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How Carmen Randolph’s Revolutionary WFS will Transform Philanthropy


As the Founding President and CEO of Women’s Foundation of the South (WFS), Carmen James Randolph will create huge change in philanthropy.

Carmen James Randolph, former VP for Programs of the Greater New Orleans Foundation, will take on a new role as the Founding President and CEO of WFS. (Image credit: Women's Foundation of the South)
Carmen James Randolph, former VP for Programs of the Greater New Orleans Foundation, will take on a new role as the Founding President and CEO of WFS. (Image credit: Women’s Foundation of the South)

Carmen James Randolph, noted philanthropy leader and former Vice President for Programs of the Greater New Orleans Foundation, has been announced as the Founding President and CEO of Women’s Foundation of the South (WFS), a revolutionary first-of-its-kind foundation founded by and created for women and girls of color in the South to advance gender and racial justice. As President and CEO, she will stand up this exciting new entity, build its team, broker partnerships with women of color leaders across the South to inform WFS’ work and investments, and oversee the strategic direction and day-to-day operations.

WFS, which will have a permanent endowment, will serve as a gateway for donors, foundations, corporations, and individual investors to maximize the social impact of their investments in women and girls of color in the South. WFS’s mission is to center and invest in the collective power, health, well- being, economic security, and leadership of women and girls of color in the South, with the vision of creating a flourishing South where women and girls of color are healthy, safe, and well-resourced to determine their own destinies, so they and their families thrive.

Ms. Randolph is well known for her expertise in building and leading regional and national networks of grantmakers that advance systemic reform through action, rich community partnerships, and investment. She has deftly leveraged more than $20M in new investments from national and regional funders to support marginalized communities. As a seasoned grantmaker, she has led more than $11M in annual grantmaking from discretionary initiatives and competitive donor-advised funds. She is skilled in building nonprofit capacity through sustained operating support and strategic investments in organizational development at critical moments in a nonprofits’ life cycle. She has an abiding respect for the home wisdom of community leaders.

Her stalwart leadership at the Greater New Orleans Foundation dramatically transformed its grantmaking, programmatic initiatives, and strategic focus. Her work in disaster grantmaking influenced the equitable practices of other regional funders, establishing the Foundation as a leader regionally and nationally in this area. Her work is grounded in equity and inclusion in all programmatic work and grantmaking strategies. She consistently builds dynamic and diverse teams with outstanding recruiting and retention skills to expand organizations’ influence and extend their expertise and impact. This will greatly enhance WFS’ work, which is critically important due to a long history of institutionalized racism and disenfranchisement in the South.

As stated by the Ms. Foundation for Women, which recently published a comprehensive Call To Action called Pocket Change, notes: “Women, particularly women and girls of color, continue to navigate decades-old, complex systems of oppression and a daily onslaught of threats to their autonomy, safety, and well-being. Even in the absence of proportionate formal political power, women (especially women of color) have led and served as the backbone of nearly every impactful grassroots movement in the United States, including labor movements and the civil rights movement.”

WFS recognizes that women of color continue to do the most with the least amount of resources and support. WFS challenges us to imagine what is possible if women and girls of color had more to lead the change needed in their communities and advance their economic well-being. Led by Carmen James Randolph, WFS represents the social justice and transformational change so direly needed in our nation, particularly in the South.

ABOUT WFS

WFS is a 501(c)3 organization for women and girls of color in the South, and led by the same, founded on the principle that solutions are often held by those closest to the problem. WFS raises funds for active programs, services, and resources for women and girls of color and their families to stimulate building health, wealth, and power, and will serve women of color in Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia, and West Virginia.

VISIT: https://www.womensfoundationsouth.org

Media Contact:

Penny Guyon, Firefly Media 323.874.0772 [email protected]

Tashion Macon, BPC, 818.749.8786 [email protected]

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New Impact Strategy: Ms. South for Women and Girls of Color

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One-third of donors directed half their giving to disaster relief | Philanthropy news



Last year, 37 percent of American donors gave half or more of their charitable contributions to disaster relief efforts, and 64 percent gave to a charity they had never supported before, a survey commissioned by Vanguard Charitable finds.

Conducted by the Harris Poll on behalf of Vanguard Charitable, the survey of more than 1,300 American donors found that the top reasons American donors gave to disaster relief included wanting to assist those impacted by humanitarian crises (46 percent), feeling overwhelmed by a situation and wanting to help (33 percent), seeing charitable giving as the only way they could provide support (30 percent), and having a personal connection to the disaster/crisis (30 percent). The survey found that donors who contributed to disaster relief efforts gave more overall, meaning that disaster relief giving did not take away from, or occur in place of, ongoing giving. 

“From COVID-19 to a devastating humanitarian crisis caused by the war in Ukraine, we’ve seen donors respond to disaster relief needs in inspiring and meaningful ways,” said Vanguard Charitable president Rebecca Moffett. “In fact, this data reflects that disaster relief support is an integral part of the giving landscape, often increasing total generosity as donors look to give when and where support is needed most. And because the money in donor-advised funds has already been set aside for charitable purposes, donations from DAFs tend to be more responsive in moments of crisis, and more resilient during moments of economic uncertainty.”

(Photo credit: Getty Images/Drazen Zigic)



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Trust in nonprofits fell slightly last year, survey finds | Philanthropy news



While there is room for U.S. institutions across the board to increase public trust, a majority of respondents believe nonprofits will do what is right for society, a survey conducted by Independent Sector finds. 

Conducted in February in partnership with Edelman Data & Intelligence, the third-annual Trust in Civil Society survey found that 56 percent of Americans said they trust nonprofits, down 3 percentage points from the 2020 benchmark study (59 percent). Trust in philanthropy edged down from 36 percent to 34 percent during the same period. According to the survey, financial well-being and education are major drivers of trust, and trust of nonprofits among women fell during the pandemic.

Given the findings, Independent Sector recommended that nonprofits work to make greater progress to support and strengthen the country, for example by leveraging trust in the social sector to strengthen U.S. democracy, deepening engagement with communities and institutions, and upholding public expectations of government accountability.

“Increasing public trust of institutions and the social sector is a pressing issue for the U.S. We all benefit from strong public trust,” said Independent Sector president and CEO Daniel J. Cardinali. “Trust is the priceless currency for nonprofits, philanthropies, business charity programs, and all of us to build a healthy, equitable society. We see what happens when trust breaks. Our 2022 Independent Sector Trust in Civil Society report elevates important data and recommendations for conversations about how the social sector can engage more deeply and do better so everyone in our country thrives.” 

(Photo credit: Getty Images/SDI Productions)



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Digital, other channels of giving are expanding, study finds | Philanthropy news



Emerging trends in the United Kingdom and Brazil reveal an expansion of digital and other types of channels for giving, including online giving, crowdfunding, charity rounding up, and social impact publishing, a new research series from the Indiana University Lilly Family School of Philanthropy at IUPUI finds.

The research series, Digital for Good: A Global Study on Emerging Ways of Giving, builds on the school’s Global Philanthropy Environment Index and Global Philanthropy Tracker and will be released in phases over the next five months. The first two studies examine philanthropic engagement in Brazil and the UK prior to and throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, with profiles of China, India, Kenya, Singapore, South Africa, and South Korea to follow.

Based on an analysis of three case studies in Brazil, the first profile found that prominent emerging ways of giving include charity rounding up, crowdfunding, and social impact publishing, which involves the production of inspiring, revenue-producing editorial content. Donations collected through rounding up for charity via Arredondar increased from BRL1,091 in 2013 (equivalent to $590 in 2021, adjusted for inflation) to more than BRL1.6 million in 2020 (equivalent to $330,186 in 2021, adjusted for inflation). In addition, the study found that the most successful initiatives prioritized transparency and accountability in giving.

Based on an online survey of nearly 3,000 individuals in the UK, the profile found that prominent expanded methods of giving include online giving and crowdfunding. Among donors interviewed between May and July 2021, 60 percent reported that gifts they had made in the past year had been made online, with the most common way being through a third-party app. In addition, researchers found that 63 percent of people who used social media to request donations also made requests in person.

“The results of the first two country profiles suggest an evolution in giving practices and highlight a significant expansion of digital giving practices and peer-to-peer giving,” said Amir Pasic, the Eugene R. Tempel Dean of the Indiana University Lilly Family School of Philanthropy. “While these findings are the first in a series, the documented growth in digital giving and shifting donor expectations in the UK and in Brazil reinforce existing evidence that digital practices can help democratize the practice of philanthropy. Digital innovation makes philanthropy accessible and fosters greater transparency and accountability for how gifts lead to impact.”

(Photo credit: Getty Images)



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