Posted on June 5, 2019
The Weissberg Foundation is pleased to announce that Tamara Lucas Copeland has joined our board of directors!
Tamara is the former president of the Washington Regional Association of Grantmakers (WRAG). Her leadership with WRAG’s groundbreaking work, Putting Racism on the Table, has received widespread recognition for pushing the philanthropic community—including the Weissberg Foundation—to understand issues around race and racism and to work more effectively to advance equity.
Tamara also brings extensive experience in nonprofit management and policy issues having led Voices for America’s Children, the National Health & Education Consortium, and the Infant Mortality Initiative of Southern Governors’ Association and Southern Legislative Conference, as well as having been Congressman Bobby Scott’s (D-VA) legislative director.
We asked Tamara a few burning questions. Check out her responses below.
Why did you accept the invitation to join the Weissberg Foundation’s board of directors?
For several years, I have admired the leadership and commitment to racial justice of Weissberg Foundation executive director Hanh Le and trustee Nina Weissberg. After retiring from WRAG, I wanted to find the right spot to be a contributor toward racial justice in the DMV. When the conversation started about this possibility, I thought the Weissberg Foundation could be that place, but I knew for sure when I was introduced to their core values: equity; listening and learning; intentionality; ingenuity; and trust and empowerment. It’s a great fit and fun to be back in the WRAG community.
What are you looking forward to learning and contributing through this new role?
At WRAG, I wasn’t connected directly to nonprofit organizations working for change. Now I am positioned to learn and understand their work and needs while also being a partner in supporting them as change agents. I am excited about the possibilities.
What conversations are happening in the broader social sector right now that have your attention?
Two years ago, WRAG’s Annual Meeting was entitled “Power Reframed.” WRAG wanted to examine the concept of power then and I still do now. I don’t think philanthropy has “power” right yet, either in recognizing the power it holds and can wield or in being in authentic, dynamic partnerships with nonprofits, recognizing and supporting their power. And, of course, I want to continue the conversations on racial equity and justice. I hope they will grow and deepen in the DMV and across America, and I hope those conversations will lead to deep meaningful actions so we can all heal and prosper.
Where do you call home?
Home is Washington, DC, but a large part of my heart will always be in Richmond, VA.
What are some fun facts about you that might surprise people?
Hmmm… fun facts that might surprise people. I always think of myself as an open book, so I’m not sure there are a lot of surprises. But, here are a few. I used to own and ride a motorcycle, a gift I requested from my grandmother. I love to capture memories. Even before Facebook and Snapfish helped with this, I would and still do create an annotated photo album every New Year’s Day with highlights of time with friends and family from the previous year. One more: I’m not bored in retirement 🙂.
If you could distill your life into a Six-Word Memoir, what would it be?
Trying to live fully/purposefully/joyfully.
Learn more about Tamara through her blog and book, www.daughtersofthedream.org.