Making (Or Taking) Space: Initial Themes on Nonprofit Transitions from White to BIPOC Leaders

This report was written by the Building Movement Project on behalf of the Robert Sterling Clark Foundation. It seeks to inform the question: What, specifically, is the responsibility of organizations with white leaders transitioning out of these roles to support incoming leaders of color?


The Robert Sterling Clark Foundation (RSCF) has observed that many organizations are eager to transition from white leaders to leaders of color, but that they often do not have the experience, expertise, commitment, or supports in place to fully embrace new leadership and make these transitions successful or joyful. Too often, it is the new leaders of color who pay the price for under-prepared organizations. As RSCF continues to understand and move resources to directly support leaders of color during these transitions, they wanted to take a closer look at themselves and their grantee community.

This report shines a light on one small group of organizations and offers some findings, rather than recommendations. It helps to better understand the realities of what is happening on the ground as groups like RSCF seek to develop a better set of considerations and capacities for releasing and sharing power that white people in the nonprofit and philanthropic sectors must hold themselves accountable to, particularly during this critical period. 

Download the report above or visit the RSCF resources page here:

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