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Vu Le’s talk will stretch current practices in the nonprofit sector and explore how to move toward the future.


Frederick is honored to welcome Vu Le, nationally recognized blogger of nonprofitwithballs.com and his newest blog, NonprofitAF.

Known for his no-BS approach, irreverent sense of humor, and love of unicorns, Vu has been featured in dozens, if not hundreds, of his own blog posts. He is a writer, speaker, blogger, and former executive director of Rainier Valley Corps, a nonprofit in Seattle that promotes social justice. NonprofitAF brutally examines the joys and frustrations of the nonprofit sector, challenges established norms and provokes discussions. Vu’s passion is to make the world better while recognizing the humor in daily tasks. In his time working in the nonprofit sector, he learned that “we should take the work seriously, but not ourselves”. There’s tons of humor in the nonprofit world, and someone needs to document it.


A diverse group of panelists will take a deeper dive into equity, governance, and leadership.

Stay tuned… more panelists to be added!

Janice Simsohn Shaw >>



Janice is an adept, high-energy facilitator with 20+ years of experience helping foundation and social change leaders to be better partners, listeners, and givers. She is a passionate and vocal advocate for the power of communal learning and action, helping staff teams, boards, coalitions, and others groups gain greater alignment, clarity, and meaning in their work together. She is a frequent trainer and speaker on facilitation, helping professionals with varied experience gain competence and confidence in making meetings, workshops, and all sorts of convenings engaging, effective, and enjoyable. She is proud to work with a range of inspiring non-profit organizations, foundations, donor collectives, and social-change focused companies.

In the philanthropic sphere, Janice has designed and facilitated leadership development programs for Next Gen donors and executive directors. Her writing has been published on a range of topics including capacity building, investing in non-profit leaders, program-related investments, facilitation, and multi-generational philanthropy.

Earlier in her career, Janice served the environmental field and the Jewish community, working directly for a number of non-profit organizations, and was both a journalist and fact-checker. Janice studied at Skidmore College and Oxford University, and has benefited greatly from training with the Social Transformation Project, Rockwood Leadership, National Outdoor Leadership School, Interaction Institute for Social Change, Race Forward, Scaling Intimacy and the Center for Civic Reflection.

Lisa Brown Alexander >>

Nonprofit HR, President & CEO


“If an organization can strengthen its internal talent capacity, it can better serve the community and those in need.” That is Lisa Brown Alexander’s mantra, and she has been beating the drum for it for over 20 years! Driven to serve the often-overlooked human resources needs for the social-impact sector, Lisa set out to build a market where one didn’t exist. She founded Nonprofit HR, the leading talent management firm in the country that works exclusively with the nonprofit sector. Today, fueled by the passion of 50-plus employees and consultants nationwide, the thriving company is helping many of the nation’s most prominent nonprofit organizations get ahead through smart people management strategies. In the process, they’re changing the way an entire sector thinks about talent and culture.

Lisa has inspired Nonprofit HR to become a force which thousands of nonprofit and talent management leaders look to for consulting services, thought partnership, sector-specific hiring and executive search needs, professional development and information. Lisa’s leadership and the work of her firm have proven that better talent practices can play an integral role in nonprofit success. Nonprofits have benefited from her wealth of knowledge and experience to make their people-driven initiatives successful. Lisa’s goal is to ensure that every Nonprofit HR engagement inspires social sector leaders to strengthen their most important asset: their people.

A leader within the Greater Washington, DC Metropolitan region and the national nonprofit sector, author, international speaker, and key industry influencer, Lisa actively contributes to the strength of the sector through her advisory roles with Fund the People and Equity in the Center initiatives. She frequently addresses national conferences and events and has authored scores of articles in nonprofit and HR publications on human resources issues. Lisa also serves on the board of directors of the DC Chamber of Commerce, and the Prince George’s Cultural Arts Foundation, and is a former board member of the DC Rape Crisis Center and Community Youth Advance (formerly Mentoring to Manhood). A proud Canadian-American, mother and wife, Lisa is also the co-owner of Wellspring Manor and Spa, an upscale retreat destination and full-service bed and breakfast located in suburban Maryland. Learn more about Lisa Brown Alexander and her contributions to the social impact sector at nonprofithr.com.

Franklyn Baker >>

United Way of Central Maryland, CEO


Franklyn was named the President and Chief Executive Officer of United Way of Central Maryland in November 2016. Under his leadership, the organization has expanded the number of its family stability sites that provide homelessness prevention and shelter diversion services to families in locations across central Maryland, as well as expanded its On Track 4 Success early intervention education program that helps children succeed in school with the goal of graduating.

The Maryland ALICE (Asset Limited, Income Constrained, Employed) Report was released at the beginning of Baker’s tenure, and he is a staunch advocate of the report’s findings, which show that nearly 40% of Maryland working families cannot afford the state’s high cost of living. He has been working with legislators, companies and investors to reduce barriers and increase assets for these ALICE families.

Under Baker’s leadership, United Way also assumed the operations of the award-winning, south Baltimore Ben Franklin Center for Community Schools, now The United Way Ben Franklin Center at Brooklyn/Curtis Bay. Based at Benjamin Franklin High School, the center provides onsite daycare and early childhood development programs for teen parents and their children, as well as resources to help families become more stable and self-sufficient. He is now expanding this successful strategy into west Baltimore in partnership with the University of Maryland Baltimore.

Other achievements include the largest ever Project Homeless Connect, one of the largest resource fairs in the country for people experiencing homelessness, and successful completion of the United for Change campaign. Separate from its annual fundraising campaign, this was United Way’s first above and beyond campaign in its 95-year history. The campaign surpassed its goal of raising $4.5 million to help struggling families and individual and to improve the organization’s effectiveness.

A cross-functional senior executive with diverse expertise in non-profit organizations, he has demonstrated passion for and commitment to exceeding operational, strategic planning and financial goals. A solution-focused and performance-driven leader, Baker has the vision, experience and business acumen to move beyond layers of traditional organizational dynamics to formulate cost-effective strategies to overcome potential shortfalls and maximize resources. He is a skilled contract negotiator who consistently builds positive, mutually respectful relationships with federal, state and local government officials, vendors, providers, community partners and clients to improve social impact.

In his previous position as Principal Deputy and Chief Operating Officer for Greenpeace USA, Baker improved national operations and helped to bolster fundraising efforts ($45 million non-profit with 600 staff). Prior to this role, Baker served for more than five years as Chief Operating Officer and at the end of his tenure as Chief of Staff and External Affairs Officer with Volunteers of America Chesapeake. While there, he held primary responsibility for leading and improving operations of 32 diverse programs employing more than 750 staff geographically located from Baltimore, Maryland to Virginia Beach to Washington, DC. Baker also spearheaded the human resources, development and information technology functions, ensured its multiple facilities were well managed and met regulatory and contractual expectations while assisting with the acquisition and management of government contracts and grants comprising 92% of its $34 million in revenue.

Before Volunteers of America Chesapeake, Baker worked as Director and Executive Administrator of Public Sector Partnerships within Children’s National Health System in Washington, D.C. In prior leadership roles, Baker added value with such companies as Columbia, Maryland-based Magellan Behavioral Health, Blue Cross Blue Shield Association and others in various positions ranging from Senior Manager to Vice President.

Baker earned a bachelor’s degree in business administration with a concentration in finance from Howard University and a master’s degree in nonprofit administration from the Mendoza College of Business at the University of Notre Dame.

Baker has served on multiple boards including as board chair of the $95 Million Unity Healthcare, has completed a two-year Executive Development Program, and is a 2013 class member of Leadership Greater Washington. He is a 2018 class member of the Greater Baltimore Committee’s LEADERship Program, and serves on the boards of Baltimore’s Promise and Parks and People Foundation. Baker lives in Annapolis, Maryland with his wife, Michell and teenage daughter, Gabriell.

Jen Bokoff

Jen Bokoff >>

Disability Rights Fund, Director of Development


Jen has dedicated her career to elevating unheard voices, supporting community-centered solutions, and driving equity and effectiveness. Through frequent writing, public speaking, and facilitation, she enjoys naming tensions and connecting people to resources, ideas, and one another. Jen worked at Candid for seven years, where she developed partnerships, communications, resources, and insights to power the work of the philanthropic sector. There, she led research on participatory grantmaking that featured DRF’s work. Previously, Jen was a client advocate for a community-based organization and later a grantmaker at a private foundation focused on supporting healthy food systems and the arts. She was also a paralegal for the Internal Revenue Service, which taught her the power of active listening and offered unique insight into people’s lived experiences. Jen was identified by Onalytica in 2019 as a top 10 charity industry influencer and by Submittable in 2020 as a top 15 grantmaking-shaper.

A graduate of Tufts University, Jen studied community health and sociology. She serves on the Alumni Council’s executive and strategic planning committees, and also serves on an advisory committee for The Moth’s education programs. In her spare time, she is an amateur comedic improviser and bridge player.

Satonya Fair Bio

Satonya Fair >>

PEAK Grantmaking, President & CEO


As President and CEO, Satonya works closely with the Board and staff to articulate and implement a vision for the future of PEAK, ensuring a values-driven approach in which equity, diversity, inclusion, awareness of power dynamics in the craft of philanthropy, and a commitment to learning, sharing, and evolving, are integrated and operationalized in the organizational strategy. She is dedicated to engaging PEAK membership and building the organizational value proposition, while also cultivating strong partnerships with philanthropy-serving organizations and the broader philanthropic sector as an ambassador, thought leader, and collaborator. During her tenure, she hopes to strengthen internal infrastructure, grow and diversity PEAK’s funding base, and support an inspired and dynamic staff team while fostering inclusivity, shared values, and high performance.

Satonya brings 25+ years of experience working in nonprofit and philanthropic roles. Prior to joining PEAK, she served as Vice President and Chief Philanthropy Officer at The Executive Leadership Council where she developed and launched a philanthropic engagement strategy and funding pillars for the organization. Previously, she was Director of Grants Management at The Annie E. Casey Foundation where she oversaw grant operations, and served in management roles at Citi, supporting community relations and foundation giving.

Satonya earned her JD from the University of Cincinnati and her bachelor’s degree in psychology and political science from Miami University (Ohio). She is a graduate of the Career Pathways executive leadership program at the Council on Foundations (Cohort 3) and is a certified Prosci Change Management practitioner.

She is an active volunteer, including former board service with PEAK Grantmaking, the Technology Association of Grantmakers and Maryland Philanthropy Network.

Vu Le Panelist

Vu Le >>

NonprofitAF, Founder


Vu Le (“voo lay”) is a writer, speaker, vegan, Pisces, and the former Executive Director of RVC, a nonprofit in Seattle that promotes social justice by developing leaders of color, strengthening organizations led by communities of color, and fostering collaboration between diverse communities.

Vu’s passion to make the world better, combined with a low score on the Law School Admission Test, drove him into the field of nonprofit work, where he learned that we should take the work seriously, but not ourselves. There’s tons of humor in the nonprofit world, and someone needs to document it. He is going to do that, with the hope that one day, a TV producer will see how cool and interesting our field is and make a show about nonprofit work, featuring attractive actors attending strategic planning meetings and filing 990 tax forms.

Known for his no-BS approach, irreverent sense of humor, and love of unicorns, Vu has been featured in dozens, if not hundreds, of his own blog posts at NonprofitAF.com, formerly nonprofitwithballs.com.

2021 Registration is Open