« Review: 'Upper Hand: The Future of Work for the Rest of Us' | Main | The sustainable nonprofit: From transitional to transformative fundraising »

Information for more impact: An interview with Kat Rosqueta, Executive Director, Center for High Impact Philanthropy and Candid Board Chair

May 23, 2022

Headshot_Kat_Rosqueta_Center for High Impact PhilanthropyIn February 2022, Katherina “Kat” Rosqueta became board chair of Candid, the organization established in 2019 with the merger of Foundation Center and GuideStar, where she had also served as a trustee beginning in 2012. Rosqueta was integral to the planning that led to the creation of Candid and served as vice chair to T. Sylvester John, whom she succeeded this year.

To many, Rosqueta is best known as the founding executive director of the University of Pennsylvania’s Center for High Impact Philanthropy (CHIP), a collaboration between the Wharton School—where she received her MBA in 2001—and the School of Social Policy and Practice. Since 2006, Rosqueta has led CHIP’s effort to encourage the practice of an evidence-based approach to philanthropy.

Philanthropy News Digest spoke with Rosqueta about her career, her work with CHIP, and how it all connects with Candid’s 2030 vision.

Philanthropy News Digest: You’re a Philadelphia native. After earning an undergraduate degree at Yale and working for more than a decade in the San Francisco Bay Area, was coming home, first for an MBA at Wharton and then as a founder of the Center for High Impact Philanthropy at the University of Pennsylvania, inevitable?

Kat Rosqueta: The draw of family was always quite strong, but after a decade in Northern California there was a lot of reinforcement of the same ideas. I considered business school when I was at a point in my career where I needed more tools and a bigger community to figure out how I could make a bigger difference.

At the same time, people around me were saying: “Oh, nonprofits have to be more business-like.” I decided to find out what that means.

To give you some historical context, I left the Bay Area at the frothiest part of the first dot-com bubble. People thought I was insane to leave Silicon Valley and the Bay Area. Until that point, I was almost always involved in some sort of startup, and I had a bias—one that I think a lot of entrepreneurs, in my case, a social entrepreneur, had—around any kind of consulting.

But I got recruited to McKinsey & Company during the summer between my first and second year at Wharton. I found really sharp people that I was learning really quickly from and with.

To me, my time with McKinsey—and my earlier work in Wells Fargo’s Corporate Community Development Group—is reflected in our work at the Center for High Impact Philanthropy. No single sector—the business sector, the government sector, the nonprofit, philanthropic sector—alone can possibly advance the kind of lasting, positive social change that we all hope for.

You can even look at the origin story of CHIP, which was conceived as a collaborative effort between fellow alumni of the Wharton School and the dean and stakeholders from what was then called the School of Social Work, now Penn’s School of Social Policy & Practice.

And while it can be much more challenging and take longer to work in those kinds of collaborative efforts, or even with a really diverse team, that’s the only way to solve these really tough problems....

Read the full interview with Kat Rosqueta, founding executive director of the Center for High Impact Philanthropy and board chair of Candid.

« Previous post    Next post »

Comments

Feed You can follow this conversation by subscribing to the comment feed for this post.

The comments to this entry are closed.

Quote of the Week

  • "[L]et me assert my firm belief that the only thing we have to fear is...fear itself — nameless, unreasoning, unjustified terror which paralyzes needed efforts to convert retreat into advance...."


    — Franklin D. Roosevelt, 32nd president of the United States

Subscribe to PhilanTopic

Contributors

Guest Contributors

  • Laura Cronin
  • Derrick Feldmann
  • Thaler Pekar
  • Kathryn Pyle
  • Nick Scott
  • Allison Shirk

Tweets from @PNDBLOG

Follow us »

Filter posts

Select
Select
Select