NMAG NewsNew Mexico Nonprofit Support System Landscape Study

December 20, 2018 – 


Dear Colleagues,

The New Mexico Association of Grantmakers (NMAG) and the supporting funders and Steering Committee members listed below, are pleased to present the findings from the New Mexico Nonprofit Support System Landscape Study.

REPORT: Report NM Nonprofit Supports Landscape with Appendices

SLIDE PRESENTATION: Website NMNonprofitSupportsLandscape_Presentation

This study is an important collaborative effort demonstrating philanthropy’s commitment to strengthening New Mexico’s nonprofit sector. New Mexico funders have had a long history of both financial and non-financial investments in the nonprofit sector. In 2016 alone, funders gave approximately $1 million to New Mexico grant recipients in support areas such as network building/collaboration, capacity building/technical assistance, leadership development, research/evaluation, and public education/marketing. 1New Mexico grantmakers also offer high levels of general operating and other capacity building support along with significant in-kind giving for services that nonprofit organizations use to build their internal capacity.2

This effort began in 2017, when a group of New Mexico funders gathered to discuss how to improve the availability of high-quality support services for New Mexico’s nonprofit sector. The group agreed they needed to know more about the sector’s support service and resource needs, what organizational framework would strengthen it, and lessons learned from innovative efforts in other states. The group pooled resources to fund a research study to answer these questions. After a rigorous RFP process, we selected Apex, an Albuquerque based consulting firm, as our research and strategy partner. A group of funder and nonprofit leaders then volunteered to participate in a steering committee to provide guidance and direction for the study.

Apex staff evaluated the issues comprehensively using a variety of methodologies and approaches. The staff conducted a survey of 305 nonprofits and 35 funders, interviewed 35 service providers, funders and Tribal organizations, conducted 7 case studies of models in other states, and reviewed the literature for current research and best practices. The recommendations call for a coordinated and more strategic service support system that facilitates greater collaborations and identifies new ways to connect nonprofits to resources and a designated advocacy voice for the sector. Finally, the report calls for funders to unite in aligned or pooled funding around these recommendations.

We wish to deeply thank the funders who came together to fund this project, and the Steering Committee for their leadership contributions and thoughtful recommendations. Our deepest appreciation to the nonprofits, funders, and their dedicated staff who completed the survey or participated in interviews. This report is an important next step in our journey to unite and engage funders and nonprofit organizations for a stronger, more effective and sustainable nonprofit sector. We invite others to contribute their thoughts on this report by sending any feedback to Cathy Frey at or 505-660-5073.

Supporting Funders:

Albuquerque Community Foundation

Community Foundation of Southern New Mexico

Con Alma Health Foundation

McCune Charitable Foundation

New Mexico State University Foundation

Sandia National Laboratory

Santa Fe Community Foundation

Taos Community Foundation

United Way of Central New Mexico

Steering Committee Members

Larry Alei, Center for Nonprofit Excellence, Director

Heather W. Balas, President and Executive Director, New Mexico First

Cathy Frey, Executive Director, New Mexico Association of Grantmakers

Michelle Gutierrez, Program Officer, NB3 Foundation

Marita Jones, Healthy Native Communities Partnership, Director

Frank René López, W.K. Kellogg Foundation, Director New Mexico Programs

Annmarie McLaughlin, Director of Community Programs, Santa Fe Community Foundation

Lisa M. O’Brien, Taos Community Foundation, Foundation Director

Ed Rivera, President and CEO, United Way of Central New Mexico/Center for Nonprofit Excellence

Dolores E. Roybal, Executive Director, Con Alma Health Foundation

Randy Royster, President and CEO, Albuquerque Community Foundation

Pam Valencia, Healthy Native Communities Partnership, Grants and Finance

Susan Wilger, Director, Nonprofit Resource Group (National Center for Frontier Communities)

Terra Winter, Executive Director, Community Foundation of Southern New Mexico

Apex Staff

Carlos Romero, MBA, President & Senior Evaluator

Nancy Hood, PhD, Senior Evaluator

Anna Horner, Research Associate

Morgan Occhino, Research Associate

Olga Glinskii, MA, Evaluator


1Foundation Center Maps that compiles data from a number of sources, including direct reporting of grants by foundations, IRS information returns (Forms 990 and 990-PF), foundation web sites, and other public sources.

2New Mexico Association of Grantmakers, Outlook for Foundation Giving, 2018 report https://www.nmag.org/news-item/new-philanthropy-in-new-mexico-2018-report/