This seminar precedes the PRI Institute, a new forum and intensive training designed for grantmakers who are already engaged in the productive use of program-related investments (PRIs) or who are committed to learning in detail how to develop and implement a philanthropic strategy that includes PRIs.
PRI Makers Network is an association of grantmakers who use program-related and other investments to accomplish their philanthropic goals. Its mission is to provide a forum for networking, professional development, collaboration and outreach to funders, including those not currently making PRIs or other social investments.
As Counsel for the Skoll Foundation, Ed Diener provides expertise and leadership for legal, contracting and tax activities. He also supervises the Foundation's portfolio of program-related investments.
Ed came to Skoll from The Omidyar Foundation, a part of Omidyar Network in Redwood City, Calif., where he was Vice President of Finance and Administration for almost two years. Previously, he worked for six years at The David and Lucile Packard Foundation in Los Altos, Calif., where he was Assistant Director of Finance and Administration and, later, Resident Counsel.
An attorney and Certified Public Accountant, Ed practiced commercial and corporate law for 17 years prior to entering the philanthropic sector.
He graduated from Bowling Green State University in Ohio magna cum laude with a Bachelor of Science degree in accounting. He earned a law degree from Boalt Hall School of Law at the University of California at Berkeley and remains a member of the bar.
Christa Velasquez is Director of Social Investments at the Annie E Casey Foundation. The Foundation is a private charitable organization whose principal mission is to help build better futures for disadvantaged children and families.
Ms. Velasquez is responsible for developing, coordinating, and managing the Foundation’s $100 million social investment fund. She develops and implements the Foundation’s evolving social investment strategy, designs social investment policies and procedures, and educates staff about Social Investments (SIs) and how to identify potential investments. Ms. Velasquez also manages the due- diligence process and is responsible for deal structuring, portfolio monitoring, developing a technical assistance plan for grantees and partners, and creating SI training tools.
Prior to joining the Foundation, Ms. Velasquez spent six years at Brody·Weiser·Burns (BWB), a consulting firm based in Connecticut, the last two years as an associate partner. At BWB, she specialized in social investing, community development financing, business planning for social ventures, program evaluation, and management of minority cultural institutions. She has worked extensively to develop new SI programs, evaluate and redesign existing programs, underwrite and structure investments, and monitor the performance of borrowers and investees.
Ms. Velasquez is on the Board of Managers of TRF Urban Growth Partners, the board of directors of the American Visionary Art Museum, Catholic Charities of the Archdiocese of Baltimore, Goodwill Industries of the Chesapeake, and the Advisory Committee of the Yale University School of Management Internship Fund. Ms. Velasquez has an undergraduate degree in Latin American Studies from the University of Chicago, and an M.B.A.