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Community Foundation Update (10/09/2021) | Philanthropy news


The Community Foundation of Greater Birmingham has announced eleven grants awarded through its Jefferson County Public Health Advised Fund, which was established after the Drummond Co. paid $387,500 to the county board of health for violations of the Federal Clean Air Act at the ABC Coke facility in Tarrant. The funds established the ABC Coke Fund to benefit the public health of the City of Tarrant, the North Birmingham community, and Birmingham’s Inglenook neighborhood. Recipients include the Literacy Council of Central Alabama, Sight Savers America, Freshwater Land Trust, and Meals on Wheels of Central Alabama.


The Community Foundation for Southern Arizona in Tucson has announced that its LGBTQ+ Alliance Fund will receive a gift of $150,000 to establish the Sylvia Stan Mulka Endowment Fund. The largest such gift in the Alliance Fund’s twenty-two-year history boosts its total endowed funding to more than $500,000.


The Escondido Community Foundation, an affiliate of the San Diego Foundation, has awarded grants totaling $228,000 in support of nine organizations working to improve social and emotional well-being in the area. Recipients include the Alabaster Jar Project, Outside the Lens, North County Lifeline, and the Tariq Khamisa Foundation.


The Omaha Foundation has announced a grant from its Community Resilience Fund in support of the Office of Latino/Latino American Studies at the University of Nebraska Omaha. Established in April, the fund is dedicated to supporting Omaha-area organizations serving communities disproportionately affected by COVID-19. Since the spring, the fund has awarded nearly $362,000 to twenty-five nonprofits.

New Mexico

The Santa Fe Community Foundation has announced the appointment of ten new members to its board of directors: Hispanics in Philanthropy president and CEO Ana Marie Argilagos, International Folk Art Alliance CEO Stuart Ashman; former museum leader Letitia Chambers; former nonprofit executive Susan M. Coliton, who served as interim CEO of the Santa Fe Foundation until June 2021; former corporate executive Bud Hamilton; executive consultant Leslie Nathanson Juris; former World Bank executive and nonprofit director Helena Ribe; former executive director of the Con Alma Health Foundation Dolores E. Roybal; community volunteer Nancy Steedman; and banker Dion Silva.

New York

The Rochester Area Community Foundation has announced that president and CEO Jennifer Leonard plans to retire in September 2022 after twenty-eight years. Simeon Banister, the foundation’s vice president for community programs, has been promoted to executive vice president, and the foundation’s board has approved a plan for Banister to become president and CEO after Leonard’s retirement. Before joining the foundation in 2017, Banister worked in the public and private sectors, including the New York State Senate, the New York Department of Taxation and Finance, the State University of New York, and several private commercial real estate firms. During Leonard’s tenure, the foundation has expanded its asset base from $32 million to $578 million, nearly two-thirds of which is permanently endowed.

North Carolina

The Foundation for the Carolinas has announced that its Cleveland County Community Foundation awarded $27,200 in grants to eleven organizations in support of COVID-19 relief. Recipients include the Community Math Academy, Foothills Farmers Market, Kings Mountain Crisis Ministry, and Samaritan’s Feet International.


The Canton-based Stark Community Foundation has announced the transition of the Fred F. Silk Charitable Foundation from a private non-operating foundation to a charitable fund of the community foundation. The transfer of $16.7 million to the community foundation is the largest investment in its history. Established in 1990, the Silk Foundation received the bulk of the estate when Silk passed away in 1995 and has since provided more than $13 million in support of charitable causes across Stark County, including more than $500,000 to local nonprofits in 2020. As part of SCF, the fund will continue to provide annual grantmaking support to a number of local universities and an array of organizations that directly benefit the Stark County community and its residents.


The Oregon Community Foundation has announced that Max Williams will transition out of his role as president and CEO after a decade of leadership. Williams will continue to lead OCF until a new CEO is selected. This month, the foundation’s board of directors will begin a national search process, anticipating a nearly yearlong selection and transition process.


The Pittsburgh Foundation has announced that seventy-five artists from the region who are Black, Indigenous, and people of color (BIPOC) will receive micro-grants of $1,000 each from the foundation’s Center for Philanthropy. Awarded through the through the foundation’s Mac Miller Fund, the grants are not required to fund specific projects; instead, artists have the freedom to use the funds however they see fit, including supporting their own well-being, or improving or enhancing their creative skills and talents.

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Candid launches ‘U.S. social sector’ dashboard | Philanthropy news

Candid has launched a U.S. Social Sector Dashboard, a free resource designed to “demystify” the sector by providing data on its scope, constraints, and potential.

Developed with funding from Amazon Web Services and Vanguard Charitable, the dashboard offers key data and insights about the makeup and impact of civil society, including previously unreleased statistics on the racial composition of leaders and funding flows to charities. According to the dashboard, the social sector, which employs 12.5 million people, comprises more than 1.81 million nonprofit organizations: 501(c)(3) charitable organizations (80 percent), which include public charities (73 percent) and private or community foundations (7 percent); 501(c)(4) advocacy and social welfare groups (4 percent); 501(c)(6) business associations (4 percent); 501(c)(7) social and recreation clubs (3 percent); labor unions and other 501(c)(5) groups (3 percent); and fraternal societies categorized as 501(c)(8) and 501(c)(10) organizations (2 percent).

According to the dashboard, religious organizations currently make up 18 percent of public charities, followed by those focused on human services (17 percent), community and economic development (15 percent), education (14 percent), sports and recreation (8 percent), arts and culture (7 percent), philanthropy and nonprofit management (7 percent), health (7 percent), and the environment and animal welfare (4 percent). In terms of funding flow, in 2018 public charities received $292 billion in contributions from individuals, $76 billion from foundations, $40 billion from bequests, and $20 billion from corporations; $174 billion in government support; and $1.6 trillion in earned income.

And among reporting nonprofits, 60 percent of CEOs identified as white, 10 percent as Black, 5 percent as Latinx, 3 percent as Asian/AAPI, 1 percent as Native American/Indigenous, 3 percent as multiracial/multiethnic, and 1 percent as additional ethnicities, while 17 percent did not disclose. Among board members, 66 percent were white, 15 percent Black, 7 percent Latinx, 5 percent Asian/AAPI, 1 percent Native American/Indigenous, 2 percent multiracial/multiethnic, and 0.4 percent additional ethnicities, while 4 percent did not disclose.

“Candid exists to get people the information they need about the social sector to do good. Many of our tools focus on one organization, one grant, or one issue at a time; that kind of focus can be critical for decision makers,” said Candid executive vice president Jacob Harold. “This new dashboard builds on that focus by offering a fuller picture of the social sector as a whole. We hope that this tool will help people build a better understanding of the nonprofit and philanthropic ecosystem and its central role in our society.”

(Photo credit: GettyImages/Prostock Studio)

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UW–Madison receives $20 million for Letters & Science building | Philanthropy news

The University of Wisconsin–Madison has announced a $20 million lead gift from brothers and alumni Jeff Levy (’72) and Marv Levy (’68, JD ’71) in support of a new academic building in the College of Letters & Science.

Construction on Irving and Dorothy Levy Hall, named for the parents of Jeff and Marv, is expected to begin in 2023 and be completed in 2025. Once complete, the building will establish a unified home for the Department of History and nine other L&S academic departments, programs, and centers that currently are spread across eight facilities on campus. The five-story building will feature nineteen classrooms as well as a space where students can gather and interact informally with each other and their instructors to maximize collaboration.

The Levy brothers own and operate Phillips Distributing Corporation in Madison. Their commitment was contingent upon the Wisconsin state legislature and governor including the project in the 2021-23 state budget with $60 million in state support, which occurred earlier this year.

“We envision this vital new facility as a highly collaborative and state-of-the-art learning environment for all,” said College of Letters & Science dean Eric Wilcots. “We are immensely grateful to the Levy family for their support of this vision. Our students deserve classroom space that enhances interactive learning and engagement through cutting-edge technology. They also deserve a building that inspires, rather than intimidates. The Levy family’s gift will reverberate through future generations, touching many lives.”

“We are proud to help make this building a reality. We hope it will be a central educational location for the undergraduate experience at UW-Madison,” said Marv Levy. “Our hope is that by honoring our family legacy of charitable giving with this gift, we can offer to future generations some of the opportunity that the UW has provided us.”

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U.S. nonprofit sector uneven in impact and recovery, report finds | Philanthropy news

While nonprofits have contributed significantly to U.S. society and economy in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic, the health of the sector is uneven in both impact and recovery, a new report from Independent Sector finds.

Based on aggregated survey and research data from multiple sources in four categories — financial resources, human capital, governance and trust, and public policy and advocacy — the second edition of the Health of the U.S. Nonprofit Sector (43 pages, PDF) found that the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic varied by subsector and organization size, with arts organizations and those that rely on fees for service hit especially hard. Yet, even as 40 percent of nonprofits saw declines in total revenue and all subsectors except social services saw drops in gross output, the sector contributed 5.9 percent of GDP in 2020 — up 0.4 percentage points from 2019. And while 57 percent of nonprofits cut overall expenses, 64 percent suspended services, 44 percent reduced the number of programs or services, and 47 percent reported serving fewer people in 2020, Independent Sector’s Trust in Civil Society survey found that, as of early 2021, 57 percent of surveyed Americans had received nonprofit services and 84 percent expressed confidence in the ability of nonprofits to strengthen American society, up 3 percentage points from 2020.

According to the report, the sector’s advocacy efforts in 2020 helped secure notable federal resources that served as financial lifelines to nonprofits, particularly through the Paycheck Protection Program, payroll tax credits, and temporary universal charitable deduction. In addition, a study by Nonprofit VOTE found that voter engagement efforts helped reach underrepresented communities and narrow participation gaps.

The report outlines recommendations in each category to strengthen the sector, including prioritizing flexible funding, developing a shared understanding of equitable financing, promoting evidence-based practices to close workforce diversity and equity gaps, building capacity of virtual volunteering, improving the quality and depth of metrics for equity and “healthy” governance, improving digital access and literacy, and establishing public policy advocacy as a core competency of nonprofit management and governance.

“We have much to do to build the nation we, as changemakers, dream of becoming,” wrote Independent Sector president and CEO Dan Cardinali in the report’s foreword. “What can galvanize us to greater positive action? It’s that the everlasting human qualities of resilience, kindness, and collaborating for collective progress do not fade easily. They are within our grasp every day, giving all of us hope and confidence. The health of our nation is the sum of the richness and diversity of our members and sectors working together, elevating dignity, honoring our differences, and building for the common good.”

(Photo credit: Los Angeles Regional Food Bank)

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