Established in 1985 to honor IS founding chair John W. Gardner, the annual award recognizes an individual in the nonprofit community whose leadership has been transformative; who has mobilized people, institutions, or a cause that improves the lives of others; and who exemplifies the leadership and ideals of the award's namesake.
In 1999, Glover Blackwell founded PolicyLink, a national "research and action institute," with the goal of driving policy solutions that help advance racial and economic equity. Over the last two decades, the institute's work has altered how organizations pursue equitable outcomes for the nation's most vulnerable communities. Prior to founding PolicyLink, Glover Blackwell served as a senior vice president at the Rockefeller Foundation from 1995 to 1998, overseeing the foundation's Domestic and Cultural divisions and developing its Next Generation Leadership and Building Democracy programs. A lawyer by training, she also founded the Urban Strategies Council in Oakland, California, a regional research and advocacy organization dedicated to social, economic, and racial equity, in 1987.
"Angela's commitment to equity comes with a long-term vision," said Fred Ali, president and CEO of the Weingart Foundation and chair of the 2018 John W. Gardner Leadership Award Committee. "She is incredibly intentional about guiding and inspiring a pipeline of leaders — and young leaders of color, in particular — who will continue well into the future to work for a fair, inclusive nation that delivers on the promise of opportunity for all."
"For many years now, Angela Glover Blackwell has been at the forefront of solutions for social and economic equity in our nation," said IS president and CEO Daniel J. Cardinali. "Though there is much work ahead in rectifying systemic injustice, Angela had the foresight to recognize the transformative role public policy could play in expanding access and opportunity to historically underserved and low-income populations. She inspires us to think beyond existing limitations and focus our efforts to improve lives and strengthen our communities on the biggest attainable scale."
(Photo credit: PolicyLink)