Shavonn Richardson, MBA, GPC
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"Learn to do good. Seek justice. Relieve the oppressed."
About Shavonn Richardson MBA, GPC
Shavonn is a true expert in the grant writing field. With 20 years of experience as a grant writer, nonprofit leader, program manager, and federal grants reviewer, she started her career as Co-Founder of the 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization Blue Flowers Org in 2014 after losing her grandfather to prostate cancer. Her work involved developing community solutions to address social determinants of health, patient advocacy, and advancing prostate cancer research. Shavonn also worked as a Corporate Social Responsibility Program Manager for a corporate foundation, where she helped distribute $1.3 million in grants and sponsorships to Atlanta nonprofits each year.
Now, as Founder and CEO at Think and Ink Grant Consulting, Shavonn and her team help organizations transform their grant-seeking strategies by providing customized, real-world solutions to help organizations "think" through grant-seeking strategies and "ink" competitive proposals.
Shavonn holds a Grant Professional Certified (GPC) credential - an achievement earned by fewer than 450 grant professionals nationwide. Administered by the Grant Professionals Certification Institute (GPCI), the GPC certification is based on rigorous standards and ongoing research to meet the real-world demands of grant professionals. GPC-credentialed grant professionals demonstrate excellence in the grants profession. She is a Grant Professionals Association (GPA) Approved Trainer, demonstrating a grant professional skillset as well-prepared, credible, and skilled in helping people build their grants knowledge base. Shavonn is also a Forbes-published author, speaker, and industry voice on LinkedIn through her bi-weekly newsletter, Get.Grants.Better.®
Shavonn is committed to giving back to the grant professionals industry. She currently serves as the national President of the Grant Professionals Association (GPA). She has volunteered as the Corporate Giving/Sponsorships and Grants Chair for the Junior League of Atlanta. In 2017, she was recognized as an Association of Fundraising Professionals (AFP) Diversity Fellow. In 2023, she received the "Business Women to Watch" Award from the Atlanta Business League.
Shavonn earned an MBA in Finance from Emory University in Atlanta, GA, and a BBA from Howard University in Washington, DC.
Shavonn's Founders Story
When I first started my career...
I saw nonprofits experience so many problems finding and winning grants with very few real solutions. I thought, what do nonprofits really need to move the needle? How can I help them transform their grant-seeking strategy?
I saw firsthand, as a nonprofit leader, how difficult it is to get grants. As a former nonprofit leader, I have walked the journey so many nonprofit leaders walk. We were one of the lucky ones - we won the majority of the grants submitted through a very deliberate and proven process I still use today. Later, I saw the grant-seeking experience through the eyes of a funder by working as a program manager for a corporate foundation office. It was a privilege to read multiple applications, learn what stood out in some applications, and see opportunities for improvement in others.
Seeing both ends of the grant "giving" and "seeking" equation created a crystal clear vision of what resources are available and what funders expect from nonprofits.
Think and Ink Grants Consulting was started as.....
A solution to this problem. How can we help level the playing field for nonprofit organizations? How can we create a firm that offers cutting edge professional expertise, practical, actionable, and effective support, and maintains the highest ethical standards? Our story of how Think and Ink Grants™ got started sheds light on how this came to be.
I believe changing the world...
Begins with improving the status of women, children, health, and education. This is why Think and Ink Grants specializes in these areas to help change the world by improving communities, one grant at a time. Recently, our work has expanded into the social justice space to contribute to the invaluable work of improving the status of underrepresented and disenfranchised communities.
I always felt I was walking in my truth...
Even as a little girl. It all made sense once I realized I am the fourth generation of my family committed to advancing the community. I went on to do all things young people do: I went to school and earned a BBA from Howard University and an MBA from Emory University. I mastered my craft and invested in my professional growth. Starting Think and Ink Grants is a God-driven effort combining all my life and professional experiences to meet the needs of nonprofit organizations.
Think and Ink Grants® is not...
We are committed to our clients by helping them continuously increase their grant funding through our grant research, grant writing, grant management, nonprofit consulting, and evaluation services. We are especially excited about our new initiative, Get.Grants.Better. , specifically designed to address the unique needs of smaller nonprofit organizations.
We invest in our team and are committed to helping them contribute to their community, support their families, and create opportunities for training and career advancement. We are dedicated to being a workplace of inclusivity where employees of all races, genders, and backgrounds can thrive.
We advance the grant professionals industry by the work we do each day. Most members of the Think and Ink Grants Consulting, myself included, are members of the Grant Professionals Association (GPA). We are proud to uphold the GPA's Code of Ethics and be on the cutting edge of the tools and resources to support those we serve.
How do we hope to support your grant-seeking goals?
We hope to be your one-stop-shop for all your grant needs. We make it easier for nonprofits to build a relationship with one firm that provides end-to-end support through a team leveraging diverse skills and expertise.