Doug Hahn


Developed handbook funding for philanthropy funding 55+ charities


  • Stakeholder Management
  • Conflict Resolution
  • Documentation
  • Facilitation
  • Presentation to executives
  • Technical Writing
  • Research
  • Web Development
  • Executive Communication


Funding 55 charities and counting thanks to an aligned board.

Building an Ethical Framework with Executives

I partnered with C-level executives to define needs and articulate beliefs, creating an investment strategy for philanthropic foundation. 72-page workbook has guided board investments since 2019 and used to fund 55+ charities. Workbook built in Sphinx technical documentation software for maintainability and cross-referencing.

A sample reference chart in the handbook
A sample reference chart in the handbook

In order to succeed at this project I grounded all work in the three broad ethical theories (Consequentialist, Non-consequentialist, Agent-centered), keeping things high-level and as objective as possible for the team. The document was functionally organized by the nonprofit’s areas of concern:

  1. Animal Welfare
  2. The Environment
  3. The Arts

Where possible, I charted certifications and standards to establish objective criteria or referenced published and peer-reviewed sustainable standards for investment. I then worked with the team to outline steps for choosing whether to fund a charity. As with many documents, I framed the lay of the land and left the choice in the executives’ hands; after all, the document is a tool to help with decision-making rather than a directive on how to make choices.

Documentation Sample

Below is a writing sample from the handbook:

What follows is a two-step process that could help vet organizations associated with livestock.

Step 1: Certification

We can see whether the organization is certified in any of the following recognized programs:
1. Humane Farm Animal Care
2. AWA Program
3. Global Animal Partnership
4. USDA/Organic
5. American Humane Certified

Step 2: Track the Issue at Hand

We can also use any of the Certification Tables below to pin down the specific animal welfare issue (or issues) most pertinent to the cause at hand.
For example, if litter conditions for chickens are important you, you might check the table below and see that the Humane Farm Animal Care Program requires litter management, whereas Global Animal Partnership does not.

For areas such as art where there are no measured standards, the framework builds on a starting point founded in education and strengthening diverse communities.

Finally, the guide contains appendices that provide further reading as well as peer-reviewed citations wherever possible.

Executive Communication Plan

I use the skills I acquired as a certified project manager to build productive working relationships with executives, which focuses on the following:

  1. Anticipate concerns & give regular updates
  2. Tailor communication for each executive
  3. Keep the bottom line up front
  4. Messages no longer than a small phone screen
  5. Follow up on questions as a priority
  6. Listen carefully

Funding charities since 2015

This is one of my favorite projects. It was quite sweeping in scope and required a lot of finesse, while giving me the opportunity to gain gain a deeper understanding of animal welfare, sustainability, and nuanced issues such as animal testing. The output of this project, more funded charities and a clear direction for a team, is something that makes me proud because it aligns with my overarching goal to make the world a better place.