Close this search box.

To honor the legacy of founder Reid Carpenter, and founding board chair Jerry Colangelo, LF launched the Colangelo Carpenter Innovation Center (CCIC) in 2018. The CCIC provides a creative space to generate and scale innovative programs, partnerships, and practices to support cities around the world.



Incubating and scaling effective approaches to impact those in need

Best Practices

Learning from the LF network and beyond to scale what works


Uniting the public, private, and social sectors and faith communities


Data to Drive Impact

Data To Drive Impact

Leveraging the latest in data analytics and business intelligence tools to measure and inform impact in cities.

A project exploring how the non-profit sector can use and understand data to make cities look more like playgrounds in the same way that tech and other private sector companies use this information to propel their business. National governments, cities, NGOs and all industries are using tools to produce, collect and analyze data at a rapid pace. This abundance of data and advancing analytics capabilities can be used to improve the lives of people around the world.  The private sector has been building and deploying data analytics in their businesses for many years while the nonprofit sector is far behind. When a mission-driven organization like Leadership Foundations has the talent and tools, data science can produce real impact.  

Charity to Change

Charity To Change

Engaging churches and church networks in reimagining how congregations can invest in long-term community change.

The faith community is a potential force for massive social change – yet it is often fragmented, operating in silos, and desperately needing to align and integrate its efforts with the wider community. Charity To Change is an innovative training program to help churches and church collaboratives reimagine how congregations can invest in long-term community change.

Learn more here


Partners In Change

Enabling personal, social, and economic upward mobility.

Partners in Change pairs trained volunteer coaches with adults who are pursuing tangible goals for moving beyond difficult financial constraints or living situations.

We are committed to providing supportive, affirming, one-to-one relationships with adults living in low-income communities as they self-empower and become their own agents of change in building turnaround strategies for themselves and their families. 

Learn More

Propel Leadership Project

Propel Leadership Project

Leveraging our diverse network to create a model for increasing the number of people of color in leadership positions in the non-profit sector. 

Launching in 2021, the Propel Project builds on LF's commitment to diversity as a value and as an opportunity to create room for new and existing leaders to build a just and fair society. 50% of all Presidents/CEOs of Local Leadership Foundations (LLF) are people of color — a remarkably high percentage for the nonprofit sector.

The project will address the underrepresentation of executives of color in the nonprofit sector by building a learning cohort of faith-based nonprofit organizations and leaders that desire to be catalysts in addressing ethnic/racial underrepresentation.

We will be working with LLF Presidents and partner organizations to recruit a cohort of up and coming leaders to help build a new generation of leaders from across sectors. Instead of recruiting the LLF Presidents to be in the cohort, we will ask them to nominate someone, from their organization or from a partner organization, to join the learning cohort on their behalf.

More than training, participants will be asked to co-create initiatives, tools, policies, and practices to address the system and the impediments it creates for leaders of color. The emphasis of the cohort will be to take a critical look and offer significant solutions to change the system, not just train leaders of color to negotiate it.

Collectively, the participants will be asked to tackle difficult subjects in a safe space and create models for overcoming the impediments to upward mobility in the nonprofit sector. The unique design changes the paradigm for training cohorts in that participants are given the opportunity to serve the network. The model can then be distributed to others in the nonprofit sector and adopted by the network.


Hands And Feet United

Mobilizing churches to work together across communities

The Hands and Feet United platform seeks to partner urban, suburban and rural churches to address issues while building a relational network. This program engages congregational leaders in championing comprehensive community and service initiatives, empowering small teams of congregants across geographic, ethnic and socio-economic boundaries.

Program Replication

Program Replication

Operationalizing the replication of best in class programs in order to  inform our collective knowledge of how fundamental social problems can be solved. 

Each of the 188 initiatives within the LF network grew out of a specific context with unique relationships, leaders, partners, funding, training, recipients, and other factors. However, there is a distinct and untapped value that the LF network possesses: the opportunity to replicate some of the more successful programs, saving time and resources for LLFs while sharing proven ideas to strong local organizations. Leveraging that knowledge developed by another LLF can enable a new site to increase the speed of implementation and the odds of obtaining the desired outcomes.


The CCIC consists of entrepreneurial leaders from the public, private, and social sectors who are committed to building strategic networks and generating new ideas to support our vision of cities transformed from battlegrounds to playgrounds


The CCIC is an agile platform for learning and creativity that identifies opportunities and develops initiatives to advance LF’s vision of cities transformed from battlegrounds to playgrounds.

Senior Innovation Fellows and Trustees work together to convert ideas into reality with the opportunity of scaling to 40+ cities around the world.


 to generate and scale creative ideas for serving people in need through five distinctive features:

Global Scale

LF is a growing network of 40 plus Local Leadership Foundations from around the world. The CCIC’s mission is not simply to generate and test new ideas for transforming the way cities serve people in need, but to see those ideas applied to meet real-time, systemic community needs on a global scale. The CCIC has access to ideas from on-the-ground experts from around the world and can efficiently learn and scale what works, and then distribute models and training to serve hundreds of thousands of people in need. 

Integrated Data

The CCIC is linked to LF’s Stages of Impact (SOI) data platform. The SOI platform collects organizational, financial, and programmatic insights from local Leadership Foundations, which the CCIC can access to source insights and demonstrate impact. All CCIC programs are designed with a view toward their capacity to collect meaningful data, so we can improve the quality of data input, output, and analysis across the network. The CCIC will also be a key engine for expanding and improving the way LF builds and leverages the SOI data platform going forward.

Bridge To Faith Communities

Faith communities are increasingly understood as a critical broker for social capital and community engagement, and therefore their role as community impact partners is in higher demand. Because LF is a Christian organization that has worked with both faith-based and community-based partners for over 40 years, the CCIC begins with the credibility to demonstrate and distribute best practices on faith-based community engagement to any and all potential partners. Similarly, the CCIC is in a position to credibly translate ideas from the private, public, and social sectors into meaningful efforts within faith communities.  

Based in Washington, DC

In Washington, DC the CCIC is positioned to participate in and contribute to the global conversation about how cities are changing and how city leaders are learning to implement programs and policies to serve people in need. The CCIC will work alongside research and policy think-tanks, global NGOs, and policymakers to better understand and more directly shape the way faith communities are involved in serving cities around the world.  

Relationships And Local Capacity Building

While innovation is the goal, relationships are the way and the means by which innovation is achieved. As a result, the CCIC is in a unique position to generate ideas and program models that can quickly be adopted and adapted at a local level and implemented in a way that builds local capacity. This counters the notion that innovative ideas operate independent of community contexts and that what works best for one, works best for all. This will be further augmented by the CCIC Senior Innovation Fellows, a group of women and men uniquely shaped by their faith and domain expertise, that will allow the CCIC to always be relationally relevant and contextual. 

New Book Launch

City As Playground Anthology

 is now available for purchase in print and Kindle.

Celia Vigil

Communications Associate

What book, movie, quote, or tv show has most shaped your understanding of leadership or the city?   

A quote that has shaped my understanding of leadership and the city is, “Do not be daunted by the enormity of the world’s grief. Do justly now, love mercy now, walk humbly now. You are not obligated to complete the work, but neither are you free to abandon it.”

While the amount of work there is to do to transform cities is great, this quote reminds me that we are freed from having to complete it all, though our obligation to continue remains. We may never see a huge transformation in our lifetime. The work stretches far beyond us. However, this does not make our acts of faithfulness in the day to day less significant, no matter how small they may seem.