GG+A President Suzanne Hilser-Wiles recently appeared on “The Development Debrief” podcast to explore philanthropy’s diversity, equity, and inclusion challenges.
“Organizations and companies that have diversity of leadership on their board and in their senior ranks perform better,” Hilser-Wiles said during her wide-ranging conversation with host Kathryn Van Sickle, a major gift officer at Columbia University. The same can be said across the nonprofit world, she added.
“While we know this, we don’t always have a plan to address this,” she said. For example, a recent GG+A analysis found that nine of out the 50 largest fundraising universities in the United States had advancement departments led by women.
“This is not a problem that will magically fix itself,” she said. That requires an institution’s leadership and board to ensure their senior leaders are representative of their broader organization. That type of effort can pay significant dividends, she noted, given that the diversity of opinions and perspectives leads to better problem solving.