On July 9, 2020, in the wake of the murder of George Floyd and as protests calling for justice swept across the United States, LAPA Fundraising provided space for five of our nonprofit executives of color to discuss the impact of racism on the nonprofit sector and the communities we serve.
Since LAPA’s founding in 1995, discussions like these, led by people of color and dedicated to dismantling racist systems, have guided LAPA’s approach to diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI).
These areas define our DEI approach:
We are our people.
Many people comprise LAPA Fundraising, including staff, consultants, and vendors. Each of these individuals plays an essential role in advancing the revenue program of our clients. As a professional services firm, our greatest asset is the collective knowledge, passion, and experience of our remarkable people. We are committed to enjoying a workplace that is diverse, celebrates differences, and inspires our team to reflect deeply on cultural biases and privilege. We are committed to creating an environment that is free from discrimination and prejudice, where all people are treated fairly and with respect, and where all are given an equal opportunity in all aspects of their experience with us.
We support communities of color.
LAPA has a storied history of working with nonprofits located in communities of color, including in Harlem, the South Bronx, and Queens, NY; Detroit, MI; U Street in Washington, DC; Jackson Ward in Richmond, VA; and Seventh Street in West Oakland, CA.
We recognize the reality of system racism and oppression.
We recognize the systemic inequities that disproportionately hinder the success of Black and Brown staff and intersect with discrimination based on age, class, gender, national origin, religion, disability, and sexual orientation, among others. LAPA is committed to recognizing these systemic inequities. We are also committed to promoting racial and social equity both within our firm and in our broader communities—above and beyond our existing investments in diversity, equity, and inclusion.
We seek to empower marginalized people.
Real progress toward equity depends not only on hiring Black, Brown, Asian, Latinx, womxn, and queer employees but also on making sure they are empowered.
LAPA’s executive team works to create an intentionally inclusive work environment that will lead to a more diverse and equitable workplace for all. This includes a firm-wide mandate to prioritize hiring staff and vendors from marginalized groups.
In addition, our thought leadership on our blog and in our publications aims to reflect the inclusivity we seek by amplifying the voices of fundraisers and thought leaders who are Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC).
We support and adopt the United Nations’ LGBTI Standards of Conduct for Business.
At LAPA, practicing the principles of diversity, equity, and inclusion plays a central role in our mission to help our staff and clients move forward in an evolving world. We work internationally as well as domestically, and therefore, we are proud to support and adopt the United Nations’ LGBTI Standards of Conduct for Business.
We recognize diversity, equity, and inclusion as a best practice.
DEI enables us to build a team with a diverse set of skills from a wide array of backgrounds, in turn providing our clients with the most innovative and creative solutions to their concerns. As such, we recognize DEI as integral to LAPA’s mission of delivering results for our clients.