Organizational Change Process

“There is no formula for how to align an organization’s commitment to racial justice with its policies, practices, culture, and ethos. Doing this work organizationally is also about building internal will. … It is about taking risks in word and deed. It is about working with integrity and being accountable to people and communities most impacted by structural racism” (Operationalizing Racial Justice in Non-Profit Organizations). Internal operations need to be aligned with an organization’s commitment and values for legitimacy and credibility with the community it works in and with its partners. To the degree that white dominant culture is embedded in an organization, exposing how it permeates practices and operations provides an opportunity to co-create a culture grounded in liberation and racial equity.



Fitting Pro-Blackness Into the Nonprofit Infrastructure
Shanelle Matthews
Nonprofit Quarterly (NPQ)

Addressing White Supremacy Culture

Going Pro-Black
Cyndi Suarez
Nonprofit Quarterly (NPQ)
Qualities of Regenerative and Liberatory Culture
Daniel Lim
The Office Door: How White Supremacy Materializes at This Threshold of Workplace Relations and Power Dynamics
Jennifer Outlaw
Stanford Social Innovation Review
Ending White Supremacy Culture: Honoring the Labor that Got Us Here
Hafizah Omar and Alyssa Smaldino
Living Cities
20 Subtle Ways White Supremacy Manifests in Nonprofit and Philanthropy
Vu Le
Nonprofit AF
Divorcing White Supremacy Culture
Tema Okun
Why Throwing Professionalism Out the Window Was My Best Career Move
Kelly Jeanine
Community-Centric Fundraising
Can Anybody Hear Me? How White Nonprofit Writing Standards Erase BIPOC Voices — And Why That Is Definitely Not OK
Yolanda Contreras
Community-Centric Fundraising
An Open Letter & A Call for True Healing Justice
Whitney Spencer
Black Women in Nonprofits Matter
Dr. Danielle Moss Lee
NonProfit Quarlerly
Dismantling White Supremacy in Nonprofits: A Starting Point
Jarell Skinner-Roy
YNPN - Twin Cities
White Culture, Transforming White Privilege: A 21st Century Leadership Capacity
Maggie Potapchuk
MP Associates
Challenging White Dominant Culture: Time to Look in the Mirror
Lupe Poblano
Interrupting White Dominant Culture In Museums
Mike Murawski
Art Museum Teaching
Paying Attention to White Culture and Privilege: A Missing Link to Advancing Racial Equity
Gita Gulati-Partee and Maggie Potapchuk
OpenSource Leadership Strategies; MP Associates; The Foundation Review
The Bias of “Professionalism” Standards
Aysa Gray
Stanford Social Innovation Review
The Practice of Perfectionism
Laura Brewer
Do the Heart Work
Transforming Culture — An Examination of Workplace Values Through the Frame of White Dominant Culture
Merf Elfman
Columbia Legal Services
White Dominant Culture and Something Different: A Worksheet
Tema Okun and Kenneth Jones et al.
Partners for Collaborative Change
White Supremacy Culture
Tema Okun
White Supremacy Culture & Remote Work
Remote DEI Collective and The Learning Accelerator
White Supremacy Culture in Organizations
Tema Okun, Daniel Buford, et al.
Dismantling Racism Works, adapted by the Centre for Community Organizations (COCo)

Information on Specific Sectors

Organizing for Racial Equity Within the Federal Government
Ryan Curren
Race Forward
Equity, Diversity, Inclusion & Antiracism Toolkit
Marci Ramiro-Jenkins et al.
Oregon Library Association
Employees Are Calling Out Major Reproductive Rights Organizations for Racism and Hypocrisy
Ema O’Connor
BuzzFeed News
Advancing Racial Equity in Public Libraries: Case Studies from the Field
Amy Sonnie et al.
Government Alliance on Race & Equity (GARE)
Catalytic Change: Lessons Learned from the Racial Justice Grantmaking Assessment
Soya Jung with M. Potapchuk, R. Sen and L. Villarosa
Philanthropic Initiative for Racial Equity (PRE); Applied Research Center (ARC)
Centering Race in Health Equity Advocacy: Lessons Learned
Rachel Estrella, Tracy Endo Inouye, and Heather Lewis-Charp
The Colorado Trust; Social Policy Research Associates (SPR)
Confronting Structural Racism in Research and Policy Analysis
Steven Brown, Kilolo Kijakazi, Charmaine Runes, and Margery Austin Turner
Urban Institute
Inside Building Diverse and Equitable Organizations, Teams and Newsrooms: Expert Q&A
Sabrina Hersi Issa
The EJ Lab;
Race to Lead: Confronting the Nonprofit Racial Leadership Gap
Sean Thomas-Breitfeld and Frances Kunreuther
Building Movement Project
Race-Explicit Strategies for Workforce Equity in Healthcare and IT
Race Forward
Racial Justice and Health Equity Initiative
Boston Public Health Commission
Reckoning, Repair, and Change: How Business Leaders Can More Effectively Advance Racial Equity and Competitive Advantage
Veronica Borgonovi

Internal Strategies

Checking In with Our Humanity: A Resource on Embedding Racial Equity in Your Day-to-Day Work
Living Cities
Moving Toward Conflict for the Sake of Good Strategy
Yotam Marom
Making (Or Taking) Space: Initial Themes on Nonprofit Transitions from White to BIPOC Leaders
Building Movement Project; Robert Sterling Clark Foundation
How to Be an Antiracist Supervisor: Start with Changing What You Call Yourself
Kim-Monique Johnson
Nonprofit Quarterly (NPQ)
Grappling with Feedback: Lessons in Trying, Failing, and Trying Again
Learkana Chong
The Four Elements of Strong Relationships
Monna Wong
The Management Center
Dignity Is the Bedrock for Workplace Belonging
Aida Mariam Davis
Stanford Social Innovation Review
Fiscal Year 2022 Budget Equity Tool
City of San Antonio
10 Ways to Make Executive Leadership Searches and Transitions Better and More Equitable
Vu Le
Nonprofit AF
3 Ways to Decolonize Your Nonprofit As Told By A Black Queer Feminist Organizer
Neesha Powell-Twagirumukiza 
Everyday Feminism
A Welcoming Environment: Next Steps in Our Anti-Racism and Anti-Oppression Work
Courtney Harge
Fractured Atlas
In Defense of Black Staff in the Political Sector
Including Indigenous Perspectives in Your Organization
Kira Page
Not Showing the Salary Range in Job Postings Is Archaic and Inequitable. So Why Do We Keep Doing It?
Vu Le
Nonprofit AF
A Vision for Belonging
Maro Guevara
Boston Builds Capacity to Address Racism and Achieve Health Equity
Human Impact Partners; Boston Public Health Commission, MA
Can One Committee Change an Organization?
Marcela Gara and Nicole Lampe
Resource Media
Commitment to Racial Equity
Funders Together Homelessness Ends Here
Driving Toward Equity - Building a Racial Equity Team
Urban Sustainability Directors Network
Equity Values in Action: Learnings from a Lab
Elissa Sloan Perry
Change Elemental
Health and Healing Justice and Liberation Values Document
US Social Forum 2010
Racial Equity Core Teams: The Engines of Institutional Change
Terry Keleher et al.
Government Alliance on Race & Equity (GARE)
We Can’t Work Toward Racial Justice and Equity Without Working on Relationships
Kad Smith

Policies and Practices

Making Our People Policies More Equitable, Human, & Humane
Aja Couchois Duncan and Pam Sysiuk
Change Elemental
Culture, Collaboration and Capital: Leveraging Procurement for Economic Equity
Griffin & Strong, P.C.
City Accelerator: Living Cities et al.
Trading Glass Ceilings for Glass Cliffs: A Race to Lead Report on Nonprofit Executives of Color
S. Thomas-Breitfeld and F. Kunreuther, et al.
Building Movement Project (BMP)
Developing Human Capital: Moving from Extraction to Reciprocity in Our Organizational Relationships
Jeanne Bell
Nonprofit Quarterly (NPQ)
Pay Equity: Performative or Palpable?
Erika Chen
Community-Centric Fundraising
Thinking Through Your Hiring Process
nènè Konaté
Evaluating the Executive Director
Women and Femmes of Colour in Community Organizations
Kira Page
50 Actions Your Org Can Take After Posting About BLM
Vanessa Douyon
The 10 Commitments Companies Must Make to Advance Racial Justice
Mark R. Kramer
Harvard Business Review
Webinar: Race to Lead Revisited
Building Movement Project
Vital Voices: Lessons Learned from Board Members of Color
Vernetta L. Walker and Deborah J. Davidson
18 Ways We’ve Improved Our Hiring Process
Kira Page
Addressing and Preventing Workplace Harassment and Discrimination
City of Seattle, Anti-Harassment Interdepartmental Team (IDT)
Advancing Frontline Employees of Color: Innovating for Competitive Advantage in America’s Frontline Workforce
Fay Hanleybrown, Lakshmi Iyer, Josh Kirschenbaum, Sandra Medrano, and Aaron Mihaly
FSG and PolicyLink
An Integrated Anti-Oppression Framework for Reviewing and Developing Policy
Margaret Alexander
Springtide Resources
Anti-Oppression Principles
Center for Story-based Strategy
Beyond Diversity and Multiculturalism: Towards the Development of Anti-Racist Institutions and Leaders
Mary Pender Greene
Journal for Nonprofit Management
Black Space Manifesto
BlackSpace Urbanist Collective, Inc.
Contracting for Equity: Best Local Government Practices that Advance Racial Equity in Government Contracting and Procurement
Tim Lohrentz
Insight Center for Community Economic Development; Government Alliance on Race & Equity (GARE)
Equity in Hiring and Employee Development: A Review of Initiatives in Human Resources Designed to Increase Diversity in City Employment
Mike Lipski, Erin Stenson, Melissa Gombar, and Brad Wirtz
City of Madison Human Resources
Equity, Diversity and Inclusion in Recruitment, Hiring and Retention
Desiree Williams
Urban Sustainability Directors Network; Kapwa Consulting
On Land, Race, Power, and Privilege: An Organizational Statement of Values
Center for Whole Communities
Race Equity and Inclusion Action Guide: 7 Steps to Advance and Embed Race Equity and Inclusion Within Your Organization
Terry Keleher, et al.
The Annie E. Casey Foundation
Racial Equity Value Statements
Varisce Alston et al.
Partnership for a Healthy Durham; Durham County Department of Public Health
Reimagining Compensation Decisions Through an Equity Panel
Jasmine Hall

Racial Equity Impact Questions and Process

Racial Equity Planning Tool
Boston Public Schools, Office of the Superintendent
REIA: Racial Equity Impact Analysis: A Process for Change
Tanya Cromey et al.
City of Minneapolis, Division of Race & Equity
Brave Questions: Recalculating Pay Equity
Mala Nagarajan and Richael Faithful 
Network Weaver
Race and Social Justice Initiative: Budget and Policy Filter Supplemental Toolkit
City of Seattle, Office for Civil Rights
Racial Equity & Inclusion at Living Cities: Frequently Asked Questions
Living Cities
Racial Equity Analysis
Race and Social Justice Community Roundtable
Racial Equity Impact Assessment
Terry Keleher, Applied Research Center
Race Forward
Racial Equity Impact Assessment Pocket Guide
Voices for Racial Justice
Racial Equity Toolkit: To Assess Policies, Initiatives, Programs and Budget Issues
City of Seattle
Strategic Questioning: An Approach to Creating Personal and Social Change
Fran Peavey


The MACDC Racial Equity Pledge
Massachusetts Association of Community Development Corporations
How to Receive Feedback (Part 2): Power, Difference, and Inequity
The Management Center
Our Default Organizational Decision-making Model is Flawed. Here’s an Awesome Alternative!
Vu Le
Nonprofit AF
When a Black Woman and Everybody Else Values Her AND Her Work
Natalie S. Burke
Generational Differences in Racial Equity Work
Dax-Devlon Ross
Nonprofit Quarterly (NPQ)
Are You Centering or Off-Centering?
Erin Okuno
Cyndi Suarez on Power
Gibrán Rivera
#NonprofitKarens: What They Look Like and How You Can Spot One!
Dominique Calixte
Community-Centric Fundraising
Centering Equity in Intermediary Relationships: An Opportunity for Funders
Natalie Bamdad and Susan Misra
Change Elemental
How to Talk About Racism at Work
Ajah Hales
So You’ve Declared That Black Lives Matter. Now What?
The Management Center
Race Matters Toolkit
The Annie E. Casey Foundation; Race Matters Institute
10 Ways to Practice Institutional Racism at Your Nonprofit Organization
Korbett Mosesly
Approaches to Power Inequity Within Organizations
AORTA (Anti-Oppression Resource and Training Alliance)
Avoiding Racial Equity Detours
Paul Gorski
If You Defend Human Rights, Share Your Story
Norwegian Human Rights Fund;; et al.
Maintaining Professionalism In The Age of Black Death Is….A Lot
Shenequa Golding
Our Approach to Race Equity Work and Why We Focus on Black and Latinx People
Race to Lead: Women of Color in the Nonprofit Sector
Ofronama Biu
Building Movement Project
Your Black Colleagues May Look Like They’re Okay — Chances Are They’re Not
Danielle Cadet

Tools and Toolkits

Anti-Racism Learning and Reflection Tool
The Regents of the University of California
Pay Scale Equity Process and Calculator
V. Subramaniam and M. Nagarajan
Vega Mala Consulting
Power Dynamics: A Systemic Inquiry
Anna Birney
Network Weaver
Race Equity Cycle Pulse Check
Equity in the Center
Anti-Racism Roadmap for Everyday Action
N. Ncube, P. Okundaye, et al.
Racial Equity Outcome Toolkit: A Six-Step Process for Your Organization
LaTrenda Leonard Sherrill
The Heinz Endowments
Towards Braiding
Elwood Jimmy and Vanessa Andreotti with Sharon Stein
J. Hogue & Associates
Deeper Anti-Racist Organizational Change: More Tools & Resources
Thulasy Lettner, S. Louis, S. Ashraf, et al.
CommunityWise Resource Centre; Alberta Association of Immigrant Serving Agencies (AAISA)
10 Ways Orgs Can Show Up for Black Lives Without Exploiting ‘Black Lives Matter’
Sunshine Muse
Resources for Building Anti-Racist Organizations
The “Problem” Woman of Colour in Nonprofit Organizations Tool
Kira Page
Advancing the Mission: Tools for Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion
JustPartners, Inc. (JPI); The Annie E. Casey Foundation
Anti-Racist Organizational Change: Resources & Tools for Nonprofits
CommunityWise Resource Centre
Building a Multi-Ethnic, Inclusive & Antiracist Organization: Tools for Liberation Packet
Safehouse Progressive Alliance for Nonviolence (SPAN)
How to Manage When Things Are Not Okay (And Haven’t Been For Centuries)
The Management Center
Moving Past the Silence: A Tool For Negotiating Reflective Conversations About Race: Moving Philanthropy Closer to Racial Equality and Social Justice
Vanessa McKendall Stephens, Ph.D.
Effective Communities, LLC
Organizational Race Equity Toolkit
JustLead Washington, Race Equity & Justice Initiative (REJI)
Racial Equity Toolkit: Implementing Greenlining’s Racial Equity Framework
Adrian Sanchez and Carla Saporta
The Greenlining Institute
Seeing and Naming Racism in Nonprofit and Public Organizations
Laurin Y. Mayeno
Mayeno Consulting

Understanding the Change Process

“To love is transformational … To translate this to others … requires our whole hearts, minds, actions, and accountable systems. All of this is a profound act of resistance and culture shift. We are swimming upstream against the normative practice of checking off our to-do lists. … Love, when fused with power, is our tool for justice, freedom, and liberation. … Our very survival is wrapped in love and power. Our work is amphibious, living in the both/and, beyond the shores of the binary, colonized world of separation and othering.”

~ Shiree Teng and Sammy Nuñez, Measuring Love in the Journey for Justice


Fitting Pro-Blackness Into the Nonprofit Infrastructure – Shanelle Matthews

Also in this section:
  • Addressing Trauma and Healing

  • Caucus and Affinity Groups

  • Community Organizing

  • Hate Crimes Prevention and Response

  • Narrative Change

  • Training and Popular Education

  • Advocacy

  • Community Building

  • Conflict Transformation and Restorative Justice

  • Leadership Development

  • Policy and Legislative Change

  • Youth Activism and Intergenerational Work

  • Arts and Culture

  • Community Engagement

  • Dialogue and Deliberation

  • Multicultural Competency

  • Racial Reconciliation



An anti-racist is someone who is supporting an antiracist policy through their actions or expressing antiracist ideas. This includes the expression of ideas that racial groups are equals and do not need developing, and supporting policies that reduce racial inequity. 

SOURCE:  Ibram X. Kendi, How To Be An Antiracist, Random House, 2019.

Caucusing (Affinity Groups)

A caucus is an intentionally created space for those who share an identity to convene for learning, support, and connections. Caucuses based on racial identity are often comprised, respectively, of people of color, white people, people who hold multiracial identities, or people who share specific racial or ethnic identities.

To advance racial equity, there is work for white people and people of color to do separately and together. Caucuses provide spaces for people to work within their own racial/ethnic groups. For white people, a caucus provides time and space to work explicitly and intentionally on understanding white culture and white privilege and to increase one’s critical analysis around these concepts. A white caucus also puts the onus on white people to teach each other about these ideas, rather than placing a burden on people of color to teach them. For people of color, a caucus is a place to work with peers to address the impact of racism, to interrupt experiences of internalized racism, and to create a space for healing and working for individual and collective liberation. At times, people of color may also break into more specific race-based caucuses, sometimes based on experiences with a particular issue, for example police violence, immigration, or land rights. Groups that use caucuses in their organizational racial equity work, especially in workplaces and coalitions, generally meet separately and create a process to rejoin and work together collectively.

SOURCE: (ACT / Strategies / Caucus and Affinity Groups)

Related Resources:  Caucus and Affinity Groups

Location: ACT / Strategies

Implicit Bias

Also known as unconscious or hidden bias, implicit biases are negative associations that people unknowingly hold. They are expressed automatically, without conscious awareness. Many studies have indicated that implicit biases affect individuals’ attitudes and actions, thus creating real-world implications, even though individuals may not even be aware that those biases exist within themselves. Notably, implicit biases have been shown to trump individuals’ stated commitments to equality and fairness, thereby producing behavior that diverges from the explicit attitudes that many people profess. The Implicit Association Test (IAT) is often used to measure implicit biases with regard to race, gender, sexual orientation, age, religion, and other topics.

SOURCE:  Cheryl Staats, State of the Science: Implicit Bias Review 2013, Kirwan Institute, The Ohio State University. 

Related Resources:  Implicit Bias

Location: ACT / Communicating


The everyday verbal, nonverbal, and environmental slights, snubs, or insults, whether intentional or unintentional, which communicate hostile, derogatory, or negative messages to target persons based solely upon their marginalized group membership.

SOURCE:  Derald Wing Sue, PhD, “Microaggressions: More than Just Race” (Psychology Today, 17 November 2010).

Related Resources:  Racism (scroll down alphabetically to the box for “Interpersonal Racism”)

Location: FUNDAMENTALS / Core Concepts

Multicultural Competency

A process of learning about and becoming allies with people from other cultures, thereby broadening our own understanding and ability to participate in a multicultural process. The key element to becoming more culturally competent is respect for the ways that others live in and organize the world and an openness to learn from them.

SOURCE:  Paul Kivel, “Multicultural Competence” (2007).

Related Resources:  Multicultural Competency

Location: ACT / Strategies


  1. Power is unequally distributed globally and in U.S. society; some individuals or groups wield greater power than others, thereby allowing them greater access and control over resources. Wealth, whiteness, citizenship, patriarchy, heterosexism, and education are a few key social mechanisms through which power operates. Although power is often conceptualized as power overother individuals or groups, other variations are power with (used in the context of building collective strength) and power within (which references an individual’s internal strength). Learning to “see” and understand relations of power is vital to organizing for progressive social change.

  2. Power may also be understood as the ability to influence others and impose one’s beliefs. All power is relational, and the different relationships either reinforce or disrupt one another. The importance of the concept of power to anti-racism is clear: racism cannot be understood without understanding that power is not only an individual relationship but a cultural one, and that power relationships are shifting constantly. Power can be used malignantly and intentionally, but need not be, and individuals within a culture may benefit from power of which they are unaware.

  3. (A) The ability to name or define. (B) The ability to decide. (C) The ability the set the rule, standard, or policy. (D) The ability to change the rule, standard, or policy to serve your needs, wants, or desires. (E) The ability to influence decision makers to make choices in favor of your cause, issue, or concern. Each of these definitions can manifest on personal, social, institutional, or structural levels:  

  • Personal Power - 1. Self-determination. 2. Power that an individual possesses or builds in their personal life and interpersonal relationships.  

  • Social Power - 1. Communal self-determination. 2. A grassroots collective organization of personal power. 3. Power that social groups possess or build among themselves to determine and shape their collective lives.  

  • Institutional Power - 1. Power to create and shape the rules, policies, and actions of an institution. 2. To have institutional power is to be a decision maker or to have great influence upon a decision maker of an institution.  

  • Structural Power - To have structural power is to create and shape the rules, policies, and actions that govern multiple and intersecting institutions or an industry.


  1. Intergroup Resources, “Power” (2012).

  2. Alberta Civil Liberties Research Centre, “Racism and Power” (2018) / “CARED Glossary” (2020).

  3. Our Shared Language: Social Justice Glossary, YWCA (2016).

Racial Healing

To restore to health or soundness; to repair or set right; to restore to spiritual wholeness.

SOURCE:  Michael R. Wenger, Racial Equity Resource Guide (W.K. Kellogg Foundation, 2012).

Related Resources:  Addressing Trauma and Healing and Trauma, Violence, and Healing

Locations: ACT / Strategies and PLAN / Issues

Racial Reconciliation

Reconciliation involves three ideas. First, it recognizes that racism in America is both systemic and institutionalized, with far–reaching effects on both political engagement and economic opportunities for minorities. Second, reconciliation is engendered by empowering local communities through relationship-building and truth-telling. Lastly, justice is the essential component of the conciliatory process—justice that is best termed as restorative rather than retributive, while still maintaining its vital punitive character.

SOURCE:  The William Winter Institute for Racial Reconciliation, Position Statement on Reconciliation (2014).

Related Resources:  Racial Reconciliation

Location: ACT / Strategies

Restorative Justice

Restorative Justice is a theory of justice that emphasizes repairing the harm caused by crime and conflict. It places decisions in the hands of those who have been most affected by a wrongdoing, and gives equal concern to the victim, the offender, and the surrounding community. Restorative responses are meant to repair harm, heal broken relationships, and address the underlying reasons for the offense. Restorative Justice emphasizes individual and collective accountability. Crime and conflict generate opportunities to build community and increase grassroots power when restorative practices are employed.

SOURCE:  The Movement for Black Lives (M4BL), “Glossary.”

Related Resources:  Conflict Transformation and Restorative Justice

Location: ACT / Strategies

White Supremacy Culture

  1. White Supremacy Culture refers to the dominant, unquestioned standards of behavior and ways of functioning embodied by the vast majority of institutions in the United States. These standards may be seen as mainstream, dominant cultural practices; they have evolved from the United States’ history of white supremacy. Because it is so normalized it can be hard to see, which only adds to its powerful hold. In many ways, it is indistinguishable from what we might call U.S. culture or norms – a focus on individuals over groups, for example, or an emphasis on the written word as a form of professional communication. But it operates in even more subtle ways, by actually defining what “normal” is – and likewise, what “professional,” “effective,” or even “good” is. In turn, white culture also defines what is not good, “at risk,” or “unsustainable.” White culture values some ways of thinking, behaving, deciding, and knowing – ways that are more familiar and come more naturally to those from a white, western tradition – while devaluing or rendering invisible other ways. And it does this without ever having to explicitly say so...

  2. An artificial, historically constructed culture which expresses, justifies, and binds together the United States white supremacy system. It is the glue that binds together white-controlled institutions into systems and white-controlled systems into the global white supremacy system.


1. Gita Gulati-Partee and Maggie Potapchuk, “Paying Attention to White Culture and Privilege: A Missing Link to Advancing Racial Equity” (The Foundation Review vol. 6: issue 1, 2014).

2. Sharon Martinas and the Challenging White Supremacy Workshop, 4th revision (1995).

Related Resources:  Organizational Change Process (see the first section: “Addressing White Dominant Culture”)

Location: ACT / Strategies