I know it’s trite, but today is bittersweet as it is my last day working here at the Charities Review Council. Without a doubt, this has been the best place I’ve worked, and I’ve been honored to be connected to such a storied organization.
When I started at the Council, we were just launching the process of revising the Accountability Standards, which included getting feedback from people across the state about what they saw as the “reasonable expectations” of an accountable nonprofit. Whether it was in Duluth or Mankato or right here in the Twin Cities, I always walked away from these town hall forums amazed at the number of people who showed up and genuinely cared about making the connection between the nonprofit sector and donors stronger. For a self-professed “nonprofit geek,” I knew that anyplace that could energize that type of response was the place for me.
There have been a lot of exciting changes at the Council since then - the launching of the new Accountability Wizard (along with the revised Accountability Standards), developing a new program working with immigrant & refugee-led nonprofits, and changing the way we report review results to focus on the most trustworthy nonprofits. Through all of these changes, though, the Council’s values of transparency and integrity have shown through and it has been a great place for me to learn. I’ve appreciated building relationships with board and committee members, staff members at reviewed nonprofits, donors who thoughtfully support the great nonprofits in the area, and (of course) my amazing co-workers here at the Charities Review Council.
Despite all this, I am excited to start a new chapter at Ameriprise Financial in their Community Relations department. I know that the lessons I’ve learned here about informed philanthropy will serve me well, and I look forward to continuing to work with the nonprofit sector, albeit in a different capacity.
Thank you to everyone who has made this a great place to be. Here’s hoping our paths cross in the future again. Take care.
Martin Wera joined the Charities Review Council in March of 2009. As the Program Director, he oversaw, managed and delivered the Council’s services to nonprofit organizations, donors and grantmakers.