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Partner of the Month: Abby Hazlett

Posted by Sagarika Ravishankar

Abby Hazlett, Partner and Rising Leader

Abby Hazlett is a driving force in our Project Impact cohort, which is working to evaluate the impact of our capacity building partnerships. She is the one Partner who has been engaged in Project Impact since we launched the cohort in March. With Project Impact, Abby uses her analytical mind to conduct interviews with former and current Investees and pull out key findings and themes to identify the effect our capacity building model has on the people and organizations we work with. Working collaboratively with team members, Abby led the design of our quantitative survey and is currently conducting a meta-analysis of the data to fold into our final report. We value her input, expertise, and her commitment to Project Impact, and recognize that her involvement has been a key factor in moving the project forward, defining how we prove and improve our impact.

In addition to her Partnership with Project Impact, she is also part of the 2017 Rising Leaders for Social Good cohort. As a Rising Leader, she is doing some deep learning around philanthropy and defining her personal philanthropic goals. Rising Leaders has been the gateway for her involvement with Project Impact. We are so inspired by the enthusiasm and commitment Abby brings to the table as a Partner, and as a philanthropist.

What drove you to join SVP?

I came to SVP because I was looking for a way to get involved in the vibrant non-profit community in Portland. Having always worked in education or the private sector, I felt like a complete beginner and the Rising Leaders program really appealed to me as a way to immediately start working with a trusted Portland non-profit, gain some more knowledge and context around issues related to non-profit work, and get introduced to a broad range of other non-profit organizations (SVP Investees) all at the same time.

What has been most rewarding for you thus far?  

I joined the SVP group participating in the funders cohort of Project Impact and I have really enjoyed the experience of thinking deeply about how to evaluate impact. It’s also been a great way to learn more about the SVP model and get to know great SVP staff like Lauren Johnson and Sarah Cohen-Doherty. We’re coming to the end of that project and working on the final report and I am really proud of the work we’ve done.

Have you had any “aha” moments?

My biggest “aha moment” in my work with SVP so far came when I was conducting interviews for Project Impact. I spoke with the Executive Director of an Investee who explained to me how working with SVP hadn’t just allowed them to improve their board structure but had also created space for them to step back and make an entirely new strategic plan. The scope and direction of the organization were transformed because of the work they did with SVP and she was so excited about the impact that will have on the communities they serve. I felt like the value of a capacity building model really clicked for me during that interview.

What do you like to do in your free time?

I’m a first-time homeowner so I spend a lot of my free time on house and garden-related projects. I try a lot of DIY projects and I’m learning which things I like doing myself and which I’d rather leave to the experts. I also love to bike around Portland, even better if the ride involves a stop at a brewery! I am an avid traveler and even when I don’t have a big trip planned I consider myself very lucky to live in Oregon where there are plenty of adventures that can fit in a weekend.

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