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Innovation In the Business of Nonprofit Sustainability Close-up: Najmah Thomas

On April 22, 2014, ConnectVA is hosting Innovation in the Business of Nonprofit Sustainability in collaboration with Organizational Solutions and Southside Community Partners. The event is generously sponsored by Flashpoint Fund

The full-day event will feature Najmah Thomas, Ph.D., currently serving at the Virginia Community College System Office as the statewide Workforce Investment Act Director. Najmah will moderate “What About Funding? Perspectives on Nonprofit Sustainability”, a dynamic community stakeholder panel of representatives from local corporations and foundations discussing the role of stakeholder engagement and capacity building.

Participating Corporate & Foundation Stakeholders:

Learn more and register here.

“I work to encourage individuals and organizations to develop an empathetic connection with themselves and the world – helping them clarify their mission, articulate meaning goals, and identify viable, measurable objectives.”

What does “innovation in the business of nonprofit sustainability” mean to you?

Innovation as it relates to sustainability is a good word, but should be considered in context. Perhaps a fresh look and a renewed commitment to the application of fundamental concepts is in order.

To me, the business of sustainability means doing the ongoing, time-consuming, courageous, and multi-dimensional work of networking, partnership building, collaboration, and coalition building – and it must include a sector-wide movement. 

3 things people should know about you:

  • I believe in real collaboration, system building, and customer services as guiding principles. 
  • I am committed to improving the lives of youth, and particularly at-risk youth.
  • I believe that the sooner we embrace reality of interdependence, the better off we will be.

What should we know about your work:

  • I am my work. My work is my business. It is all interconnected for me!


Najmah Thomas has a Master’s Degree in Adult Learning and Distance Education from the University of Phoenix and a Doctorate of Philosophy in Public Policy and Administration from the L. Douglas Wilder School of Public Affairs at Virginia Commonwealth University. She is an adjunct professor at Virginia Commonwealth University’s Wilder School as well as South University Online.  

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