"I’ve been hoping for such a world-wide gathering since the Global Symposium on Community Foundations in 2004 in Berlin, which I unfortunately did not attend. At the time, I was responsible for the Mott Foundation’s grantmaking in Russia, Ukraine, and Belarus and part of my responsibilities were to support efforts to promote community foundations in those countries. I recall the gratitude and enthusiasm of those I met in subsequent months who did attend the symposium: gratitude for having the chance to establish face-to-face contact with peers from other places around the world, and enthusiasm to start adapting and applying the ideas and practices they heard about from those peers.
In the years since the 2004 convening, I took over responsibility for much of Mott’s global community philanthropy grantmaking and became very interested in the idea of bringing another symposium to life. Indeed, a number of us associated with the Global Fund for Community Foundations have been thinking, planning and working on making it possible. Several meetings and documents later, in early 2015 the Global Alliance for Community Philanthropy adopted the idea of a Global Summit for Community Philanthropy as part of its agenda. I was thrilled, and remain excited that the Summit will finally be taking place this December. I am convinced that giving people with similar interests and passions the opportunity to meet each other face-to-face, to hear about what their colleagues are doing, to reflect collectively, and to establish relationships that can later deepen, will give the field momentum and propel it forward in a meaningful way. I also believe that community philanthropy is more than ready for the global stage when it comes to development, and there is much to present to skeptics and potential partners. The moment is ripe – the time is now."