The Crimsonbridge Leadership Fund identifies emerging and existing leaders, from nonprofits of all sizes, to participate in professional development programs that will elevate their work to the next level. Through our partnerships with Georgetown University’s Center for Public and Nonprofit Leadership and with Leadership of Greater Washington, we seek to promote a robust nonprofit sector in the Greater Washington region. We believe that big and small, we are all needed as we seek to address society’s most challenging problems. The unique impact of the Crimsonbridge Leadership Fund should demonstrate to the academic and philanthropic communities the important benefits of university and funder collaborations.




Georgetown University’s Center for Public and Nonprofit Leadership (CPNL) serves as a leading education, research, and training center to develop nonprofit leaders and scholars, providing them with the skills and courage to effectively address social needs and civic problems. Its Nonprofit Management Executive Certificate Program is an experiential leadership lab designed for executive directors and senior managers of nonprofits.

The CPNL has been committed to diversity and scholarship support for its programs, but the need for financial assistance exceeded the program’s available scholarship funding. To address this gap and help the CPNL expand its outreach to engage more local leaders of diverse backgrounds, the Crimsonbridge Foundation partnered with the CPNL to create the Crimsonbridge Leadership Fund to support diverse leaders from locally-based and locally-serving nonprofit organizations in the Greater Washington Region with partial and full scholarships.


An increase in scholarship funds and a targeted outreach strategy to diverse markets resulted in a significant rise in applications and an increase from 20 to nearly 40% diverse participants in the program. The program has a 100% approval review from participants, who have reported gains in leadership and management skills, as well as value in expanding their local network. Since 2016, 21 local nonprofit leaders have received support from the Crimsonbridge Leadership Fund. In 2017-18, the CPNL’s strategic focus is to learn more about how nonprofits are promoting racial equity within their leadership, and the challenges nonprofits face in this area. The CPNL views the Crimsonbridge Leadership Fund as a critical piece of this work.

“This opportunity supports the development of each individual leading nonprofit organizations. But more importantly, it represents robust support for the entire sector, as we – leaders – can shape policy and advocate for a more integrated community of nonprofits. This training gives us the tools to implement that. As I have mentioned throughout the program, I am a strong believer in integration, collaboration, and inclusiveness to achieve a broader impact. I am certain that spaces like this, where knowledge and ideas are shared, are the best way to create real social and economic transformation.”

Patricia Funegra, Founder and CEO of La Cocina VA