An equitable New Jersey through creative, engaged, sustainable communities
It is with a great deal of enthusiasm and hope that today we are releasing a new strategic plan for the Geraldine R. Dodge Foundation, guided by the vision of an equitable New Jersey through creative, engaged, and sustainable communities.
As is clear from demographic trends, New Jersey will soon become one of the first states where no single racial or ethnic group will be in the majority. As a foundation focused exclusively on New Jersey, we must work continually to understand the shifting priorities and needs of communities, and how our programs and operations reflect and serve the people of our state.
Dodge’s strategic plan is the culmination of a comprehensive effort by our entire board and staff to examine how the Foundation’s expertise, influence, and relationships can address challenges and leverage opportunities facing New Jersey.
During this process, we spent a great deal of time examining our intercultural awareness as individuals and as an organization; exploring issues of diversity, equity, and inclusion; reviewing current social, economic, and cultural trends in New Jersey; and talking with grantees, colleagues, and peers. We challenged each other and our assumptions about our grantmaking, our programs, and our organizational direction. The conversations were transformational.
We have identified four goals that center equity at all levels of our organization — program, internal, external, and financial — as well as initial strategies we will pursue over the next three years. Because we know equity is a word with different definitions to different people, we defined what it means to our organization.
At the Geraldine R. Dodge Foundation, equity means aligning our resources to address historical, institutional, and structural impediments so that New Jerseyans of all races and communities have what is needed to realize a quality life.
We recognize that the completion of this plan is actually just the beginning. We now enter a period of exploration and intentional change as we implement our new vision, mission, goals, and strategies. It also will be a period of risk-taking and learning from successes and failures we experience along the way as we figure out our role in an equitable New Jersey.