Portrait of a smiling woman with red glasses

Eleanor A. Smith (she, her)

In 1997, I founded Eleanor A. Smith & Associates to provide strategic consulting services to foundations and non-profit organizations.

I am passionate about helping leaders envision the ultimate social impact they seek, clarifying how they intend to create such change and devising user-friendly ways to achieve it.

I write regularly about trends in strategic planning, program evaluation, theory of change, program development and other social sector topics. See latest post here.


  • Foundation Grantmaker
  • Community Needs & Market Researcher
  • Economic Development Consultant
  • Evaluation Consultant
  • Strategic Planning Facilitator
  • University Instructor & Workshop Trainer
  • Journalist and Book Author


Eleanor A. Smith & Associates have worked in and with philanthropic and social benefit organizations for decades. We believe that organizations create social impact when a clear and compelling vision of success drives everything they do and the entire team is on board.

Our work with foundations, nonprofits and their stakeholders is guided by the following values and behaviors:

  • Listen & Pay Attention
  • Be Self-aware & Culturally Humble
  • Center Equity & Inclusion
  • Speak Honestly & Act Transparently
  • Collaborate &¬†Share Decision-making
  • Meet Clients Where They Are
  • Prize Creativity & Innovation
  • Emphasize Practical, Sustainable Solutions


I have a Masters Degree in City & Regional Planning from the University of California at Berkeley (dual focus on regional economics and community development) and a BA in Comparative Culture from the University of California at Irvine.

I am trained and skilled in using a variety of strategic planning methods, TOP facilitation, Theory of Change facilitation, evaluation design and methods (The Evaluators Institute) and Organizational Diagnosis (Community At Work). I have been certified as a Theory of Change facilitator by the Center for Theory of Change.


American Evaluation Association
San Francisco Bay Area Evaluators
Metis Partner Solutions

Progressive Consultants Network


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