A Night of Social Innovation at Hanson Bridgett, LLP

Last month, our Strategic Partner Hanson Bridgett LLP co-hosted a successful evening of learning about impact investing, hybrid models, and innovations in foundation giving. We welcomed key speakers Wes Selke of Better Ventures, Nancy Heinen of Embrace, and Ruben Orduna of The San Francisco Foundation to share their insights to how new giving vehicles are changing the social impact landscape.

Leslie Keil, Co-Chair of Full Circle Fund's Economic Opportunity Circle and Partner at Hanson Bridgett LLP, kicked off the evening by providing a robust overview of how donor innovations, like Program Related Investments (PRIs), and different organizational structures, like tandem and hybrid models.

Ruben Orduna, Vice President of Development & Donor Services for The San Francisco Foundation (TSFF), gave an inspirational talk on TSFF’s power of leverage through offering PRI’s to their donors who want to maximize impact their charitable giving. The results were astounding, as PRI’s enabled (in less than one year) TSFF’s grantee to retrofit over 1000 housing units, provide over 150 business loans, and offset over 690 metric tons of greenhouse gas!

Next, Nancy Heinen, Board Member of Full Circle Fund's former Grant Partner Embrace, spoke on account of Embrace’s unique hybrid of its nonprofit operation and its for-profit social enterprise, Embrace Innovations. Through this pioneering model, Embrace has been able to generate commercial sales, implement research and development practices that create other disruptive technologies, and ultimately improve maternal and child health outcomes in the developing world. Thanks to its for-profit arm, Embrace has scaled its impact through over 80 global programs.

Our last expert speaker of the evening, Wes Selke of Better Ventures, spoke on the value and role of venture capital on social impact organizations and causes. Through the venture capital model, and by improving access, information, and business practices, Better Ventures has been able to raise over $6 million for over 30 companies in its portfolio, while also providing mentorship, startup development, peer collaboration, and fundraising support.

At Full Circle Fund, we strive to continue learning about the dynamic trends and and innovative developments within social impact. We're excited to have had the opportunity to learn more about hybrid models and the future of social enterprise, and hope to apply this learning to our programs, partnerships, and offerings for our Members, future Grant Partners, and broader community.

Many thanks again to our speakers and to Leslie Keil of Hanson Bridgett LLP for making this event possible!

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