past event
Nonprofit Organizations

How Nonprofits and the Media Can Build Trust and Engagement with the American Public

Nonprofits play a major role in everyday American life. They create green spaces for kids to play, ensure people can receive medical care, provide religious services, and fill communities with art and music, among other contributions.

Yet there is a disconnect between what nonprofits provide and how Americans perceive those benefits in their lives. A recent study by the Indiana University Lilly Family School of Philanthropy found that only 5.4 percent of Americans said they or anyone in their immediate family received services from a nonprofit in the past year. How can nonprofits better share their impact in a way that helps the public connect to the story—and see themselves as an essential part of it?

Join the Aspen Institute’s Program on Philanthropy and Social Innovation together with the Lilly Family School of Philanthropy for a virtual discussion with distinguished guests from across the social sector to explore:

  • Actionable ideas that nonprofits can carry out to increase engagement and communication with the public.
  • The vital role the media plays in helping the public understand philanthropy’s influence and impact on everyday life.
  • How engaging Americans can help rebuild trust in nonprofits, our society, and in each other.


  • Dr. Una Osili, Associate Dean for Research and International Programs, Lilly Family School of Philanthropy, Indiana University
  • Stacy Palmer, Editor, The Chronicle of Philanthropy
  • Sabeen Perwaiz Syed, President and CEO, Florida Nonprofit Alliance
  • Art Taylor, President and CEO, BBB Wise Giving Alliance

Moderated by Jane Wales, Vice President, Aspen Institute, and Co-Chair, the Generosity Commission


Event information
Thu May 25, 2023
2:00pm - 3:00pm EDT