Thought: are we really like-minded?  For years, we have used this terminology to describe Impact 100 membership.  But, as the Focus Area Committees get back to work this month to review the long-form, “Common Grant Application” from nonprofits, I’m not sure “like-minded” is accurate…..


An old friend recently recounted a Focus Area Committee meeting in which the dialogue around a nonprofit funding request was “intense:” two Impact 100 members disagreed — both with valid points and experiences — regarding how an initiative could truly impact our community.  Depth vrs. breadth?  Funding ALL of an initiative or funding SOME of an initiative?  They left the meeting still appreciating each other….even scheduling a time to get lunch together at a later date.

Sure, our like-mindedness stems from believing in collective giving: pooling our resources together beyond that which we might afford individually.  But that does not mean we are of the same mind or habit of thought, as defined by good-old Mirriam Webster.  Serving on a Focus Area Committee again this year, I see such different habits of thought.  And it’s really quite amazing that these can be shared, respected, and supported in the spirit of community IMPACT.  

So, as Shannon, Membership Chair, and one of her committee members, Barb, expressed: perhaps we are less “like-minded” and more women who care about the world in which we live.  And as Charnella, another Impact 100 member added: women who care about the community in which we live.

We go about that “care” in different ways — different habits of thought.  And that is not a bad thing.  In fact, it’s what makes us better….together. 

There are many strong grant proposals that have the potential to make a lasting impact on our community.  I’m certain that robust dialogue and even respectful disagreement will be part of that beautiful process.  This year (once again) promises educational site visits and difficult choices as Impact 100 members work to identify the nonprofits that will be Grant Finalists – and then select FOUR Grant Recipients in September.

Whether you are a brand new member or a seasoned veteran on one of the Focus Area Committees, it’s likely that you have engaged in rich conversation with women who see things differently from you.  Thank you for serving and creating an inclusive space for such!  If you do not have the time to dedicate to one of these Focus Area Committees, that’s a-okay.  Rest assured, there are members doing deep due diligence as part of the Impact 100 process.

The Impact 100 Board recently set a goal to increase our membership and infrastructure support to award FIVE grants by 2021 — our 20th year anniversary!   Why?  Because we are a group of women who care about the community in which we live.

 Thank you to all of the Impact 100 women who have joined this movement to benefit our communities through the power of collective giving!  And thank you for caring about OUR collective community.

Keep in touch.  Shoot me a note with your thoughts at
In service,
Clare Zlatic Blankemeyer