Who We Are

Tracy Kunkler, MSW, is Co-founder and Principal at Social Profit Strategies.

After more than 2 decades in the nonprofit and government sectors, in 2008, Tracy became a consultant, and then a Partner, in Sims & Steele Consulting. She wrote many winning grants for clients and became a regular presenter for the Duke Nonprofit Certificate Program and the Association of Fundraising Professionals.  Soon, nonprofits sought her guidance on organizational assessment and strategic planning, as well.   She assisted dozens of organizations to assess, plan, and transform their work together.

Her reputation as a skilled facilitator and her passion for the local food movement grew and attracted a wide variety of organizations and networks, like the Carolina Farm Stewardship Association and the Appalachian Foodshed Project, and created a food systems niche for Tracy.

By 2012, Tracy’s focus was shifting even more toward systemic issues that required large scale collaborative efforts, and in 2014 she left Sims & Steele to form Social Profit Strategies with Michelle Smith.  With years of community development experience, Tracy understood her clients’ needs for more adaptive ways of governing how they work together, make decisions, create inclusion, empower leadership, and distribute power – to bring about more effective and equitable results in large scale systems change.  She co-founded the Dynamic Governance Institute, which has evolved into Circle Forward, a system of consent-based governance that is being used by nonprofits, social enterprises, and cross-sector networks at the local, regional, and multi-state levels.  

Tracy’s work has been featured on the Community Voices program at the Virginia Tech Institute for Policy and Governance (VTIPG); as one the “Best Ideas for 2016” by the Mountain Xpress; and in a UMN research publication, Cultivating Collective Action: The Ecology of a Statewide Food Network.




MichelleSmithheadshots-4-200x200Michelle Smith is co-founder and  social profit cultivator at Social Profit Strategies.  For more than two decades she has worked with for-profit and non-profit businesses that are committed to contributing to a vision of prosperity, vitality and peace for the whole community.

Michelle trains, coaches and facilitates groups of people who want to  work together more collaboratively, with more inclusivity and greater participation.  Since first encountering the foundations of Circle Forward (Dynamic Governance, Sociocracy)  she has immersed herself in practicing and training groups in this collaborative, consent-based governance system including completion of Advanced Facilitation with John Buck and Governance Alive!

Michelle also helps social profit organizations and businesses with customized project planning, management, implementation.  Michelle brings expertise in systems and strategies for online, major gift and grant fundraising as well as communications, marketing, volunteer and donor relations from a broad range of organizations dedicated to community vitality and social change.