"Kelley is incredible. Having worked with her to set up and manage the Participatory Grantmaking Community i have seen first-hand the care, attention and skills she puts into her work. She has been instrumental in the community growing from 12 to 800, developing our governance structure and the direct running of the Community. Kelley is thoughtful, effective, impactful, diligent, analytical and details orientated. She works with care and compassion and brings this together with professionalism that not only gets the work done but brings people along as she does it. It has been a pleasure and joy to work with Kelley and I would highly recommend doing so if the opportunity ever arises."
-Hannah Paterson, Head of Funding - UK Portfolio at the National Lottery Community Fund
"Kelley’s in depth knowledge of philanthropy and participatory grantmaking has been invaluable. She is a trusted thought partner whose expertise and professionalism has been integral to advancing our efforts to work in community thoughtfully and equitably. "
-Donna Daniels, Vice President Integrated Capitals and Communities at the Heron Foundation
"For the Grassroots Fund, stepping in to a gifting circle (as part of our participatory grantmaking model) is a first. It’s an approach that is outside the norms of philanthropy and really invites participants to co-create the program. Kelley’s support has been key to ground this new approach in previous experiences, being able to answer any questions and draw from a wealth of examples that help the group gain confidence that this new approach has worked and holds great potential."
-Bart Westdijk, Co-Director at New England Grassroots Environment Fund
"Working with Kelley Buhles has been instrumental to my understanding of trust based practices in philanthropy. Her expertise and passion for dismantling donor advised funds contributed to the development of key programs, donor education, and best practices within our department, as well as motivated all who worked with her to push beyond the limits of structures in place.
Kelley’s management style and overall way of working also deeply aligns with her values. As the former leader of our department, she led our team with collaboration and trust being at the forefront of everything we did. Because of this, working under Kelley was the most rewarding and effective work experience I’ve ever been a part of. She is a thoughtful leader and trusted collaborator, who I hope to have the honor of working with again in the future."
-Raquel Iglesias, Cultural Funding at City of Oakland