About The Communications Network


The Communications Network supports foundations and nonprofits to improve lives through the power of smart communications.

Why communication matters
In recent years, growing numbers of foundations and nonprofits have recognized the value of using strategic communications as a tool for advancing their missions and extending their impact.

Several forces drive the resulting investment in more robust communications: a desire by nonprofits and foundations to demonstrate the results of their efforts; a desire to be more transparent; and a need to respond to increasing scrutiny from policy makers and the media.

As a result, nonprofits and foundations are implementing sophisticated and comprehensive communications programs. These enhanced activities require a deep knowledge of how to create and deliver messages, how to brand and position organizations, and how to integrate new forms of communications technology and social networking tools into communication programs.


As these communications efforts grow, so does the need for communications practitioners in the social sector to have timely access to knowledge, expertise, practical advice, and guidance to improve their work. More and more, social sector communicators are finding valuable assistance in The Communications Network.

The Network Today
Formed nearly 30 years ago by the late Frank Karel of The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and The Rockefeller Foundation as a volunteer membership association to promote the use of strategic communications in philanthropy, The Communications Network today is a nonprofit organization whose mission is to support foundations and nonprofits to improve lives through the power of smart communications.

What We Do: Connection + Insight + Inspiration 
The Network helps everyone in the social sector better understand the unique role strategic communication plays in advancing mission and driving social change. We connect communications professionals working in the social sector to each other. We provide guidance and mentoring and regularly offer learning and networking opportunities through webinars and other presentations, both online and in local communities, and at our annual conference. Today, the Network’s membership comprises a wide range of individuals from foundations, nonprofits and consulting firms who are committed to making communications an integral part of effective social change.

We help those who do good do better.

Watch the video below for a brief history of the Communications Network and the story behind our mission.

Video credits: Minna Jung-script; Eric Brown-narration; Jai Sen-direction; Bishakh Som-illustration

For additional information, contact us, or phone 202-355-4909.

To join the Network, click here.

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