The Podium Foundation
320 Hull Street, #202
Richmond VA 23224
Mission Statement
Inspiring Richmond youth to become confident and capable writers with the skills necessary to succeed in citizenship, college, and career.
Web and Social Media
Multi-Media Comments Link to YouTube Channel is
CEO/Executive Director Lindy M. Bumgarner
Board Chair Mr. Scott Hammer
Board Chair Company Affiliation NorthHighland
Contact Information
Address 320 Hull Street, #202
Richmond, VA 23224
Telephone 804 921-2328
History and Background
Year of Incorporation 2008
Financial Summary
Revenue vs Expense Bar Graph - All Years
Expense Breakdown Bar Chart - All Years
Projected Revenue $145,000.00
Projected Expenses $136,500.00
Additional Documents

Inspiring Richmond youth to become confident and capable writers with the skills necessary to succeed in citizenship, college, and career.
Podium is redefining the education standards of our city's public schools through close interactions with teachers and students. We are equipping Richmond youth with communication and leadership skills critical for success. While strengthening the dialogues between the schools and the Richmond community, our platforms encourage the voices of our youth to be heard.
Since 2008, Podium has increased the number of outlets students have to practice their writing and express themselves. We have also dedicated ourselves to better preparing educators for teaching communication and artful expression in Richmond Public Schools.
The inaugural Podium Journal was a result of over 500 written and artistic submissions from RPS students. The following four editions exceeded more than 1,200 submissions each.
Podium's T3 (Teaching The Teachers) Academy has helped more than 120 secondary education teachers become more comfortable with their own writing, as well as using the skill in the classroom.
Financial Needs
  1. $8,000- A Printing Benefactor is needed to cover paper costs for the Podium Print Journal/Zines each year.
  2. $6,500- Underwrite the T3 Academy and support operations for Podium's annual professional development conference for Richmond city teachers.
  3. $75- Sponsor a Podium Student for a four-week unit of programs.
  1. Volunteer Tech Support- Podium needs technological assistance with website maintenance, graphic design and social media management.
  2. Writing Mentors--Podium invites area professionals in the publishing, writing and related fields to conduct classes, lectures and workshops during after-school programs.
  3. Board Members- Podium welcomes local leaders with experience and passion for youth, writing and literacy education. Board members are closely involved with all of Podium's programs and ensure that the organization remains healthy. 
  1. Technology Suite (Adobe CS6) for Mac-$350
  2. Non-perishable snacks for after-school programs
  3. Journals, pens, flash drives, etc. for after-school programs
Podium was founded in 2008 to answer a need that is all too frequent in urban school systems like Richmond’s. A disparity existed between the opportunities available to students in the surrounding counties and in the schools of the city itself. Under the belief that competence with the written word is an irreplaceable skill in our culture as well as our economy, Podium was founded specifically to support the teaching and practice of writing skills and creative expression in our city’s public high schools.   Prior to Podium’s founding, 5,400 students in Richmond's public high schools lacked many of the writing and creative platforms commonly available in dozens of county schools nearby. To accomplish our mission, Podium has forged several key partnerships, notably with Richmond Public Schools, VCU, Communities in Schools of Richmond, local corporations and foundations, as well as dozens of volunteers and mentors. Podium operates a range of programs, each aiming to increase the self-esteem and creative reach of Richmond’s students, as well as strengthen cooperative talents and skills they will use in their transition to college and/or the professional world. City students receive real experience in working to deadlines, editing, as well as the incalculable thrill of seeing their works published and widely viewed.   It is important to note that the creative content of these programs is the sole product of the students themselves, including writing, illustrating, design and editing, all accomplished under Podium mentorship. While the value of such platforms for the city’s high school students may seem obvious, it should not go without observing that in a key aspect, writing differs from reading.  Long-term, it is Podium’s goal to advocate that every under-served high school student in each city of Virginia will have its own version of Podium as a platform for his or her artistic expressions.
Areas of Service
Areas Served
Richmond, City
Metro Richmond
Henrico County
Podium's programs serve Richmond Public High and Middle Schools. We have targeted schools that are strapped for resources and inspiration. Podium is a means for students and teachers to improve the quality of experience and education that is advocated in often under-resourced local schools.
Board Chair
Board Chair Mr. Scott Hammer
Company Affiliation NorthHighland
Term Aug 2015 to July 2018
Board of Directors
Board Members
David Creasy David Creasy, CPA
Melanie Cross Community Volunteer
Scott Hammer The NorthHighland Company
Janell Hancock Dominion Resources
Jerry Kilgore McGuireWoods
Deanna Lorianni Zuula Consulting
Shelley McLaughlin Marsico Institute
David L. Robbins Author
Rob Shinn Cap Results
Kristin Walinski Scribe On Demand
Lawton Way Hunton & Williams
Vida Williams Axis Partners
Board Demographics - Ethnicity
African American/Black 1
Asian American/Pacific Islander 0
Caucasian 11
Hispanic/Latino 0
Native American/American Indian 0
Board Demographics - Gender
Male 5
Female 6
Board Term Lengths 2
Board Term Limits 3
Board Meeting Attendance % 80
Written Board Selection Criteria? Yes
Written Conflict of Interest Policy? Yes
Percentage Making Monetary Contributions 100
Percentage Making In-Kind Contributions 100
Number of Full Board Meetings Annually 10
Standing Committees
Development / Fund Development / Fund Raising / Grant Writing / Major Gifts
Program / Program Planning
Other Boards
The tables below contain information about other groups that advise this nonprofit on operations and projects.
Youth boards meet bi-annually in order for Podium to better collaborate with RPS and serve participants. The organization will undergo work with a consultant regarding board development in 2016. 
Executive Director
Executive Director Lindy M. Bumgarner
Experience Podium's co-founder and executive director, Lindy M. Bumgarner, has extensive experience in education and the non-profit industry. She has presented on panels and workshops at national conferences and is the former creator and director of Special Programs and Outreach for the Richmond Commonwealth's Attorney's Office. Ms. Bumgarner holds graduate degrees in pedagogy and has taught at the high school and collegiate levels. 
Senior Staff
Vicki Yeroian Programs Director
Full Time Staff 2
Part Time Staff 4
Volunteers 30
Contractors 0
Retention Rate 100
Organization has a Fundraising Plan? Yes
Organization has a Strategic Plan? Yes
Years Strategic Plan Considers 3
Date Strategic Plan Adopted July 2013
Management Succession Plan? No
Organization Policy and Procedures Under Development
Nondiscrimination Policy Under Development
Whistleblower Policy Yes
Document Destruction Policy Yes
Directors and Officers Insurance Policy Yes
RPS coordinates with principals and teachers.  Teachers and administrators serve on the programs advisory committee or assist with program operation. VCU provides meeting space, plus students who serve as mentors and assistant editors or design team leaders. Communities in Schools of Richmond assists through their site coordinators, working closely with all Podium initiatives and volunteers.
Outstanding Achievement for T3 AcademyRichmond Public Schools School Board2011
Certificate of Recognition for generous commitment of time and support to RPSSchool Board of the City of Richmond2012
Description During each after-school club meeting, a different creative theme is introduced and practiced. Local writers, journalists, and artists work with Podium staff and mentors to help facilitate workshops. Podium Clubs simulate professional conditions to learn the value of responsibility, commitment, and teamwork. Podium Clubs are instrumental in producing Podium’s prize publication, the Podium Journal. All content of the Podium Journal is written, edited, and designed by RPS students under Podium mentorship.  
Population Served K-12 (5-19 years)
Budget $36,000.00
Short Term Success
   The success of the Podium Clubs would be nothing without the work of our dedicated students. Since 2008, the number of students participating in have grown tremendously. Our pilot year included 35 students in four Richmond Public High Schools. Since then, over 200 students have joined the Podium Clubs in nine schools. We are proud of our high retention rate, at least 60% of our students return to the clubs in the following year. 
   Our clubs are making lasting impressions, several Podium alumni have returned to be mentors and volunteers. We encourage our students to remain connected with Podium, they are key actors in promoting the practice of writing and creative expression to the up-coming generations. In addition to our alumni, we have had over 100 mentors from VCU cycle through our clubs. Our mentors are an intangible part of this program, shining light on the responsibility and work ethic it takes to be a successful student.  
Long Term Success
Description        Now in its 7th year, the Podium Journal puts on display the creative, expository, and artistic work of RPS high school students. The works are created in the classroom and outside of class by students in five categories: fiction, memoir, poetry, op/ed, and art. Pieces are selected and edited by each school's Podium Club, then sent to a central student committee for selection and inclusion into the journal. A student design team works with a partnership through the Visual Arts Center of Richmond to create the look. Up to 20,000 free copies are placed each year into the schools and greater Richmond metro area.


Population Served Adolescents Only (13-19 years)
Budget $8,000.00
Short Term Success

    The Podium Journal has made significant leaps since its initial publication. The Journal itself has transformed from a simple black and white design to a full-color journal. The number of submissions have increased significantly every year. After collecting just 400 during the pilot year, the following two years have collected more than 1200 submissions in poetry, short story, non-fiction, opinion, and visual arts. With only 12,000 copies printed for the first volume of the journal, 20,000 copies of volume two and three were distributed throughout the Richmond community. 

Long Term Success

   The growing success of our Print Journal has led to the development of the Podium Online Journal. This e-publication, which launched in 2012, launches new work every quarter. Podium Online grants more opportunities for students to receive the thrill and confidence that comes with being a published writer. Podium Online allows more diverse and expansive pieces to be displayed to a larger audience


Podium offers an annual summer series of creative and expository writing and pedagogy workshops for 30 teachers across disciplines in grades 6-12. Our mission is to provide teachers continuing education workshops for incorporating writing and artful expression of all kinds into their classrooms. Each group of teachers receives recertification points and participates in professional development opportunities throughout the year. For the past two years, the T3 Academy has had a waiting list of teachers from all over the region that want to come participate in the conference.

Population Served K-12 (5-19 years)
Budget $12,000.00
Short Term Success
The T3 Academy (Teaching the Teachers) has turned into one of Podium's prize programs. Our T3 teachers have praised the conference for it's creative approach to teaching writing, and for helping identify positive classroom strategies. We encourage our teachers to explore their own voices and imagination. This type of learning translates to more effective connections with the students and a better grasp on the practice of artful expression.
What teachers are saying about the T3: 

“I enjoyed the learning atmosphere of feeling safe to expose, exploit, and experiment.”

“Instructors helped us to understand how to build our skills through active learning.”

“T3 gave me the opportunity to be creative and many starting points for lessons to use in my own classroom.”

“It brought out the best in people and challenged us to be better teachers and writers.”

“I have been attending conferences, seminars, and classes for 40+ years. This academy was by far the most useful, engaging, and rewarding of all.”

“I realized how much I enjoyed writing and learning new techniques to inspire/motivate my students.” 
Long Term Success
Podium has high aspirations for the T3 Academy. We would like to expand the conference from the local school system, and attract more educators from the regional and national levels.  Podium is proud of the innovative model we have designed to impact Richmond's urban schools. The T3 Academy is an avenue for other school systems to approach the pedagogy of writing in a more informed and connected manner.  The T3 can be replicated and conducted in school systems of all shapes and sizes. Podium hopes to continue improving the quality of instruction and the number of educators that the T3 Academy can accommodate.
This break through program begun out of grassroots efforts by a handful of teachers. Podium now delivers over 4,000 free literary journals into classrooms in the city's middle and high schools. Middle school remedial reading students use the Podium Journal and Podium Online as supplemental literacy tools, while art and English classes utilize them as instructional material. A study guide is in development by teachers and Podium staff. Richmond is the only city in the nation where classes study works written and designed by their own students. 
Population Served Adolescents Only (13-19 years)
Budget $2,200.00
Long Term Success    Inspiration Squared is a revolutionary attempt at redefining how our schools teach writing. We are encouraging our local educators to use the Podium Journal and resources as examples in their lessons. We believe that students are more engaged and attentive when they are learning from people of similar experiences. As Inspiration Squared expands to more classrooms, we have received more and more feedback that our resources are preparing students for not only scholastic success, but inspiring them to use their creative skills in the future. Inspiration Squared is the means in which Podium links the gap between educators and students, encouraging them to share experiences and creativity.
Project Write Now is a series of after-school and co-curricular writing outreach activities provided to RPS middle school students. Youth explore writing as an enrichment opportunity as well as learn core writing skills to successfully transition to high school.
Budget $10,000.00
Fiscal Year
Projected Revenue $145,000.00
Projected Expenses $136,500.00
Form 990s
IRS Letter of Exemption
Detailed Financials
Expense Allocation
Fiscal Year201520142013
Program Expense$112,776$70,670$55,402
Administration Expense$18,798$12,514$16,396
Fundraising Expense$5,809$6,525$6,684
Payments to Affiliates------
Total Revenue/Total Expenses1.160.961.13
Program Expense/Total Expenses82%79%71%
Fundraising Expense/Contributed Revenue4%8%8%
Assets and Liabilities
Fiscal Year201520142013
Total Assets$46,762$23,548$29,794
Current Assets$45,238$22,109$28,355
Long-Term Liabilities$0----
Current Liabilities$0----
Total Net Assets$46,762$23,548$29,794
Short Term Solvency
Fiscal Year201520142013
Current Ratio: Current Assets/Current Liabilities------
Long Term Solvency
Fiscal Year201520142013
Long-Term Liabilities/Total Assets0%0%0%
Capital Campaign
Currently in a Capital Campaign? No
Capital Campaign Anticipated in Next 5 Years? No
State Charitable Solicitaions Permit
Solicitations Permit
Solicitations Permit Application Confirmation 11/2015View
Foundation Comments
  • Transitioned from a calendar fiscal year to a 7/31 fiscal year end in 2013
  • Form 990 and financial statements prepared internally by the organization
  • Financial information provided by the Form 990