Paul Vandeventer, Community Partners on Civic Engagement

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Paul Vandeventer is the Founder and CEO of Community Partners in Los Angeles, where he has led the organization through more than 20 years of dynamic growth and development. Community Partners is responsible for fiscal sponsorships, grantmaker partnerships, organizational development, fundraising, speakers, workshops, and knowledge building. 

In his role, Paul is actively involved in many various civic initiatives in the Los Angeles region, specifically in the collaboration of social agencies, philanthropic foundations, corporations, and governmental agencies.  He actively promotes a holistic model of engagement, and the need to engage all stakeholders around a shared clarity of purpose. He writes and speaks extensively on networks, partnerships, and civic engagement. 

In this interview, Paul shares his model for engaging community stakeholders, for developing and encouraging grassroots social agencies, and for promoting greater involvement and 'civic reach.' He also speaks of the community as a model for "the human experiment," how our shared belief systems will allows us to achieve common goals.

HIGHLIGHTS OF THE SHOW:

In this interview, we discuss:

  1. Community Partners as an 'incubator' for nonprofit and social sector agencies to grow and develop. (5:00) 
  2. How he defines Civic Reach and is able to measure that through the Civic Power Grid (13:30)
  3. Specific examples of networked partnerships for achieving civic initiatives in L.A. (20:00)
  4. How we are all a part of this human experiment, relationships are at the essence of politics, and we are all searching for commonalities and "clarity of purpose."   (28:00)
  5. The importance of storytelling for portraying an organization, advancing an agenda, and achieving goals.  (38:30)

THOUGHT OF THE DAY:

"The work that Community Partners is built on - that I do today - is informed by this idea that if we can share a common story long enough, we can actually appreciate one another's role in it." 

LINKS AND RESOURCES MENTIONED IN THE SHOW:

  1. The work of Community Partners.
  2. The Civic Power Grid (c) 
  3. Increasing Civic Reach article in the Stanford Social Innovation Review. 
  4. "Networks That Work: A Practitioner's Guide to Managing Networked Action" Order it here.

 

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