ASU Lodestar Center


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Coronavirus FAQ: How the Lodestar Center is responding to COVID-19

Last updated November 3, 2020

Because the Lodestar Center is housed within Arizona State University, we rely on the instruction of the university in responding to the novel coronavirus.

ASU resumed on-campus, in-person classes on Aug. 20, 2020. Consistent with our efforts to always meet learners where they are, ASU offers courses in a variety of learning environments to accommodate degree-seeking students’ needs depending on location or circumstance as a result of COVID-19.

For up-to-date information on Arizona State University's response, read ASU's latest coronavirus updates and check the university's FAQ page. Researchers can check the university's COVID-19 guidelines for more information on research work.

For information specific to Lodestar Center programs, read on.

Lodestar Center offices

What's the status of the Center?

The ASU Lodestar Center offices on the Downtown Phoenix Campus reopened on August 17, 2020. Our programs will continue to be run virtually until further notice.

2020 Nonprofit Conference on Sustainability Strategies

Our 28th Annual Nonprofit Conference on Sustainability Strategies was held virtually on October 28. It will be followed on November 23 by a workshop on scenario building and contingency planning.

COVID-19 Survey of Arizona Nonprofits

On May 1, the ASU Lodestar Center released a report on the impacts of COVID-19 on the Arizona nonprofit sector. The report analyzed data from 449 responding organizations and detailed the dramatic impacts of the pandemic.

As unemployment soars and Arizonans cope with the ongoing impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic, many nonprofit organizations, from food pantries to shelter services, are needed more than ever. But those same organizations are struggling with disruptions of their own as donations decline and volunteers stay home. Other categories of nonprofits, including education, environment, and arts and culture, have seen their operations severely reduced or halted, with a real risk of organizations closing entirely.

  • Nearly 80% of Arizona nonprofits reported a reduction in their normal services.
  • 11% of organizations are not operating at all.
  • Almost 40% of all arts and culture nonprofits are not currently operating.
  • Just under 20% of nonprofits say they won't meet payroll in eight weeks.
  • Only 5% of nonprofits say they are operating normally.

The results contribute Arizona voices to a broader national conversation about COVID-19 and the nonprofit sector. Organizations can continue to submit data for follow-up reports.

Nonprofit Innovation Hub

The COVID-19 pandemic has left no nonprofit or philanthropic organization untouched, from a human service nonprofit coping with unprecedented demand to an arts organization unable to welcome guests to their venue. The disruptions have been massive in scope. While conducting our survey on the impacts of COVID-19 to the nonprofit sector, we heard hundreds of stories like these from nonprofits across the state.

But we've also heard stories of incredible innovation. Some nonprofits have adopted new technology to continue their services; others have pivoted to new business models to fulfill their missions.

We invite you to share your own experiences for our Nonprofit Innovation Hub, where organizations can find ideas and inspiration from their colleagues in the nonprofit community. Your responses will contribute to an indispensable resource and help lift up the sector during this time of need.

Nonprofit Compensation and Benefits Report

What is the status of this report?

The report was released on June 2. It provides essential data for decision-makers in the nonprofit community, with compensation data on 50+ nonprofit job positions, as well as findings on employee retirement, insurance, paid time off, and other benefits for Maricopa and Pima county organizations. It is critical in helping nonprofits make informed decisions on salaries and benefits for dozens of position titles, organized by budget size and organization type (human services, education, arts, etc.).

Nonprofit Management Institute

Have you canceled any professional-development courses?

We are continuing to educate the nonprofit community, using a virtual format for all of our offerings until further notice.

American Express Leadership Academy

What's the status of the next Academy class?

The interview and selection process for Class 13 were conducted virtually. The new class was announced in late August. The program started the year in a virtual format, with in-person gatherings to resume at a later date based on recommendations from the university and public health officials.

Public Allies Arizona

Public Allies and their Partner Organizations should have already received information from Director Jake Teskey. If you have not, email Jake at

Service Enterprise Initiative

Service Enterprise Initiative organizations of Cohort 17 should have received information from Jill Watts and the Basecamp platform, as well as their coaches. For more information, email

Lodestar Center blog

How are you using your blog platform at this time?

We are encouraging stakeholders to share their expertise on nonprofit and philanthropic issues during these challenging times. For example, American Express Leadership Academy alumnus Seth Cothrun wrote about lessons learned during the last financial crisis and why nonprofits need to have plans in place for a dramatic budget reforecast. If you'd like to contribute a blog post to the conversation, please email Phil Bencomo at