Diana Blank began her philanthropic journey in 1993. For the next three decades, she worked to increase the dignity of individuals and the sustainability of communities by investing in transformative leaders and ideas. All told, she made more than $1 billion in grants during those 30 years — combining large, public gifts with small, quiet gestures to confront seemingly intractable problems in creative ways for the benefit of people and planet.

Diana always aspired to leave the world a better place than she found it, and spending out was her chosen path to make that happen. She never sought to build an institution for her philanthropy that would live in perpetuity. Instead, her strategy involved working nimbly as an accelerant of progress, lifting up transformative leaders and ideas to help effect critical change in the present, where it is so urgently needed.

The Kendeda Fund knows our work would never have been possible but for the efforts of those who came before us; and we recognize that others will carry on when we’re gone, working with and for future generations.

Though Kendeda is stepping off the philanthropic path, we know our grantee partners and a majority of fellow funders are not. We are grateful to all whose sights remain fixed on a future where justice, equity and peace ascend. In service of everyone continuing after we depart, our staff developed a series of six reports in conjunction with the communities of practice that supported us for so many years. In some cases, we held those conversations with collectives; in others, one-on-one. For all six, we leaned on external facilitators and writers from different areas like academia, journalism and evaluation to gain additional perspectives.

We hope peers, friends and allies alike will receive these humble offerings and use them to navigate the road ahead. They are meant to honor the uniqueness and creativity of our partners. They are rich with ideas and inspiration. And they represent our last opportunity to amplify the voices, ideas and wishes of partners we love.

Voices of our Grantees: Our Six Program Reports

The Kendeda Fund’s Girls’ Rights grantees reflect on spending down with principle and purpose.