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SCG 2014 Public Policy Conference

Thursday, April 3, 2014
8:00am - 3:00pm PDT
The Center for Healthy Communities
1000 North Alameda Street, Los Angeles, CA 90012
Members: $0.00
Non-Members: $250.00
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FREE for SCG Members / $250 for Eligible Non-Members 

>> View the conference participant list. 

>> Speaker Biographies

Conferenced out? Too busy? Here are the top 3 reasons why it’s really worth taking a few hours to attend SCG’s conference on April 3rd:

1 .  

HUGE changes are happening right now in public education. Get the facts you need for your grantmaking.

2 .  

You can’t do it alone. Share what you’ve learned, learn from your peers—and build your network of like-minded funders. (Plus special sessions for corporate and family philanthropy!)

3 .  

Get the CliffsNotes on regional trends. Our experts will lay out what you need to know about fast-moving demographic, economic, and philanthropic shifts.

This conference is your guide to critical changes in education funding and regional trends. Even if we don’t fund advocacy or think of ourselves as “policy funders,” much of our grantmaking takes place at the intersection of policy and philanthropy: in public schools, healthcare clinics, homeless shelters, veterans’ programs, and so on. Our funding shapes, and is shaped by, major policy shifts that are taking place right now at local, state, and national levels. Join your colleagues in philanthropy to explore critical public policy issues that affect the future of everyone in Southern California—and beyond:

  • An impressive line-up of leaders from the public, nonprofit and philanthropic sectors—each bringing innovative approaches to the forefront of complex policy topics 
  • A broad look at several initiatives working to identify issues and solutions in our region, including the LA 2020 Commission, Forecast LA, and LA2050
  • Keynote address by California’s State Superintendent of Public Instruction, followed by a deeper focus on the fast-changing education policy arena
  • Opportunities to add your expertise and voice to a rich conversation in the plenary Q&A’s, topic-based breakouts, and informal networking time



8:00 am  - Registration and Networking Breakfast

9:00 am - Welcome

9:15 am - Plenary: Our Region, Our Challenges, Our Opportunities for Impact

Moderated by Dr. Fernando Guerra, Director, Thomas and Dorothy Leavey Center for the Study of Los Angeles, Loyola Marymount University

Bill Allen, CEO, Los Angeles County Economic Development Corporation

Antonia Hernández, President and CEO, California Community Foundation and Los Angeles 2020 Commissioner

Tara Roth, President, Goldhirsh Foundation (organizer of the LA2050 initiative)

10:15 am - Networking Break

10:30 am - Breakout Session A: Corporate Giving, Family Philanthropy,  and Topic-Based Breakout Sessions

11:30 am - Lunch and Keynote  Address: A Candid Conversation About Education Policy

Tom Torlakson, State Superintendent of Public Instruction and Director of Education, California Department of Education

Introduced by Garrett Gin, Director and Local Market Manager for Greater Los Angeles, Bank of America

Interviewed by Joanne Kozberg, Principal, California Strategies

1:00 pm - Networking Break

1:15 pm - Breakout Session B: Education Policy

Common Core 101: Revamping Instruction and Assessment

Moderated by David Rattray, Senior Vice President of Education and Workforce Development, Los Angeles Area Chamber of Commerce

Joan Bissell, Director, Teacher Education and Public School Programs, Office of the Chancellor California State University

Christopher Shearer, Program Officer, Education Program, The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation

Dr. Ilene Straus, Vice President, California State Board of Education

Voices of Reform: What’s Working and What’s Next

Moderated by Robin Kramer, Executive Director, Reboot

Gregory McGinity, Managing Director of Policy, The Broad Education Foundation

Anita Ravi, Chief Academic Officer, The Alliance for College-Ready Public Schools

Jed Wallace, President and CEO, California Charter Schools Association

Local Control Funding Formula: What It Means for Schools, Communities and Funders

Moderated by Mary Lou Fulton, Senior Program Manager, Schools, The California Endowment

Jonathan Kaplan, Senior Policy Analyst, California Budget Project

Stacy Lee, Policy Manager, First 5 LA

Kim Pattillo Brownson, Director of Educational Equity, Advancement Project

2:15 pm - Networking Break and Sundaes on the Plaza

3:00 pm - Adjourn



In this panel, leading voices from the corporate, civic, and foundation worlds come together to share insights from their recent initiatives. The Los Angeles 2020 Commission’s A Time for Truth report paints a vivid picture of the City’s fiscal and economic issues, laying the groundwork for the Commission’s subsequent recommendations. The Los Angeles Economic Development Corporation publishes a wide range of economic research and policy analysis, while Loyola Marymount University’s Forecast LA offers an in-depth analysis of key economic and quality-of-life indicators over the near term. Looking farther ahead, the Goldhirsh Foundation’s LA 2050 project aims to create a shared vision for the future of Los Angeles County, and to drive and track progress toward that vision.

Elected in 2010 as chief of California’s public school system and leader of the California Department of Education, Superintendent Tom Torlakson applies his experience as a teacher, high school coach, and state policymaker in his work to improve the state’s public education system. His work has taken him from the classrooms of Contra Costa County’s Mount Diablo Unified School District (where he remains a teacher-on-leave), to the Antioch City Council, Contra Costa County Board of Supervisors, and the California State Senate and State Assembly. 

Daren Garshelis, Counsel at Alliance for Justice (AFJ), will be available throughout the day to provide consultations on the rules of foundation participation in advocacy. Participants will have the opportunity to ask questions about how they can legally promote public policy, and how they can permit their grantees maximum flexibility to advocate. (Note: AFJ will provide resources and guidance for informational purposes only. Consultations do not create an attorney-client relationship.)


Corporate Giving
Designed by the SCG Corporate Leadership Council, this session is exclusively for SCG members representing corporate giving programs and corporate foundations. We will dig deeper into how the corporate sector (and SCG members specifically) are responding to regional challenges and where there are opportunities for greater collaboration. Come prepared to share your company's work around key issues, including job creation/growth, poverty, education, regional collaboration, and leadership. How can we work together to solve some of these problems? How can we leverage our resources to help?

Family Philanthropy
Designed by the SCG Family Philanthropy Advisory Council, this session focuses on innovative approaches by family philanthropists to address community issues. You’ll hear how family philanthropists determined the focus for their giving, leveraged their funds, and built strong relationships in communities and with their peers. There will be ample time for you to share the ways you are addressing community issues, ask questions, and get feedback from your peers.

Topic-Based Sessions
Choose from a variety of peer learning groups focusing on several of our regional challenges and opportunities.


Common Core 101: Revamping Instruction and Assessment
Learn how Common Core State Standards, Next Generation Science Standards, and next generation assessments will provide deeper learning opportunities for today's youth and a more globally competitive workforce for tomorrow's economy.  This session will provide an overview of how new standards and assessments bolster STEM education and better prepare students to graduate from high school and college, and to be career ready. Panelists will share best practices and lessons learned from early adopters across the country, implications for public policy, and how to engage critical stakeholders in the successful implementation of education reform.

Voices of Reform: What’s Working and What’s Next
Our panel will share their experiences some of the reforms and innovations that are showing promising results for student achievement. They’ll offer insights into knowing when it’s time to go beyond the pilot or to retract and make adjustments.  Hear national, state, and local perspectives about what's working, what didn’t work, and potential strategies to ensure that every student has the opportunity to succeed.

Local Control Funding Formula: What It Means for Schools, Communities and Funders
What do funders need to know about this seismic shift in public education funding and its implications for equity? Explore how the Local Control Funding Formula (LCFF) is a major step toward making California school funding more equitable and how we can ensure resources are addressing local needs that support greater student achievement. Panelists will give an overview of how LCFF works, discuss its challenges and opportunities, and explain why local stakeholder involvement will be the key to ensuring that LCFF dollars are spent to support the students for whom they are intended.



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Bronze Sponsor:






SCG Members: Free
Eligible Non-Members: $250

Who May Attend:
Current SCG members and other grantmakers eligible for membership. For eligibility requirements, click here.

SCG members: you must log in to your SCG account to register online.
Eligible Non-members: If you already have an SCG account, log in to register. If you do not have an account yet, contact [email protected].

Space is limited.