MNA Engagement



The Michael O’Neill Nonprofit Leadership and Management Education Award is a named after USF Professor Emeritus Dr. Michael O’Neill, a recognized scholar in nonprofit leadership and management education who founded the MNA Program in 1983, the first nonprofit-specific graduate program of its kind. The award was instituted on April 25, 2018 during the 35th Anniversary Celebrations of the Master of Nonprofit Administration (MNA) Program. The Award recognizes exceptional leaders who demonstrate excellence in nonprofit leadership and management with educational strategies, systemic solutions and sustainable impact.

About Prof. Michael O’Neill, Ed.D.

Dr. Michael O’Neill, Ed.D. is recognized as the father of nonprofit management education (NME) field. He demonstrated his leadership through the founding of the Master of Nonprofit Administration  (MNA), the first graduate degree of this kind. He also founded the Institute of Nonprofit Organization Management (INOM) and served as President of theAssociation for Research on Nonprofit Organizations and Voluntary Action (ARNOVA). He was also instrumental in the establishment of Nonprofit Academic Centers Council (NACC), the accrediting body for NME programs.


Liz Jackson-Simpson

Liz Jackson-Simpson is CEO of Success Centers. We recognize her exceptional example of a committed nonprofit leader providing systemic solutions for at-risk youth and disenfranchised communities in the San Francisco Bay Area.

Alexa Cortez Culwell, MNA

Ms. Alexa Cortez Culwell, MNA  is the co-founder of Open Impact and a longtime philanthropy advisor, speaker, and facilitator. For the past 25 years she has built and managed foundations and philanthropic initiatives for successful entrepreneurs, including serving as the founding CEO of the Charles and Helen Schwab Foundation. She recently completed a four-year appointment as a visiting practitioner at Stanford University’s Center on Philanthropy and Civil Society.

Jeanne Bell, MNA

Ms. Jeanne Bell, MNA  is the former CEO of CompassPoint and current Director of the Nonprofit Quarterly NPQ‘s Advancing Practice program. She also serves in the Advisory Board of  University of San Francisco’s MNA program. She is a recognized author of numerous articles on nonprofit leadership and management including The Sustainability Mindset (Jossey-Bass, 2015).

MNA Program Stakeholder Engagement

The MNA Program is not just a master’s degree. It is your vehicle to express your engagement and channel your contributions to change the world and make our communities better – more equitable, inclusive, sustainable and beneficial for all. Nonprofit professionals, alumni and leaders who care about our societies recognize the importance of supporting young leaders and young professionals to become agents of change for social impact and social innovation in our communities. Here are four ways your can connect, engage and take part in this shared challenge. This is also the core mission of the MNA Program: “to develop effective nonprofit leaders for the challenges of the 21st Century.” You can mentor a current MNA student, support a student’s tuition with a scholarship, teach a nonprofit lesson or MNA course, and/or advise the program in the MNA-AB. Click on the buttons below for more information. Thank you!

To engage with these possibilities but also to ask a question or suggest other ways to contribute to the mission of the MNA Program feel free to send us an email  

Nonprofit Sector and Community Engagement

We know how essential is to network for any career developments. For the nonprofit sector engagement is not just about networking and it is not just about careers. It is about establishing sustainable initiatives, innovative solutions, and socially impactful programs. We would not be able to do so without the support, collaboration and cross-sector leadership of many stakeholders who share the same concern to ‘change the world‘ and support ‘inclusive communities‘. The MNA Program, in addition to career related events and connections with key leaders and alumni, offers the opportunity to ‘get your foot on the door’ of key organizations and fields. The MNA program does so through curricula embedded practical activities consulting with nonprofit organizations and social enterprises who shared the same passion for  better organizations and societies. It does so also through co-curricula activities like the many conferences, events and connections that the San Francisco and Bay Area provides. The complexity of social problems require integrated solutions implemented by social change leaders equipped with the right tools for engaging across sectors, nations and diverse perspectives. Our values for human dignity, quality of life and community sustainability reflect also our competencies and connections with the social sector. The following is a partial list of preferred organizations and initiatives we often refer to in our programs and we hope they can be useful to you to further your engagement.

Nonprofits Organizational Partners

There are numerous organizations that have been the subjects of our research and have partnered with our program or collaborated with our students in their project-based learning activities. These are just a sample of great nonprofits in our roster.

Nonprofit Associations

Nonprofit Resource Centers

Nonprofit Essential Readings 

United Nations Relevant Programs

Service Organizations and Associations

  • Association of Fundraising Professionals
    Golden Gate Chapter
  • California Association of Nonprofits 
    The California Association of Nonprofits (CalNonprofits) is a statewide membership organization that brings nonprofits together to advocate for the communities we serve.
  • Development Executives Roundtable
    Development Executives Roundtable (DER) is an educational and collegial resource for Bay Area fundraisers – professional, volunteer, and potentials alike – for over 35 years. Lunchtime meetings held on the second Friday of every month (with rare exceptions).
  • Grant Professionals Association (GPA) Since its inception in 1998, GPA has grown rapidly. With over 1,800 current members internationally, the opportunities and benefits of membership continue to attract people from all over the globe.
  • Harvard Business School Community Partners
    HBS Community Partners offers Bay Area nonprofits the opportunity to have pro bono consulting and advisory services by Harvard Business School alumni who wish to channel their business management skills to create positive social impact.
  • Net Impact. Net Impact’s Service Corps volunteers partner with nonprofits on short-term, part-time consulting projects related to finance, marketing, new program development, business planning, fundraising, and strategic planning.
  • Northern California Grantmakers
    Northern California Grantmakers (NCG) is an association of foundations, corporate contributions programs and other private grantmakers. NCG’s work is focused in two broad arenas: enhancing the effectiveness of philanthropy, and strengthening the ties between philanthropy and it many stakeholders in nonprofit organizations, government, business, media, academia, and the public at large.
  • Stanford Alumni Consulting Team
    The Stanford Alumni Consulting Team provides pro bono consulting expertise in a wide range of areas, including strategic planning, marketing, earned revenue, financial sustainability, and organizational growth.
  • Young Nonprofit Professionals Network-San Francisco Bay Area
    The Young Nonprofit Professionals Network-San Francisco Bay Area (YNPN-sfba) promotes an efficient, viable, and inclusive nonprofit sector that supports the growth, learning, and development of young professionals.

Consulting, Training, and Resources

  • CompassPoint
    CompassPoint Nonprofit Services is a nonprofit consulting and training organization. They provide nonprofits with the management tools and concepts necessary to best serve their communities.
  • Center for Nonprofit Management Southern California
    The Center for Nonprofit Management offers seminars on issues related to nonprofit management.
  • Center for Volunteer and Nonprofit Leadership of Marin
    Offers a series of workshops and trainings, affinity groups, a resource library, and a referral service for volunteers to the Marin nonprofit and volunteer community.
  • Consulting Within Reach Consulting Within Reach provides consulting to nonprofits in the San Francisco Bay Area, Los Angeles, and beyond. We are a White House award winning firm with services in strategic planning, marketing, fundraising, database, and web.
  • The Impact Foundry
    Impact Foundry is Northern California’s Nonprofit Resource Center. Impact Foundry offers training, resources and sustainability consulting for nonprofits.
  • The Taproot Foundation
    The Taproot Foundation is a leading nonprofit marketing and technology consulting firm. The foundation’s work is offered pro bono in a competitive grant-making process.
  • Volunteer Match 
    The Volunteer Match operates with the mission of linking people who care with people in need.


Legal Services

  • California Lawyers for the Arts
    Service organization which provides lawyer referrals, dispute resolution services, educational programs, publications and a resource library to artists of all disciplines and arts organizations.
  • The Bar Association of San Francisco
    Its Justice & Diversity Center (JDC) advances fairness and equality by providing pro bono legal services to low-income people and educational programs that foster diversity in the legal profession.
  • Community Organization Representation Project (CORP)
    The Community Organization Representation Project (CORP) is a project of the Justice & Diversity Center of The Bar Association of San Francisco (formerly Volunteer Legal Services Program). They provide pro bono legal assistance to nonprofit organizations that directly serve low-income and underserved communities in Northern California. CORP can help with a variety of legal matters such as employment, corporate, contract, real estate, tax, and intellectual property.

Loans, Meeting Space, Real Estate, and Renovation

  • Northern California Community Loan Fund 
    The Northern California Community Loan Fund (NCCLF) is a nonprofit lender dedicated to strengthening the economic base of low-income communities in northern California.
  • Arts Loan Fund The Arts Loan Fund (ALF), managed by Northern California Grantmakers, has loaned over $19 million in the past thirty years as a way to boost the sustainability and growth of non-profit art and cultural organizations.
  • Community Conference Space
    Silicon Valley Community Foundation provides free community meeting space for nonprofit organizations located in San Mateo and Santa Clara counties. Organizations can use the state-of-the art facilities to host meetings, trainings, informal gatherings or retreats.
  • Dancing Deer Farm
    The Center for Reuniting Families (CRF) at Dancing Deer Farm is a nonprofit education center and organic farm on California’s central coast. CRF provides a venue, at no cost on weekdays, to other nonprofits with goals and mandates compatible with theirs.
  • Impact Hub
    Hub spaces range from stimulating, collision-rich café and hot-desking environments that support innovation, to quiet areas that foster focused concentration, to places where members work the phones for hours pushing their ideas forward. Hubs also feature event spaces for large and small film screenings, art openings, and presentations.
  • MCF Loan Fund
    The Marin Community Foundation (MCF) Loan Fund provides financing options to nonprofits that may not be able to access or afford traditional commercial debt.
  • Metta Fund Community Room
    Miramar Farms provides a venue space for tech companies, and for non-profits as well, including donating our space to four nonprofits a year.
  • Nonprofit Finance Fund
    The Nonprofit Finance Fund (NFF) provides loans, workshops, and planning assistance to help nonprofit organizations grow and thrive as businesses while honoring their mission.
  • Rebuilding Together San Francisco
    Rebuilding Together San Francisco provides free renovations for San Francisco based nonprofits and community service facilities, as part of its Rebuilding Weekend program on the last weekend of April. Rebuilding Together San Francisco is a nonprofit organization that brings together volunteer teams to provide repair and renovation work for low-income homeowners, non-profits, and community centers. The type of work completed includes (but is not limited to): interior painting, minor plumbing, electrical, landscaping, carpentry, safety modifications, etc.

Academic Programs

  • University of San Francisco – School of Management Our unique Master of Nonprofit Administration (MNA) Program
  • California State University East Bay
    Extended and Continuing Education Courses
    Offers a Nonprofit certificate and credit through Masters in Public Administration Program
  • Mills College – Office of Graduate Admission
    Offers the following graduate degrees: Master of Public Policy (MPP), Master of Business Administration (MBA) with option of concentration in nonprofit management, Joint MPP/MBA, and Joint MBA/MA in Educational Leadership. All graduate programs at Mills are co-ed.
  • Online Colleges – Scholarships and Financial Aid An online directory of scholarship opportunities and financial aid for California students.
  • San Francisco State University – Department of Public Administration
    Offers a Masters in Public Administration with a concentration in Nonprofit Management and, in conjunction with the College of Extended Learning, a basic certificate in Nonprofit Management and a certificate in Nonprofit Leadership & Strategic Management.
  • San José State University – Professional Development Certificate Programs Nonprofit Management Certificate program.
  • Stanford University – Graduate School of Business Offers a Public Management Program.
  • University of California at Berkeley – Haas School of Business MBA Nonprofit and Public Management Program.

Computer Technology

  • TechSoup Global
    TechSoup Global helps nonprofits globally get and use technology to heighten their impact. Through its web sites, events, and community-building initiatives, TechSoup Global also helps companies and foundations optimize their philanthropic impact.
  • TED (Technology, Entertainment, Design TED is a nonpartisan nonprofit devoted to spreading ideas, usually in the form of short, powerful talks. TED began in 1984 as a conference where Technology, Entertainment and Design converged, and today covers almost all topics — from science to business to global issues — in more than 110 languages. Meanwhile, independently run TEDx events help share ideas in communities around the world.
  • NPR (National Public Radio) This multimedia provider distributes high-quality and top-priority news, information, and music programming to a network of 975 independent stations. With 26 million people tuning into NPR podcasts and newscasts every week, the organization reaches more people than the total circulation of top national newspapers!
  • SamaSource is digitalizing the fight against poverty. To harness the untapped potential of the poor, SamaSource gives women and youth in impoverished countries the opportunity to engage in dignified, digitally-based work. The organization recruits poor women and youth (making less than an average of $3 a day) to become workers and earn a living wage.
  • Code For America. CFA believes that entire cities can use the web to operate on a higher level for their citizens. Selecting from a talented pool of web developers, entrepreneurs, and technologists, CFA matches coders with different cities; these brilliant hackers then help the cities leverage technology to positively impact their communities.
  • Ushahidi, is a nonprofit that develops free and open-source software for information collection, visualization, and interactive mapping. Highlighted by its namesake – which is Swahili for “testimony” – the organization’s initial software allowed Kenyans to document and report incidents of violence in real-time after the grisly 2008 post-election fallout, during which 1,200 people died and hundreds of thousands of people were displaced.

Employment Resources

  • Idealist
    Posts job and intership listings on national and international basis.
  • Philanthropy News Digest
    Provides job postings for foundations, grantmaking public charities, corporate grantmakers, and other nonprofit organizations. Job postings cover the nation with many from California.
  • Bay Area Career Center 
    BACC offers counseling, coaching, workshops, networking events, and job clubs. Currently open by appointment only.
  • Craigslist 
    Provides job postings for nonprofits in the Bay Area and in other metropolitan areas as well.
  • Jewish Vocational Services
    Provides job training programs, job placement assistance, job retention services, career and employment counseling, a Technology Access Center to utilize computers and office equipment, career-related workshops, and computer workshops and classes. Also offers online job listings, resume posting, and online job matching.
  • Northern California Grantmakers 
    Recent job openings announced by member grantmakers, and updated monthly.
    Carries extensive nonprofit job listings for administrative, staff and professional positions on a local and national level.
  • Young Nonprofits Professional Network-San Francisco Bay Area Career Center 
    This searchable databases allows for easy access to Bay Area job postings.

Resources for Artists and Nonprofit Arts Organizations

  • California Arts Council
    Helps independent local groups develop their own arts programs. Promotes employment of artists and those skilled in crafts in the public and private sector. Provides for exhibition of artworks in public buildings throughout California; and enlists the aid of all state agencies in the task of ensuring the fullest expression of our artistic potential.
  • Artists House Music
    Artists House Music is a nonprofit web site where all musicians can receive informational support, guidance, and expert resources to help them navigate the challenges and maximize the opportunities available to them within the music industry.
  • Bay Area Performing Arts Spaces
    Bay Area Performing Arts Spaces is a comprehensive, state-of-the-art, searchable database of performing arts venues and facilities in the greater Bay Area for classes, workshops, auditions, rehearsals and even performances.
  • Bay Area Video Coalition
    Provides fiscal sponsorship to independent artists/producers who meet their requirements.
  • California Lawyers for the Arts
    Service organization which provides lawyer referrals, dispute resolution services, educational programs, publications and a resource library to artists of all disciplines and arts organizations.
  • Grants for the Arts
    Established through a combination of City and State legislation, and approved by the City’s Board of Supervisors, Grants for the Arts has a policy of supporting an arts organization’s general operating expenses. Its foremost goal is to be a stable, dependable base of support for organizations that continue to meet the funding criteria.
  • San Francisco Arts Commission
    City agency that champions the arts in San Francisco.
  • San Francisco Film Society
    The Film Society brings together international and Bay Area filmgoers and filmmakers through engaged and responsive audience interaction, creating a positive impact on the city’s community and cultural life.
  • Theatre Bay Area
    Theatre Bay Area’s (TBA) mission is to unite, strengthen and promote theatre in the region by providing communication networks and opportunities and creating resources for theatre companies, theatre workers, and theatre lovers. TBA serves as a liaison between the theatre community and government, business and others who benefit from a healthy and thriving theatre community.

– Educating Social Sector Leaders Since 1983 –

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