We are thrilled to welcome in September by honoring Andrew Becvar as SVP Portland’s Partner to the Month! Andrew is a Certified Financial Planner™, and is the President of BizPlanet, a Business Planners’ Network, which helps entrepreneurs and social changemakers organize their ideas, strategies, and resources in a formal plan and works with them to facilitate the achievement of their business and organizational goals.
Andrew joined the SVP Partnership in 2018 and has brought his expertise in financial management directly to our Partnership ever since. At the end of 2018, Andrew co-facilitated a Financial Planning & Philanthropy Workshop to teach Partners how to leverage their financial resources by giving to the community through financial planning.
In 2019, SVP Portland began to pilot a Financial Health Assessment, created by SVP Seattle. As Lead Partner for this effort, Andrew led a team of Partners to collaborate with Latino Network’s management and board to build a roadmap for increasing financial maturity (e.g., an organization’s ability to manage, maintain, and improve day-to-day financial business processes).
Andrew’s leadership, passion, and expertise truly represent the SVP spirit!
AN INTERVIEW WITH ANDREW:
Why did you join SVP?
I first learned about SVP’s venture philanthropy model through an invitation to attend the annual Partner’s meeting, an event that showcases the organizations that SVP Portland supports and highlights the impact they have had in the community over the previous year. I was extremely impressed with the outcomes of their work and the systems approach that they take to make such a positive difference in Portland. Other SVP chapters from around the country had even sent groups of their partners to attend a workshop about how SVP Portland had tailored their philanthropy model to focus their resources and efforts on a specific high-impact issue, and how that strategy had enabled them to have a stronger effect on the broader goals they’ve set out to achieve.
I appreciated SVP’s ability to identify and leverage the skills of their Partner network, enabling us to contribute in the way that best fits our abilities to serve the needs of the organizations that we support. The opportunity to leverage my experiences to directly help others is what attracted me most to join as a Partner of SVP Portland, and for that I am forever grateful.
How does capacity building solve community problems?
Wouldn’t it be awesome if every great idea automatically came with a roadmap to guide its founders through the process of starting, developing, and growing an organization that is optimized to successfully (and joyfully) achieve its mission!? Well, I certainly wish that were the case, but recognize that all too often even the most experienced and well-intentioned leaders struggle to maintain one or more administrative elements that are crucial to bringing their visions into reality. Building organizational capacity in these overlooked areas removes many of the obstacles that frequently deter organizations from delivering the services that they were designed to provide.
SVP Portland has been amazing to work with because it helps equip these passionate philanthropists with the tools required to bring their organizations from wherever they are to the next level of operational maturity. Many organizations already exist to solve various social problems, and SVP helps them stay focused on what inspires them, as well as helps them manage the various stages of growth so they can continue serving the community in their special way.
What has been most rewarding thus far?
Our Financial Health Assessment team recently had the privilege of working with an SVP Community Partner, Latino Network, and providing feedback from a facilitated “financial deep dive” discussion. Seeing how everybody was able to use their unique experiences and perspectives to directly support such an important organization was absolutely thrilling and gave me a true sense of the capacity-building potential that SVP has to offer. Even for an organization as impressive as Latino Network, this service feels like an invaluable contribution and I am looking forward to working with other organizations that can benefit from this process.
What do you like to do in your spare time?
I really like to spend time outdoors hiking, camping, rafting, and skiing. I also love playing disc golf and am happy to introduce new people to the sport! I grew up in Portland and enjoy visiting friends and spending time with family, as well as going out to see live music, stand-up comedy, debates, and presentations about current social issues.
I enjoy staying up-to-date on financial, economic, and political news, and studying regularly to stay current on various professional credentials. Beyond that, I have a lot of fun working with teams to develop websites and online platforms, learning about new technologies and data science applications, teaching students about personal finance, volunteering at events for entrepreneurs and future business leaders, ideating and innovating to address social equity problems, and can often be found at various types of MeetUp events around town.