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Something Crazy Happens When You Pack a Ballroom with Nonprofits and Project Managers

Max Skolink, who runs Taproot Foundation’s Washington chapter, had a zany idea. Why not pair up nonprofits with project managers, who can help “scope out” specific programs that have been particularly challenging and offer pro bono guidance?


Luckily the idea came to him while chatting with Kendall Lott, the 2014 chair of the Project Management Institute, Washington DC chapter and president of M Powered Strategies. It turned into the first-ever project management focused ScopeAThon, held yesterday in McLean, VA, with the help of PMI members, A Billion + Change and HP. (Max was snapped with Georgia Gillette from A Billion + Change, a movement to inspire companies to do pro bono work.)


Over 100 nonprofits participated after Taproot sent a call out to the DC region a few months ago for organizations that may need help with “capacity building projects” like marketing and branding, HR, strategic planning, financial management and IT. Max says the concept of corporate pro bono services, especially focused on project management, can be new and scary for nonprofits, so it took time to sell the event to organizations, but he thinks it could be held annually. Resources were donated, including the Sheraton providing the venue in Tysons and Charity Engine donating a database for applications.