Dear Colleagues,

On behalf of the  Planning Committee, I am honored and pleased to welcome you to the Breakin' It Down Conference .

It Started with an Idea. Back in 2003, Denise Stennis and Juan Calixto recognized the opportunity to build up diverse people via peer-to-peer skills training to make the social impact sector stronger and more equitable. They realized that while their organizations could afford to invest in their professionalization, some grassroots organizations doing integral work could not afford similar professional development of their staff. They also realized that in working together to train their affinity group memberships, together they could combine resources to cultivate the next generation of diverse professionals in nonprofit and philanthropic services. 

While we have come a long way, of course, there is much more to do.

Fulfilling the Promise. Our vision is that the organizations who serve our communities have leaders who reflect us so we can move the needle on equity. We are not marginalized communities needing to be fixed with charity. We are underserved who need investment and affirmation.

We are at a critical point in time with various social movements: #MeToo, Black Lives Matter, overcoming internal organizational scandal, backlash towards immigrants, impact investing and finally defining the difference between diversity vs. equity vs. inclusion. How do we fulfill our missions in these times? How do we heal? How do we fulfill the promise?

Our hope is that we learn from what others are doing to ensure respect for women, embrace diversity, ensure equity and design programs for full inclusion. 

The Breakin’ It Down Conference is for your professional and personal benefit in our shared community to stop the discourse of hate and embrace our common humanity.

Rhea Yap

Conference Chair

Rhea Yap, Chair - 2019 BID Committee
Rhea Yap, Chair - 2019 BID Committee