Milano faculty member Molly Schultz Hafid received the Award for Excellence in Community Leadership from the Neighborhood Funders Group (NFG).  A national, membership association of grant-making institutions, NFG’s mission is “to build the capacity of philanthropy to advance social justice and community change.” The NFG Award for Excellence in Community Leadership recognizes individual leaders who have a track record of respectful working relationships across issues and constituencies with both community organizations and other organizations of funders. 

Molly co-chaired NFG from 2010-2016. In this capacity, she helped lead the organization through an executive director transition, a complete restructuring of programs, and the development of a new approach to member-led funder organizing.  From 2007-2011, Molly also served as the co-chair of NFG’s longest standing working group, Funders for a Just Economy.  In 2014, Molly co-founded Funders for Justice, which has since become a signature project of NFG’s.  Formed in response to the murder of Michael Brown in Ferguson, MO, Funders for Justice is a national network of almost 400 grantmakers which has been working since then to expand philanthropic support for community-led efforts to increase police accountability and advance racial justice.

It is only the third time an individual has been selected to receive the Excellence in Community Leadership award.  NFG’s choice demonstrates Molly’s extraordinary leadership and commitment to advancing NFG’s goal of achieving “economic and social justice for people in low and moderate-income communities, both urban and rural, throughout the United States.” Molly received the award before several hundred funders gathered together for NFG’s annual conference this June. 

In addition to teaching at Milano, Molly is Associate Director at TCC Group where she leads, manages, and advises projects in foundations strategic planning and strategy development; learning and capacity building; landscape analyses and grantmaking portfolio review; and multi-party partnerships and funder alignment.  She also works closely with TCC Group’s portfolio of managed family foundations, providing advice and support for approximately $25 million in annual grantmaking.  Molly contributes to the design and execution of TCC Group’s philanthropic sector research agenda and thought leadership, with a specific focus on social justice philanthropy and on exploring how strategic equity commitments and internal institutional practices can align and reinforce each other.

Congratulations, Molly, on a well-deserved honor!