Mission Forward! MIE's 2018 National Conference

Photo courtesy Metropolitan Family Services, investee of Northern Trust.


Join us in Chicago at our 2018 National Conference, "Mission Forward!", the pre-eminent impact investing conference for foundations and their partners. Produced every other year, the Mission Investors Exchange conference is one of the most anticipated events for impact investors in philanthropy, offering an action-focused, collaborative, and personal space to renew and build partnerships, experience on-the-ground impact investments, share investment opportunities, meet leading voices in the field, and shape the future of the impact investing movement.

Registration for the National Conference is currently open to all foundations and all members of Mission Investors Exchange. If you are interested in attending but are not an MIE member or a foundation, please contact Maggie Cutts for information on conference attendance and how to join MIE for an exciting year ahead!


What We'll Cover

The 2018 conference will focus on bold innovations in the field and the unique leadership role of philanthropy in the impact investing marketplace. Issues of racial equity, diversity, and inclusion will be critical topics woven throughout the conference. We’ll cover topics including:

Going Big

What does it look like to grow foundation impact investing programs in ambitious, still-unimagined, and courageous ways, no matter what your resources are? We’ll explore how foundations are pushing the boundaries of scale, including investing from the endowment and 100% for mission.

Driving Innovation

How are foundations demonstrating leadership in this space, putting catalytic ideas into practice? Sessions will feature new investment products, platforms, and tools, and developing philanthropy’s vision for the future of our global financial markets.

Building Partnerships

How can we rapidly mobilize, collaborate, and partner—both within and beyond philanthropy—based on a common vision and an inclusive, community-led approach? We’ll highlight unique and effective partnership models, such as place-based collaborative investing, sector-focused impact investment funds, Pay for Success initiatives, and other cross-sector opportunities to coordinate capital to make exponential impact.

Championing Equity & Impact

How do we relentlessly raise the bar for equity and impact, and what stands in our way? And how can philanthropy play an intentional leadership role in ensuring that equity and impact are at the heart of the impact investing movement? We’ll examine the ways in which philanthropy sets high standards for the field and keeps the ‘impact’ in impact investing.   




  • Julia Stasch, President, The John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation
  • Darren Walker, President, Ford Foundation


Thank you to our sponsors for making this event possible! If you are interested in sponsoring this pre-eminent event for foundations and their partners, please contact Monique Aiken at [email protected].






Danville Regional Foundation
PATH Foundation
Richmond Memorial Health Foundation
Robins Foundation


Cambridge Associates
Gary Community Investments
Institute for Sustainable Investing at Morgan Stanley
RBC Global Asset Management


Brown Advisory
Community Capital Management


Adler & Colvin
Bader Philanthropies
The Patricia Kind Family Foundation
LOCUS Impact Investing
Walden Boston Trust


  • Cliff Barber, Chicago Mezzanine Fund
  • Jason Baxendale, Chicago Community Trust
  • Bruce Boyd, Arabella Advisors
  • Allison Clark, The John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation
  • Linda Darragh, Kellogg Graduate School of Management, Northwestern University
  • Christina Hachikian, Booth Graduate School of Business, University of Chicago
  • Calvin Holmes, Chicago Community Loan Fund
  • Grace Hou, Woods Fund Chicago
  • Rudolfo Medina, Second Federal/Self Help Credit Union
  • Joel Moore, Merrill Lynch 
  • Irene Pritzker, IDP Foundation
  • Matt Reilein, O'Brien Staley Partners
  • Kurt Summers, City of Chicago
  • Will Towns, Benefit Chicago
  • Tom Trinley, Gaylord and Dorothy Donnelly Foundation
  • Eric Weinheimer, Forefront
  • Jessica Yagan, Impact Engine/Yagan Family Foundation



  • Rukaiyah Adams, Meyer Memorial Trust
  • Mark Constantine, Richmond Memorial Health Foundation
  • Kimberlee R. Cornett, The Kresge Foundation
  • Christine Looney, Ford Foundation
  • Cynthia Muller, W.K. Kellogg Foundation
  • Rehana Nathoo, Case Foundation
  • Kevin Peterson, New Hampshire Charitable Foundation
  • Susan Phinney Silver, The David and Lucile Packard Foundation
  • Joohee Rand, Santa Fe Community Foundation
  • Debra Schwartz, The John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation
  • Shuaib A. Siddiqui, Surdna Foundation
  • Richard Woo, The Russell Family Foundation

Schedule, At a Glance

Our agenda is still evolving. Check back for updates!
DAY ONE: Monday, May 14, 2018
7:30 am  Registration Opens for Mission Forward!
10:00 am – 12:45 pm and 10:00 am – 3:00 pm Beyond the Walls: Offsite Sessions Around Chicago (Space limited)
10:30 am – 12:30 pm Trustee Forum: A Primer for Members of Foundation Boards of Directors (Separate event registration)
1:00 pm – 2:30 pm Introduction to Impact Investing: A 101 for Beginners
2:45 pm – 3:15 pm Structured Networking (by foundation type, role, etc.)
3:30 pm – 5:00 pm Mission Forward! Plenary
5:00 pm – 7:00 pm Welcome Reception
7:00 pm Experience Chicago: Dining with Colleagues
DAY TWO: Tuesday, May 15, 2018
7:30 am – 8:30 am Networking Breakfast
8:30 am – 12:00 pm Concurrent Sessions and Networking Center
12:15 pm – 1:30 pm Lunch Plenary
1:30 pm – 5:00 pm Concurrent Sessions and Networking Center
6:00 pm – 8:00 pm Experience Chicago: Special Reception and Event
DAY THREE: Wednesday, May 16, 2018
8:00 am – 8:45 am Networking Breakfast
9:00 am – 11:30 am Concurrent Sessions (incl., Interactive Workshops) and Networking Center
12:00 pm – 2:00 pm Closing Lunch Plenary
2:30 pm – 5:00 pm
Post Conference Gatherings:
  • Community Foundation Peer Learning Group
  • Additional post-conference gatherings TBD

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