AF4Q May 2013 National Meeting Sessions




May 2013 kicked off the start of the last phase of Aligning Forces for Quality, and the 16 AF4Q Alliances are marshaling what they need to have in their toolkits to ensure that their good work—and in some cases their organization—can sustain over time. Key to that goal is partnerships, within the community and among communities.

There are many elements to the sustainability equation. It is a considerable effort to navigate the federal and state health care landscapes, consider and pitch funding sources, and lay the groundwork to have long-term influence in a region. This meeting focused on the importance of partnerships in ensuring sustainability and gave attendees tools to continue to work with their teams on putting together the pieces of the sustainability puzzle. View the agenda here.

Plenary Sessions:


  • Welcome and opening remarks: Anne Weiss, RWJF and Robert Graham, AF4Q National Program Office

Jim Ziolkowski, founder, president, and CEO of buildOn, a non-profit organization that builds schools in developing countries while also running afterschool service programs in America’s toughest inner cities. With Berwickian goals, a deep belief in the power and value of his mission, and the skills to sell and spread his work, Ziolkowski created not only an organization, but also a movement. RECAP


Led in discussion by Jeff Brenner, this engaging panel will focus on the power of partnering with the media to tell your story, ways to engage reporters in your longer story well before they actually write a news article, and innovative approaches to connecting with the media. RECAP


  • Remarks by Katherine Browne, AF4Q National Program Office

Jerry Porras- Lane Professor of Organizational Behavior and Change Emeritus at Stanford University’s Graduate School of Business. Porras co-authored international business bestseller Built to Last: Successful Habits of Visionary Companies with Jim Collins. The book is based on the results of an exhaustive six-year research project aimed at discovering the approaches and behaviors of the most visionary companies of the past two centuries. Translated into 25 languages, it has sold more than one million copies worldwide. Mr. Porras believes that enabling individuals to build successful, healthy organizations is a powerful catalyst for creating successful, healthy societies. SLIDES / RECAP

Breakout Sessions:

  • THE STATE OF PARTNERING WITH THE STATES: This session exploredthe innovative partnerships various multi-stakeholder or community organizations have developed with their states to advance common agendas. MATERIALS / SLIDES / RECAP

  • STAKEHOLDER RELATIONSHIPS: TEACHABLE MOMENTS IN RETENTION OF STAKEHOLDERS: This panel of experts shared with you their thoughts and experiences on what NOT to do when trying to retain key stakeholders.  MATERIALS / RECAP

  • WHAT IT TAKES: CHARACTERISTICS OF SUSTAINABLE EFFORTS: This session explored the features of projects that have been able to transform stakeholder interest into support, and support into sustainability. MATERIALS / SLIDES / RECAP

  • THE ROAD TO FINANCIAL STABILITY: PARTNERING WITH GRANTMAKERS: Understanding what foundations consider when awarding grants goes a long way to help an Alliance craft the right proposal or pitch. In this session, attendees heard from decision makers from foundations who already have chosen to fund work in the health care world, including a few who fund current AF4Q communities. MATERIALS / RECAP

  • SUSTAINABILITY THROUGH ADAPTABILITY: BUILDING STRONG FOUNDATIONS FOR THE FUTURE BY CEMENTING PARTNERSHIPS NOW: Seizing big opportunities in the world of multi-stakeholder collaboratives requires significant and deliberate relationship building before the need arises. Speakers spoke about why they partnered with AF4Q Alliances in the past and how doing so helped both of their organizations be in the right position to respond when exciting new opportunities presented themselves.  MATERIALS / RECAP

  • GETTING TO “YES”: INTEREST-BASED NEGOTIATIONS: This unique 90-minute exercise was led by experts from the Center for Creative Leadership. MATERIALS / SLIDES / RECAP

  • HEALTH INSURANCE EXCHANGES: WHAT TO EXPECT WHEN YOU’RE EXPECTING: We don’t have a crystal ball, but we do have this insightful and well-connected panel that helped us understand what is coming down the road from the exchanges—and what is likely running through the minds of your various stakeholder groups. We heard predictions about what lies ahead and how these changes may affect numerous stakeholder partners. Build your plans from a position of knowledge about what the future holds.  MATERIALS / RECAP
  • PARTNERING FOR ORGANIZATIONAL DEVELOPMENT: THE "SECRET SAUCE" OF ALLIANCE BUILDING: This special 90-minute workshop offered hands-on support for your work in board development, succession, and engagement. MATERIALS / SLIDES / RECAP
  • THE ROAD TO FINANCIAL STABILITY: FINDING VALUE IN DATA: Data is a fundamental component in improving health care. However, data analytics can be a very resource intensive effort, making it difficult to generate a positive return on investment. In this panel, speakers shared how they have used data to generate value for their organization and what types of data products and services stakeholders are likely to see value in and buy.   SLIDES / RECAP

PDF version available here.