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Grantmakers for Girls of Color Announces Dr. Monique Morris as its First Executive Director

Mar 27, 2020

Renown author and activist will guide new organization, with a focus on convening philanthropic support and increasing resources for girls of color

                                                                                                                                                                      Photo credit: Filip Wolak

Grantmakers for Girls of Color (G4GC) is thrilled to announce the  appointment of Monique Morris, Ed.D, as its first Executive Director. Dr. Morris, an award-winning author, educator and activist, holds three decades of experience in the areas of education, civil rights, juvenile and social justice and has been a lifelong advocate for improving the educational and socioeconomic conditions for girls and women of color. Her visionary leadership and expertise, deeply aligned with G4GC’s mission, will boldly shape its future as a dynamic independent funder activist organization, fiscally-sponsored by Rockefeller Philanthropy Advisors.

Since 2015, G4GC has grown into a robust community of funders actively working on efforts that address the structural inequities facing girls and young women of color, creating partnerships to deepen its impact by centering them in philanthropy and movement building. Through Dr. Morris’s leadership, G4GC will begin its organizational transformation, continuing its longstanding work to advocate and advance the voices and lived experiences of girls and young women of color throughout the United States, while building its future identity, infrastructure and strategy. 

“Grantmakers for Girls of Color represents a space for those of us in philanthropy who are committed to dreaming up a world that all of our girls deserve,” said Teresa Younger, Executive Director of the Ms. Foundation for Women. “We couldn’t think of a better leader of this next chapter of our work together. This time calls for bold, clear and loving leadership. That is Dr. Monique Morris.”

Initially a project of the NoVo Foundation and other philanthropic partners, G4GC launched as an online platform in 2015. Since then, G4GC has grown into a powerful movement spurred by activists and advocates, and has held annual national convenings that connect funders to the issues facing girls and young women of color and to help philanthropy better respond to their needs.

“We believe deeply that addressing the multiple forms of violence facing girls of color — by resourcing their leadership and voices — is critical to creating a better world,” said Tynesha McHarris, Program Officer for the NoVo Foundation’s Advancing Adolescent Girls’ Rights Initiative. “Dr. Morris embodies everything we want in that world — courage, love, and justice. We couldn’t imagine a better leader.”

As G4GC’s first Executive Director, Dr. Morris will work with a staff to design and implement the organization’s strategic mission and vision including developing imaginative and effective programming, strategic communications, and in the near future, an equitable and thoughtful participatory grantmaking program to increase resources for girls of color. She will build on the incredible momentum created by girls of color, the movements that center their voices and G4GC’s growing funder community. 

“Monique has dedicated her life to being an accomplice in building the power of girls of color,” said Lateefah Simon, President of the Akonadi Foundation. “We couldn’t be more ecstatic to have her on board as a leader of G4GC.”

G4GC also partnered with Walker and Associates, a Black-women owned consulting firm to ensure a values-aligned approach throughout the application and hiring process. For more information, please visit www.walkeraac.com.

G4GC and its partners will remain committed to building a world in which all girls and young women of color are healthy, safe and thriving and fully empowered to dream and shape their desired reality on their terms, while dismantling structural barriers created by racism, sexism and ageism and other forms of oppression that prevent their full participation in our country’s future. To learn more about G4GC, please visit GrantmakersforGirlsofColor.org.

More About Dr. Morris
Monique W. Morris, Ed.D., is an Executive Producer and co-writer of the 2019 documentary film, PUSHOUT: The Criminalization of Black Girls in Schools, based upon two of her books, Sing A Rhythm, Dance A Blues: Education for the Liberation of Black and Brown Girls (The New Press, 2019) and Pushout: The Criminalization of Black Girls in Schools (The New Press, 2016). Dr. Morris is also the Founder of the National Black Women’s Justice Institute (NBWJI), an organization that works to interrupt school-to-confinement pathways for girls, reduce the barriers to employment for formerly incarcerated women, and increase the capacity of organizations working to reduce sexual assault and domestic violence in African American communities. Dr. Morris’s work has been profiled by MSNBC, CSPAN2, The Washington Post, The New York Times, NPR, and PBS, among other national and local print, radio, and television media. Her research intersects race, gender, education and justice to explore the ways in which Black communities, and other communities of color, are uniquely affected by social policies.

Dr. Monique W. Morris’ 2018 TED Talk on Why black girls are targeted for punishment at school — and how to change that.

More About Grantmakers for Girls of Color
An initial project of the NoVo Foundation, Foundation for a Just Society, Ms. Foundation for Women, The New York Women’s Foundation, Communities for Just Schools Fund and other partners, Grantmakers for Girls of Color (G4GC) began as a shared resource across philanthropy. As a newly-formed independent entity, fiscally-sponsored by Rockefeller Philanthropy Advisors, G4GC will continue to advance its vision for all girls and women to achieve equity and justice in this critical moment in history — and in our future. G4GC openly invites partners and stakeholders to co-create an inclusive space in support of girls and young women of color across programmatic issues and geographic areas. Learn more by visiting GrantmakersforGirlsofColor.org.