EP 10: The Power of Giving: Jenny Malseed’s Path to Making a Difference

Joining today’s conversation is Jenny Malseed, VP of Strategy and Talent at GlobalGiving, a United States-based nonprofit organization which provides funding for grassroots charitable projects across the globe. As Jenny puts it GlobalGiving was “crowdfunding since before crowdfunding was a thing.” International aid and nonprofits, she explains, can be very paternalistic and inequitable, telling those in need what’s best and, through their practices, attracting only nonprofits from developed countries with English as a first language. GlobalGiving’s Pathways Program focuses on making the platform accessible to those who could benefit most and mapping out journeys which ensure that the organization is solving problems that really need to be solved and not just those that are easiest. Central to GlobalGiving’s mission is community-led change, putting resources and power in the hands of the people closest to the problem, so that communities can drive their own progress. 


Equity and community are just as much a part of the organization’s internal mission. A company is only enriched and strengthened by its diversity of backgrounds, skillsets and experiences, and part of Jenny’s work is to oversee the company’s Race Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Initiative. REDI is committed to ensuring that every voice contributes to shaping the company. Jenny highlights how transparency, including the acknowledgment of mistakes, has been instrumental in aligning GlobalGiving closer to its mission. Moreover, fostering a culture of humility and kindness has leveled the playing field between employees and executives. This approach has cultivated a unique culture of recognition within the company, which notably includes a taco-based reward system.


A company’s greatest asset is its employees. On today’s episode of Women Igniting Change Jenny shares how her time spent in the Peace Corps shaped her leadership skills and values and how to ensure even the most difficult conversations are productive.



  • “There is so much richness in different perspectives, and every individual brings unique skills, expertise to all the problems in the world or anything that we're trying to do.” (4:38 | Jenny)
  • “It can be very tempting to start focusing externally and say, ‘We need to go do programs, we need to support racial justice,’ which we do, absolutely. But if we don't work on ourselves, that lacks authenticity.” (5:32 | Jenny)
  • “It sounds like a cliche, but how true is it that your employees are your greatest asset, and particularly in a social service organization or nonprofit? Our employees are what we have. That's it. That's the entire value that we deliver.” (7:10 | Jenny)
  •  “There are so many terrible things happening in the world all the time and yet I know I’ve got my people working and helping to make it a little bit better.” (15:07 | Jenny)
  • “When we talk about community led change, just to be clear, as I said, we're talking about communities being the ones that are driving change. And in particular what that means is that we need to put resources and decision-making and even power in the hands of those who are closest to the problems.” (19:47 | Jenny)