YANA Bay Area Kickoff: Networking followed by a presentation, “How a Climate Nonprofit Built Its Strategic Plan,” from Maura Fallon-McNight of The Business Council on Climate Change and Jonathan Becker MC ’87 of This Team Works.

How a Climate Nonprofit Built Its Strategic Plan:
Lessons and Practical Tips from the Business Council on Climate Change

The San Francisco Bay Area chapter of the Yale Alumni Non-Profit Alliance hosted its 2018-19 kickoff event on October 30, in downtown San Francisco.

Maura Fallon McKnight, the executive director of BC3 (the Business Council on Climate Change), a SF-based nonprofit, and Jonathan Becker, MC ’87, a strategic planning consultant who heads the company. This Team Works, shared the podium to discuss how strategic planning enabled a small nonprofit to maximize its impact. Maura described BC3’s strategy for enlisting corporations in building a low-carbon future. Jonathan described the lessons learned and challenges met in developing THE strategic plan for BC3.

Maura opened the session by asking attendees to introduce themselves and their interests in the nonprofit /social impact sector. We learned that members of the audience are at work on issues of public health, environmental protection, international human rights, religion, arts and culture, and social action.

The chapter hosted a social hour preceding the presentation. Lively conversation over California wines and snacks provided opportunities for not only professional networking and sharing ideas, but also for kindling or reviving friendships.


Event overview: Whatever the sector, making and executing strategy is a challenge, but it is essential to mission success. The Business Council on Climate Change (BC3) is a San Francisco-based nonprofit focused on bringing leaders from all sectors together to address the climate change challenge.

In 2017, the executive director and board decided it was time for a fresh look at the organization. There was no question of the magnitude of the issue – climate change in San Francisco – and of the potential of the region to develop inspirational and innovative approaches. BC3 had a great contribution to make. And yet the organization’s leaders felt it was time for a new strategy that helped BC3 live into its mission and its full potential. BC3’s executive director, Maura Fallon-McKnight, discussed the process BC3 went through. This session was designed for any nonprofit leader or board member who is interested in strategy’s role in organizational success. She was joined by Jonathan Becker MC ’87 of This Team Works, the consultant that supported the process.