New York Times’ David Bornstein, social innovator Jeff Snell headline ‘UnConference’ on Oct. 8

Posted By on September 26, 2019
David Bornstein (left) & Jeff Snell (right)

The duo of social innovator Jeff Snell and the New York Times’ David Bornstein will headline The UnConference: CommYOUnity Solutions on Oct. 8 in Phoenix, offering attendees a space to voice key issues and helping find solutions to challenges in the nonprofit and philanthropic community.

Registration is open now for this convening of the nonprofit and philanthropic community.

During a TEDx talk he gave at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee in 2014, Snell told a story from his days running the Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Milwaukee, which grew to be the largest of 2,500 chapters in the country providing services and opportunities to young people.

“I was focused on market share,” he said, flying high as a fundraiser. “Because then I could come back to you and then I could say, ‘Hey, about that charitable contribution. Help me out. We’ve got more kids than ever. I need more money than ever.’ I wasn’t actually focused on solving the problem.”

That realization led Snell to pivot into the world of social innovation, finding new and sustainable ways to make a difference in the social sector.

One of his projects included a partnership with The New York Times to develop social innovation as an interdisciplinary learning tool in curriculum. At the Times, David Bornstein has co-authored the “Fixes” column since 2010 and co-founded the Solutions Journalism Network, which works to establish solutions journalism — rigorous reporting that examines responses to social problems.

Snell is the founder of Midwest Social Innovation LLC, serves as a special advisor at the University of Wisconsin-Madison and has an appointment as Senior Fellow for Social Innovation at the ASU Lodestar Center. He previously served as CEO for International Folk Art Market Santa Fe, the world’s largest artisan-enterprise accelerator. He has won a MacArthur “Genius” Award for his work.

Along with his New York Times column, Bornstein is also the author of three books on social entrepreneurship and speaks regularly on his work advancing solutions-based thinking and reporting.

The October 8 convening, the ASU Lodestar Center’s 27th annual event, will include a morning-long Solutions Collaboratory, in which attendees and facilitators will distill idea development down to hours instead of weeks during a high-energy, interactive group process, collaboratively identifying problems and developing plans to address them. Afterwards, Bornstein and Snell will reflect during a salon-style conversation on stage.

The afternoon’s programming includes two sets of workshop sessions. A diverse group of expert presenters will help attendees move from ideas to solutions and give them the tools to make an impact. Topics include conflict resolution, leadership development, diversity in the workplace, volunteer engagement, fundraising and more.

Networking time has been built into the day’s agenda as well, offering additional opportunities for collaboration between organizations and communities.

The UnConference: CommYOUnity Solutions takes place Tuesday, October 8, 2019, from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. at the Black Canyon Conference Center in Phoenix. The $149 registration fee includes continental breakfast, lunch, presentations and convenient parking.

The ASU Lodestar Center organizes this and other events as part of the Center’s mission to build the capacity of the social sector by enhancing the effectiveness of those who lead, manage and support nonprofit and philanthropic organizations.

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