Training details

access_time 1 hour, 30 minutes

attach_money Free


Arts and cultural production represents 4.2 percent of the US economy, or $760 billion. Socially responsible investing in the United States has reached $8.7 trillion. Yet when looking at the thematic areas targeted by impact investing across the country, arts and culture is 0%.

There is an opportunity today to engage capital that values diversity, equity, and inclusion to help shape a creative economy that reflects the culture and heritage of diverse communities and creatives across the U.S. A creative economy shaped by these values can contribute to building social cohesion, resiliency and sustainability for the future. The creative economy in communities across the United States is ripe for impact investment—but where to start?

This video features Laura Callanan, founding partner of Upstart Co-Lab and Eddie Torres, President & CEO of Grantmakers in the Arts (GIA) in conversation with Ellen Friedman, Executive Director at the Compton Foundation, and Gary Steuer, President and CEO of Bonfils-Stanton Foundation, examining and implementing mission-related investment (MRI) strategies within their foundations. They discuss how MRI has the potential to advance their organizational missions and work toward a creative economy that is sustainable, equitable, and inclusive—before it’s too late - while also exploring impact investing as an innovative opportunity to invest in the arts and unlock resources specifically for ALAANA communities.

Outcomes: Upon completion of this video you should be able to:

  • Explain why impact investing is important to the arts and culture sector, and how impact investing is another lever for funders to use to advance their missions.
  • Explain how racial equity is a key factor to consider when investing in communities
  • Identify  an array of opportunities that can help align a funder’s investment portfolio with the creative economy.
  • Describe the issues confronted by foundations when exploring MRI

Intended audience:

  • Foundations that fund the arts
  • Foundations striving to include arts and culture as part of their MRI or impact investing strategies
  • Artist-endowed foundations who wish to learn more about impact investing
  • Artists starting investable social purpose businesses and hoping to attract funding from MRI
  • Social entrepreneurs in creative industries


Qualifies for
1.5 CFRE point(s)

Intended audience

  • All levels of experience

Bonus materials

You can jump to sections of the video using the following bookmarks:

00:02:15 Eddie Torres, Grantmakers in the Arts

00:08:12 Laura Callanan, UpStart Co-Lab

00:23:38 Gary Steuer, Bonfils-Stanton Foundation

00:42:23 Ellen Friedman, Compton Foundation

00:56:09 Q&A

01:21:44 Closing Thoughts


Here are links to the webinar's associated handouts and documents referenced during the webinar:

The Sonen's 2017 Impact Report that Ellen Friedman mentions can be found here:

Additional questions fielded following the Q&A:


Edwin Torres Grantmakers in the Arts
Ellen Friedman Compton Foundation
Gary Steuer Bonfils-Stanton Foundation
Laura Callanan Upstart Co-Lab