2012 marks the inauguration of the AAPIP Banyan Tree Award, in recognition of a key individual or institution with demonstrated commitment to Building Democratic Philanthropy within the field and the community. The first AAPIP Banyan Tree Award recipient is Alandra L. Washington, Deputy Director, W.K. Kellogg Foundation. The award will be presented to Ms. Washington at the AAPIP Annual Membership Meeting in Los Angeles, California, on April 29, 2012, in conjunction with the 2012 Council on Foundations Conference.
Ms. Washington is the Deputy Director for the Family Economic Security and Education and Learning teams at the W.K. Kellogg Foundation. In addition to supporting the vice president for programs in providing overall coordination of the teams’ programming efforts in support of the Foundation’s mission, Ms. Washington manages a portfolio focused on philanthropic engagement and community philanthropy, through which she has worked with the AAPIP Community Philanthropy program, including the development of the AAPIP Giving Circle Network.
The AAPIP Banyan Tree Award is presented to an individual or institution within philanthropy or the community with demonstrated commitment to Building Democratic Philanthropy. The Banyan tree, with its deep roots and expansive, inviting canopy, is in many cultures a gathering and community space. The Banyan tree offers a useful metaphor for AAPIP’s achievements in the development of community philanthropy, and giving circles, in particular.
Peggy Saika, President and Executive Director of AAPIP, applauded the choice of Ms. Washington for this inaugural recognition by observing, “Alandra’s encouragement and advice, her willingness to connect the importance of community philanthropy to allies across the country and, most importantly, her leadership in sharing our stories with others at the W.K. Kellogg Foundation, has been critical in our efforts to create a robust movement to build giving circles within Asian American and Pacific Islander communities.”
The W.K. Kellogg Foundation, established in 1930, supports children, families and communities as they strengthen and create conditions that propel vulnerable children to achieve success as individuals and as contributors to the larger community and society. Grants are concentrated in the United States, southern Africa, Latin America and the Caribbean. The Kellogg Foundation has worked closely with AAPIP in the development of community philanthropy in AAPI communities, particularly through the Foundation’s Cultures of Giving Initiative.