Stanford PACS Education for Philanthropy Professionals

Join us in person this fall on the beautiful Stanford University campus!

“I found the EPP curriculum compelling and comprehensive, covering everything from systems and strategy to the history of philanthropy and contemporary trends. The cohort included an impressive international group and the participants’ varied and unique perspectives helped to reinforce course materials and make for robust discussions. I would highly recommend the EPP course to any philanthropy professionals interested in an executive style learning program.”

Danielle Smith, Director Long Ridge Foundation & Long Ridge Action Fund

About the Program

The Effective Philanthropy Learning Initiative (EPLI) at the Stanford Center on Philanthropy and Civil Society (PACS) offers an executive-style learning program for philanthropy professionals. The program is taught by experienced Stanford faculty and staff and includes several notable guest speakers with expertise in philanthropic scholarship and practice. Cohort sizes are limited to ensure in-depth learning and effective networking with peers.

Who Should Attend

This course is ideal for senior executives, program officers and trustees at small to mid-size family foundations, or individuals managing charitable giving within a family office. Emerging philanthropists, wealth managers, philanthropic advisors, and philanthropy consultants have also found the course to be highly valuable and are invited to apply.


In person

October 25 – 27, 2023
Enjoy learning and networking with peer leaders in person on the beautiful Stanford University campus!


November 1 – 3, 2023
9 am PST – 12 pm PST


Certificate of Completion


Prospective participants should complete the application found here which will ask them to respond to open-ended questions, and confirm their availability and commitment to the program. 



Includes tuition and materials. 


October 1st, 2023 


Questions? Contact: 

What The Course Will Cover

– Donors’ values and focus areas for giving
– Social problems, their causes, and strategies for solutions
– Historical and societal contexts of philanthropy
– Contemporary trends in philanthropic practice
– Relationship-, community-, and trust-building
– Strategies for governance and managing family dynamics
– Governance and vehicles for structuring gifts
– Causes such as racial justice, democratic institutions, and global giving

Confirmed Fall 2023 Speakers

Melissa A. Berman Founding President and CEO of Rockefeller Philanthropy Advisors, Inc.

Paul Brest– Professor, Stanford Law School, former president of the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation, and co-author of “Money Well Spent: A Strategic Guide to Smart Philanthropy”

Fred BlackwellCEO, San Francisco Foundation

Ashley BlanchardSenior
PACS Advisor; Philanthropy Practice Leader,
Lansberg Gersick & Associates (LGA)

Jacob HaroldNonresident Fellow, Center on Nonprofits and Philanthropy, Urban Institute

Pia InfanteSenior Fellow, Trust Based Philanthropy Project

Renee Karibi-WhyteSenior Vice President & Corporate Sect’y, Rockefeller Philanthropy Advisors

Mosun LayodeExecutive Director, African Philanthropy Forum (APF)

Katherine Lorenz President of the Cynthia and George Mitchell Foundation and leader of the NextGen Giving Pledge

Micah McElroyAssociate Director of Research, Effective Philanthropy Learning Initiative 

Elizabeth McKeonDirector of Planet, Ikea Foundation

Sonia MedinaExecutive Director, Children’s Investment Fund Foundation

Vera MichalchikDirector, Philanthropy Research and Education, Effective Philanthropy Learning Initiative; Senior Research Scholar, Stanford PACS  

Rob Reich Professor, Stanford University and author of “Just Giving: Why Philanthropy is Failing Democracy and How It Can Do Better

Robert Ross President and Chief Executive Officer for The California Endowment

Emma Saunders-HastingsProfessor, The Ohio State University and author of “Private Virtues, Public Vices: Governing Philanthropy”

Debra Schwartz Managing Director of the MacArthur Foundation’s Impact Investing

Ben Soskis Senior Research Associate,
Center on Nonprofits and Philanthropy

Tom SteinbachExecutive Director, Tempest Advisors

Nick TedescoPresident, National Center for Family Philanthropy (NCFP)

Policies and Procedures (FAQ)

Application and Eligibility: 

The application form is designed to assure a fit between participants and program offerings, with priority given to professionals who best meet the program’s criteria for who should attend (see section above). Accepted applicants will receive notification by October 2nd.  

Be sure to observe time zone differences when considering your availability to fully participate in all sessions of the program.   

Acceptance and Registration: 

Once accepted, you will be asked to register for the course and be provided further information regarding program fees.  

Program Fees 

The program fees include tuition, course materials, and access to additional tools and resources.  Breakfast and lunch will be provided during the in-person sessions. Travel and lodging are not included.

If your background is highly relevant but the cost of participation poses a significant barrier, we would like to hear from you

Please note that program specifics, particularly regarding faculty and session topics, are subject to change.    

Payment Procedure 

Upon acceptance, payment details including an invoice and online payment link will be sent by email. Full payment of the invoice will confirm your enrollment and secure your reservation. Payment will be accepted by bank wire transfer, or credit card (American Express, MasterCard, Visa, and Discover).  

Certificate of completion: 

At the end of the program, participants will receive a certificate of completion. The program does not offer an accredited degree from Stanford University, and at this time, does not qualify for continuing education credits.  

Cancellation Policy: 

We anticipate circumstances and availability issues arise unexpectedly for prospective participants.    

If you wish to cancel and receive a full refund, you must submit your request in writing at least 20 days prior to the program start date. If you submit your request within 19 days of the program start date, you are not eligible to receive a refund. Cancellation requests are valid only upon Stanford PACS confirming receipt of your request.  

Should you have any further questions, please email  

Stay up to date with EPLI education offerings!

Stay Up-to-Date on EPLI Education Programs

* indicates required