Crisis Response – Preparing Your Nonprofit for the Tough Disasters

April 19, 2018
8:30 AM - 1:30 PM

Vue 17
1034 S. Brentwood Blvd. #1700
St. Louis, MO 63117
Venue website

8:30 AM to 9:00 AM - Registration & Networking

9:00 AM to 11:00 AM - Morning Panel
11:00 AM to 12:30 PM - Break, Lunch & Networking
12:30 PM - 1:30 PM - Afternoon Keynote

No matter what your role, you'll find this event informative and inspiring! 

At any time, a natural disaster or man-made crisis can hit, impacting the people our organizations serve and requiring staff and volunteer leaders across the agency to shift their focus to best fulfill the mission and benefit the community. At this program, you will hear from some dynamic leaders who can share what they learned while responding to crisis events.


In the morning, we will hear from a panel of leaders from around the country about how they and their organizations responded to significant natural disasters. Our panelists include experience in professional fundraising, communications, executive management, and board leadership.

Meet the Panelists: 

Donna McGinnis,
President and CEO at Naples Botanical Garden

Donna McGinnis is President and CEO of Naples Botanical Garden in Naples, Florida. She is a native of Seattle and spent many years in St. Louis where she served in leadership positions at the Missouri Botanical Garden and Missouri History Museum.  She was also a consultant with The Rome Group and an adjunct professor at Washington University for a decade. 

Donna holds a bachelor’s degree in Communications, an MBA, and the Certified Fund Raising Executive (CFRE) credential. She serves in a leadership role with the American Alliance of Museums and is actively involved in domestic and international conservation issues.


Ramon Cruz,
Board of Directors at the National Sierra Club

Ramón Cruz has over 15 years of experience intersecting the fields of sustainability, environmental policy, urban planning, energy and climate change. He has worked in the public sector in his native Puerto Rico as the Deputy Director of the Environmental Quality Board, the state environmental regulatory agency and as Commissioner of the Puerto Rico Energy Commission. 

He has also worked in the non-governmental sector in senior positions at the Environmental Defense Fund, the Partnership for New York City and the Institute for Transportation and Development Policy. He has been a consultant for the World Bank, the Natural Resources Defense Council and the German Agency for International Cooperation (GIZ). Ramón is a graduate of American University in Washington D.C. and Princeton University in New Jersey.      


Miranda Lewis,
Executive Director, Foundation Channel Marketing and Communication at Mercy Health Foundation

Miranda has worked at Mercy Hospital since 2007, serving currently as Executive Director, Foundation Channel Marketing and Communication. She worked as the media coordinator for four years, and served as the spokesperson for the hospital at the time of the Joplin tornado, dealing with local, national and international media. In the wake of the disaster, Miranda had the opportunity to share her experience and lessons learned as a guest speaker at several crisis communication conferences such as Missouri Hospital Association, Indiana Hospital Association, Public Relations Society of America – Orlando Chapter and the California Association of Public Information Officials.


Handy Lindsey, Jr., President of the Ruth Mott Foundation in Flint, Michigan will deliver a keynote address you won’t want to miss. When the water crisis in Flint, Michigan, came to light, the Ruth Mott Foundation was one of many local organizations that responded to the man-made disaster. In his keynote address, Ruth Mott Foundation President Handy Lindsey Jr. will discuss how the foundation advocated for Flint’s most vulnerable residents, and will outline the challenges and opportunities in acting to alleviate an environmental crisis in a community already experiencing a disinvestment crisis.

Handy Lindsey, Jr.,
President of the Ruth Mott Foundation in
Flint, Michigan

Growing up poor as the oldest child of two Mississippi sharecroppers, Handy Lindsey Jr. knew focusing on his education would be his pathway out of poverty. After moving to an impoverished neighborhood in north St. Louis, Handy earned a scholarship and graduated from St. Louis University High School in 1971 – a triumph that altered the course of his life. Since then, he has dedicated his life to working in philanthropy, a profession that gives him the opportunity to help improve the quality of life for other families in need. Currently, Handy is President of the Ruth Mott Foundation in Flint, Michigan, which is still recovering from a water crisis that exposed thousands of vulnerable residents to unsafe levels of lead in their drinking water. In addition to the Ruth Mott Foundation’s work around the water crisis, Handy led the implementation of the Foundation’s new strategy that focuses grantmaking in the areas of youth, public safety, economic opportunity, and neighborhoods.

Handy has 30+ years of leadership experience in professional philanthropy. He joined the staff of The Ruth Mott Foundation of Flint Michigan in September 2014 as its President. In the interim between that post and his retirement as President of the Cameron Foundation of Petersburg, Virginia in 2012, he managed an independent consulting practice that focused on executive effectiveness and advising foundations in organizational development, program planning and strategy and capacity building for nonprofit excellence. He led the Field Foundation of Illinois in Chicago from 1988 until 2003. Between 1980 and 1988 he served the Chicago Community Trust in several positions including Assistant Director, Staff Associate, Senior Staff Associate and Executive Director of the Chicago Area Foundation for Legal Services, a supporting organization. He has also worked as a consultant to the United Way of Metropolitan Chicago and in Corporate Contributions with the local telephone company. Handy was instrumental in the development of the East St. Louis Community Foundation, where he served as interim Executive Director in 1985-86. Handy has extensive nonprofit governance experience having served on the board of directors of more than two dozen civic organizations, policy institutes, and professional associations of philanthropy, most in leadership roles such as member of the executive or management committee or chairman. Immediate past experience includes four years as a member of the executive committee of the Southeastern Council of Foundations and two years as chairman of Grantmakers for Effective Organizations. Handy studied at the University of Chicago where he earned an M.B.A. from the Booth School of Business, an M.A. from the School of Social Services Administration (SSA), and an undergraduate degree in Sociology. Between 1997 and 2000 he completed all required course work, but withdrew prior to completing the dissertation toward a PhD at SSA.

Continental breakfast and full lunch provided. 


$85.00 AFP Member

$125.00 Non-AFP Member

$35.00 Lunch Only - AFP Member (Includes Afternoon Keynote)

$50.00 Lunch Only - Non-AFP Member (Includes Afternoon Keynote)