Northland Foundation Shares in 2016 Responsive Philanthropy Award Presented by Minnesota Council of Nonprofits

Wednesday, October 12, 2016

The Minnesota Council of Nonprofits presented the Responsive Philanthropy Award to the Northland Foundation and other five Minnesota Initiative Foundations (MIFs) at its annual conference held on October 7, 2016.  A video also was produced to highlight the MIFs. The Minnesota Council of Nonprofits is an association with over 2,000 nonprofit members, whose votes determine which Minnesota foundations and corporate giving programs receive this special recognition. Criteria include:

  • Being responsive to citizen initiatives;
  • Recognizing public policy issues and long-term strategies to fight problems; and
  • Committing substantial resources to disadvantaged people and Minnesota communities through a process of dialogue and partnership.

The MIFs have demonstrated responsive philanthropy since their inception in 1986. They were created to be responsive agents to the mining, farming and community crisis devastating rural Minnesota 30 years ago. Designed to empower and organize local people to address issues they faced, each MIF has developed uniquely over the years in response to key issues in their respective regions. Their determination and prudent use of assets help to ensure that the people in their regions have more opportunity and the best possible start in life.

Individually and collectively, they share a culture of collaboration with the people of their regions, with nonprofit and business partners, and with each other. An example of this includes the recent funding awarded from the State of Minnesota to support the joint work of the MIFs around Pre-K to Grade 3 alignment, recognizing their role in improving early learning outcomes in rural Minnesota.

“It is an honor to be recognized for the qualities that the Northland Foundation tries to bring to everything that we do—being approachable, flexible, and nimble,” said Tony Sertich, Northland Foundation President, “and to have an opportunity to thank The McKnight Foundation and the many incredible funding and community partners who provide critical support.”

Together, the Minnesota Initiative Foundations have awarded more than 34,000 grants totaling $203 million, $68.5 million in business loans and have combined assets totaling $270 million.