SPOTLIGHT STAGE

Interactive demonstrations, dynamic performances, spirited debates – all in the center of the Public Square.

Wednesday, November 13

2:30 pm – 2:50 pm

A Decade of Lessons Learned Serving Nonprofits as a Social Venture

Big Ideas

Jitasa founder, Jeff Russell, will share his (sometimes painful) leadership and organizational lessons learned, which should be applicable for every Executive Director who has tried to do something new, groundbreaking or creative at their nonprofit. Jeff will share about their journey and all of the lessons learned over the past decade as Jitasa has become the largest B-Corp in the nation serving nonprofits with bookkeeping and accounting services.

Presented by Jitasa

Wednesday, November 13

4:05 pm – 4:25 pm

A Wellness Moment

Mind, Body, Soul

Our work as changemakers is important, but nurturing our own well-being is just as, if not more, important. Self-care is the active participation in maintaining good mental, physical, emotional and spiritual health. There is no right or wrong way to engage in it nor does it have to be complicated or involved. You can simply take a moment to recharge and keep moving forward in your day.

This short restorative session will give you space to reconnect and check in with yourself through guided breathing and mindfulness exercises. You will feel refreshed and ready to continue your experience at Upswell Chicago because a healthier, more centered you means a healthier, more vibrant community around you.

Thursday, November 14

10:20 am – 10:40 am

A Wellness Moment

Mind, Body, Soul

Our work as changemakers is important, but nurturing our own well-being is just as, if not more, important. Self-care is the active participation in maintaining good mental, physical, emotional and spiritual health. There is no right or wrong way to engage in it nor does it have to be complicated or involved. You can simply take a moment to recharge and keep moving forward in your day.

This short restorative session will give you space to reconnect and check in with yourself through guided breathing and mindfulness exercises. You will feel refreshed and ready to continue your experience at Upswell Chicago because a healthier, more centered you means a healthier, more vibrant community around you.

Thursday, November 14

9:00 am – 9:20 am

Build vs. Buy for Nonprofit Professionals

Big Ideas

When considering a Build versus Buy decision, it’s a dilemma that non-profit professionals face when it comes to their technical roadmap: to build a custom software solution or buy commercial off-the-shelf platforms. Pros and cons are weighed as you try to find an economical software solution that will help your non-profit administration and fundraising goals. Learn to understand the clear benefits and advantages of each approach.

Friday, November 15

10:40 am – 11:00 am

Content Strategy for Donor Engagement: From Tactics to Testing

Capacity Building

Creating effective content to engage donors is a critical need, but development and communications staff don’t always understand how to collaborate to develop a content strategy that drives donations and moves donors along an engagement ladder.

In this workshop, you’ll learn some guerilla tactics for defining your audience using personas, developing strategies for delivering content across channels (web, social, and print), devising ways to keep audiences engaged, and creating original content that is user-friendly, SEO-friendly, and 508-accessible.  We’ll cover:

  • Figuring out how content you produce serves your business goals.
  • Coming up with a plan for creating content to reach the users you have—and the ones you don’t.
  • Thinking through how to relate content on your site and across social media to keep users engaged longer.

Understanding how to develop metrics and use analytics to track outcomes.

Presented by Message Agency

Thursday, November 14

11:35 am – 11:55 am

Give.org Donor Trust Report: New Edition

Big Ideas

Highlights of second annual survey on donor trust, misconceptions and behavioral intentions toward giving. Survey also addresses donor expectations about disaster relief appeals.

Presented by BBB Wise Giving Alliance

Thursday, November 14

2:05 pm – 2:25 pm

Have Your Best Board Meetings. Ever.

Capacity Building

BoardEffect provides you with a suite of tools designed specifically to enhance board work. Combined with a few smart practices, BoardEffect can help increase board engagement, and streamline board meetings so your board can focus on your mission. Join us for this fun, brief overview on tips for having the best board meetings ever.

Thursday, November 14

4:20 pm – 4:40 pm

How a Millennial Musician Is Bridging the Political Divide

Big Ideas

Hear from Millennial Action Project (MAP) Founder and nationally-recognized political commentator, Steven Olikara, on his journey from music to democracy entrepreneurship, creating a unique model of cross-partisan action with young lawmakers. Founded in the wake of 2013 government shutdown, MAP has grown into the nation’s largest nonpartisan organization of young lawmakers, spanning across 29 states and Congress.

Presented by Millennial Action Project

Friday, November 15

9:00 am – 9:20 am

How Foundations are Keeping up with SDGs

Capacity Building

The United Nations Sustainable Development Goals were formalized in 2015 to create a standard set of goals to create prosperity and peace for all people. Foundations are key impact drivers in making the goals successful. But how do foundations implement the goals into their giving programs? What are the right tools? And when is the right time to start using them? This session dives into these questions and will leave you with practical examples to implement the goals in meaningful ways.

Presented by Blackbaud, Inc

Thursday, November 14

12:35 pm – 12:55 pm

Impact Measurement for Meaningful Grantmaking

Capacity Building

Grantmaking no longer consists of simply writing a check and walking away. New grant makers want to make sure they are being good community partners by making donations that will truly have an impact. Measuring the potential impact of a donation can be a tricky path to forge. This session will offer foundations a clear path towards being a good philanthropic steward while making impact oriented grants. You will leave inspired and ready to launch an impact oriented giving program.

Presented by Blackbaud, Inc

Thursday, November 14

10:20 am – 10:40 am

Inclusivity, Competition and Community Needs: Formalizing your Approach to Market Analysis

Big Ideas

The changing needs of constituents, priorities of funders, difficulty finding staff, the sheer volume of other nonprofits…there’s a lot of forces influencing nonprofit organizations. It is easy to understand how leadership may feel overwhelmed. Solutions abound – collaboration, merger, collective impact, but before jumping to conclusions, let’s include more voices and truly understand, “What does our community need us to do?” We’ll discuss a structured framework designed to include more voices, understand competition, breakdown beneficiary needs and engage in a holistic look at your organization’s role in the broader community.

Presented by Spectrum Nonprofit Services

Thursday, November 14

1:05 pm – 1:25 pm

Leadership’s Contemporary Evolution

Big Ideas

Are societal expectations of leaders shifting? Do leaders evolve in their thinking, and will their followers accept their changes? How does a leader’s past behavior reflect on them as a leader today? What are the moral and ethical dimensions that shape these changes? This talk will engage attendees in the real dilemmas of leading and the judgments we as members of society have about the moral and ethical influences that impact how we judge their behaviors.

Presented by University College at the University of Denver

Thursday, November 14

11:00 am – 11:20 am

Peacebuilding in the US Culture Wars: Religious Liberty as a Critical Tool

Bridging Divides

Wednesday, November 13

4:10 pm – 4:20 pm

The Donor Base You Can’t Afford to Ignore

Big Ideas

Grassroots donors are not just a feel-good idea or an unattainable myth: They are fueling real change across all advocacy issues and making it possible for nonprofits to create inclusive, flexible, and sustainable fundraising programs! Come see data that demonstrates how small-dollar donors are building momentum for the causes they love and learn about the latest grassroots fundraising trends in this spotlight talk from ActBlue, the home of small-dollar donors.

Hosted by ActBlue

Thursday, November 14

8:00 am – 8:20 am

The Future of Work: How to Support Worker Success in the Age of Automation

Big Ideas

The accelerating pace of technological innovation is contributing to significant changes in the nature of work and a growing gap between the demand for qualified workers and talent ready to fill in-demand roles. But this future of work is not something to be feared; rather, it represents an opportunity to reshape the workforce ecosystem for the better. In this session, we will share findings from our recent report, Supporting worker success in the age of automation, about how public, private, and social sector players can support workers, specifically those without four-year degrees, adapt to the changing nature of work.

Sponsored by Monitor Institute by Deloitte

Friday, November 15

12:05 pm – 12:25 pm

The Stance of Power and Grace: Using the Arrow of Discernment

Mind, Body, Soul

If you find yourself blaming others for your disgruntlements, you create a victim mentality within yourself. This strips you of authentic power and drops you into the “cup half empty” mind. By gracefully turning the arrow of discernment back to your own heart, you employ mindful awareness to understand your role in the situation. You become a collaborator of your own empowerment, infusing your inner and outer worlds with understanding and harmony.

Wednesday, November 13

1:10 pm – 1:30 pm

Weaving Strong Communities

Big Ideas

Strong communities don’t just happen. They are built and strengthened by people (Weavers) with time, skill and love. David Brooks of Weave: The Social Fabric Project and the New York Times will be in conversation with Deepti Doshi of Facebook around what motivates people to become Weavers and how they learn these weaving skills.