Raikes Foundation Impact-Driven Philanthropy

In Partnership with Moving Beyond, Rooted Strategies is supporting the Raikes Foundation’s Impact-Driven Philanthropy efforts working closely with other foundations, wealth advisors, digital infrastructure organizations, donor education partners, academia, and individual donors. The initiative seeks to create a stronger impact-driven philanthropy field that is more visible, efficient and outcomes-oriented, and engage more donors.


Rooted Strategies supported the GIIN as they embarked on their next phase of growth that required them to make difficult prioritization choices. Together we took stock of the essential ingredients needed to nurture a passionate, inspired, and powerful team ready to take on these new opportunities and challenges.

City Harvest Healthy Neighborhoods Initiative

Rooted Strategies facilitated a year-long process to develop a Theory of Change and program criteria for program prioritization and decision-making, culminating in a four-year strategic plan for the Healthy Neighborhoods Initiative. Although the work began in this smaller program division, the whole organization adopted the Theory of Change that named food security for all New Yorkers as the long-term outcome. Simultaneously Jessica helped the organization to expand their capacity to think differently about how they plan for, evaluate, implement, and manage programs. Enabling staff to think flexibly and critically about the programming that can best serve its communities requires training a “new muscle.” Teams from across the organization engaged in action learning experiments that helped advance understanding of the reality and conditions of people living with food insecurity and the best ways to partner and build solutions with them.

“Jessica’s interactive facilitation style brings the best out in her retreat participants, building consensus for a strategic way forward and laying a solid groundwork for actually implementing the plans. She helps build capacity for change and gains the confidence of program staff and senior leadership alike.”
John Martinez, Director of Program Development - MDRC

Bedford 2020

Bedford 2020 faced a unique program planning challenge of having already met its stated goal of reducing greenhouse gas emissions 20% by 2020 in the town of Bedford, Rooted Strategies, in partnership with Solid Fire Consulting, co-lead the organization through a seven-month-long organizational development and program planning process. The process ended up being as important as the product, resulting in an impact-based program decision-making framework for strategic planning today and into the future. Also central to the effort was developing a succession plan for its three co-founders in an open and transparent way.


MDRC is a 40 year-old, 350+ employee, social policy research and demonstration project nonprofit working to find solutions to some of the most difficult problems facing the nation.  Rooted Strategies regularly facilitated strategic planning with programs they were evaluating on the ground as well as inside the organization.

Jessica facilitated strategic planning retreats and on-going implementation support for the leadership Strategy Group, the Operation Working Group, Development and External Affairs Department, and the Families and Children K-12 policy areas within the organization. Jessica worked with six state-based and national program being evaluated to support strategic planning around recruitment and retention of program participants including programs serving high-school drop out youth and adults seeking to obtain their GED and gainful employment.