Philanthropic Innovations

A fundamental aspect of Marga Incorporated’s work has been to catalyze innovations in philanthropy. Marga’s ongoing initiative, the Race and Equity in Philanthropy Group (REPG), designed with the Annie E. Casey Foundation several years ago, continues to be the most notable example of a sustained innovation in philanthropy in Marga’s portfolio. However, Marga’s work continues to lead to the development of philanthropic innovations.  Marga believes that the full potential of philanthropy as an agent of social change has significant room for growth.  Marga works with philanthropists, foundations, community organizations, Philanthropy Serving Organizations (PSO’s) and other partners in order to develop new ways to leverage philanthropic resources to bring about change.  Through Columbia University, Marga’s work continues to be informed by research led by Marga’s President that investigates philanthropy and strategic partnerships.

Some of the other philanthropic innovations Marga has assisted in recent years include:

New World Foundation

For several years, Marga Incorporated has been advising the New World Foundation, where Marga Founder & CEO, David Maurrasse, has been serving as Senior Fellow on Philanthropic and Community Impact.

  • Civic Opportunities Initiative Network (COIN)– Marga helped design and assess this effort to increase access to higher education for young people while providing opportunities to intern in nonprofit organizations.  The program exposes cohorts of high school students to coaching, leadership development, college preparation and other resources.  Upon entering college, the program supports their tuition all the way to graduation and continues to connect participants to civic engagement experiences.
  • Quality Jobs Fund– More recently, Marga has been advising a $100 million Donor Advised Fund at the Foundation, which was established by the Federal Home Loan Bank of San Francisco in order to invest in intermediary organizations that expand the availability of high quality jobs in vulnerable communities.
  • Quality Jobs Fund Learning Initiative– Marga is assessing the Quality Jobs Fund (QJF) to learn about the impact of QJF investments on intermediaries, businesses, employees, and communities. The assessment will also highlight the broader policy implications and lessons learned from QJF as a whole.


United Philanthropy Forum

Marga Incorporated has been supporting the efforts of this association, which serves over seventy Philanthropy Serving Organizations (PSO’s) to deepen their commitment to racial equity.  Marga helped conduct an investigation and compose a report to capture how PSO’s are addressing racial equity to date.  Marga is continually working with the Forum’s Racial Equity Working Group in order to develop the Forum’s services to strengthen how PSO’s develop and refine their racial equity programming and engage their foundation members on this issue.


Valdry Center on Philanthropy

Marga Incorporated conducted a feasibility study, supported by the W.K. Kellogg Foundation, which launched a new Center on Philanthropy at Southern University. This is the first center of its kind at an Historically Black College or University (HBCU).  Marga also helped develop the curriculum for the Center’s first year.


The Prosperity Foundation

Marga Incorporated worked with longtime client, the Community Foundation for Greater New Haven, and a group of Black leaders in Connecticut in order to develop a new community foundation focused specifically on addressing issues facing the states Black communities in areas such as education, health, and economic development.


Leverage the Trust

On behalf of the Association of Black Foundation Executives (ABFE), Marga Incorporated interviewed Black foundation Trustees in order to help shape ABFE’s agenda to increase the number of Black Trustees in foundations and improve how foundations invest in Black communities.