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The Learning Conference 2015

June 10–11, 2015

Boston, Mass.

B4. Co-Creating Knowledge with Social Justice Grantees

Wednesday, June 10, 2015 at 3:00 PM–4:15 PM EDT
Martha’s Vineyard B (Fourth Floor Level)
Session Designer:

Barbara Osborn, University of Southern California’s Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism, and Liberty Hill Foundation

Session Description

Learning with grantees can take many forms and can be an integral part of all foundation program activities. In this session, participants will learn about an array of collaborative models for learning with social justice grantees, developed by Liberty Hill Foundation and its partners. These approaches to research and evaluation engage grassroots grantees from the get-go, build their capacity and provide invaluable feedback to the foundation. Through a blend of presentations, small-group discussions and interactive activities that draw on attendees’ own experiences and reflections, participants will discuss and articulate ways to replicate or adapt these models to develop rich learning experiences for their foundations and grantees.

Primary Points Of Contact

Barbara, Osborn

Session Designers

Barbara Osborn, Annenberg School, University of Southern California and Liberty Hill Foundation


Evelin Montes, Liberty Hill Foundation
Speaker Biography

In her role, Evelin is responsible for Liberty Hill’s grantmaking programs and oversight of the Wally Marks Leadership Institute for Change, Liberty Hill’s innovative capacity-building program for grantees. Evelin also manages Liberty Hill’s external capacity building services, Training for Impact, which assists foundation partners to enhance their grantee’s community engagement and advocacy skills. Evelin is a trained executive and organizational development coach, which complements her 15-year community organizing background. Evelin holds a B.A. in Urban and Environmental Policy from Occidental College. 

Eric Wat, Special Services Group
Speaker Biography

Eric Wat is the Director of Research and Evaluation at Special Service for Groups (SSG), a nonprofit organization.  Eric works with various foundations and funders to build grantee learning communities by providing technical assistance on evaluation in order to help them produce and use community-driven data to improve their work.  At SSG, Eric has built a diverse team specialized in participatory action research and empowerment evaluation.  His published research began with the gay Asian community in Los Angeles more than 12 years ago.  Other research publications include: research ethics, education disparities, mental health and substance abuse, and community organizing.

Barbara Osborn, USC Annenberg School of Journalism and Communications and Liberty Hill Foundation
Speaker Biography

Barbara Osborn, Wow The Crowd’s chief strategist, works with CEOs and other senior nonprofit leaders on organizational and communications strategy. Dr. Osborn spent more than a decade as Strategic Communications Director at Liberty Hill Foundation where she established the foundation’s brand and provided training to grassroots community organizations.  

Her interest in community research led to the development of a groundbreaking doctoral seminar, Research Practice and Social Change, at University of Southern California’s Annenberg School. The course pilots short-term research projects that partner graduate student research teams and grassroots community organizations using a community based participatory research approach.

Session Materials