On Philanthropy: Best excerpts from the first 100 columns

Since 2010, I have now written 100 columns addressing many aspects of philanthropy – for families, businesses and foundations. To acknowledge this milestone, here are some of my favorite excerpts – quotes that best encapsulate the many lessons I’ve learned and the thoughts I’ve tried to convey. On family giving “Many families fail to talk…

Donor-advised funds – Powerful giving tool needs sharpening

The fastest-growing tool in the philanthropic arena is the donor-advised fund. DAFs are 501(c)(3) philanthropic accounts established at a public charity. They allow donations of cash, property, appreciated assets and more – and donors receive immediate tax deductions. The DAF legally controls the money from the point of donation. Subsequently, donors can advise the DAF…

New study outlines unprecedented financial risk to many nonprofits

Across the United States, more than 1.5 million nonprofit organizations engage in remarkable work to transform lives, communities and the planet. Unfortunately, these organizations currently face a wide range of growing pressures. Consider these facts: In 2013, nonprofit organizations employed more than 10.6 percent of the workforce (14.4 million). More individuals are employed by nonprofits…

Six trends to affect philanthropic landscape in 2018

When it comes to the world of philanthropy, 2018 promises to be transformational. Pessimists are concerned about the impact of new federal tax laws, the increase in income inequality, and the growing need for critical social services. Optimists see more reason for hope, believing that we have entered the “golden age of giving.” Watch for…

Moving the Needle

The phrase “moving the needle” gets a lot of play in philanthropy.  As well it should.  In my previous blog, “So What,” I observed that it is important to have a thoughtful reason for philanthropy that is designed to produce outcomes and is able to answer the question: “So what difference are we making?” Outcomes…