The Newsletter

Invest American Fund and Bridge Alliance Collaboration

Posted by Kahlil Byrd on December 19, 2016


The Bridge Alliance is proud to announce an investment strategic partnership between the Bridge Alliance and Invest America Fund

The Bridge Alliance recently announced a $300,000 grant program to Bridge Alliance members who best qualify for investment funds based on the strength of their collaborative programs.  A fundamental tenet that drives the Bridge Alliance strategy is the conviction that for significant political transformation to occur, a network must be established to build a shared identity, raise visibility, strengthen and expand the numbers of organizations and individuals dedicated to collaborative civic problem solving and collaborative public policy innovation. The funding of collective impact programs will drive this process. 

Invest America has just launched it’s first national fund focused on bipartisan and nonpartisan policy reform and transformation.  The fund provides seed financing and grants to the emerging community of political entrepreneurs whose core mission is to solve our toughest national problems. 

Please refer to the two links below from Invest America Fund:

We are proud to announce that Invest America Fund has committed to allocating a significant portion of their funds to investing in Bridge Alliance collective impact projects. 

An important Stanford University writing entitled “Channeling Change: Making Collective Impact Work” states the following 

“The complex nature of most social problems belies the idea that any single program or organization, however well managed and funded, can single-handedly create lasting large-scale change. “ 

We are confident that the strategic partnership just announced between Invest America Fund and Bridge Alliance is the first step bringing the infrastructure and financing to the bipartisan/nonpartisan political movement that is needed now more than ever.

Bridge Alliance

Faces Of Compassion

Posted by Marilyn Turkovich on December 12, 2016



Join us in adding a picture of yourself to the Charter for Compassion's Faces Of Compassion campaign. When you do, will donate $1 to the Charter for Compassion in your name. They need 10,000 people to finish it! The final mosaic will be displayed at various locations over the next year and help support projects around the world. 

To add your picture, upload it to Twitter, tag it with #FacesOfCompassion and @zumyn_mosaics – and help build a banner for display at events worldwide – a mural of a compassionate city, formed from all our faces. 

Click here to learn more about the Charter. 

Click here to learn more about the campaign.

Bridge Alliance

Five new members!

Posted by Bridge Alliance on December 04, 2016


We at Bridge Alliance hope you had a wonderful Thanksgiving with family and friends. In the past week, have grown by 5 new member organizations which puts our total membership at 54! The rapid growth in our membership provides proof that organizations and individuals in our nation are committed to collaborative civic problem solving and public policy innovation. Our newest members are All In Together, Stronger U.S. Education Fund, Independent Voter Project, National Foundation for Women Legislators (NFWL), and TheChisel.

Read more

Our Growing Membership

Posted by Bridge Alliance on November 21, 2016


The Bridge Alliance membership base has been growing quickly. This means greater exposure for organizations doing political bridge building work, more opportunities for strategic partnerships and joint collaboration, and building capacity and support for the transpartisan movement. We are excited to announce three more organizations that have been added to our network, Millennial Action Project, ALL IN Campus Democracy Challenge, and Common Ground Committee.

The Millennial Action Project has an audacious mission: re-establish political cooperation across parties and defeat the polarization and gridlock that is holding back our government and country. Our generation has a unique opportunity to forge a new path and lead our nation into the future, which is why MAP is committed to activating our nation's youngest generation of leaders and lawmakers.

Preparing graduates for their public lives as citizens, members of communities, and professionals in society has historically been a responsibility of higher education. The ALL IN Campus Democracy Challenge recognizes those postsecondary campuses committed to improving democratic engagement, increasing student voter participation rates, and graduating students with a lifelong commitment to being informed and active citizens. It also awards exemplary efforts in these same areas.

Screen_Shot_2016-11-21_at_2.48.42_PM.pngCommon Ground Committee's mission statement is to pursue initiatives which will reveal common ground for finding truth, clarity, understanding, and progress on issues of importance in a civil manner that does not require compromise of fundamental principles.




Bridge Alliance

New Members

Posted by Bridge Alliance on November 16, 2016


History shows that the challenges fracturing our nation remain beyond the capacity of the two party process to move our nation forward.  It is time for our country to heal and put country before party so that we can fulfill the American dream. On a bright note, Bridge Alliance's membership of organizations doing outstanding work keeps growing. We are excited to announce that Cities of Service, Sustained Dialogue Institute, and State Legislative Leaders Foundation have joined us.

logo16.pngCities of Service is a national nonprofit organization that supports mayors and city chief executives in their efforts to engage local communities and residents, identify challenges, and solve problems together. We work with cities to build city-led, citizen-powered initiatives that target specific needs, achieve long-term and measurable outcomes, improve the quality of life for residents, and build stronger cities. 

Unknown.pngSustained Dialogue Institute develops leaders able to transform differences into the strong relationships essential to effective decision-making, democratic governance, and peace. Sustained Dialogue differs from other changemaking processes through its focus on understanding the nature of community relationships, which are often the “problem behind the problem”. 

8B1872DE-898B-48FD-80B4-B262161D8718.pngState Legislative Leaders Foundation is a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization dedicated to professional development for our nation’s current and future state legislative leaders. Our constituency includes Speakers of the House, Senate Presidents, Majority Leaders, Minority Leaders, and Pro Tempores. And through our Emerging Leaders Program, we offer mentoring to first and second term legislators who have been identified by their peers as future leaders.

Bridge Alliance

Illinois Humanities & Institute for Local Government

Posted by Bridge Alliance on November 16, 2016


This last summer, the Bridge Alliance was busy making connections and bringing new organizations on board. We wanted to take a moment to highlight two of our newer members and the powerful work they are doing.

Illinois Humanities works to build dialogue across all sectors of society to examine issues important to democracy in the focus areas of public policy, media & journalism, business, and art. Using the humanities as tools to stimulate discussion, we create experiences across Illinois through programming, events, and grantmaking to engage a diverse public on ideas and issues that matter.


The Institute for Local Government promotes good government at the local level with practical, impartial and easy-to-use resources for California communities.  The Institute’s goal is to assist local leaders to govern openly, effectively and ethically, work collaboratively and foster healthy and sustainable communities.

The Bridge Alliance is proud to have new organizations joining our network that all have in common a commitment to working together for collective impact and increasing visibility for all those who want to strengthen the common ground.

Bridge Alliance

Represent.Us & FairVote

Posted by Bridge Alliance on October 31, 2016



One of our members, Represent.Us, is the nation’s largest grassroots anti-corruption campaign. We bring together conservatives, progressives, and everyone in between to pass powerful anti-corruption laws that stop political bribery, end secret money, and give voters a stronger voice. Together, we’re fixing our corrupt political system – so our leaders represent us.

This year, Represent.US has helped create statewide anti-corruption acts in two states, Washington (The Washington Government Accountability Act) and South Dakota (The South Dakota Accountability and Anti-Corruption Act). The Washington Act will end secret money and reveal who is buying political ads, encourage voter participation and empower small donors, and increase penalties for rule breakers. The South Dakota Act will end secret money, stop unlimited lobbyist gifts, and increase enforcement for violation of campaign and lobby laws.

OxU62jNH.jpgAnother one of our members, FairVote, has garnered broad support across the political spectrum for their initiative in Maine on ranked choice voting (RCV). RCV describes a voting system that allows voters to rank candidates in order of preference, and 

then uses those rankings to elect candidates. RCV is straightforward for voters, allowing them to rank as many candidates as they want without the fear that ranking others will hurt the choice of their favorite candidate. The campaign has released a video of the RCV benefits for Maine that you can watch here.

We are proud to support these organizations and our other members in their efforts to change our nation. We are making progress and we strongly urge everyone to vote in their respective communities.

Bridge Alliance


Posted by Courtlyn Carpenter on October 23, 2016


Dear Friend-

We are excited to help announce that one of our members bridgeUSA is opening new collegiate chapters around the nation that will help more young people engage in civil discourse. bridgeUSA seeks to provide an open and welcoming forum for frank and rational political discourse where it is most desperately needed – the university campus.

Here is a note from President and Co-Founder, Patrick Kearney:

"bridgeUSA was happy to recently welcome the newest addition to our organization - bridgeASU - whose coverage of the presidential election has electrified Arizona State's campus and brought dozens of new members to the bridge movement. 

Likewise, bridgeSLU and bridgeUST, at St. Louis University and the University of St. Thomas, respectively, await administrative approval to begin their activities. We have also received expressed interest from student leaders on dozens of campuses across the country, including MIT, George Mason, Boston University, Michigan, Chicago, Northwestern, and other schools, all of whom are excited to join bridge in bringing virtuous discourse to their college campuses."

Bridge Alliance

Nevins Fellows

Posted by David Nevins on October 16, 2016



The Nevins Democracy Fellows program is an educational and leadership-training program. This program has the necessary funding to provide Penn State students with an all-expenses paid summer internship opportunity with a civic organization that promotes democracy, dialogue, and/or deliberation.

They believe that trans-partisan leadership skills can best develop by exposing students to a variety of philosophies, viewpoints, and strategies, and by teaching them the tools of critical thinking, deliberation, and dialogue. Nevins Fellows get a grounding in these ideas through a one-credit course at Penn State, but the summer internship is the key.

They are looking for democratic innovators to host Penn State students for two months the summer of 2017.  The McCourtney Institute for Democracy at Penn State provides the funding for this program, and the hosts ensure that the Fellows have an outstanding educational and professional experience advancing the programs of the host organization.

Past host organizations include: No Labels, The Aspen Institute, Public Agenda, Everyday Democracy, Healthy Democracy, The Jefferson Center, and many more.

Applications are due by October 21, 2016. Interested organizations can apply to host a 2017 Nevins Fellow by clicking here, and you can view FAQ by clicking here.

If you have questions or need any more information, please contact the McCourtney Institute Managing Director Chris Beem at [email protected].

Bridge Alliance


Essential Partners

Posted by Parisa Parsa on October 10, 2016


Bridge Alliance is excited to help announce that one of our member organizations Public Conversations Project has a new name and identity- Essential Partners.

Here is a note from Essential Partners about their change:

The new name and identity culminated from two years of analysis, research, and a strategic process to better address the many challenges facing the nation and the world. 26 years after the founding of the organization by a group of colleagues at the Family Institute of Cambridge, our body of practice in shaping courageous conversations is well known and respected. We are now ready to boldly proclaim the power and relevance of our work and move assertively to share our practices, our training, and our consultation with new audiences hungry for better ways to be in community.

The name “Essential Partners” emerged because we get to the issues at their essence. We work through long-term, sustained partnership with communities that want to find a new way to be together. Our years of action research have shown that new possibilities emerge when people whose views differ turn to one another as essential partners to discover a path forward. We are ready to be your partners in uncovering the essential connection that is hidden in the midst of difference. Learn more about the work that led us in a more detailed story.

Executive Director Parisa Parsa sums it up:

“Essential Partners invites us each to discover and re-discover the core of who we are and what we value. Grounded in our own truth, we can find both the courage and the generosity to listen to those we have considered our enemies. This continued discovery of our partnership as neighbors sharing a community, a nation, a planet is absolutely essential to crafting a vibrant future.”