Wednesday, August 13, 2014

100 years of community foundations

For the 100th anniversary of America’s community foundations, David C. Perry of the University of Illinois at Chicago and Terry Mazany of the Chicago Community Trust have edited a volume of essays by community foundation leaders entitled Here for Good: Community Foundations and the Challenges of the 21st Century. It covers topics like the role of community foundations in facilitating collaboration among local stakeholders, rural philanthropy, and whether, as Douglas Kridler of the Columbus Foundation writes, “we go the way of newspapers, symphony orchestras, and other signs of community vitality that were under so much financial strain at the time of the writing of this book.”

The Cleveland Foundation was the first community foundation, founded in 1914 by lawyer and banker Frederick Harris Goff. Ronald Richard, present-day president and CEO of the Cleveland Foundation, writes in Here for Good that Goff’s model was “a permanently enduring organization flexible enough to address the needs and seize the opportunities of any era.” Today there are 700 such foundations in America with almost $50 billion in assets. In 2011, community foundations made grants of around $4.2 billion, more than 10 percent of the country’s total foundation grant making.

Read more at Philanthropy Daily here

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