VISIONS Internal Newsletter & Updates

Last Updated On: 3.26.24

Department Updates

Welcome to our updated newsletter format! We’re trying on this new approach to help you get to information in a more streamlined and referenceable way. So try it out! And let us know what you think and if you have any ideas around content, topic order, or usability. Email to share your strokes and options!

From Elika's Desk

I am reflecting on where we were when I first came in 2020 and where we are now - here is a link to the comparisons of trends. I appreciate everyone who took the time to respond - we read what you submitted and tried to include everything as we completed this review of consultant pay and landscape analysis of similar DEI organizations in the marketplace. One curiosity from across recent conferences is the media chilling effect on anti-oppression efforts. AND there are still many doing the work and many are still doubling down. Since the beginning of the year, we have had 30 inquiries come through and of those 30, 12 are currently in process, 8 have moved onto proposals, and 5 have turned into contracts.

As part of my own self-reflections and self-focus, I'd love to check in with the community, similar to the 1:1 conversations most of us had in spring 2020 to hear how things are going and what you may need from me. If you can kindly take a few moments to respond to this quick survey, I'd love to continue to learn and grow. Please know I am also just a phone call, text, email away and would love to hear from you all, as well.

Planning for the road ahead - developing VISIONS’ next strategic plan

As many of you may already know, VISIONS has recently begun the process to develop our next strategic plan. We’ve engaged Jay Vogt, an incredibly talented external consultant to support us in the process—he’s familiar with VISIONS as an organization and attended our October PACE last fall. Our current strategic plan was approved in spring 2020 after much collaboration between various stakeholders, and I’m excited for the opportunity to have those of you who are interested engage in this new planning process. We’ve been listening to the various surveys and 1:1 conversations held over the past few years, and I am hopeful this next strategic plan will reflect what many of you have voiced and shared.

Every strategic plan follows a roughly similar arc, AND every strategic plan is entirely unique to the organization.  Here is the arc of VISIONS’ strategic plan:

  1. The board will affirm the process, and VISIONS' guiding ideas, at its spring retreat on April 19 (and form a Strategic Planning Committee to oversee it).
  2. Assessment and discovery have been ongoing for a couple years via various community surveys.
  3. Critical strategic issues have emerged from our assessment and discovery, as well as in conversation with the staff, including consultants.  The larger internal community will discuss these topics at community calls in April, May, June, and September. (Come and share your insights; more detail about topics for each month are listed below.)
  4. The community will come together to set goals on September 27th as part of our anniversary celebration.
  5. Teams will be formed around each goal to define objectives, initiatives, and success metrics. (So think about whether any of these strategic issues resonate with you and whether you are interested in getting involved on the committee!).
  6. Strategic planning will feed operational planning and budgeting in 2025 (FY26).
  7. The board will approve the new strategic plan in April, 2025 for FY26.

We’ll be hosting discussion sessions around the various strategic issues that were identified based on your feedback on the several surveys shared with the community over the last few years. These discussions will occur at the next several community meetings (with a small break over the summer). 

Your insights are essential and will direct the content of our next strategic plan! The schedule of community call discussions and themes to be discussed are below. Each call will take place from 4:00-5:30 pm EST. Please reach out to Clarissa if you do not see the invitation on your calendar. 

Strategic Plan Discussion Schedule

  • April 5
    • MODEL (11 mentions)
    • How can we best modernize our model (i.e. honor the model, while updating language, etc.)
  • May 3
    • COMMUNITY (08 mentions)
      • How can we further strengthen our community to overcome physical distance and foster greater connection?
    • CONSULTANTS (07 mentions)
      • How can we further strengthen our consultant pool?
  • June 7 - Admin Town Hall (including pay model strategic issue)
    • PAY (05 mentions)
      • How can we best improve our pay model?
  • September 13
    • GROWTH (08 mentions)
      • How can we best grow our consultancy business (in a sustainable way)?
    • PUSHBACK (06 mentions)
      • How can we best respond to the current political climate and the pushback on DEI?


Thank you for all of your input that has brought us to this point in the planning process, and thank you in advance for your continued support and participation that will lay the foundation for our next 40 years of impact!

From VP of Consultants, Dr. Val Batts
From VP of Admin, Nikki Glass
From Programs Director, Leena Akthar

Upcoming Events

Out Doing the Work

LDB peace march invitation to join; if interested in joining/creating a team, please let Clarissa know. 

Learn more HERE

We’re thrilled to have had our very own VISIONS’ executive director, Elika, participating with the Mediators Beyond Borders International UNCSW 68 delegation, along with MBBI President & CEO Prabha Sankaranarayan, who also graciously serves on our board.

The UN Commission on the Status of Women (UN CSW) is the principal global intergovernmental body exclusively dedicated to the promotion of gender equality and empowerment of women. During the Commission’s annual two-week session, representatives of UN Member States, civil society organizations and UN entities discuss progress, gaps, and further actions in the implementation of the 1995 Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action, as well as emerging issues that affect gender equality and the empowerment of women.

From the Office

VISIONS Office Upcoming Holidays & Closures

The office will be closed on the dates below. If you need assistance while the office is closed, you can refer to the VISIONS Help Cheat Sheet.

  • VISIONS Office Closed Spring Break - March 25-29, 2024
  • Patriots' Day (MA) - April 15, 2024

Community Check In Call Themes

Community Check In Call Themes (4:00-5:30 pm ET)

  • April 5: Strategic Plan - MODEL
  • May 3: Strategic Plan - GROWTH & COMMUNITY
  • June 7: Town Hall for Admin/Salesforce Questions - Strategic Plan - PAY
  • September 13: Strategic Plan - PUSHBACK


Strategic Plan Committee

  • Interested in joining? Please let Elika know
General Feedback Survey

Have any general feedback, questions, or ideas? Let us know! You can complete the survey and someone from VISIONS will reach out to you.