Spring 2017 Newsletter


The Evaluation 2017 conference will take place November 6-11, 2017 in Washington, DC with the theme of “Evaluation: From Learning to Action.” 

During Evaluation 2017, we will explore four ways that our community can learn from evaluation to create better practices and outcomes. Evaluation is dependent on learning from each other and putting theory into action. Each learning opportunity presents unique challenges and together, as a community, I would like to answer the questions that will allow us to move beyond these challenges to find solutions to improve our programs and create greater good for society as a whole. Click on each learning opportunity to learn more.

Learning to Enhance
Evaluation Practices


Learning What
Works and Why




Learning from Others


Learning About
Evaluation Users and Uses


Given the focus on learning, I encourage all who submit proposals to think creatively and design innovative learning experiences for attendees. 

 -Kathy Newcomer, AEA President

More information about the theme can be found here.

Do you have a great idea for a session topic?

We encourage you to submit your session abstracts on the AEA Proposal Submission Portal.  We will consider abstracts that span a broad range of topics, but here are some ideas to get you started:

  • Examine evaluation models that were effective in specific nonprofit program settings

  • Describe successful strategies that captured and/or set the course for your nonprofit or foundation’s impact on a particularly challenging/entrenched issue within a community or within society more broadly

  • Illustrate exceptional experiences in evaluation from your foundation’s strategies and impact

  • Provide concrete evaluation strategies, tips and tricks for practitioners working in nonprofits

  • Present and/or collaboratively refine an evaluation tool that has been developed or used by your nonprofit organization or foundation

  • Share a skill and develop the evaluation capacity of nonprofit and foundation professionals

  • Analyze lessons learned and best practices from diverse evaluation initiatives

  • Generate new ideas related to emerging themes in evaluation practice for nonprofits and foundations

Please note that AEA review criteria assesses relevance to the conference theme, so although making that connection is not required, it will reflect positively in scores by reviewers.

In advance of submitting, please be sure to carefully review the descriptions of each presentation type and choose the appropriate one for each of your sessions. Whenever possible, please also identify specific individuals who are willing to serve as chairs / discussants for your session(s) and include their names as part of your submission. Please note that this year, all people on a submission are required to have an account with AEA, even if just a guest account. Be sure all collaborators on your submission have an account before beginning the submission process. The proposal submission deadline is 11:59 PM ET March 16, 2017.

We need your help with the proposal review process!

Are you inclined to contribute to the conference from behind the scenes?  We have opportunities for you too!  We are seeking NPFTIG members to review 5-7 abstracts to ensure that our sessions are valuable, relevant, and compelling for our members. Abstract review by volunteers will take place around April. We will reconfirm your interest in serving as a reviewer a week or two before proposal reviews begin to ensure you are still available. If you are submitting a proposal yourself, you can indicate on your submission form that you would like to be a reviewer. If you are not submitting a proposal, you can still review--we’d love to hear from you (our contact information is below)!  

Each TIG has the opportunity to structure their review process in the way they see fit. Last year, the NPFTIG sought volunteer reviewers from our membership through this same newsletter solicitation. From the list, we randomly selected enough volunteers so that each proposal was reviewed twice. Each proposal was scored according to standard criteria provided by AEA. Scores from the volunteer reviewers were then averaged to get the final score, which determined whether or not the proposal was accepted. As always, we are open to suggestions from our membership on ways to improve the review process, and look forward to receiving any comments you have.

Please feel free to contact Molly (mollymhamm@gmail.com) and Katelyn (Katelyn.Mack@fsg.org) if you have questions, suggestions, or need further information. If you’d like to volunteer as a reviewer, please send us a message by March 17th indicating your interest clearly in the subject line.


After three years of service to the NPFTIG, we would like to thank Laura Beals for her leadership and ensuring that the NPFTIG continued to grow in membership and visibility at the AEA conferences. Laura is currently the Director of Evaluation at Jewish Family and Children’s Service Boston, a large social service agency. We are grateful for her work on behalf of nonprofit organizations and foundations, and look forward to continuing collaboration beyond her term of service. Thank you for your contributions, Laura!


In January and February, we called for nominations and ran elections for the open leadership position of Business Co-Chair. We are happy to announce that Susan M. Wolfe will be joining us as a business co-chair. Many thanks to all who voted--we had an exciting candidate pool. We appreciate all of those who stepped up to run for the election. It is a testament to our members’ commitment to the field!

Dr. Susan M. Wolfe is a Senior Consultant at CNM Connect in Dallas, Texas. CNM Connect is a nonprofit organization whose mission is to strengthen nonprofits and communities through education, consulting, and evaluation services. Susan has over 30 years of experience evaluating programs and policies across a variety of settings. She is a community and developmental psychologist and has held leadership positions in AEA and the Society for Community Research and Action. She lives in Cedar Hill, Texas with her husband, her Chihuahua and Chiweenie, and a big fat cat named Chloe. Her hobbies include traveling, taking pictures, cooking and eating, and just doing whatever comes up that looks like fun.


We will once again be hosting a NPFTIG-sponsored week on AEA365, currently planned for the week of October 8th to 13th. In the coming months, the leadership team will determine a theme and solicit short pieces from our members. Be on the lookout for upcoming announcements if you would like to contribute.


In order to get to know our members better, we will begin a new member spotlight feature in our newsletters. The spotlight will take the form of a Q&A, with a mix of more serious and fun questions. We are currently looking for members to feature for the first few editions. If you are interested in introducing yourself to the NPFTIG membership, please email Molly at mollymhamm@gmail.com to coordinate your contribution. We look forward to hearing your story!



We welcome questions and comments. Our contact information is below:


Karen Jackson

Katalyst Innovative Consulting Services

Durham, NC 27712

Tel: 601-347-6093

Email: kltjackson@outlook.com


Susan M. Wolfe

CNM Connect

Dallas, TX

Tel: 214-580-1748


Program Co-Chair

Molly Hamm

The DREAM Project

Dominican Republic

Tel: 913-636-9669

Email: mollymhamm@gmail.com

Program Co-Chair

Katelyn Mack


San Francisco, CA USA

Tel: 415-689-3874

Email: katelyn.mack@fsg.org