Our Mission

To strengthen, promote and represent nonprofit organizations, empowering them to meet the diverse, changing needs of our communities.

Our Members

Our member organizations touch the lives of countless adults, children and families throughout our region, and in some cases, throughout the nation and the world.

Our members protect our environment, help the homeless, support the arts, feed the hungry, advance education, provide employment assistance, nurture the sick, champion the underserved, and so much more. Their dedication and hard work have a direct, life-changing impact on our communities.

Member Highlight: United Planning Organization (UPO)

UPO’s mission is to Unite People with Opportunities so they and their communities can thrive. A human and community development organization, UPO serves 55,000 DC residents annually. UPO’s portfolio to aid customers’ move to the middle class includes a holistic array of opportunities to help people lift themselves out of poverty.

Here is a snapshot of how UPO serves the Washington, DC community: Job training,  placement and national certifications through their UPO Workforce Institute DC’s largest Early Head Start provider for children 0-3 years old Robust STEAM enrichment activities and college scholarships Advocacy through volunteer opportunities, community leadership classes and place-based community impact strategies Partnerships with developers to create new affordable housing units and Permanent Supportive Housing activities Community reinvestment through free tax preparation, housing counseling and foreclosure prevention Place-based strategies integral to neighborhood transformation and revitalization   The Comprehensive Treatment Center (methadone treatment), Electronic Benefits Transfer (EBT) and Shelter Hotline  Foster Grandparent Program, family strengthening and more 

UPO has been a member of the Center for 39 years. “The Center for Nonprofit Advancement is a beacon for local nonprofits committed to life-long learning and continuous quality improvement in service delivery,” observes UPO President and CEO Andrea Thomas. “It’s vital for us. For example, UPO earned the coveted Agency of Excellence Award as a direct result of our team’s commitment to continuous professional development. The Center is critical to that effort.”

Our Team 

Created in 1979, the Center for Nonprofit Advancement is the nation’s first state association for nonprofit organizations. For almost four decades, the Center has continued to grow and advance, thanks to the efforts of a dedicated group:

Board of Directors



Our Impact

The Center’s primary service region includes Washington, DC, Prince George's and Montgomery Counties in Maryland and the state of Virginia. However, the Center welcomes any 501(c)(3) nonprofit that wishes to join.

Identifying, monitoring and sharing new and shifting trends within the nonprofit sector, the Center works collaboratively with local experts to develop custom programs and solutions. Through our training, resources and relationships with the corporate, philanthropic and government community, we help our member nonprofits save more … do more … and succeed more—ultimately achieving a more sustainable future.

The Center serves thousands of nonprofit staff, volunteers and board members, making it easier for nonprofits to fulfill their missions by helping them:

Strengthen capacity through training opportunities

1,500+ participants a year

Reallocate more funds to programs with operational savings

10%-50% discounts through group purchasing opportunities

Gain expert insights, market exposure and cash awards through competitions

$66,000 cash grants awarded each year

Network with nonprofit colleagues, industry experts and leaders in the foundation and government sectors

Countless invaluable connections


Our Values

We believe that...

Nonprofits are an essential ingredient in the health of our communities and our democracy. Strong nonprofits lead to better communities, better quality of life and a better democracy.

Nonprofits are stewards of public trust. Transparency and accountability are the foundation of that trust.

Diversity in all forms — organizations, people, religions, and culture — is part of our vitality. Promoting diversity and practicing inclusiveness makes us stronger.

The vibrancy and effectiveness of nonprofits hinge on information, education, celebration, collaboration, and representation. Nonprofits deserve a strong voice in the affairs that affect them. Together, we shape the future.

Intention, commitment, optimism, and a belief in a better tomorrow are vital ingredients in our growth and development and our service philosophy. Every day we strive to do better, be better, serve better.

Social Impact Vision

Effective nonprofits, thriving communities.