Letter to the Community

Yanique Redwood, PhD, MPH
President and CEO
Deborah M. Smith, M.D.
Chair, Board of Trustees

When we tell people that the Consumer Health Foundation is transforming, there is often a look of surprise on their faces. It is easy to believe that Consumer Health Foundation had already been transformed in a variety of ways. We are intentional about our commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion. CHF is one of few private foundations in the country with a person of color at the helm. The Board of Trustees has historically reflected the racial/ethnic and gender diversity present in our community, and the Foundation has been advancing equity since we made our first grants 20 years ago.

Those looks of surprise lead us to two observations:

  • First, there may be an assumption that organizations can be transformed. That is to say, the work of transformation can be completed and finished. Achieving equity is certainly a desired outcome. Indeed, we do aspire to the day when it is impossible to predict a person or group’s outcomes based on racial identity (equity as a goal). However, we also see equity as a constant process of assuring the conditions that allow all people regardless of their racial and ethnic background to live optimally (equity as a process). In a similar vein, organizations must see themselves as constantly in the process of transformation. The question on everyone’s minds at the board, senior management and staff levels ought to be, “What else can we do as an organization to become more equitable?” This is also the work.
  • Second, foundations (including CHF) often have little accountability to a community or set of communities. As a sector, we have accepted this as the way it is. We are now challenging ourselves in this respect, and we have started with the center of power in philanthropic organizations—the Board of Trustees. For many community members, the ability to fully participate in philanthropy has been limited by structural racism and other forms of oppression. So, we dedicated resources to popular education with community members about the philanthropic sector and how it amasses and distributes wealth. At the same time, we created opportunities for all of us to react to outdated notions about who knows best what communities need. We, then, invited community members of color with lived experience and expertise in surviving housing instability, low wage work as an adult and unemployment or underemployment to apply to serve on the Board. We received 19 such applications from thoughtful, curious and, ambitious folks. By this fall, four of these individuals will join us. We paused strategic planning last year to wait for them so that we could, together, rethink our programmatic strategy in partnership with a broader network of community members. We have hired a facilitator to keep us vigilant about power dynamics at board meetings and strategic planning conversations.

At an interest meeting that we held at Miriam’s Kitchen this past spring, we explained our transformation efforts to community members who had experienced or were experiencing homelessness. One woman asked, “If you have been around for 25 years, how come you are just now doing this?” It was a pointed question deserving of a clear answer. Our answer was not good enough, but it is where we are.

We had focused on racial and gender diversity and the traditional lens of diversity frameworks and had failed to examine board composition and other parts of our institution through the intersection of race and class. Now that we have, many tensions have surfaced, but we are ready for the relationships and conversations that will allow us to further clarify the pathways to racial equity and economic justice.

It’s about time, and it is the time.

Grantmaking Overview

Black Organizing For Leadership and Dignity

Black Organizing For Leadership and Dignity


To support the organizing and leadership of Black organizers in the Washington, DC region.

Black Youth Project 100 DC

Black Youth Project 100 DC


To support Black youth organizing and leadership development in the Washington, DC region.

Bread for the City

Bread for the City


To advocate for affordable housing.




To organize low-income, immigrant workers and their families, advocate for workers’ rights, and build community wealth.

Centreville Immigration Forum

Centreville Immigration Forum


To support cross-racial partnerships among workers, develop the leadership of indigenous women, and create pathways for employment opportunities through skills trainings.

Commonwealth Institute for Fiscal Analysis

Commonwealth Institute for Fiscal Analysis


To provide general operating support.

Financial Statements

as of December 31, 2018 and 2017





Cash & cash equivalents






Program related investments



Receivables, net



Prepaid expenses and other assets



Total Assets



Liabilities & Net Assets


Accounts payable and accrued expenses




Accounts payable, program close out



Deferred lease incentive



Deferred excise taxes



Other liabilities



Total Liabilities



Net Assets

Net assets without donor restrictions



Net assets with donor restrictions



Total Net Assets



Total Liabilites & Net Assets



for the Years Ended December 31, 2018 and 2017




Net Assets Without Donor Restrictions

Revenue and Other Support

Net unrealized gains



Interest and dividends



Net realized gains (losses)






Rental income



Other income



Release of net assets from restrictions



Total Revenue and Other Support




Program Services



Management and general



Total Expenses






Net Assets with Donor Restrictions




Release of net assets from restrictions



Change in Net Assets With Donor Restrictions Before Non-operating Activities



Non-operating Activities
Transfer of other RPCC funds to Greater Washington Community Foundation

Transfer of RPCC funds



Change in Net Assets w/Donor Restrictions After Non-operating Activities



Change in Net Assets$(2,810,465)$3,565,382Net assets, beginning of year$26,680,537$23,115,155

Net assets, end of year$23,870,072$26,680,537

Board & Staff

Board of Trustees

Deborah Smith,

David Harrington,
Vice Chair/Assistant Secretary

Art Stevens,

Wendy Chun-Hoon

Tanya M. Edelin

Tonya Vidal Kinlow

Jacquelyn L. Lendsey

Elizabeth H. Patterson,
until June 2019

Darakshan Raja

Yanique Redwood

Silvia Salazar

Aydin Tuncer

Alan Reed Weil

David Zuckerman

Foundation Staff

Yanique Redwood

Kendra Allen

Temi F. Bennett, Esq.

Nia Nyamweya

Ria Pugeda

Nivosoa Robjhon

Board & Staff Diversity

CHF Board Race and Ethnicity Composition

7%Asian/Pacific Islander
43%African American
14%Mixed Race

CHF Board Sexual Orientation Composition


CHF Board Gender/Gender Identity Composition


CHF Board Age Range Composition

14%Under 35
21%65 or older

CHF Staff Race and Ethnicity Composition

17%Asian/Pacific Islander
66%African American
17%Mixed Race

CHF Staff Sexual Orientation Composition


CHF Staff Gender/Gender Identity Composition


CHF Staff Age Range Composition

33%Under 35
0%65 or older