Eric Weinheimer is the president and CEO of Forefront, Illinois’s membership organization for nonprofits, grantmakers, public agencies, advisors, and allies. Eric led the organization’s rebranding three years ago from Donors Forum to Forefront to emphasize putting the members and their impact front and center for the people of Illinois. “The name Forefront will hold our feet to the fire to ensure our work is leading this movement,” Eric said in 2015. Eric will be joining the movement on a national scale when he attends Upswell this November.
Q: In a few sentences tell us who you are, what drives you, what you’re working on, and why you’re inspired to make the world a better place.
EW: I’m the president and CEO of one of the coolest organizations in the country. Forefront is a unique organization because it’s a state association that represents foundations, nonprofits, and social entrepreneurs across Illinois. We are like Independent Sector, but for our state. Through Forefront, I am currently working on creating a vibrant ecosystem that allows our members and other social impact warriors to do their best work and create vibrant communities throughout Illinois.
Q: What is your favorite way to relax?
EW: Playing the piano. As an aspiring jazz pianist, I enjoy learning, improvising, and creating beautiful music.
Q: What is the last issue you personally advocated for?
EW: I personally advocated for the preservation of the Johnson Amendment because we need to keep our sector nonpartisan and focused on mission.
Q: What excites you about Upswell?
EW: What excites me about Upswell is the opportunity to strengthen our collective voice and spur collective action across the country.
Q: Who or what are you inspired by?
EW: I’m inspired by my children. They work hard, listen well, make good choices, and they are in service to others.