English Speaking Union of the United States National Headquarters HQ

Expanding Minds - Strengthening Friendships - Unlocking Opportunities

aka ESU, ESUUS, English in Action   |   New York, NY   |  www.esuus.org

Mission

The English-Speaking Union of the United States employs English as a catalyst to foster global understanding and good will by providing educational and cultural opportunities for immigrants, students, educators, lifelong learners, and members.

Ruling year info

1967

Executive Director

Ms. Karen Karpowich

Main address

144 E 39th St

New York, NY 10016 USA

Show more contact info

EIN

13-1623995

NTEE code info

Secondary/High School (B25)

Ethnic/Immigrant Services (P84)

Humanities Organizations (A70)

IRS filing requirement

This organization is required to file an IRS Form 990 or 990-EZ.

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Communication

Programs and results

What we aim to solve

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Created right after World War I, the English-Speaking Union of the United States addressed the need to forge close personal and national ties as a prerequisite for the preservation of peace. ESU's founder, Sir Evelyn Wrench, firmly believed that given the opportunity to know one another personally, people who shared a common language would soon discover that they also shared similar values, whatever their differences in nationality or background. He imagined the ESU as an inclusive organization "founded in no narrow attitude of race pride, in no spirit of hostility to any people." Its educational mission would be carried out by a host of activities allowing for personal contact between peoples at every level.
A century later, in a shrinking world dominated by dollars and digits, unprecedented migration and bloody national borders we face the continuing challenge to nurture understanding, inclusion, good will, and tolerance, both internationally and within our communities.

Our programs

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

National Shakespeare Competition

National Shakespeare
Competition: A school-based performance program held annually in ESU Branch communities throughout the US in which high school students compete with recitations of a memorized Shakespearean sonnet and monologue before judges in a school assembly. Winners of the school competitions progress to their community ESU Branch competition, and winners of the ESU Branch rounds receive a free trip to New York City where they compete in the National semi-finals and finals. First-place winners receive a cash prize and a summer scholarship to study in the UK. Since its inception, over 250,000 students in 65 communities across the US have competed in the National Shakespeare Competition.

In the past year, due to the pandemic, the Competition has run virtually with youtube video submissions and live zoom performances.

Population(s) Served
Adolescents

English in Action (EiA) helps newcomers to the United States gain fluency and confidence in conversational English by pairing them with volunteer tutors for weekly conversation sessions. In addition to practicing the language without the fear of making mistakes, English in Action students learn about life in this country and teach their conversation partners about their own languages, lands and customs.

Every year, more than 500 students from some 50 countries and volunteer tutors are paired through the program in New York City.

Population(s) Served
Immigrants and migrants

ARNIC is a FREE program that gives recently arrived (less thank 2 years in the country) low-income immigrants, refugees and asylum seekers the skills and confidence to participate fully in American society.
After initial assessment and proof of income and status, each participant is accepted as a member in the program for a full year and is offered language classes, English in Action conversation sessions, intensive tutoring classes to remedy specific weaknesses (accent reduction, grammar, etc.), workshops on practical issues like college applications, job search, medical insurance and other, and cultural interest programs including networking events, excursions and field trips to museums, theater and sporting events.
ARNIC members also get transit assistance (metrocards) and access to the ARNIC lounge with computers, library and internet access, as well as healthy snacks and beverages.

Population(s) Served
Immigrants and migrants
Economically disadvantaged people

Our 60-year-old study-abroad program offers scholarships to teachers to continue their education at prestigious centers of learning in the UK at University of Oxford, Shakespeare's Globe, and the University of Edinburgh.

Population(s) Served
Adults
Academics

And educational initiative for students in grades 5 to 8 designed to help young adolescents develop critical thinking and language arts skills through public speaking.

Population(s) Served
Adolescents
Children and youth

A merit-based scholarship program that provides tuition, room, and board for U.S. students to spend a semester or year between high school and college (gap year) at a British boarding school, and for UK 'students to spend their gap year at select US schools.

Population(s) Served
Students
Adolescents

The program offers two extraordinary students from historically black colleges and universities scholarships (transportation, tuition, room, board and stipend) to study for a semester at a UK university of their choice.

Population(s) Served
People of African descent
Students

Where we work

Our results

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

How does this organization measure their results? It's a hard question but an important one.

Number of one-on-one coaching sessions

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

Immigrants and migrants

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

Since launch of the program. English in Action pairs fluent English speakers-volunteers with new immigrants seeking to improve their speaking skills for regular one-on-one coaching sessions.

Number of training workshops

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

Economically disadvantaged people, Immigrants and migrants

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

Andrew Romay New Immigrant Center offers workshops on a range of practical topics that help new immigrants to better integrate in our society. Topics include job hunt, social media, online safety, etc

Total number of classes offered

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

Economically disadvantaged people, Immigrants and migrants

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

Andrew Romay New Immigrant Center offers English classes to newcomers to the US.

Number of students enrolled

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

Adolescents

Related Program

National Shakespeare Competition

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

High school students across the country participate in the ESU National Shakespeare Competition by performing monologues and sonnets.

Number of teachers recruited

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

Adolescents

Related Program

National Shakespeare Competition

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

Teachers coach high school students to participate in the ESU National Shakespeare Competition.

Number of grants received

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

ESU's strategic plan calls for increasing the number of foundations that support ESU's programs.

Goals & Strategy

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn about the organization's key goals, strategies, capabilities, and progress.

Charting impact

Four powerful questions that require reflection about what really matters - results.

In 2016 the ESU underwent a strategic planning process that resulted in a board-approved blueprint for how the organization should recast itself in response to the changing context of American society and its constituents' needs and interests. The strategic plan identified the following goals for the ESU: English as Catalyst: Develop educational opportunities for employing English as a shared language to inspire common bonds and empowerment of students, teachers and immigrants through creative and confident civil discourse.
International Exchange: Build global understanding through a broad and excellent system of international exchanges supporting teachers and students.
Board Leadership: Build a next generation board passionately committed to building national and international leadership by the ESU through fundraising for and service to the organization's educational programs.
Institutional Capacity-Building: Build the capacity of the ESU to grow, manage, and sustain its programs.

The strategic plan reviewed all of our programs and made recommendations to discontinue a few, and invest in the rest.
English as Catalyst: English in Action; the Andrew Romay New Immigrant Center; Middle School Debate; National Shakespeare Competition.
International Exchange: Teachers Learning Abroad (T-Lab); Secondary School Exchange; and the Luard Morse Scholarships.
The strategic blueprint envisions that each program will establish benchmarks and a plan for reaching them; demonstrate financial stability and a pathway toward growth in revenue and capacity; and in general pursue all elements of an excellent business plan (e.g., revenue/cost analysis, program design, staffing, and marketing). The ESU as an organization is to operate much like an institution of higher learning, with a “school" for international exchange and a “school" for educational opportunities that involve the speaking of English.

The nearly 100-year-old ESU is on a sound financial footing with a small staff based in New York City and 54 branches around the nation.
The staff comprises professionals with degrees in education, refugee and migration studies, English, etc. The ESU has the support of over 1,250 volunteers who donate their time and expertise to our education and immigrant support programs. Our members provide raise funds for the TLab and the Luard Morse Scholarships.
Last but not least, our Board of Directors is engaged and active, working toward the shared goal of establishing the future ESU as a nationally recognized prominent charity. As a key step parallel to the strategic planning, the Board of Directors completed the extensive process of re-organizing the national 501(c)(3) corporation's relationship with the branches, to insure modern management responsive to requirements for nonprofit organizations under U.S. tax rules and to provide for organizational unity through a national network.

EiA – we’ve set up new partnerships with organizations that refer students and volunteers and host conversation sessions outside ESU's house to enrich the content and attract more students.
Kansas City and San Francisco branches have launched EiA in partnership with the local library systems. A pro-bono consulting project with HBSCNY will create manual of operations and a branding strategy to rollout EiA to more locations.
The Andrew Romay New Immigrant Center underwent an independent evaluation with recommendations to make the program more effective that are at the core of our fundraising.
TLab. To subsidize teacher scholarships we offer one-week travel and learn opportunities for lifelong learners.
We are planning a professional assessment of the Middle School Debate that we hope will show the program's impact on students' future success and build the case for why it should receive support from departments of education and the federal government.

How we listen

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Seeking feedback from people served makes programs more responsive and effective. Here’s how this organization is listening.

done We demonstrated a willingness to learn more by reviewing resources about feedback practice.
done We shared information about our current feedback practices.
  • Who are the people you serve with your mission?

    New immigrants and English language learners Teachers and educators Students from historically black colleges and universities Middle school students High school students

  • How is your organization collecting feedback from the people you serve?

    Electronic surveys (by email, tablet, etc.), Paper surveys, Focus groups or interviews (by phone or in person), Case management notes, Community meetings/Town halls, Constituent (client or resident, etc.) advisory committees,

  • How is your organization using feedback from the people you serve?

    To identify and remedy poor client service experiences, To identify bright spots and enhance positive service experiences, To make fundamental changes to our programs and/or operations, To inform the development of new programs/projects, To identify where we are less inclusive or equitable across demographic groups, To strengthen relationships with the people we serve, To understand people's needs and how we can help them achieve their goals,

  • What significant change resulted from feedback?

    With feedback from our immigrant students participating in the Andrew Romay New Immigrant Center we expanded the number of language classes and continued the programs during the summer. It was important to the students to overcome the setbacks in their progress due to the Covid lockdown and isolation. The ESU National Shakespeare Competition moved entirely to an virtual format at the insistence of participants.

  • With whom is the organization sharing feedback?

    The people we serve, Our staff, Our board, Our funders, Our community partners,

  • How has asking for feedback from the people you serve changed your relationship?

    Feedback helps us allocate resources - funding, staff time, tutors and instructors' time, to the programs that are identified as most useful and helpful to our constituents.

  • Which of the following feedback practices does your organization routinely carry out?

    We collect feedback from the people we serve at least annually, We take steps to get feedback from marginalized or under-represented people, We aim to collect feedback from as many people we serve as possible, We take steps to ensure people feel comfortable being honest with us, We look for patterns in feedback based on demographics (e.g., race, age, gender, etc.), We look for patterns in feedback based on people’s interactions with us (e.g., site, frequency of service, etc.), We engage the people who provide feedback in looking for ways we can improve in response, We act on the feedback we receive, We tell the people who gave us feedback how we acted on their feedback, We ask the people who gave us feedback how well they think we responded,

  • What challenges does the organization face when collecting feedback?

    It is difficult to find the ongoing funding to support feedback collection, Staff find it hard to prioritize feedback collection and review due to lack of time,

Financials

English Speaking Union of the United States National Headquarters
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Operations

The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.

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Connect with nonprofit leaders

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Connect with nonprofit leaders

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Build relationships with key people who manage and lead nonprofit organizations with GuideStar Pro. Try a low commitment monthly plan today.

  • Analyze a variety of pre-calculated financial metrics
  • Access beautifully interactive analysis and comparison tools
  • Compare nonprofit financials to similar organizations

Want to see how you can enhance your nonprofit research and unlock more insights? Learn More about GuideStar Pro.

English Speaking Union of the United States National Headquarters

Board of directors
as of 3/24/2021
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
Board co-chair

Dr. Paul Beresford-Hill

Ambassador of the Permanent Observer Mission of the Sovereign Order of Malta to the United Nations

Term: 2015 - 1021


Board co-chair

Mr. John Raffaeli

Vice Chair

Term: 2013 - 2019

Dr. Cheryl Albuquerque

Valley Children's Main Campus, Madera CA

Julia Hansen

Palm Beach, FL

Dincan Karcher

New York, NY

Donna Miller

Oviedo, FL

Bettie Miller

Champan, AL

John Raffaeli

Mountbatten Institute, Fernandina Beach, FL

Dr. Susan Sinclair

Nashville, TN

Dr. Julia Van de Water

Lexington, VA

Dr. E. Peeper, President

New Orleans, LA

Susan Ferris

Portland, OR

Dr. Janet Haedicke

Monroe, LA

Barbara Hughes

Winter Park, FL

Frederick London

New York, NY

David Martinelli

New York, NY

Darryl McCormick

Stamford, CT

Geneive Metzger

Boca Raton, FL

Noel Sloan

New York, NY

Jill Richardson

New York, NY

Ralph Wyndrum

Fair Haven, NJ

Board leadership practices

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

GuideStar worked with BoardSource, the national leader in nonprofit board leadership and governance, to create this section.

  • Board orientation and education
    Does the board conduct a formal orientation for new board members and require all board members to sign a written agreement regarding their roles, responsibilities, and expectations? No
  • CEO oversight
    Has the board conducted a formal, written assessment of the chief executive within the past year ? No
  • Ethics and transparency
    Have the board and senior staff reviewed the conflict-of-interest policy and completed and signed disclosure statements in the past year? No
  • Board composition
    Does the board ensure an inclusive board member recruitment process that results in diversity of thought and leadership? No
  • Board performance
    Has the board conducted a formal, written self-assessment of its performance within the past three years? No

Organizational demographics

SOURCE: Self-reported; last updated 3/24/2021,

Who works and leads organizations that serve our diverse communities? GuideStar partnered on this section with CHANGE Philanthropy and Equity in the Center.

Leadership

The organization's leader identifies as:

Race & ethnicity
White/Caucasian/European
Gender identity
Female, Not transgender (cisgender)
Sexual orientation
Heterosexual or Straight
Disability status
Person without a disability

Race & ethnicity

No data

Gender identity

No data

 

No data

Sexual orientation

No data

Disability

No data

Equity strategies

Last updated: 03/24/2021

GuideStar partnered with Equity in the Center - an organization that works to shift mindsets, practices, and systems to increase racial equity - to create this section. Learn more

Data
  • We review compensation data across the organization (and by staff levels) to identify disparities by race.
  • We ask team members to identify racial disparities in their programs and / or portfolios.
  • We analyze disaggregated data and root causes of race disparities that impact the organization's programs, portfolios, and the populations served.
  • We disaggregate data to adjust programming goals to keep pace with changing needs of the communities we support.
  • We have long-term strategic plans and measurable goals for creating a culture such that one’s race identity has no influence on how they fare within the organization.
Policies and processes
  • We have a promotion process that anticipates and mitigates implicit and explicit biases about people of color serving in leadership positions.
  • We seek individuals from various race backgrounds for board and executive director/CEO positions within our organization.
  • We help senior leadership understand how to be inclusive leaders with learning approaches that emphasize reflection, iteration, and adaptability.
  • We measure and then disaggregate job satisfaction and retention data by race, function, level, and/or team.
  • We engage everyone, from the board to staff levels of the organization, in race equity work and ensure that individuals understand their roles in creating culture such that one’s race identity has no influence on how they fare within the organization.