Another Record Membership for Impact100 Sonoma

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAThe level of enthusiastic applause was extraordinary as Sydney Randazzo, President of Impact100 Sonoma, made the announcement: 239 members*!  This record membership represents a 78% retention rate for returning members, includes 55 new members, and means that in June 2014, Impact100 will be able to provide $239,000 in grants to nonprofits serving Sonoma Valley.  This is a tremendous accomplishment for the organization, bringing the total amount granted in only five years to $929,000!  What is also remarkable is that in 2015, we will surpass $1,000,000.

Additional good news announced at the meeting is that Union Bank will be our major underwriter for a second year!  As all of the $1,000 donated by each Impact100 member goes directly to grants, support from community partners such as Union Bank helps to defray the administrative costs of our organization.


Celia Canfield and Mary Ann Gallagher


Following an update from Grace Meeks, Impact Grant Chair, on the changes to the 2014 $100,000 Impact Grant, the meeting was turned over to Celia Canfield (Executive Vice President, Impact100 Sonoma) and facilitator, Mary Ann Gallagher (see bio below).  Celia explained that the day was about “reflection and envisioning and hearing your voice.”


Mary Ann outlined the tangible goals for the day:

  • Celebrate our five-year accomplishments
  • Envision what could evolve in the next five years
  • Capture member visions and how they could work
  • Organize future member involvement

and also the secondary goals:

  • Hear all voices and interests
  • Know at least five new or little-known people better
  • Touch as many members as possible in a meaningful way
  • Encourage participation in brainstorming and solutions after the meeting

and then she set us to our tasks.






More than 90 Impact100 members were in attendance, and they were randomly placed at one of nine tables, each with an assigned host and recorder.  After a quick “how many new people can you meet in two minutes activity,” the groups got to work.  There were two rounds of conversations.  During the first round, all tables discussed membershipOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA Thoughts were captured on templates (see right) as members first described what currently works and then moved on to envisioning what could evolve.  Conversations were lively and recorders feverishly jotted down the ideas expressed.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAThen using a “dot voting” technique, each table focused on the most popular ideas presented and envisioned how those ideas might be implemented…  and then the gong sounded…  time to move on to the next topic of discussion.

During the second round, one half of the room discussed grant allocation and the other half discussed community involvement.  The same procedures were followed and new templates were generated.  Again, the time sped by and the gong sounded, indicating the close of the conversations.   After a quick break during which members had an opportunity to sign up for committee work, each of the tables reported on the big ideas that emerged from their conversations.

There is something quite refreshing about the honest energy of a meeting such as this.  Reflective comments from attendees included:
   Loved the brainstorming – I got to know people much better, met a brand new member.
   Great, productive, participatory meeting.
   Loved the whole experience!

Impact100 members are extremely proud of their organization and its accomplishments, but they want to make an even bigger impact.  Their voices were heard.

To learn what those voices had to say, please review a synthesis of the discussions available here.
In addition, a collection of all of the completed table templates is available here.

Many thanks to all who helped to plan and organize the meeting and to the following members who served as Hosts and Recorders:
Lorraine Ashton, B.J. Bischoff, Patti England, Cathy Gorham, Constance Grizzell, Marguerite LaDue, Lynne Lancaster, Kathryn Lewis, Lisa Lilienthal, Nancy Lilly, Susan McQuaid, Grace Meeks, Jeanne Montague, Mirja Muncy, Ann Reder, Diana Sanson, Jacque Scott, Peg VanCamp


* This number represents an update to the original announcement of 231 members.

** Mary Ann Gallagher is interested in bringing forth the creative genius in all people. With a Ph.D. in Education from Catholic University in Washington DC, Mary Ann has been working to create transformative learning environments throughout her career.  Mary Ann lives in Berkeley, California.  She is a principle with Participant Centered Transformations offering brain-based event conducting and design skills.  She consults with Economic Transformations group on global economic development projects primarily oriented to sustainability.  She is a life coach, a mother of two grown children, both successful artists.


With thanks to our 2014 Major Underwriter
union bank