August 25, 2020 -- The boards of the Alliance for Strong Families and Communities (Alliance) and the Council on Accreditation (COA) voted on Wednesday, August 19th to sign a Nonbinding Letter of Intent to explore a merger of the two organizations. The two organizations have been in discussions with multiple task forces of their boards since May 2019 and believe they have the agreements necessary to move to due diligence. Both organizations represent thousands of professionals working across the sectors of social, health and human services fields, and share a long history and vision, with the Alliance serving as one of the original founders of COA in 1977.
In a joint statement, Susan N. Dreyfus, president and CEO of the Alliance and Jody Levison-Johnson, president and CEO of COA, noted: “The merging of our two organizations to create a new organization is a very exciting possibility as it would amplify both of our missions, assets, networks and accelerate our shared vision to achieve greater impact, influence, and foster more rapid innovation. This new organization would be grounded in a deep commitment to equity, diversity, and inclusion that creates better outcomes for people and communities with a strong focus on advocacy at the local, state and federal levels. We could maximize our joint capacities, credibility, and reputation, and will build upon the excellence of our partner organizations through data and research, best practices, quality standards, policy, and accreditation pathways. Jointly, we would become a multifaceted and larger cross-sector network of partners (beyond existing COA-accredited organizations and current Alliance members) that could strengthen the reach and influence of our respective fields and the social, health and human services sector as a whole.”
A Joint Negotiation task force made up of selected members of both boards and executive leadership will be working throughout the remainder of the year on due diligence. Both organizations will be keeping their staff, networks, customers, funders and partners informed along the way and it is estimated that if the decision to proceed is made, the new organization will be created in early 2021.