Indie Philanthropy Staff
Arianne Shaffer – Co-Founder and Director
Indie Philanthropy matters to me because it’s high time that the field of philanthropy has a place to call home for all the impactful, change-making and evolving practices for funding that work for radical social change.By day, Arianne spends her time working the wheels in creative philanthropy. When she is not reimagining funding as the Director of Indie Philanthropy, she works as the Communications Director at Kindle Project, where she got her start in the field in 2009. Her passion for philanthropy comes from a long line of justice-oriented work. From interfaith dialogue to documentary filmmaking, Arianne has spent her career bringing people together to create and build towards the vision of a more just world.By night, Arianne is a storyteller, performing stories about her life to audiences of all kinds. Arianne offers storytelling workshops to groups, companies, artists and activists and is the Board Chair for Raconteurs Storytelling.
Arianne received her MA in Peace Education from the United Nations University for Peace and completed an honours degree in Religious Studies at Concordia University. She is based in Toronto.
Indie Philanthropy Steering Committee
I am an indie philanthropist because it is time to shake up the way money and power moves from the hands of funders into the hands of activists and organizations.
Alissa is the Executive Director of The Pollination Project, a foundation that gives daily $1000 grants to up-and-coming changemakers around the world. From 2007-2012, she co-founded and served as co-Director of The Engage Network, where she designed, led and advised complex online to offline civic engagement projects for large international organizations. Alissa was also the Executive Director of Julia Butterfly Hill’s environmental organization, Circle of Life (2001-07) and a women’s financial education nonprofit, Resourceful Women (1997-2001). She holds an MBA in Nonprofit Management from the University of San Francisco and a BA from Oberlin College. Alissa is a mom and a passionate advocate for her local foster care system.
Indie Philanthropy matters to me because philanthropy doesn’t have to be part of the problem we are trying to fix (and I think I was born a disrupter).
Ginger Hintz grew up on the prairies of South Dakota. After moving to Ohio at the tender age of 20, she embraced punk, community, and writing to fight for reproductive, racial, and gender justice. She has a BA in Environmental Policy and an MA in American Cultural Studies from Bowling Green State University. Manifesting west coast aspirations, Ginger moved with her partner and asthmatic cat to Seattle, WA where she learned about the curious workings of philanthropy at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. This and experiences with Resource Generation, Emerging Practitioners in Philanthropy, and Social Justice Fund NW afforded the opportunity to talk about privilege and how those power dynamics influence social change strategies.
Currently the Program Manager for the Women Donors Network, Ginger manages and advises the organization’s donor circles using an intersectional feminist lens. She’s also on the Bitch Media Board of Directors. She looks for courage in complexity and finds joy in articulating an inclusive feminist agenda. Ginger currently lives in Oakland, California.
Indie Philanthropy matters to me because mainstream philanthropy, despite its size and magnitude, is falling short in adapting to and alleviating rapidly escalating social and environmental issues.
Nicolas Makharashvili brings extensive experience in strategic philanthropy education, nonprofit program development and strategy, capacity building, and evaluation for the social sector. He joined Growth Philanthropy Network/Social Impact Exchange in March of 2016. Most recently, he served as the Program Director for Bolder Giving where he planned, managed and oversaw various philanthropic initiatives, including Environmental Justice and Global Givers projects, promoting individual philanthropy for social, racial, economic and environmental justice.
Previously, he served as the Deputy to the President and CEO and then as Deputy Director of Development for the Roosevelt Institute, a leading national policy think-tank. Earlier, Nicolas was the Marketing Operations and Finance Associate at the Philanthropy Workshop, worldwide leader in strategic philanthropy education, which gives individual high-net-worth philanthropists and their families the skills, knowledge and networks to increase the impact of their giving. Nicolas holds a BBA in Finance & Investments from Baruch College.
Indie Philanthropy Key Advisors and Consultants
Sadaf Cameron – Indie Philanthropy Initiative Co-Founder and Key Advisor
Indie Philanthropy matters to be because it’s subversive, rebellious, and makes the world of philanthropy a far more interesting place.
Sadaf spent her childhood and adolescence playing her hand at international spy training; scaling walls and jumping off buildings barefoot in valiant attempts to fly, rolling out of moving objects to perfect the art of fleeing without breaking bones, being invisible in daylight without an invisibility cloak, ambushing trespassers by sword and pick pocketing suburbanites by sleight of hand, bending spoons, and becoming well-versed in morse code and speaking in tongues.
Sadaf co-founded Kindle Project in 2008. She brings her espionage skills to her art, photography and leadership at Kindle Project.
Currently, Sadaf is Vice President of the Board of Directors for the Institute for Energy and Environmental Research and is a member of the Yes Lab Advisory Committee. Sadaf has served as President to the Board of Directors for Skateistan, Environmental Justice Manager for Tewa Women United, and Public Education and Outreach Director at Concerned Citizens for Nuclear Safety.
A photographer and multimedia artist, Sadaf’s work has included documenting Afghan refugee camps and the survivors of the 1947 partition in both India and Pakistan. Sadaf’s work has been shown at Evo Gallery, The Institute of American Indian Arts Museum, The Mannheim Fotofestival in Berlin, and is a part of the permanent collection at Albuquerque Museum of Fine Arts.
Sadaf received her MA in Peace Education from the United Nations University for Peace in Costa Rica and her BFA in Photography from the College of Santa Fe.
Laura Loescher – Indie Philanthropy Initiative Co-Founder, Key Consultant
Indie Philanthropy is important to me because I believe that our survival is only possible if we move money out of exploitive and extractive activities and toward radically life-affirming purposes. Indie Philanthropy offers a plethora of creative and accessible approaches for doing this.
Laura is a leadership coach, philanthropic advisor and mentor to individuals and organizations who are devoting their lives and resources to inner and outer healing and transformation. For the last 25 years, she has worked on the radical edges of investing and philanthropy, supporting efforts to shift money away from extractive and exploitative activities, and toward life-enhancing purposes.
Laura co-founded and directed Aepoch Fund, a foundation whose mission was to support artists, healers, activists and movements engaged in transforming ecological, cultural, economic, and social conditions so that all people and the planet can thrive. Prior to that, she co-founded Changemakers, a foundation practicing and promoting community-based philanthropy and organizing donors to direct their giving to social change.
Laura has designed and facilitated trainings, workshops, and curricula related to leadership development, philanthropy and social change for communities around the country. Her work in philanthropy was preceded by several years of immersion in the field of social investing. She served both as a researcher on corporate social responsibility (mostly irresponsibility) and an educator in the realm of investing. Her current role in the investment world is to offer information and encouragement to her clients who want to direct investment capital toward enterprises that support social equity, ecological resilience and community wealth, or what is called “Indie Investing.”