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Celebramos EPIP’s Latino Roots

Hispanic Heritage Month just ended on October 15, and we would be remiss not to acknowledge it and EPIP’s Latino roots. Many don’t realize that people of color were at the center of EPIP’s formation.

Most know the story of how Rusty Stahl founded EPIP with a group of like-minded people back in 2001. However, EPIP’s staff recently discovered that one of Rusty’s compadres was a Latino Program Associate from the Charles Stewart Mott Foundation, Alejandro Amezcua.

Alejandro and Rusty worked to bring the idea of EPIP to fruition. A recent conversation with Rusty revealed the story:

Alejandro Amezcua was a Jane Adams fellow a year after me at Indiana University and we went together to the the Council on Foundations conference [in 2000].

The next year I was at Ford, Alejandro was at Mott. And Alejandro and I said, “Well, last year we felt really weird and isolated at [the] conference. This year we’re going not as students but as grantmakers from these two big national foundations. Let’s convene the dinner for the young people who we meet there”.

Those were the humble beginnings of EPIP (thanks to the support of Elan Garonzik and Linetta Gilbert who mentored them both).

EPIP staff was particularly impressed with Alejandro’s commitment to philanthropy through social entrepreneurship. He is currently an Assistant Professor of Entrepreneurship at Syracuse University, where he completed a doctorate in Public Administration and an MPA in Management, Entrepreneurship and Innovation.

We are proud of EPIP’s legacy of diversity and innovation as vehicles for making the world more just, equitable, and sustainable.

We hope to honor that history by highlighting our members as innovators and celebrating their diverse talents and backgrounds. Our move to the Centre for Social Innovation and upcoming programs of our People of Color Network at Harvard and the June 2014 Unity Summit in Washington DC in partnership with JAG aim to fulfill those goals.

Gracias Dr. Amezcua for your work that helped get EPIP started.


Rahsaan Harris, PhD
Executive Director | Emerging Practitioners in Philanthropy (EPIP)


More on the PCN Gathering Nov 5 & 6 in Boston

EPIP’s People of Color Network gathering will be held on November 5th & 6th at Harvard. Scholarships are available on a rolling basis. Further details can be found in Kate Seely’s recent blog post. If you’re interested in attending and applying for the scholarship, please don’t delay. This is the 7th gathering of our members of color. PCN gatherings provide participants with opportunities to explore identity, race, and social impact.

Also, on 11/5 at Harvard, we will be co-hosting a workshop on Implicit Bias that is free and open to everyone.

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