the investor has two options: divest or engage. In this session, we’ll discuss what an investor can achieve through either of these two strategies and why and how some choose to implement both divestment and engagement to drive change.

Speakers:

  • Adam Kanzer, Head of Stewardship, Americas, Bank of the West/BNP Paribas

  • Matt Patsky, CEO, Trillium Asset Management

  • Additional speakers to be announced


11:00 AM | Concurrent Sessions (Choose One)
Open to all Pre-Conference Delegates

11:00 AM | DAFs: Maximizing the Impact of Donor Advised Funds
Organized with Tides and Amalgamated Bank

The Donor-Advised Fund (DAF) market is now equivalent in size to the venture capital market. This both offers a great opportunity and raises growing concerns regarding transparency and impact. This session will cover ways to deepen the environmental, social and governance (ESG) focus within the DAF market, and suggest provocative and practical examples and models of how this field can evolve. As the DAF market swells to represent a significant portion of the philanthropic landscape, we need to work together to identify and strategize around the associated opportunities and risks.

Speakers:

  • Amy Bennett, Director, Marketing, Impact Assets

  • Anna Fink, Vice President, Amalgamated Bank

  • Additional speakers to be announced

11:00 AM | Loan Guarantees: Catalytic and Collaborative Uses
Organized with MCE Social Capital

Loan guarantees are an underutilized tool in the investor’s toolkit. Panelists representing both big and small foundations will discuss examples of the catalytic use of loan guarantees to unlock private capital and how they have collaborated with other foundations in a guarantee "pool" to support strong performance outcomes, both domestically and globally

Speakers:

  • Catherine Covington, Managing Director and Business Development Officer, MCE Social Capital

  • Teri Lovelace, President, LOCUS Impact Investing

  • Additional speakers to be announced


12:00 - 4:00 PM | Local Field Trips & Off-Site Sessions (Choose One)

1) Field Trip: Climate Disaster Response and Resilience
Organized with NY Community Trust

2) Field Trip: Green Infrastructure
Organized with Natural Resources Defense Council

3) Field Trip: Affordable Housing
Organized with van Ameringen Foundation

Speakers:

  • Jonathan Rose, President, Jonathan Rose Companies

4) Field Trip: Food Systems
Organized with Fair Food Fund and Woodcock Foundation

Speakers:

  • Oran Hesterman, President and CEO, Fair Food Fund

5) Field Trip: Brooklyn Art, Culture, and a Community in Change
Organized with Hip Hop Caucus


Main Conference

6:00 - 7:00PM | Opening Reception
Registered Delegates & Invited Guests Only

7:00 - 9:30PM | Opening Dinner
Registered Delegates & Invited Guests Only

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WEDNESDAY, MARCH 6TH 


7:30 – 8:30 AM  |   Breakfast & Registration

7:30 – 8:30 AM  |   Active Owners Working Group Breakfast 


8:30 – 8:45 AM  | Welcome

8:45 – 9:15 AM  |   Keynote

Chid Liberty, Founder, Liberty & Justice

Chid co-founded Liberty & Justice, Africa’s first Fair Trade Certified™ apparel manufacturer, after working in entertainment, technology, and finance. He was born in Liberia, West Africa, but left as an infant when his father became the nation’s ambassador to the Federal Republic of Germany, with residence in Bonn. His family was later exiled in the United States. In 2009, Chid returned to Africa after 28 years abroad. Inspired by the Nobel Peace Prize winning Liberian Women’s Peace Movement, Chid co-founded Africa’s first Fair Trade Certified apparel factory to provide economic opportunities for internally displaced women, who on balance, were vulnerable to rampant unemployment and economic exclusion. He is currently leading L&J’s rapid expansion in Liberia and throughout the region. In addition to his work at Liberty & Justice, Chid served as the Entrepreneur-in-Residence at the University of Liberia’s Monrovia Business Startup Center (BSC). The BSC was founded by Spark, a Dutch NGO, for whom Chid manages the Ignite Fund (Liberia) – an equity investment fund that makes strategic investments in Liberian Pico-cap companies with high growth potential. He also speaks internationally on social entrepreneurship and impact investing – recently at Harvard, Stanford, and Princeton Universities, as well as the Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology in Australia and IE in Madrid, Spain.


9:15 - 11:30 AM | Democratizing Finance

To democratize finance, communities must define their own needs and play a role in addressing them. Too often, however, investment products are designed without input from the communities whose challenges they seek to address. This session will consider the opportunity and need to shift the prevailing paradigm in favor of community-driven and integrated capital deployment strategies. We will challenge how mission investors approach community-based solutions and evolve beyond the traditional lens of only financial risk and return. Together, we will explore models for engaging with diverse stakeholders and investment vehicles to support just and sustainable economies.


11:30 AM – 12:00 PM  |   Community Reflections

Join us to learn from and appreciate Confluence Members’ reflections on the field in an open forum sharing session.


12:15 – 1:30 PM  |  Lunch


1:30 – 2:45 PM  |  Concurrent Sessions (Choose one)

Beyond Quality Jobs: The Transformative Power of Worker-Ownership
Organized with Libra Foundation, RSF Social Finance, and the Fund for Democratic Communities

In the spirit of truth and transparency, this panel will delve into how our practice can range from incremental change to strategies that result in true transformation. We will explore how supporting worker-ownership is one critical way investors can promote diversity, equity and inclusion.” This discussion will feature a mix of wealth inheritors, lenders, cooperative developers, and worker-owners. Each of the speakers, in their distinct roles, will share how self-reflection and personal development has impacted their path and practice in the field.

Speakers:

  • Alex Haber, Philanthropic Advisor, RSF Social Finance

  • Regan Pritzker, Board Member, The Libra Foundation

  • Marnie Thompson, Co-Managing Director, Fund for Democratic Communities

Case for Accountability: Considering Potential Harm for Smarter Investing & Stronger Impact
Organized with Woodcock Foundation

Current impact investment due diligence and measurement frameworks tend to focus on how deals can create social and environmental change. Unfortunately, they don’t fully consider all external stakeholders and the potential harm to local communities. We will explore this gap and discuss resources and tools for creating more accountability in our investment practices. By being more thoughtful about the full force of the “impact” of our investments, we as investors can make more informed decisions about intended and unintended outcomes; avoid and mitigate harm where it can be identified; and hold investees accountable for measuring and reporting on social results. Panelists will share their own personal stories about investment projects gone wrong and tools for improved diligence and monitoring.

Speakers:

  • Natalie Bridgeman Fields, Founder and Executive Director, Accountability Councel

  • Stacey Faella, Executive Director, Woodcock Foundation

  • Gabino Vicente, Community Leader, Mexico

Transitioning to a 100% PRI Strategy
Organized with Tiedemann Advisors

What happens when a foundation accelerates its use of Program Related Investments (PRIs), while downsizing the deployment of grant dollars? We will engage with the implications of scaling PRIs to 100% of a foundation’s 5% annual distribution, hearing from a variety of perspectives. While perhaps at odds with traditional philanthropy, the session will cover the investment, legal, tax, and moral considerations of this approach. The adoption of PRIs in the U.S. remains low on a relative basis, and this session seeks to highlight the added benefits of a fully integrated PRI strategy, drawing from a practitioner’s perspective.

Speakers:

  • Brad Harrison, Director, Tiedemann Advisors

  • Additional speakers to be announced

When Worlds Collide
Organized with Cambridge Associates

Impact investing has historically stood apart from “traditional,” financial return-driven investing, but increasingly, an exciting convergence of variables is turning this old distinction on its head. Is impact investing still a discrete discipline or does it overlap with traditional investing in more ways than we acknowledge? If so, what are the implications for investors, managers and entrepreneurs, in terms of their own identities, communication strategies, and opportunities for collaboration? This session will call on three unique stakeholders, all with experience in traditional and impact investing, to discuss the opportunities and potential risks of having these two worlds collide. Panelists will highlight specific examples in which their motivations and investment practices did or did not align with their investing partners – either their external collaborators or internal colleagues - to better understand why breakdown occurs and what is possible when viewpoints effectively converge.

Speakers:

  • Raoul Slavin Julia, Managing Director, The Aspenall Group for Treehouse Investments

  • Additional speakers to be announced

Movement Building Tools and Approaches for Investors
Organized with Tides

In this session, we will have a focused conversation at the nexus of technology, movement building, and advocacy. Informed by the current heated political environment, we will delve into specific technology solutions that aim to boost civic engagement for the long term. We will hear directly from movement leaders on how tech solutions are transforming their work to build a broader and more powerful movement. We will address the importance of impact investing and c4 funding in this context, as well as traditional 501c3 grant-making. We will open up the conversation to engage the audience, to learn from each other, and to address challenges or fears that people feel when considering advocacy or c4 funding as part of their toolkit.

Speakers:

  • Peter Martin, Philanthropic Director, Tides

  • Additional Speakers to be Announced


2:45 – 5:15 PM  |  Free Time

3:00 - 4:00 PM | Book Fair and Book Signing

Join us for refreshments, pick up a book, and have it autographed by thought-leading authors from the Confluence community. 


6:00 – 9:00 PM  |  Climate Gala

Evening Welcome

Evening Keynote

Plenary: Investing in Climate
Organized with Hip Hop Caucus

Speakers

  • Rev. Lennox Yearwood Jr., President and CEO, Hip Hop Caucus

 

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THURSDAY, MARCH 7TH


7:30 – 9:00 AM  |  Breakfast & Registration 


9:00 – 9:15 AM  |  Morning Introduction


9:15 – 9:45 AM  |  Keynote

Anand Giridharadas, author of “Winners Take All”

Anand Giridharadas is the author of the New York Times best seller Winners Take All, The True American (soon to be a feature film), India Calling, and. He was a foreign correspondent and columnist for The New York Times from 2005 to 2016, and has also written for The Atlantic, The New Yorker, and The New Republic. He is a former McKinsey analyst, an Aspen Institute fellow, a visiting scholar at New York University, an on-air political analyst for NBC News, and has spoken on the main stage of TED. His writing has been honored by the Society of Publishers in Asia, the Poynter Fellowship at Yale, and the New York Public Library’s Helen Bernstein Award. He lives in Brooklyn, New York.


9:45 – 11:15 AM  |  Plenary

Is it Time to Stop Talking About "Impact Investing?”

The term “impact investing” can stand in the way of capital deployment. All too often, as investors trip over themselves to define, articulate, and measure the elusive notion of “impact,” blank checks await a recipient and a signature. Is impact capital “dumb money?” Are impact investors somehow more morally correct than other investors? What if we dispensed once and for all with this perplexing moniker and instead adopted terminology that is more effective at getting money out the door? Through this interactive session, we will first evidence the fact that very few agree on what “impact” means. We will then propose a variety of terms that might break through the linguistic barriers to a lexicon that – finally – liberates capital. Audience polling and spirited debate will be used to stimulate this discussion. If nothing else, we might all agree that we really just want to be better investors.

Speakers:

  • Preeti Bhattacharji, Vice President, Integrated Capitals, The Heron Foundation

  • Additional speakers to be announced


11:15 - 11:30 |  Break


11:30 AM – 12:45 PM  |  Concurrent Sessions (Choose one)

Tales from the Fire: Engaging Emerging Managers
Organized with Athena Capital

Innovative investors tend to chart their own course when they expand their team of advisors and managers to execute on a new strategy. Often times, investors interested in cutting-edge investments find that the field isn’t mature yet and lacks investment managers and products with seasoned track records. What have the pioneers done to build their portfolios and the field? What have they learned from their experiences? This discussion will examine best practices in working with emerging managers within the evolving investing landscape.

Speakers:

  • Kate Huntington, Managing Director, Athena Capital Advisors

  • Adam Wolfensohn, Co-Managing Partner, Encourage Capital

  • Additional speakers to be announced

Addressing Income Inequality in a Market Rate Impact Portfolio: Can it Be Done?
Organized with Community Capital Management

Income inequality in the United States is at an all-time high. Many of the issues and challenges that greatly concern socially conscious investors stem from the widening gap between rich and poor and its harmful effects on the most vulnerable populations and communities. Values-driven investors have historically pursued investment opportunities that indirectly touch upon income inequality, but are there solutions that address income inequality head-on? Can we tackle income inequality with market-rate investments? This panel will feature a lively discussion among successful practitioners about the feasibility of addressing income inequality through a variety of investment approaches.

Speakers:

  • Olympia de Castro, Partner, Strategy & Investments, Community Investment Management

  • Nick Flores, Director, Impact Investing, The Caprock Group

  • Sarah Livnat, VP of Communications and Impact, Oportun

  • David Sand, Chief Investment Strategist, Community Capital Management

Collaborations in Climate Investing
Organized with John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation

Global leaders increasingly recognize that climate change poses a threat to progress, prosperity, and biodiversity. Within this context, and as the U.S. relaxes environmental regulations, should investors lead on the climate front, and how can collaborative efforts advance this leadership? In this session, presenters will share how they have developed, or are developing, large-scale collaborations around resilience, sustainable land use, energy access, and innovative financial structures to demonstrate the urgency and ambition in climate investing. We will explore considerations for implementing a collaborative investment model and show how effective collaboration can scale solutions.

Speakers:

  • John Balbach, Associate Director, Impact Investments, John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation

  • Shilpa Patel, Director, Mission Investing, Climateworks Foundation

  • Susan Phinney-Silver, Director, Mission Investing, David and Lucile Packard Foundation

  • Ramsay Ravenel, Executive Director, The Grantham Foundation for the Protection of the Environment

Clarity on Commitments: Not all Impact Investment Mandates are Created Equal
Organized with Ceniarth

As a field, we have developed a disturbing tendency to celebrate the announcement of any new impact investing commitment with equal fanfare, whether the move represents a truly pioneering approach or an incremental shift in the way assets are managed. But what do these commitments actually mean in practice? This session will feature a range of practitioners discussing the factors – historical constraints, financial return parameters, progressive leadership – that led them to pursue disparate strategies. The discussion will not be limited to specific asset classes, but will focus on how each investor approaches their strategy. We will discuss to what extent practitioners evaluate each investment for direct mission alignment and how/if investments are aligned with programmatic priorities. And we’ll explore how boards approved different strategic approaches and whether certain obstacles stood in the way of even more progressive options.

Speakers:

  • Vince Knowles, Investment Manager, Ceniarth LLC

  • Additional speakers to be announced

 

The Future of Banking

Digital innovations like mobile banking and cryptocurrencies are disrupting the banking industry and creating stiff competition among traditional banks and emerging fintech ventures. This disruption has changed not only the way we buy, sell, borrow and invest, but it has altered the very definitions of currency and banks themselves. It has also pushed banks to better differentiate their products and align their investments with their customers’ values. In this small session, we will explore the banking industry’s latest disruptions – technological and otherwise – to better understand how banks will serve and be served by values-aligned investors in the future.

Speakers:

  • Arjan Schütte, Founder and Managing Partner, Core Innovation Capital

  • Additional speakers to be announced


12:45 - 2:00 PM  |  Lunch


2:00 - 3:00 PM   |  Membership Meeting (Members Only)

Join Confluence Philanthropy’s Board to hear about the year ahead, ask questions, and share your ideas. We will make special announcements about the successes of our programs over the past year, changes in programming, and ways that you can get involved.


3:00 – 5:00 PM  |  Post Conference Events (Working Groups & Meetings)

Implicit Bias Workshop
Organized with Nia Community Foundation and Rockefeller Philanthropy Advisors

Details TBA

Filling the Gap: Bringing New and Different Investment into Reproductive Health
Organized with Jessie Smith Noyes Foundation and Tara Health Foundation

Reproductive health is underinvested in due to political complexities, challenging market conditions, and uncertain returns. The Reproductive Health Investors Alliance will bring new private-sector business models to reproductive health and justice efforts with the backing of committed philanthropies, family offices, venture investors, and private individuals. In this working group session, we will discuss opportunities that can benefit from private investment models, and we will share our learnings from the early days of the Alliance's history.

Speakers:

  • Rini Banerjee, Interim Executive Director, Jessie Smith Noyes Foundation

  • Lisa Hammann, COO, Tara Health Foundation

  • Additional speakers to be announced

Are we Losing our Love of Life? "It Must be the Money."
Organized with Thousand Currents

The Buen Vivir Fund (BVF) was co-designed by Thousand Currents, its grassroots partners in the Global South, and financial investors to support grassroots economic initiatives that build wealth, community power, and buen vivir – “right living,” or life in balance with natural systems and future generations. The BVF started as a learning experiment and launched its first round of investments in 2018 to support nine remarkable projects in different parts of the world. In this session, members of the BVF will share their mistakes, learnings, challenges, and successes as they developed a model that brought love and money into a healthier relationship with one another. The session will include a visioning exercise, followed by a fishbowl-style conversation, and small and large group discussions on operationalizing an impact investing fund in which capital can flow in service of well-being. Come hear what these visionary leaders have to say about our shared future in investing!

Speakers:

  • Rajiv Khanna, Director of Philanthropic Partnerships, Thousand Currents

  • Additional speakers to be announced

Climate Solutions Collaborative Working Group Meeting


3:00 – 5:00 PM  |  Open Networking