After five years at Trinity, Neill Coleman is stepping down as executive director of Trinity Church Wall Street Philanthropies to return to his consulting practice, Mission Magnified.
Starting in 2018, Neill built out what became the Philanthropies department at Trinity with focus areas in racial justice, affordable housing, and leadership and capacity in the church. Annual grant-making has increased significantly, totaling over $150 million during his time at Trinity, and the church is now a valued philanthropic partner for other foundations and government, as well as receiving high marks as a funder from grantees.
“After a wonderful five years building the strategy, structure, and team of Trinity Church Wall Street Philanthropies, the work is in a fantastic place, and for me, now is the time to focus more deeply on my interests in cross-sector collaboration, especially between philanthropy and government,” said Neill. “I will very much miss the amazing Philanthropies team and other Trinity colleagues, but I know the commitment to using Trinity’s gifts to work for justice and equity, and doing so by walking alongside our grantees, will continue.”
“Neill’s leadership of the Philanthropies team has enabled Trinity to expand the reach and depth of our grant-making efforts, supporting myriad partner organizations in New York City and around the world in their important work,” said the Rev. Phillip A. Jackson, Rector of Trinity Church Wall Street. “While we are sorry to see Neill leave Trinity, we support his efforts to drive social change and wish him much success in returning to his consulting work.”
During Neill’s tenure, Trinity’s grant-making has contributed to 5,500 units of affordable housing in New York City, stepped up to support asylum seekers, and responded to the city’s mental health crisis. In response to COVID, Trinity established an $8 million loan fund to support local nonprofit grantees and funded efforts in 40 countries to reach nearly three million people with targeted health messaging and support. Neill fostered a “walking alongside” approach, seeking to develop relationships with grantees from a posture of generosity and grace. In the most recent Center for Effective Philanthropy Grantee Perception Survey, Trinity achieved high marks, including placing in the top 10% funders for the extent to which Trinity’s grantmaking priorities reflect a deep understanding of the needs of the people and communities that grantees serve.
Neill’s last day at Trinity will be Feb. 17. Holly Coats, who currently serves as Managing Director for Grants Management, will serve as interim Executive Director during the transition period while Trinity considers internal and external candidates for the position.