Bert A. Getz Center for Collaborative Philanthropy
After 15 years of philanthropic investing to improve K-12 education, the Rodel Foundation of Arizona recognized that greater impact was possible by advancing public policies that support effective reform initiatives and ultimately drive systemic change. Rodel also recognized that its individual efforts would be more powerful with the committed support of other philanthropic organizations.
From this starting point grew the idea of forming strategic alliances with other foundations who shared the mission to improve educational outcomes for every student in Arizona. The challenge was to see if foundations working together could create something far greater than the sum of their parts. Rodel recognized the obvious value of generating synergy, cooperation, and leverage among entities but looked beyond that to envision a new model for examining problems and advancing solutions. It wanted to catalyze innovation and foster creative solutions to Arizona’s pressing education challenges.
Rodel saw a Center for Collaborative Philanthropy as a place that could bring together groups with different ideas, approaches, experiences and areas of expertise who by sharing insights could refine and improve ideas. Developing a successful model for collaboration would demonstrate how working cooperatively rather than individually could achieve lasting and scalable solutions. It could also address the frustrating problem of seeing stunning examples of singular success but insufficient progress in sharing these successful innovations more widely across institutions.
In partnership with the Arizona Community Foundation, Rodel launched the Bert A. Getz Center for Collaborative Philanthropy in 2017. The Center bears his name and honors Bert A. Getz as one of the founders of the Arizona Community Foundation and a member of the Rodel Foundation of Arizona board of directors since its inception.
In these positions, as well as the multitude of roles he has held in the business, medical and philanthropic communities, Mr. Getz has been a steadfast proponent of communication and cooperation among entities in order to avoid duplication of effort and to promote effective management of resources. He understood and encouraged the benefits of collaboration long before the term became fashionable.