The preeminent forum grantmakers to come together and learn about the latest rules and regulations governing cross-border giving.
The International Grantmaking Symposium


Keynote: Scaling Philanthropic Giving to Sustainable Development

Join Marcos Neto, Director of UNDP’s Sustainable Finance Hub and Karen Kardos, Global Head of Philanthropic Advisory at Citi Private Bank, for a fireside chat about successes to date and the challenges ahead as we work to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals. The discussion will be moderated by Ted Hart, President & CEO of CAF America, and they will discuss examples of how philanthropists and foundations can complement innovative solutions for achieving the SDGs by 2030.

Marcos Athias Neto

Marcos Neto is Director of UNDP’s Sustainable Finance Hub. With more than 25 years’ experience in development finance and private-sector development, Marcos leads UNDP’s work on sustainable finance in more than 140 countries in collaboration with other UN agencies and partners.

Head of the G20 Sustainable Finance Working Group Secretariat, Marcos also co-chairs the executive boards of the Business Call to Action and the Connecting Business Initiative. Apart from his role at UNDP, Marcos is on the Supervisory Board of CARE International.

Prior to joining UNDP, Marcos served at CARE International for 17 years, in roles including Regional Manager for Asia and Latin America at CARE UK, Executive Director of CARE Brasil, and Program Director for Central America.

A lawyer by training, Marcos holds a Master of Laws degree from the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS) at the University of London. He is a passionate advocate for the Sustainable Development Goals.

Karen Kardos

Karen Kardos is a Director at Citi Private Bank and Global Head of Philanthropic Advisory. She advises families, foundations, and endowments on their philanthropic strategic development and best practices to meet their philanthropic goals.

Prior to joining Citi, Karen spent 17 years with Geller & Co., and since 2007, served as the Director of Finance and Philanthropic Operations for a private foundation in their multifamily office practice. Her experience includes not only advising clients on their philanthropic giving strategies; she is also well versed in private foundation finance, operations, grants management, governance, and compliance. She has extensive experience working with ulta hgh net worth individuals on their personal charitable giving, charitable giving through donor advised funds, and political giving.

Karen is a 21/64 Certified Multigenerational Advisor. She is a member of the Planned Giving Council at Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts, a Coalition Building Partner for the Generosity Commission, and a member of the Finance Council, and volunteer at her local parish.

Karen received her Bachelor of Science degree in Accounting from Binghamton University. She resides in New York City with her family.

Each year, the International Grantmaking Symposium hosts a mix of sessions and panels that provide young professionals and industry leaders alike with a valuable learning experience. This year’s sessions continue this tradition by exploring the fundamentals of international grantmaking along with the latest trends and topics within the sector. ​​

Below we have included this year's Schedule at a Glance. In the coming weeks we will announce more information and speakers for each session. All session subject to change.

Tuesday, November 7, 2023

9:45–10:00 a.m.

Welcome and Opening Remarks

10:00–11:00 a.m.

Scaling Private Philanthropic Giving in Sustainable Development
Marcos Neto, Director of Sustainable Finance Hub | UNDP
Karen Kardos, Global Head of Philanthropic Advisory | Citi Private Bank
Ted Hart, President & CEO | CAF America

Join Marcos Neto, Director of UNDP’s Sustainable Finance Hub, and Karen Kardos, Global Head of Philanthropic Advisory at Citi Private Bank, for a fireside chat about successes to date and the challenges ahead as we work to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals. The discussion will be moderated by Ted Hart, President & CEO of CAF America, and they will discuss examples of how philanthropists and foundations can complement innovative solutions for achieving the SDGs by 2030.

11:00–11:15 a.m.

Coffee and Networking

11:15 a.m.–12:45 p.m.

Partnership for the SDGs: How Grantmakers Can Collaborate for Greater Impact
Laurel Patterson, Head of SDG Integration | UNDP
Soren Vester Haldrup, Strategic Innovation | UNDP
Keyzom Ngodup, Head of Digital Programs, Chief Digital Office | UNDP
Gwynne Gauntlett, Global Lead, Digital Giving and Engagement | UNDP
Lisa Royaee, Innovation Partnerships Specialist | UNDP Accelerator Labs Network

Join this session, hosted by the United Nations Development Programme, to discuss strategies for using the power of partnerships to maximize the impact of charitable giving for sustainable development. Special attention will be given to examples of unique partnership models that create potential for philanthropy to catalyze systemic innovative development solutions for the SDGs.

This session will be moderated by Wanjiru Lucy, Partnerships Specialist with UNDP’s Bureau of External Relations, and Tea Franich, Multi-Stakeholder and Programme Development Specialist in the Public Partnerships Group with UNDP’s Bureau of External Relations and Advocacy.

12:45–1:30 p.m.


1:30–2:30 p.m.

Implementing Localization through Grant Program Design
Brooks Reed, Vice President, Thought Leadership & Philanthropy | CAF America
Deepika Allana, Program Manager | The Freedom Fund
Nathaniel Heller, Vice President & Managing Director | Geneva Global & Global Impact

Join us as we discuss the ways in which we design our grant programs—especially across borders—can help achieve localization outcomes. Topics will include best practices for grantee selection and relationship management, grant application design, reporting frameworks, and, more broadly, the structural parts of our programs that may lag behind our words in terms of supporting locally-led interventions.

2:30–3:30 p.m.

Building Resilience: The Role of International Development as Vulnerable Populations Experience Compounding Humanitarian Crises and Climate Change Disasters
Laetitia Courtois, Head of New York Delegation | International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) 
Joanna Jachacy, Representative | Polish Center for International Aid (PCPM)
Dr. Henry Howard | Philippine Disaster Resilience Foundation (PDRF)

This session will explore the ways that regions that are vulnerable to the impacts of climate change are also susceptible to violence and humanitarian crises. Speakers from ICRC, PCPM, and PDRF will discuss preparedness ahead of disasters in regions that we know are vulnerable, which includes the need to prepare for possible refugee crises simultaneously. ICRC, PCPM, PDRF will share their approaches to these complex challenges and how donors should be considering disaster preparedness and long-term relief and resilience in vulnerable regions.

3:30–3:45 p.m.


3:45–5:00 p.m.

Establishing Eligibility: Equivalency Determination and Expenditure Responsibility
Maura Whelan, Senior Counsel | Simpson Thacher & Bartlett LLP
Kevin Roe, Counsel | Simpson Thacher & Bartlett LLP

This session explores in great detail the two tools for making international grants in a legally compliant manner: Equivalency determination (ED) and expenditure responsibility (ER). Providing a step-by-step breakdown of each process, this session will elaborate on when each tool should be used and will provide practical tips for navigating these IRS regulations.

5:00–5:15 p.m.

Day 1 Closing Remarks

5:30–7:00 p.m.

CAF America’s Eighth Annual IGS Reception

Join CAF America President and CEO, Ted Hart, and Board Chair, Char Mollison, for cocktails, hors d'oeuvres and networking with your fellow IGS delegates.

Remarks will be made by Sahba Sobhani, Director of the UNDP Istanbul International Center for Private Sector in Development.

Wednesday, November 8, 2023

9:00–9:15 a.m.

Opening Remarks

9:15–10:15 a.m.

Updates and Considerations for Cross-Border Grantmaking
Jessie Krafft, Senior Vice President | CAF America
Clément Nyaletsossi Voule, United Nations Special Rapporteur on the Rights to Freedom of Peaceful Assembly and of Association

Jessie Krafft, CAF America's Senior Vice President of External Affairs, will provide an overview of critical considerations for cross-border grantmaking informed by recent trends and developments in civil society and local contexts globally. She will provide details on some of the most important changes impacting the cross-border flow of funds and will focus on country case studies. She will also be joined through video address by UN Special Rapporteur Clément Voule, who will speak about his work developing “General principles and guidelines on ensuring the right of civil society organizations to have access to resources.”

10:15–11:00 a.m.

Applied Cross-Border Giving Mechanisms: Complex Case Workshop
Kelsey McCarthy, Senior Director of Donor Services | CAF America

Join CAF America's Kelsey McCarthy, for this fundamentals session reviewing the requirements and characteristics for the IRS's two tools that allow US foundations to support foreign charities. McCarthy will cover basic guidance and workshop complex cases CAF America has navigated over the past year. Particular attention will be given to examples of complex asset grantmaking and grantmaking to government entities.

11:00–11:15 a.m.

Coffee and Networking

11:15 a.m.–12:00 p.m.

Compliance and Risk Mitigation in Grantmaking: Anti-Money Laundering, Anti-bribery, and Anti-terrorism
Glenn Mills, Vice President of Risk Management, Compliance, and Data Privacy, | CAF America

This session will provide a high-level overview of compliance requirements for financial crime regulations related to cross-border financial transactions and will touch on various regulations related to anti-money laundering, anti-bribery, and anti-terrorist financing. Listeners will be able to walk away from this session with a better understanding of what compliance issues they should look out for when considering cross-border giving.

12:00–1:00 p.m.


1:00–2:00 p.m.

Building Charity Resilience: Key Lessons for Grantmakers
Ashling Cashmore, Head of Impact and Advisory | Charities Aid Foundation
Jenna Schornack, Senior Awards Director | Lever for Change

The CAF Resilience fund was a £40m grant programme funded by the UK Government and insurance industry. Phase 2 of the programme provided flexible funding alongside additional grants and tailored support focused on building grantees’ organizational resilience. This session will share the key building blocks of this approach to building resilience, sharing key learnings and case studies. We will also be joined by Lever for Change who will share learnings from their awards programs and the ways they consider charity resilience in application selection and program design. Participants will gain an understanding of how key aspects of best practice grantmaking can build resilience amongst charitable partners as well as how to effectively manage open calls for proposals.

2:00–2:15 p.m.

Day 2 Closing Remarks

2:15–2:45 p.m.


2:45–5:30 p.m.

Site Visit - United Nations Headquarters

Join CAF America and your fellow IGS delegates on a private tour of the United Nations just a short walk (or drive) away from the conference venue.

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