Maine Philanthropy Center

Building Connections for Maine Grantmakers

Partnerships for the Future: Working Together to Get Things Done

Independent Sector Logo
Tuesday, May 21, 2019 -
9:00am to 11:00am EDT
Hannford Hall, Abromson Community Education Center, USM
88 Bedford Street, Portland
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May 20: Online registration for the symposium is now closed. Walk-in registrations can be processed at the symposium.

Table of Contents

  1. Symposium Content
  2. Symposium Format
  3.  Symposium Agenda
  4. Symposium Context
  5. Bio - Dan Cardinali
  6. Bios - Multi-Sector Dialogue Partners


“Partnerships for the Future: Working Together to Get Things Done” will explore how organizations in the corporate, nonprofit, philanthropic, and government sectors are productively collaborating to make life better for people across the nation and right here in Maine.

1. Symposium Content

The Maine Philanthropy Center is happy to bring Dan Cardinali, president and CEO of Independent Sector, to Maine. Independent Sector is the only national membership organization that brings together a diverse set of nonprofits, foundations, and corporations to advance the common good. During his time with us, Dan will:

  • Explore data, trends, and ideas that are shaping the future of cross-sector collaboration.
  • Present a vision of what future multi-sector partnerships will need to look like in order to be effective.
  • Share inspiring examples from his cross-country travel, as he highlights the work of nonprofit, government, philanthropic, and corporate organizations that are working together to promote equity throughout the nation. 


2. Symposium Format

After participating in a thought-provoking interview with Barbara Edmond, president of the Maine Philanthropy Center, Dan will join a group dialogue with leaders of Maine-based nonprofits, businesses, philanthropic foundations, and government agencies that are engaged in multi-sector partnerships. The conversation will offer an opportunity to hear from local colleagues and learn about innovative, future-focused collaborations that already are changing our state for the better. Conversation participants will include:


The morning's schedule builds in Q&A time with Dan as well as with local leaders. 

Our hope is that you’ll leave the event with new ideas about how you might want to collaborate – and with whom you might want to partner – as your organization seeks to advance the common good.

3. High-Level Agenda


Registration Opens.

8 - 9am

Breakfast and Networking.

9 - 10am

Welcome and Introduction. Interview and Q&A with Dan Cardinali.

10 - 11am

Group Conversation about Multi-Sector Projects in Maine. Q&A with participants.


Symposium adjourns.








4. Symposium Context

Today in the United States, nonprofits, philanthropic organizations, corporations, and government agencies are grappling with political, economic, cultural, and demographic change. Traditional political identities and institutional alliances are shifting in the face of significant debates over public policy and the role of government in society. As commentator Thomas Friedman has written, “the challenges [faced by] workers, communities, and companies in this age of accelerating globalization, technology, and climate change” are re-shaping the industrial world – and the situation is only compounded by the fact that “national governments are so paralyzed by partisanship that they can’t adapt.”

National governments may be struggling, but there is hope. Multi-sector partnerships are successfully adapting to changing circumstances as they labor to advance the common good at local, regional, and state levels.


People (Symposium Participants)

5. Bio - Featured Guest Dan Cardinali

Dan Cardinali is president and CEO of Independent Sector, the only national membership organization that brings together a diverse set of nonprofits, foundations, and corporations to advance the common good.

Before joining IS in 2016, Dan served on the IS Board of Directors and several IS member committees. He also led Communities In Schools, the nation’s largest and most effective dropout prevention organization, for 12 years after working in other positions at the organization.

As a thought leader in the field of public education, Dan was credited with fostering the growing national trend toward community involvement in schools through partnerships with parents, businesses, policymakers, and local nonprofit groups. As the president and CEO of IS, he believes strongly in the power of nonprofits, foundations, and other organizations to work collaboratively to improve life and the environment for individuals and communities around the world. Dan is known for his commitment to performance management to drive evidence-based programs and high impact organizations.

Early in this career, Dan worked as a community organizer in Guadalajara, Mexico organizing a squatter community to secure land rights, running water, and public education. He then returned to Washington, DC for a research fellowship at the Woodstock Theological Center at Georgetown University.

Dan is a 2007 Annie E. Casey Children and Families Fellow, serves on the board of Child Trends and the advisory boards of HBS Social Enterprise Initiative, the Conference Board’s Center on Corporate Citizenship and Philanthropy, the Fetzer Institute and Project Evident. He holds a bachelor’s degree in international relations from Georgetown University Walsh School of Foreign Service and a master’s degree in philosophy from Fordham University.

You can follow Dan on Twitter at @dancardinali.


6. Bios - Multi-Sector Dialogue Partners

Gary Friedmann (Government Sector) is a founding director of A Climate to Thrive, the grassroots initiative to make Mount Desert Island energy independent by 2030.  As chair of the Bar Harbor Town Council, Gary has led local efforts to power Town operations with solar energy and to make solar electrical power available to Bar Harbor residents through the region's first Community Solar Farm.  A partner in Bar Harbor Community Farm and past President of Maine Citizens for Clean Elections, Gary consults on nonprofit development throughout the state.



Leslie Goode (Philanthropic Sector) is a program officer at the Maine Community Foundation. She supports the Foundation's work in Hancock, Washington, and Waldo counties and works with grantmaking committees and donors in the region. Leslie has worked in the nonprofit sector for more than 25 years, with a focus on advocacy, policy, and philanthropy. Before joining the staff of the Maine Community Foundation, she served as the executive director of the Maine Chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics and the director of policy and communication at the Maine Health Access Foundation. She also has worked as an entrepreneur, small business owner, and nonprofit consultant.



Alain J. Nahimana (Nonprofit Sector) is an immigrant from Burundi who came to Maine nine years ago. Since his arrival, he has contributed to the Maine community in many ways, most recently as co-founder and executive director of the Greater Portland Immigrant Welcome Center. Alain brings to his work and to the community a drive which exemplifies his belief in the “Power Of We”: by bringing people together behind a shared vision, we can do great things. He lives in Biddeford and is the father of four. 


James Robbins (Corporate Sector) is senior vice president of community development banking and a CRA officer at Bangor Savings Bank. In this role, he co-serves as the bank's primary liaison to community organizations as well as federal, state, and municipal agencies   particularly those engaged in affordable housing and economic development activities in Maine. When asked to define his passion, Jim often states that he is "passionate about the empowerment of individuals and organizations to engage in positive change for their communities through investment, which helps to build human capital and results in innovation, commerce, job creation, economic sustainability, healthy environments, and a hopeful legacy for our children."

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