I have worked side-by-side with Gail Picco as we sought to bring about change in Regent Park, Canada’s oldest public housing project, a project that today leads the world in inner city transformation.
The past 25 years that she has been working in the charitable sector, Gail has been one of its leading practitioners and one of the most progressive thinkers we have.
Gail dares to challenge the charitable sector to dig deep and evaluate its objectives and measures of success.
Gail Picco is an award-winning charity leader and strategist, widely recognized as an expert on how to carve a path through the increasingly complex dynamics of the charitable sector. Civil Sector Press published her latest book, Cap in Hand: How Charities are Failing the People of Canada and the World in 2017.
Throughout her 30-year career, Gail Picco has been called upon—through analysis, innovation, strategy and persuasion—to create paths of success in an increasingly competitive nonprofit sector. For her, improving impact has become her professional mission.
Gail’s work in fundraising, communications and advocacy has raised hundreds of millions of dollars and generated tens of millions of calls to action. She has recently wrapped up a stint as a Principal at The Osborne Group, where she advised charities on re-structuring, merger, risk management, fundraising and communications. Before joining The Osborne Group, she ran her own consulting company Gail Picco Associates for 16 years, then joined Stephen Thomas Limited as Principal Strategist. Over a 30-year career, she has worked with Canadian Red Cross (Ontario), UNHCR: The UN Refugee Agency, CNIB, Oxfam Canada, Canadian Race Relations Foundation, Lung Association (Ontario), Children’s Wish Foundation, Alberta Cancer Foundation and Canada Medic Alert.
Although a majority of her work has been at a senior level with charities and non-profits that have significant fundraising, relationship building and communications mandates, she has also devoted a great deal of attention to developing impact strategies for community-based organizations. She served two terms as Chair of the Regent Park Film Festival. Since 2010, she has also been writing and providing commentary on the charity sector through her blog, yourworkinggirl.com.
She began her career at Interval House, a shelter for abused women and children, where she spent eight years as a counsellor.