Request for Proposals for Strategic Planning

Proposals Due:  September 18, 2020, 5:00pm

You can find this document in PDF format here.


Protohaven is a design and fabrication school built to serve the public good. Its mission is to engage people in the process of making things to enrich individual lives, build thriving communities, and contribute to a vibrant, sustainable society. Protohaven’s campus is a 12,500 square foot makerspace in Wilkinsburg, Pennsylvania.

Protohaven was founded in 2017 with the goal of building an inclusive, sustainable makerspace for the greater Pittsburgh region. It has partnered with a wide array of other nonprofits, supported dozens of small businesses, and taught hundreds of classes in design and fabrication. Approximately a third of the businesses and organizations Protohaven supports are women or minority led, and approximately a third of its members and students receive discounted access based on income, work-trade, or through nonprofit partnerships.

When the COVID-19 pandemic began this spring, Protohaven shifted its operations to produce Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) for essential workers and vulnerable populations. As it reopens and plans for the future, the organization seeks to use that same sense of purpose and its expertise in design and fabrication to meaningfully address racial inequality, gender inequality, and other long-standing social, economic, and environmental issues in the region. 


Protohaven is seeking consultants experienced in strategic planning to lead Protohaven’s Board of Directors and staff through a strategic planning process.

  1. Work with Protohaven Board of Directors, staff, members, and external stakeholders to articulate a clear strategic plan for 2021-2023. This plan should identify specific fundraising, communication, and programming objectives for the organization to pursue over the next three years. 
  1. Conduct a small scope internal and external survey to evaluate internal and external perceptions of the organization. Use findings from stakeholders to develop a general SWOT analysis.
  1. Develop a timetable of implementation with specific measurable benchmarks, objectives, and tasks to be accomplished to achieve goals. Identify clear, measurable outcomes for how to measure organizational and strategic effectiveness, impact, and success. 

  1. Establish a framework and process for the organization’s leadership to effectively implement the strategic plan and monitor progress toward achievement of goals and objectives. 
  1. Facilitate meetings and provide leadership, direction, and expert consultation and advice related to the development of an effective strategic plan, including successful implementation.
  1. Deliverable should be a strategic planning roadmap, accompanied by a strategic planning timeline, implementation, and evaluation methodology.

The budget for the project is $10,000. Protohaven requests that proposals include a clear approach to meet this limited budget, including suggested opportunities for efficiencies and work that may need to be completed internally.


Interested parties are asked to submit a proposal by 5:00pm on September 18, 2020. Proposal length must not exceed five (5) pages. Please email questions and proposals to Devin Montgomery, Executive Director, at

Proposals must include the following information:

  1. Organization description, size, and structure. Indicate whether the firm is a small, woman-owned, minority-owned, or veteran-owned business.
  1. Description of the qualifications of the consultant in relation to this project and why the consultant is well-suited to provide the required services.
  1. Description of the consultant’s general approach to strategic planning consultation, including methodology, perspective, or philosophy. Description may include details on previous strategic planning efforts led by the consultant.
  1. Work plan outlining the approach to be used and a corresponding project schedule.
  1. Detailed fee and expense schedule. The current budgeted amount for this RFP is $10,000.
  1. Credentials and qualifications of key personnel who will take responsibility for working directly on this project.


RFP Issue: August 12, 2020

Pre-proposal Meeting (non-mandatory): September 2, 2020 3:00pm. Please email for a Zoom invite.

Questions Due: September 9, 2020 by 5:00pm. Information session slides and question answers are here

Proposals Due: September 18, 2020 by 5:00pm

Interviews: October 1-2, 2020

Award Contract: October 2020

Draft Strategic Planning Roadmap Due: January 2021

Estimated Final Deliverable Due Date: March 2021


  1. Capacity:  Demonstrates capacity to successfully complete the project.
  1. Experience:  Performance of the consultant on similar projects.
  1. Suitability of the Proposal:  Proposal meets the needs and criteria set forth in the RFP. 
  1. Innovative:  Provides innovative approaches and work. 
  1. Value:  Fee structure and hourly rates.
  1. DBE Participation:  Responsiveness to Protohaven’s commitment to diversity and equity.

Consultant shall disclose any professional engagements, relationships, conflicts of interest, or potential conflicts of interest that might impact the project.