- About the Program
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- Fellows’ Center
To assist disadvantaged community members of the Maryland area who need a helping hand to improve their circumstances, by strengthening the effectiveness of not-for-profit agencies serving them.
The Harry and Jeanette Weinberg Fellows Program, created and funded by The Harry and Jeanette Weinberg Foundation (www.hjweinbergfoundation.org), is an innovative management enhancement program designed to increase community-based nonprofit agency capacity to assist people in need. The program was first introduced in 1992 in Hawaii, where more than 200 Weinberg Fellows have since graduated and are making a difference throughout the Islands. Assisted by a Board of Advisors which includes leaders of the foundation, social service and academic communities, the Foundation replicated the program for the Baltimore community in 2002.
The Harry and Jeanette Weinberg Fellows Program fosters a collaborative, supportive environment within which executive directors and key volunteer leaders of nonprofit organizations can add to their knowledge, hone their skills, develop common standards and understandings of best practices, and position their services for maximum benefit to the Baltimore community. The focus is on leading and managing social service and community-based organizations to most effectively assist disadvantaged individuals and families, deepening working relationships among staff and volunteer leaders within agencies, and providing opportunities to develop enduring cross-agency and cross-sector partnerships.
A diverse group of 25 executive directors of agencies whose major purpose is to serve disadvantaged Maryland residents is selected for the program each year. During a series of live-in sessions, presenters, discussion leaders and panelists cover the full spectrum of executive director roles, responsibilities and key relationships. Sessions usually begin at an intermediate level and are interactive, drawing on the expertise of the more seasoned executive directors. Break-out sessions focus on the specific challenges and opportunities of the participants and their agencies. Board presidents, treasurers and board members responsible for fundraising will be invited to participate in role-specific sessions on governance, financial accountability and resource development with their executive directors.
Topics include the context of the nonprofit sector, agency mission, outcomes, organizational development, asset-based approaches to problem solving, strategic planning, community capacity-building, board/staff partnership, financial management, personnel, resource development, legal issues, risk management and other subjects.
Presenters, panelists and resource people include experts from nonprofit organizations, local universities and colleges, businesses, consulting firms and government agencies.
The applicant must be the top staff person of a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization devoting most of its efforts and resources to directly helping disadvantaged Maryland residents who want to improve their circumstances.
The Harry and Jeanette Weinberg Foundation will be underwriting the majority of all costs. Executive directors selected to participate in the Weinberg Fellows Program will be expected to personally invest a registration fee of $100. Each Fellow’s agency will be expected to invest a registration fee of $500. Limited partial scholarships will be available to those unable to participate without such assistance.