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At Communities Foundation of Texas (CFT), our charge is to put giving to work. CFT professionally manages more than 1,000 charitable funds for families, companies, foundations and nonprofits and has awarded more than $2 billion in grants since its founding in 1953. We believe that where giving thrives, communities thrive, too.

CFT’s Emerging Leaders in Philanthropy program seeks to educate, engage, and broaden the philanthropic impact of the next generation of leaders in North Texas. CFT believes that educating and guiding highly engaged community-minded professionals will ensure that our region’s legacy of generosity continues to thrive and grow.


Applications for the 2020-21 cohort are now closed. Applicants will be notified of acceptance in early August.
If you have any questions or would wish to receive communications about when applications open for the 2021 cohort, please email Tina Lin at


Who should apply:

  • Leaders ages 25-40 interested in learning, engaging, and broadening their impact through philanthropy and strategic giving

What you can expect out of the program:

  • Monthly meetings from September - May (time and location varies: held during breakfast, lunch, or happy hour, will need to attend at least 6 out of 9 of the sessions to participate in grantmaking)
  • Engaging speakers and hands-on learning
  • Visits to a variety of effective nonprofit organizations in Dallas
  • Optional volunteerism and networking opportunities
  • A better understanding of community needs and the ability to assess nonprofits to assist you in determining which causes and organizations are a good fit for your philanthropy and strategic giving

Topics we will cover:

  • Key community issues (education, health, social services, etc.)
  • Finding and evaluating effective nonprofits
  • Ways to give and engage
  • Board leadership and training
  • Funding organizations (includes site visits)
  • Creating a personal giving plan and more!

View a sample syllabus from our Previous cohort here

2019-20 Cohort

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View photos from the 2019-20 cohort:PHOTOS: Board Leadership Session
PHOTOS: Holiday Cocktails & Conversations

Current 2019-2020 Emerging Leaders in Philanthropy Cohort Members

Lindsay Abernethy

Director Of Development at Trinity Park Conservancy

Ayelia Ali

Educator, North Texas Alliance to Reduce Unintended Pregnancy in Teens

Larry Banda

Attorney, Conner & Winters, LLP

Jonathan Bassham

Vice President, Morgan Stanley

Cimajie Best

Program Manager of Fellowships, OpEd project

Seth Block

Demetra Brown

Partnership Engagement Manager, Generation

Kristen Carter

Account Supervisor, Sunwest Communications

Brooks Caston

Attorney, Clark Hill Strasburger

Calvert Collins-Bratton

Vice President, Strategic Events & Relationships, Methodist Health System Foundation

Clara Cooke

Client Success Manager, Friendemic

Devin DeLapp

Financial Planning Analyst, SFMG Wealth Advisors

Belén Diez

Manager, Grants & AmeriCorps, Teach For America

Danielle Digeralamo

Campus Recruitment & Employee Wellness Lead, Whitley Penn

Lacy Durham

Senior Manager, Deloitte Tax, LLP

Tyler Floyd

Financial Planning Analyst, SFMG Wealth Advisors

Ryan Garcia

Real Estate Acquisition Analyst, Liberty Multifamily

Brooke Ginsburg


Henry Gordon

Search Marketing Manager, Camelot Communications

Carrie Gregg

Director of Operations, Ministry Brands

Mark Hamm

Director, Economic Mobility, United Way of Metropolitan Dallas

Rebekah Hardage

Senior Manager of Content Marketing, GuideStone

Lauren Holloway

Executive Director, Highland Park Education Foundation

Kalae Hooper

Vice President Senior Operations Consultant & Chair of North Texas My Environment, Bank of America

Brittany Huber

Senior Director of Development and Alumni Relations, University of Texas at Dallas Erik Jonsson School of Engineering and Computer Science

Scott Hvidt

Associate Attorney, Gibson Dunn & Crutcher LLP

Tshiunza Kalubi

Community Advocate & Citizen of the World

Diana Kao

Major Gifts Officer, North Texas Food Bank

Brittney King

Senior Audit Associate, Carr, Riggs & Ingram

Dionne Kirby

Associate Director of Development, Literacy Achieves

Sarah Kate Littlefield

Director of Donor Experience, Teach For America DFW

Clayton Lougée

Director of Development - Erik Jonsson School of Engineering and Computer Customer Experience Strategist, Thomson Reuters

Elsye Lyons

Associate Attorney, Winston & Strawn LLP

Andrew McMillan

Associate Consultant, People Performance Resources

Laura Mendivil

Co-Founder & Development Director, Rosa Es Rojo, Inc.

Julian Mensah

Development Officer, Institutional Giving, Big Thought

Selwa Moharram

Communications Coordinator, Texas Muslim Women’s Foundation

Virginia Mudge

Corporate Engagement Manager, The Dallas Opera

Claire Murchison

Associate, Crow Holdings Capital

Heather Mustain

Minister of Missions & Advocacy, Wilshire Baptist Church

Laurie Parker

Lauren Quam

Corporate Banking, Bank of Texas

Vijay Ram

Senior Therapy Consultant, NeuroPace, Inc.

Melanie Robinson

Program Manager, Dallas County Leadership ISD

Rosy Robson

Associate Pastor, First Presbyterian Church of Richardson

LaToya Rowell

Contributions Operations and External Affairs Officer, Comerical Bank

Tyler Russell

Wealth Manager, Carter Financial Management

Jamiel Sale

Marketing Manager, The Locators Real Estate Brokerage

Robyn Schell

Manager of Communications and Marketing, Dallas Regional Chamber

Amber Shcheurer

Product Marketing Engineer, Texas Instruments

Megan Sterquell

Vice President, Talent Acquisition, Goldman Sachs

Mark Studer

Account Manager, One10 Marketing

Katherine Sundby

Co-Executive Director, Elizabeth Toon Charities

Seema Tejura

Founder and Managing Director, The Literacy Architects, LLC

Roselle Tenorio

Grants and Programs Coordinator, Texas Women’s Foundation

Karyn Thomas

General Counsel, Abounding Prosperity Inc. and Black Ladies in Public Health, Inc.

Elizabeth Trecartin

Financial Consultant, Charles Schwab

Jesse Trevino

GTS Analyst, CBRE

Juana M. Véliz

Co-Founder, Impact AO

Damian Williams

Associate, Kane Russell Coleman Logan PC

Josh Williams

Associate, Newstone Capital Partners

Tyeshia Wilson

Assistant to City Manager & Chief of Staff, City of Dallas

Dana Zillgitt

Seventh Grade English Teacher, Medrano MS

Where giving thrives, communities thrive too.

Side by side, we can build a thriving community for all.

Learn more about our community impact