Partnering with foundations to bring solutions to scale

SKDKnickerbocker Foundations & Philanthropy

SKDKnickerbocker is a leader in efforts to leverage the expertise and funding that philanthropy provides to achieve grantee objectives and advance institutional missions.

Our deep experience in the sector includes work with some of the most influential foundations in the country, whose diverse program divisions include social justice, arts and culture, hunger, education, democracy, climate, resilience, and much, much more. We understand the diverse perspective within philanthropy on how to build institutional brand and reputation, communicate the work of the grantees, and engage in field building.

Whether it’s providing communications capacity support for grantees in particular program divisions, developing and executing communications plans for multi-million dollar foundation-led initiatives, or acting as the agency of record to support the institution and its leadership, SKDK’s expertise in this space in unrivaled. Our deep policy and public affairs background, coupled with our understanding of media and policy makers, allows us to develop and execute sophisticated communications programs that advance foundation missions.


  • Capacity Support for Grantees

    SKDK works with foundations across the country to provide direct communications capacity support to their grantees, help build the individual internal capacity of grantees, elevate their work to achieve greater impact and attract additional investment from the funder community. We become strategic partners with grantees to create scale, enhance impact and build narrative around the work.

  • Foundation-Supported Initiatives

    Philanthropy is increasingly shifting to a strategic model that focuses on broad initiatives advanced by funding a network of grantees, one major organization and foundation-led work. SKDK has a long track record of building communications strategies and programs that advance the goals under each of these strategic philanthropy models.

  • Institutional Communications

    Internal communications capacity varies greatly in philanthropy and so do needs. Whether serving as the firm of record for day-to-day communications for a foundation, providing additional arms and legs support for existing communications staff, helping enhance thought leadership and influence of foundation leadership, or managing crises, SKDK has a long and successful track record working in with foundations to bolster their own capabilities.

  • Thought Leadership & Influence

    SKDK works with foundation staff, program officers and presidents to develop critical thought leadership, train spokespeople and develop messaging and framing to add significant voice and power to the work occurring on the ground. We do all of this while respecting the institutional culture and reputation of the organization.

Case Studies

  • The Rockefeller Foundation

    For the past five years, SKDK has provided strategic communications assistance to The Rockefeller Foundation, its executive leadership, and various programs and initiatives. As part of our effort in supporting the foundation’s resilience-building and thought leadership in resilience, SKDK developed the communications strategy that ensured the foundation, its program team, and executive leadership were the preeminent voices in the field.

    View Case Study

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SKDK brings unparalleled strategic communications experience to major companies, non-profits, philanthropies, political committees, and candidates.

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