Rethinking and revising the “Donor Bill of Rights” - In 1993, four respected organizations worked closely together to publish a list of 10 “rights” intended to establish a stronger relationship between philanthropists and their nonprofit beneficiaries. However, 23 years ago the world was vastly different - as was the world of philanthropy. Because of farreaching changes that have taken place since then, the Donor Bill of Rights and its 10 precepts now are significantly out of date...
Money and mission were never meant to be apart - As the world's problems become more complex and urgent, traditional models of philanthropic support are not keeping pace. This lag can be blamed in part on the fact that regulations require foundations to donate only 5 percent of their assets. Typically, the remaining 95 percent is invested for growth...
In disheartening and divisive times, philanthropy can spark hope - Many Americans are disheartened by recent events and trends. Issues like terrorism, mass murders, global warming, police/citizen violence and death, drug addiction, infectious diseases, economic and social inequality — and more – are generating a tremendous sense of hopelessness. In addition, the strident partisanship and dysfunction of the current election cycle result in less civility and compassion and make us wonder how we’ll ever be able to pull together to solve the many problems faced by our country and our world. Philanthropy is inherently optimistic...
Six years, six important lessons about philanthropy - Six years ago, I began working with individuals, families, foundations and businesses across the United States — helping them design, implement and evaluate a wide variety of ways to make philanthropy more impactful for themselves and their communities. I have been privileged to assist dozens of clients...
New IRS regulations encourage use of program-related investments - With more than $800 billion of foundation assets, these annual grants total more than $56 billion — doing a lot of good. Each year, however, nearly $750 billion remains in endowments — where it usually is invested for the single bottom line of financial gain...
Plan well to avoid random acts of giving - Well-off individuals and families recognize the need to plan for their future security and their legacies — and often go to great lengths to do so. Usually, they work closely with experts who make up three legs of the planning table and help them achieve sophisticated tax-, financial- and estate-planning goals...
Creating a “safe zone” with family philanthropy - When it comes to communicating around money and values, many families face a significant challenge. Some families never talk about these issues. Others talk about them — but with difficulty. Family philanthropy can be an important and safe area in which to commence a family conversation about money and values — creating new and effective rules of engagement that carry over into other family matters. Here's how...
Impact investing gets an IRS boost - Impact investing is one of the hottest topics in the philanthropic sector. It involves investments made with the intention of generating not just a financial return, but also a social or environmental impact — the double bottom line...
Philanthropy helps families avoid shirtsleeves-to-shirtsleeves challenge - When meeting with affluent family clients, advisers frequently invoke the warning: "shirtsleeves-to-shirtsleeves in three generations." This popular quote strongly suggests that, without careful planning, a family's wealth will be dissipated by the time it reaches the grandchildren of the wealthcreating generation. It is thought to derive from the old English proverb, "there's nobbut three generations atween a clog and clog." Over the next 35 years, the largest transfer of wealth in history will take place. In the U.S. alone, it is estimated that more than $40 trillion will transfer from baby boomers to the rising generations. In addition, the ownership of thousands of family businesses will transfer to younger family members...