Vanessa Daniel – Social Justice Activist, Labor Organizer, Writer, Researcher and Funder
Vanessa Daniel has spent over 20 years actively involved in social justice movements as an organizer, freelance journalist, researcher and funder. As founder of Groundswell Fund and Groundswell Action Fund – two leading funders of women-led 501c4 organizations.
She believes institutional philanthropy is underfunding those most capable of leading transformational social change initiatives.
Early Life and Education
Vanessa Daniel has spent over 25 years engaging in social justice movements as a labor and community organizer, freelance journalist, researcher, and founding Groundswell Fund/Groundswell Action Fund to fund women of color led 501c4 organizations. Vanessa was honored with the National Committee for Responsible Philanthropy Impact Award as well as being recognized in The Chronicle of Philanthropy as one of 15 “Influencers” that are shaping nonprofit world today.
Bioneers host Pamela Shifman spoke to Bioneers guest Dr. Melissa Lee-Schifman about the role institutional philanthropy plays in dismantling white supremacy and addressing deep inequality in funding and support for nonprofits. Dr. Lee-Schifman discussed her work shifted toward reproductive justice and racial equity issues; and discussed intersectionality as essential in fighting injustice movements.
Vanessa is an author, international speaker and Confidence and Self-Image Coach for entrepreneurs and business owners. She assists them to become their best selves professionally and personally so that their goals can be reached more efficiently.
Vanessa brings with her an extensive background in dance. She has taught classes at National Ballet of Cuba, Peridance Capezio Center, Joffrey Ballet School, Round Rock Repertory Theatre and Tap City Leader programs – as well as guest teaching multiple studios. Vanessa serves as both dance mentor and guest teacher.
She began as a freelance journalist and researcher of social justice movements before founding and leading Groundswell Fund and Groundswell Action as Executive Directors – two leading funders of women of color-led reproductive justice organizations in the US. Under her direction, these philanthropies have invested over $100 million into these movements using an innovative philanthropic model focused on intersectional grassroots organizing led by women of color.
Achievement and Honors
Vanessa Daniel is an award-winning social justice activist, labor organizer, writer, researcher and funder. As founder and executive director of Groundswell Fund – one of the largest funders of reproductive justice movements across the U.S. – and Action Fund (a top funder for women of color-led 501c4 organizations). Under Vanessa’s direction, Groundswell has deployed more than $100 Million directly into field organizations while breaking down issue silos; The Chronicle of Philanthropy recognized Vanessa among 15 influencers who are changing non-profit world in 2017.
Grave to Garden is an in-depth course designed to assist people in breaking free of approval addiction, unhealed soul wounds, and shame. The course has helped numerous individuals realize their true potential and live happier, more fulfilling lives.
Vanessa Daniels is an ambitious individual who always works toward accomplishing her goals. With a life path number of 1, Vanessa demonstrates a powerful determination and will to achieve her objectives.
She has built up an excellent career and excels at her job. She boasts an enormous fan base on both YouTube and Instagram where she posts photos of herself regularly.
Groundswell Fund and Action Fund, two leading funders of women-led social justice organizations in the U.S. under her leadership. Together these two funds have disbursed more than $50 million towards intersectional grassroots organizing led by low income women and people of color – including her breakthrough model which features supermajorities of women of color movement leaders on staffs and boards of these funds.
Vanessa Selbst has amassed an estimated net worth of between $6 and 7 Million due to her phenomenal poker career and other sources such as law practice, coaching and poker training activities, investing in real estate and stocks and becoming a law professor.
She founded Groundswell Fund (a 501c3) and Groundswell Action Fund (a 501c4), two of the top funders of women-led social justice organizing in the US. Additionally, she created an innovative model of intersectional philanthropy utilizing staff and board composed primarily of women of color movement leaders and grassroots organizers – something no other philanthropy had done until that point.
She maintains an acclaimed YouTube and Instagram presence with over 70,000 subscribers, earning money through sponsorships, collaborations and Instagram ads. In addition, she runs The Bossgram Academy as a social media consulting service provider.