WFMN Interns and Fellows
Interns and Fellows

Funding the Pipeline for Women of Color in Philanthropy

Philanthropy, nonprofits, and communities benefit when women of color are represented in leadership. Recognizing the need for more women of color in philanthropy and nonprofit leadership and development, WFMN launched its Fellowship and Internship Program in 2002. The Dr. Reatha Clark King Fellowship and the Wenda Weekes Moore Internship Program are our innovative initiatives to build a pipeline of women of color leaders in philanthropy.

About the Program

Through the program to date, WFMN has engaged 38 women of color and American Indian women in all aspects of its operations, including evaluation, fundraising, grantmaking, and administration. The program also provides rigorous training and professional development opportunities. Interns and Fellows receive one-on-one mentoring and professional coaching; attend workshops on emotional intelligence, executive presence, and action planning; and attend seminars and local and national philanthropy conferences.

Reatha Clark King and Wenda Weekes Moore
Dr. Reatha Clark King and Wenda Weekes Moore
Wenda Weekes Moore Internship

As part of the year-long Wenda Weekes Moore Internship, each intern spends four weeks in the summer at the W.K. Kellogg Foundation in Battle Creek, MI, where Wenda served on the board for 26 years. This opportunity allows the intern to gain mentoring, knowledge, and learning experience from a large, private, family foundation.

Dr. Reatha Clark King Fellowship

The Dr. Reatha Clark King Fellowship, a two-year paid fellowship, plays a central role in the coordination and management of the Women’s Foundation’s Young Women’s Initiative MN (YWI MN). Named for Dr. Reatha Clark King in 2007, the fellow works both independently and collaboratively with Foundation staff and other key partners to plan, manage, and implement activities in program development, research and evaluation, meeting design and coordination, grant and contract management, grant and report writing, and publications and materials development.

Investing in Leadership

Interns & Fellows Graphic
As a result of this program, a majority of our Interns and Fellows have gone on to leadership careers in the nonprofit (64%), philanthropic (9%), and corporate (27%) sectors in the United States and abroad. Seven program participants have also been hired and promoted as WFMN staff.
Isatu Shirek
Meet the 2021 Wenda Weekes Moore Intern

Isatu Shirek

From Grand Forks, North Dakota, Isatu is a third-year student at Southwest Minnesota State University in Marshall, Minn. She is majoring in Communication Studies and has a love of storytelling. Isatu believes in the importance of sharing stories to encourage change. Growing up as one of the select minorities in her community has led her to want to encourage and give other Black, Indigenous, and people of color a way to share their stories and inspire change in their own communities. She has worked with Pioneer-PBS to create short pieces that promote positive change in rural communities, shining a light on gender and racial equity and the importance of mental health as a tool for resilience when facing adversity. She aims to carry that passion and learned skills with her as the Wenda Weekes Moore Intern at the Women’s Foundation of Minnesota.

“Working with a diverse group of women for gender and racial equity at the Women’s Foundation of Minnesota aligns with my belief in using one’s voice and taking action to change harmful narratives. I wish to use my voice to speak up in support of others and to help provide a platform for marginalized and silenced women and girls to speak and be heard. I believe the Women’s Foundation of Minnesota is doing exactly that and I look forward to working with them.”
WFMN Intern
Meet the Dr. Reatha Clark King Fellow

Erika Idrovo-Cuesta

Erika Idrovo-Cuesta, previously the Wenda Weekes Moore Intern, returned to WFMN in August 2019 after working as a legal assistant in immigration law and participating in policy training. She graduated from Augsburg University, and plans to continue as the first in her family to pursue higher education by obtaining a master’s degree in public policy.

“Philanthropy to me means opportunity. It wasn’t until I was introduced to philanthropy that I realized a community of supporters believed in this opportunity for all people to thrive, regardless of legal status, educational experience, skin color, gender or sexuality. As a Fellow, I find impact in the relationships, support, and opportunities to lead that strengthen my skills. In this role, I hope to learn more from my community and from influential leaders to grow in my leadership. I hope to respond to the growing needs from communities impacted by the coronavirus, anti-Black racism, and anti-immigration policies.”