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According to a survey done by AFP and the Chronicle of Philanthropy, one in four women have experienced sexual harassment in their nonprofit work; 7% of men reported being sexually harassed on the job; and in 65% of the cases reported in the survey, the perpetrator of the harassment was a donor. What can we do as a sector to change the culture?
My guest this week is proud feminist and fundraiser Liz LeClair. She brings more than 15 years of experience to her role as the Director of Major Gifts at the QEII Foundation in Halifax, Nova Scotia. Liz is a director with Certified Fundraising Executive (CFRE), and is the current Chair of the AFP Women’s Impact Initiative.
In 2019, Liz published an op-ed with CBC on her experience being sexually harassed by a donor. She is a co-founder of the National Day of Conversation, a day dedicated to raising awareness on sexual harassment of fundraisers.
In this episode, Liz shares her personal story of sexual harassment as a fundraiser, and how she is working to bring these issues out from the darkness and bring them into the conversation.
Here are some of the topics we discussed:
- Her story of sexual harassment in the workplace and her advice for others in this situation
- The real reason nonprofits have trouble attracting a more diverse group of volunteers
- How we can be more outspoken advocates and actively demonstrate solidarity and support a movement towards equity and racial justice within the sector
- How to start having these difficult conversations with each other, and at our places of work
A Liz quotable: “When you tell me to be nice you are asking me to give up my agency, my power, my opinion. White women, when you are okay calling out misogyny and sexism, but will not (or refuse to) call out racism in our sector you are a part of the problem.”
Resources mentioned in this episode:
Stop telling me to be nice
Silence Is Complicity: What Is Unsaid Speaks Volumes
One woman’s frustrating, futile fight for justice after being sexually harassed
Collecting Courage: Joy, Pain, Freedom, Love—Anti-Black Racism in the Charitable Sector
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About Julia Campbell, the host of the Nonprofit Nation podcast:
Named as a top thought leader by Forbes and BizTech Magazine, Julia Campbell (she/hers) is an author, coach, and speaker on a mission to make the digital world a better place.
She wrote her book, Storytelling in the Digital Age: A Guide for Nonprofits, as a roadmap for social change agents who want to build movements using engaging digital storytelling techniques. Her second book, How to Build and Mobilize a Social Media Community for Your Nonprofit, was published in 2020 as a call-to-arms for mission-driven organizations to use the power of social media to build movements. Julia’s online courses, webinars, and talks have helped hundreds of nonprofits make the shift to digital thinking and raise more money online.
Julia’s happy clients include Mastercard, GoFundMe, Facebook, Meals on Wheels America, the Make-A-Wish Foundation, and the Boys & Girls Clubs of America.