By Sentari Minor
Social Venture Partners Arizona
Social Venture Partners Arizona (SVPAZ) brings successful professionals together to leverage their time, expertise and resources to make strategic investments in the Valley. Building a dynamic connection between entrepreneurial energy and grassroots innovation, SVPAZ links business professionals with nonprofit organizations to make a tremendous impact.
The concept of Social Venture Partners was the inspiration of former Aldus Corporation President Paul Brainerd in Seattle. Brought to Arizona in 1999 by local philanthropist Jerry Hirsh, SVP Arizona was started with additional founding members from the real estate and finance industries, service providers and Valley entrepreneurs.
Our goals are simple: to cultivate effective philanthropists, strengthen organizations, and invest in collaborative solutions – building powerful relationships to tackle our toughest social challenges.
We do this in two ways: 1) Educate people to be well informed, effective, and engaged philanthropists; and 2) Invest time, expertise and money in innovative nonprofits to collaboratively strengthen their organizations.
We know that to tackle Arizona’s hardest social challenges – education, homelessness, domestic violence, hunger, and so on – we must engage business and community leaders and empower the organizations doing this great work through thoughtful investments and capacity building expertise.
Our signature event and program, Fast Pitch, has helped us to deliver on this idea in a streamlined and intentional way. Fast Pitch is a high energy, rapid fire presentation event where nine nonprofit leaders share the mission, vision, and impact of their organizations in just three minutes. These individuals compete and tell their stories to an audience of more than 500 community members to win more than $70,000 in grant funding.
SVPAZ brought Fast Pitch to Arizona after realizing that many innovative nonprofit organizations have been using limited resources in creative and effective ways to deliver breakthrough social impact and there is a need to support these nonprofits in a very strategic manner.
While all nonprofit organizations seek financial support, most could also use non-financial resources such as idle capacity; donated goods; board members; strategic advice; executive coaching; legal, accounting, marketing, or logistics assistance to build their skills and capacity.
Since its inception, Fast Pitch has become the premier event of its kind, with 2016 being our largest and most successful yet with record attendance and dollars granted.
It is our hope that SVPAZ can continue to enrich this community through engaged philanthropy and grassroots solutions.
If you are interested in learning more or becoming a Partner, please contact Sentari Minor at firstname.lastname@example.org