Project Grantsmanship

Project Grantsmanship Logo

We’ve seen the benefit of this project in the proposals submitted to us—the quality is better—and we attribute much of this improvement to participation in Project Grantsmanship.
Wendy Garen, President & CEO
Ralph M. Parsons Foundation

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Organizations that have participated in Project Grantsmanship


Project Grantsmanship is a collaborative effort established to increase the capacity of small to medium-size nonprofits serving Los Angeles County to fulfill their mission by:

  • Planning programs that deliver results

  • Increasing impact through collaboration

  • Articulating clear and logical arguments for financial support, and

  • Identifying and working in partnership with funders who share their goals

Project Grantsmanship began in 2008 as a partnership of the Annenberg Foundation, California Community Foundation, and The Grantsmanship Center. Project Grantsmanship is also generously supported by the Dwight Stuart Youth Fund, The Ralph M. Parsons Foundation, and S. Mark Taper Foundation.


How Does Project Grantsmanship Work?

The partner foundations underwrite up to 90 percent of the tuition for eligible nonprofit board members and paid staff to attend The Grantsmanship Center’s 5-day Grantsmanship Training Program and receive a copy of the textbook Grantsmanship: Program Planning and Proposal Writing
The last day of each Project Grantsmanship training includes a Meet-the-Grantmakers event where  participants can  speak directly with foundation program officers. Graduates receive 12 months of Full Membership benefits in the Center's Alumni Membership Program including access to the GrantDomain funder databases.


Results of Project Grantsmanship

Built into Project Grantsmanship from its inception is a multiyear evaluation of the training by an independent consultant, Dr. Ron Jacobs, of San Diego State University. Dr. Jacobs has assessed 381 graduates (as of this date) of this training since 2008. His findings document the effectiveness of The Grantsmanship Center’s training:

  • Graduates averaged a 47.5% increase in the knowledge and skills essential to effective proposal writing.

  • The graduates’ satisfaction with the training averaged 9.51 on a 10-point scale.

  • A six-month follow-up study of 135 representative graduates showed that the applications they submitted within 6 months of the training resulted in grant awards totaling over $21 million. 100% of those who won grants said the training helped, and 80% attributed their success substantially to the training.

  • Graduates also said their organizations were using research tools more effectively to match funders to their programs; planning better programs; writing more measurable outcomes; starting or improving their program evaluations; increasing their emphasis on sustainability; and involving their clients more in program planning.


Are There Other Requirements?

Due to the comprehensive nature of this training and team approach to certain segments, participants are required to attend all scheduled sessions for all five days.  Within five months of completing the training, each participant is required to submit a draft proposal to The Grantsmanship Center for review—a great opportunity to put new skills into practice. Participants complete a brief online survey six months after the training.


What is the Cost?

Qualifying organizations pay:

$200 per person (organizations with budgets less than $750,000)
$300 per person (organizations with budgets between $750,000 and $10 million)

Half of the tuition paid is rebated when participants complete the proposal review component and an online survey. The usual cost for the Grantsmanship Training Program is $1,040 ($995 tuition,  $45 textbook).


The standards are set high by The Grantsmanship Center. Nonprofits that participate in Project Grantsmanship are more likely to secure funding because it’s easier for us to fund great proposals for well-planned programs.
Wendy Garen, President & CEO
Ralph M. Parsons Foundation


Who May Attend?

Board members or paid staff of organizations based in and serving Los Angeles County with IRS 501(c)(3) public charity status and annual budgets at or below $10 million are eligible. Only two registrants per organization may enroll over the lifetime of the program.
Sorry, volunteers and independent consultants are not eligible.


February 13-17
May 22-26
August 7-11
November 13-17

The Grantsmanship Center
350 S. Bixel Street, Suite 110
Los Angeles, CA 90017

Monday & Tuesday 8:30 AM to 5:30 PM
Wednesday 8:30 AM to 5:30 PM (Participants may choose to work until 8:00 PM)
Thursday 8:30 AM to 5:30 PM
Friday 8:30 AM to 1:30 PM


How to Apply

Complete the Project Grantsmanship Registration Form, making sure to include required documentation and payment for tuition. Incomplete applications will not be accepted. For questions, please call Magdelyn Shaak, Project Grantsmanship Coordinator at (213) 482-9860 ext. 248 or email

Please Note: Class size is limited to 25 participants per training program. Enrollment is on a first come, first served basis. To withdraw and receive a refund, you must notify The Grantsmanship Center at least three weeks prior to the training program. In special circumstances, you may request that another eligible person attend in your place prior to the start of training. Transfers from one training to another training at a later date must be requested in advance and are allowed at the discretion of The Grantsmanship Center.


We’re happy to continue support for Project Grantsmanship because we believe that it brings solid value to the nonprofit sector.
Wendy Garen, President & CEO
Ralph M. Parsons Foundation


Click here for Registration Form