Learn about the BNI Foundation and it’s programs at the BNI US Convention

Every year, the BNI Foundation is lucky enough to be a guest at BNI US Conference. BNI and the BNI Foundation have a unique relationship – we are two separate entities, but exist simultaneously, sharing resources and embodying the concept of Givers Gain®.

 

This year, from May 17-20, Stephanie Starr, the BNI Foundation Executive Director, will be joined by her “Dream Team” of Volunteers from around the US to help to educate and inform BNI leaders how the BNI Foundation can help Members Make More Money while cause networking. The BNI Staff and volunteers, including some BNI Executive Directors, will be on hand to help BNI Executive Directors and Director Consultants learn how to implement service projects in their area to increase their bottom line, improve member retention and growth, and spread the word about BNI in their area.

 

Here are four main ways you can learn about the BNI Foundation and its programs at the BNI US Convention:

 

1.Our Booth – Learn more about the BNI Foundation and its programs! Opens at 8 AM on May 18th and closes at 4pm on May 20th.

2.Our Walk and Talk – We are hosting a Fun Walk and Talk (or Run) on Saturday morning, bright and early at 6:15! Register here and be sure to get a premiere spot and t-shirt.

3.Our Auction – Have you always wanted to become a Sonoma Wine Maker or attend a baseball game at Wrigley Field on the rooftop or vacation on the beach in Galveston? If so, come bid at our silent auction on Thursday, Friday and Saturday at the BNI Foundation Table. We will announce all winners during the Gala.

4.Our Round Tables – The BNI Foundation is hosting an information round table on Saturday, May 20th. Stop by our table to sit down with Stephanie Starr and other Executive Directors, Director Consultants and Regional Administrators who are working with the BNI Foundation to see how to implement it in your region.

 

Feel free to drop us a note at info@bnifoundation.org before the show to set up a One to One.

 

We cannot wait to see you there!

 

Regards,

 

Erica Gifford

Volunteer Coordinator

The BNI Foundation

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The Time is Here…Full Speed Ahead

Four months ago, the BNI Foundation was very happy to bring Stephanie Starr, Executive Director, onto our wonderful team. BNI Foundation Board Chair, Jeff Stay, and Co-Founder and President, Beth Misner have been closely working with Stephanie to share the culture of Givers Gain, our vision and mission (which she, in turn, helped us codify), and our future dreams for just how many kids we can impact with our initiatives.

It was Beth’s intention from the beginning to take off the foundation president’s hat within the next six months, after a time of working closely together with Stephanie to lay the best groundwork possible for our agency.

That time is here! Stephanie is now completely handling the operations of the BNI Foundation, interacting with our Board of Directors, and leading our other staff and volunteers. Beth will be stepping fully into her role as Co-Founder and will remain on the Board of Directors as board secretary. Expect to see both of them embracing their complementary roles over the next few months, and join us in congratulating them both on this milestone.

New to the BNI Foundation team are Beth Omecene Epperson, Director of Marketing & Communications with Middle Man Marketing, and Grace Sanchez Hagen, Development Consultant with the Grace Group.

We invite you to learn more about our Business Voices Teams by exploring our website, joining us at Facebook on the BNI Foundation page, or signing up for one of our Launchpad Zoom Web Calls on the 4th Monday of the month.
The young people in our world are only 20% of our total population, but they are 100% of our future! How will you join us to be a positive contributor to their story?

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Kids Need Us to Be in Their Stories

We were recently interviewing a school principal to learn more about how our local Austin Business Voices Team could help with the students’ and the school’s needs when she shared something that really jumped right out at me. She said, “While we have a lot of physical needs here, such as technology components, and science lab upgrades, what we need most are mentors for some of our most challenged youth.” She went on to share that for the population of students who come from challenging home environments, having interaction with successful business people like our BNI members could make a world of difference.

This is the heart of our Business Voices movement. We realize that where there are young people, there are needs that we can help with. I heard from a BNI director in another country, where education is managed differently than here in the US, who said that they don’t need to do school supply drives for their schools. Their governments provide thoroughly for the needs of the schools. And yet, I can’t help but think about the challenges of navigating through the teen-aged years, the emotional needs all developing young adults have, and how much caring and concerned members of their own communities could help them in any number of creative ways.

And so we have our call to action: who’s story are you in? What young person is going to look back on their life and remember YOU as the caring business owner he or she had interaction with that influenced their path in a positive way?

We invite you to learn more about our Business Voices Teams by exploring our website, joining us at Facebook on the BNI Foundation page, or signing up for one of our Launchpad Zoom Web Calls on the 4th Monday of the month.

The young people in our world are only 20% of our total population, but they are 100% of our future! How will you join us to be a positive contributor to their story?

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Who Inspires You?

By Beth Misner, BNI Foundation President: Most of us can identify someone in our lives who has inspired us to do something more than we thought was possible to accomplish. There have been many people who have inspired me personally. My husband, Ivan, BNI Founder and my Co-Founder in the BNI Foundation, inspires me every day, and I know he has inspired a fair number of you, too. His heart beats to Givers Gain – it truly does inform his life and his teaching.

And Sir Richard Branson is someone who has inspired both me and my husband. His thoughts on Business being a part of solutions needed around the globe to the various challenges we face today inspired us on many levels, most of all within the BNI Foundation. He inspired us to reach deeper in the communities all around us to do more than simply find deserving teachers to whom to send our Givers Gain® Grants.

I have kept Sir Richard updated as YOU have embraced our Business Voices initiative – creating a conduit between Business and Education for children’s education. I shared just a few of the many amazing stories with him, all of which come as a result of his vision for Business getting our hands on challenges like the ones faced in Education. Those of you who are part of a Business Voices Team are inspiring us all.

It is overwhelming to have a concept and to watch people gather around it and move with me into the unknown – to watch Business Voices unfold in real time. It is amazing to me to think about how many children are going to have different, more positive experiences because you hear this call to reach into their lives and help where it is needed.

So, although addressed to me, I extend Sir Richard’s praise on where we are today with our movement to you, because you truly deserve the majority of the gratitude. You are the ones out there in the world constructing the conduit I could only envision. To you we say:

Business Has A Voice in Education

BNI Foundation Co-Founder and President, Beth Misner, had a chance meeting at a local, Austin restaurant with a family from Houston. Michael was here to attend a rally to ask our state government not to cut funding for programs that help medically fragile children with their needs, including learning and keeping up with their counterparts as they undergo necessary medical care.

You’ll love meeting Charlotte, Michael’s young daughter, as Beth interviewed her daddy about their efforts. Remember, Business Voices is an initiative of the BNI Foundation. Our Business Voices teams say: “Bureaucracy Not Involved.” How can we help education and kids? That’s our #1 question.

We are improving tomorrow’s business through education today. Our mission is to create a conduit between Business and Education for children’s educational needs. Charlotte is just one of the reasons why we do this!

Please leave a comment below if you want to join Beth in the BNI Foundation and help us help kids with our unique and powerful movement.

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Business Voices – Powered by BNI

Austin, TX by Beth Misner:  Not long ago, I was incredibly fortunate to have three minutes to share the mission of Business Voices with a media and marketing expert, Joel Roberts. Joel is a former, prime-time, KABC radio talk show host in the #1 radio market in the world – Los Angeles. Today he is President of his own media and communications consulting firm based in LA and New York. His clients range from major publishers and best-selling authors to Fortune 500 corporations such as Lockheed-Martin, Eli Lilly, Pfizer, Novartis, Wal-Mart and Target. He also coaches many prominent politicians, CEOs, entrepreneurs like Kinkos founder, Paul Orfalae, and celebrities, including rock star Kenny Loggins.

And for just a few minutes, I was blessed that he was MY impromptu coach while I explained what I am bringing into the world through my vision for Business Voices. As I gave Joel my 60-second presentation about Business Voices, I could see him growing more excited. I told him that I can see entrepreneurs have a unique way of viewing challenges and addressing problems, and when business owners find out more about what the needs of local schools and educational organizations are, they are able to provide creative and effective solutions that are not wrapped in a lot of red tape.

Screen Shot 2017-03-05 at 4.21.56 PMAt this point, he nearly leapt up off his chair. “BNI, BNI,” he said, “You say it stands for Business Network International, but with your Business Voices initiative, you could also say it stands for Bureaucracy Not Involved!

He nailed it . . . his perception of why this movement is catching hold so easily and quickly was insightful and exciting. That’s exactly it — We as business owners are not held back by the bureaucracy that is creating such paralyzing difficulties for educators to teach well, impeding their access to the resources they need to keep kids engaged and interested, and causing many other challenges they face.

I was first struck by this realization after having a long conversation with Richard Branson about his B Team concept. If you follow my social media, you will have no doubt seen the photo of Ivan and Richard that I pulled out of an iPhone video I made of the two of them talking about the B Team and how business could make huge, positive differences in the world. He is exactly right!

Screen Shot 2017-02-03 at 11.03.36 PMAnd where better to start unleashing this vision for creating a conduit between Business and Education than within BNI, an organization filled with entrepreneurs who live by a Givers Gain philosophy and are able to embrace a movement whose rallying cry is Bureaucracy Not Involved?

The support of the business community is like a giant pair scissors that slashes right through the red tape that keeps teachers tied up. As a global citizen, I personally am tired of watching our teachers and schools struggle to operate in such a highly dysfunctional system.

Business Voices is an idea whose time has come — Bureaucracy Not Involved — and we need you to help us get on top of this huge area of concern. Will you help us?

Learn more about our movement.

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Givers Gain Grants Update

With the launch of the BNI Foundation’s Business Voices movement in August, 2014, more excitement, energy and support has been building within BNI than ever before for the great work we have been doing over the past 18 years in children’s education. As a result of the enthusiastic reaction, we plan to begin supporting Business Voices with our Givers Gain Grants program.

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Help Us Feed Inner City Kids!

Feed the Need UgandaAfter returning from an impactful trip to Zimbabwe, former BNI Select Business Source Chapter member Steve Sargent introduced his chapter to an opportunity they never expected. Steve used his presentation time, not to present on his business, but to present an opportunity for the chapter to literally save lives by giving two hours of volunteer time. Sargent found that in keeping with BNI’s Givers Gain® philosophy, chapter members were eager to help.

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Business Voices Collaboration with Smothers Academy

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Damon speaks to the BNI members in New Orleans

Written by: Beth Misner

Damon Smothers with the students of John D Martyn Alternative School.

Damon Smothers with the students of John D Martyn Alternative School.

Ivan and I (Beth Misner) hosted the BNI regional Member Extravaganza winners at a breakfast on Saturday morning during our New Orleans trip in October 2014. We invited Damon Smothers, the school psychologist who had coordinated the school visits from the previous day which I have written about earlier on this blog site, to our BNI breakfast. We asked him to share with our guests the vision he has had for some time of the Smothers Academy, a public school for boys with a prep school focus. Here is a summary of what he told us:

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The BNI Foundation Needs YOU!

The BNI Foundation Needs YOU!

As BNI grows and expands across every populated continent, our need for volunteers to serve in the BNI Foundation is also growing.

Do you have a heart for service and philanthropy?

Do you value the work of the BNI Foundation to improve tomorrow’s business through education today?

Do you have some time to donate to our cause?

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