In Foundations

Micronews on philanthropy.

Report On Princeton Donor Intent Battle Available

From the Chronicle of Philanthropy:

To dissect the nuances of the battle between Princeton University and the Robertson family, the Hudson Institute’s Bradley Center for Philanthropy and Civic Renewal has collected a variety of opinions on it.

The bitter dispute centered on an endowment, known as the Robertson Foundation, that supports the university’s Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs. The endowment was established in 1961 by Charles and Marie Robertson. William Robertson, their son, and other family members sued the university in 2002, saying the university had not adhered to the terms of the gift. . . .

The Bradley Center asked about a dozen nonprofit thinkers to discuss what the fight means for donors and the recipients of their gifts — and the opinions differ greatly.

From the Neal Freeman report published by the Bradley Center for Philanthropy and Civic Renewal:

At the heart of every charitable contribution is the concept of trust—trust by the donor that the grantee will do what he has agreed to do. If that trust is allowed to erode, if the donor can no longer rely on the grantee’s assurance, then charitable contributions will decline and the civil society they sustain will decline along with them. If that were to happen—if the private, voluntary, civil society that Tocqueville first acclaimed, and that the Bradley Center still celebrates, were to wither away—America would abandon one of its defining national traits. Absent a vibrant civil society, only government would be left to fill the social vacuum and the America of tomorrow would come to look very much like the Europe of today.

Full report here. (pdf)

Via @Philanthropy.

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Filed under: news

Truths About Leading A Foundation

From the Grand Rapids Community Foundation:

The [President Diana] Sieger Truths about leading a foundation:

  • Foundation leaders do not have all the answers 
  • Foundation leaders do have access to resources and need to use them wisely
  • Foundation leaders do need to be leaders and not just “position holders”
  • Foundation leaders do need to be active listeners

Full post here.

Filed under: executives, lessons, news

Amidst Meltdown, Corporate Philanthropy As Lobbying?

From The Hill:

In the last six months of 2008, as a financial crisis enveloped the country and lawmakers voted on a $700 billion financial rescue package, eight companies that would benefit from that package spent roughly $366,000 on events and charities connected to members of Congress, according to a review of congressional lobbying records.

More here.

Filed under: news

Target To Keep Giving

From MPLS Star Tribune:

“Target Corp. intends to continue giving 5 percent of its pre-tax profits to charity despite the economic downturn that prompted it to cut 1,000 workers on Tuesday and to announce the closure later this year of an Arkansas distribution center. ‘We remain committed to supporting the communities where we operate, including [donating] 5 percent of our income to nonprofit organizations that support the arts, education and social services,” said Lena . . . a Target spokesperson.”

Per Minnesota Council on Foundations:

Target has given five percent of its pretax profits to charitable causes since the first retail store opened in 1962. Its community outreach efforts support education, arts & culture, and social services at $3 million a week. Target Foundation & Corporation reported combined cash and in-kind contributions of $169 million for the fiscal year ending Feb. 2, 2008.

Filed under: news

Daschle Ties To Foundation Source Of Controversy

NYT: “In his financial disclosure report, Mr. Daschle said he received compensation of more than $5,000 for providing “policy advice” to EduCap. The exact amount was not disclosed. In reports to the Internal Revenue Service, EduCap says it does business as the Catherine B. Reynolds Foundation. The foundation is the principal underwriter of annual meetings held by the American Academy of Achievement, which has honored Mr. Daschle on several occasions.”

WaPo via The Corner: “Richard Lee Colvin, a loan industry expert at Columbia University’s Teachers College, said Reynolds “has acted in the nonprofit space very much as a for-profit company.” Reynolds said U.S. law allows her to run EduCap as a nonprofit, adding that critics should “take it up with Congress.” Much of the critics’ scrutiny of EduCap centers on its spending. The company paid for Reynolds, her husband, their now-teenage daughter and several friends to go to luxury resorts in the Bahamas last year and in Barbados in 2004, according to internal company records.”

Filed under: news,

Richardson’s Charity Donors Subpoenaed

Article here.

Attorneys for Frank Foy, former investment officer for the New Mexico’s Educational Retirement Board, subpoenaed Gov. Bill Richardson’s Moving America Forward Foundation. In a whistle-blower lawsuit made public Jan. 14, Foy says the state lost $90m due to worthless investments pushed byVanderbilt Financial. Vanderbilt execs had contributed to Richardson’s presidential campaign. The subpoena seeks to find out whether they also donated to the charity.

More.

Filed under: news

Gulf Coast Community Foundation Announces Grants

From the Mississippi Press.

The Gulf Coast Community Foundation recently approved grants totaling more than $17,000, made possible by the Anthony Dartez Fund (dedicated to providing servicesfor training and educational needs of the physically and mentally challenged).

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Filed under: news,