Emily Sterling

Emily Sterling

Sterling Consulting

Founder and CEO

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Emily Sterling has served as a strategic thought partner to thousands of innovative and influential philanthropists, community leaders, social entrepreneurs, nonprofits, boards, corporations, and governments for over 25 years. She has enhanced the impact of organizations of every size, sector, stage of development, and mission focus; and helped individuals enhance their leadership and influence to achieve their visions.

Emily is the Founder & CEO of Olive Grove Collective, a Silicon Valley based firm that works internationally toward its vision of “A Vibrant and Just Society.” Emily has provided a comprehensive range of consulting services to philanthropists and nonprofit boards and CEOs (high-impact giving, strategy, governance, scaling and growth plans, founder and CEO transitions, collaborations and collective impact, and more). She is driven by working with highly innovative, paradigm-shifting projects and ideas; understanding what allows for greater impact and resilience; and what drives real change at the individual, organizational, and systems levels. She partners with those who are driven to challenge historical assumptions and approaches, and who are motivated to work in collaboration with others to generate, catalyze, and test new ideas – those which will excite and challenge.

Emily is known as a trusted and knowledgeable advisor who can quickly distill complex and ambiguous information into clear patterns and options, and who supports leaders to make the right choices, not necessarily the easy ones. She thrives on new and big ideas, and has the experience, structure, and know-how to move them into action.

Emily is an engaging presenter, interviewer and panel participant at conferences and events with a core audience of philanthropists, entrepreneurs, CEOs, board members, and influencers. Her primary topics include increasing personal and organizational resilience; shifting mindsets and limiting belief systems; nonprofit impact and capacity; strategic and effective philanthropy; women’s entrepreneurship and leadership; innovation in governance; and collective action and collaborations. In addition, Emily has served on several prominent boards, and is open to private/corporate board placement.

Clients include: Hewlett Foundation; Helmsley Charitable Trust; Schwab Charitable; Tipping Point Community; San Francisco Opera; Nature Conservancy; Opportunity Fund; Oakland Museum of California; Surfrider; Moishe House; Education Trust-West; Jim Joseph Foundation; ODC Dance; Terra Foundation for American Art; Hillel International; Goodwill; Feeding Our Kids – Clinton Global Initiative; US Water Alliance; Legal Community Against Violence; San Francisco Foundation; multiple small family foundations; and hundreds of others.

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