Monthly Archives: May 2010

AGM Names New Executive Director

The board of directors and the executive search committee of Associated Grant Makers announced today that Jeffrey Poulos will take the helm as the new Executive Director of Associated Grant Makers beginning August 2, 2010.

Jeff has served as Executive Director of Stage Source, a membership association of theaters, for nine years, during which time he reversed an ongoing annual budget deficit and developed a cash reserve fund. Under his leadership, the organizational membership grew from 140 to 220 and individual membership climbed from 1,400 to 2,000. Jeff has experience in providing education and information to members, developing opportunities for networking among members and in lending the voice of a particular sector to the public discourse.

“We believe that Jeff possesses a range of remarkable skills and as a gifted generalist he will serve AGM in meeting all of the goals set forth in our new strategic plan, particularly our number one goal to be a member-driven organization. His connection to both the foundation and public charity realms gives him a good understanding of AGM’s key role as a bridge between the two sides of the field,” explains Mary Phillips, AGM Board Chair.

This means, sadly, that we will have to say goodbye to Miki Akimoto, who has been serving as Acting President at AGM.  Miki will be staying on through the summer to help manage the transition and welcome Jeff to AGM.


Registration Opens for the Forum Annual Conference!

Registration is now open for the Forum Network’s annual conference!  We hope you’ll join us July 26-28 in Chicago at the beautiful Sofitel Water Tower hotel.  This year’s program will include thought provoking plenary sessions, valuable skill building and unparalleled networking opportunities for regional associations.  To register visit

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Ohio Grantmakers Forum Launches Let’s Talk Philanthropy

Let’s Talk Philanthropy is a new blog from Ohio Grantmakers Forum. OGF staff will be posting about issues in philanthropy, especially as they affect Ohio. It’s great to see another online venue for the field. I also like the regional focus. Many of the issue we address apply across the board, but like politics, all philanthropy is local (unless it’s global, of course : )).

Congrats to Claudia and the OGF team on a successful launch. Head on over and leave a comment, bookmark the page, or subscribe via email. You’re going to want to hear what they have to say.

ABAG Presents Manuel Pastor on Regional Leadership

On May 12th, the Association of Baltimore Area Grantmakers (ABAG) held their annual meeting at the majestic Tremont Grant hotel in downtown Baltimore. After welcoming comments by board chair Lynn Homeier Rauch of the Kentfields Foundation, ABAG President Betsy Nelson took to the podium to introduce the day’s key note speaker, Dr. Manuel Pastor, professor of Geography and American Studies & Ethnicity at the University of Southern California.

Dr. Pastor’s research has generally focused on issues of environmental justice, regional inclusion, and the economic and social conditions facing low-income urban communities. His most recent book, This Could Be the Start of Something Big: How Social Movements for Regional Equity are Transforming Metropolitan America (Cornell University Press, 2009; co-authored with Chris Benner and Martha Matsuoka), suggest how regional organizing is charting a new path for progressive politics and policies in America’s urban areas.

An engaging, intelligent and genuinely entertaining speaker, Pastor elucidated the demographic trends that are driving change in American domestic policy and how a focus on regional economies, led by a spirit of collaboration and sustainability, will create a path forward and a re-imagining of the American dream.

Below is a clip of Pastor addressing regional leadership and sustainability. The speech, including an introduction by Betsy Nelson, is available in its entirety on the Forum’s YouTube Channel.

Nonprofit Exemption Revocations Start Monday

Beginning Monday, May 17, many nonprofit organizations will begin to lose their tax exempt status.  The Pension Protection Act of 2006 required all nonprofit organizations with revenues under $25,000 to file an eCard registration with the IRS within 3 years or lose their exempt status.

The National Center for Charitable Statistics at the Urban Institute has provided a portal to the IRS Business Master File which catalogs the most recent filing date for nonprofits.  If an organization has not filed in the previous three years, there is a simple one page eCard return that can be filled out on the site.  Many regionals, such as Connecticut Council for Philanthropy and the Florida Philanthropic Network, have been working with their members to educate foundations and grantees about the implications of this change.

How Big is the Gulf Oil Spill? How Will Philanthropy Respond?

I’m sure you’ve all been following the disastrous oil spill in the Gulf that is slowly but surely making its way ashore.This morning, Brenda Camper, Executive Director of the Greater Escambia Community Foundation in Pensacola, Florida, gave us a front-seat view of the action on COF’s Re: Philanthropy blog: 

The trajectory maps predict the oil is less than eighty miles away and in some communities along the Gulf Coast the smell of salt water has been replaced with the stench of petroleum. Sadly, the seabirds, the dolphins, and all of our wildlife are especially vulnerable and while they may know something is amiss, they have no knowledge of the imminent danger. As federal waters are being closed to fishing, scores of cancellations for vacations and charter fishing trips are being received. Damage has already been done to the commercial fishing industry, and the poor who have to fish to eat.

It’s hard to imagine how big the impact of this spill might be. Paul Rademacher from Google Earth developed this tool that allows users to overlay the size of the Deepwater Horizon spill over any metropolitan area. Here’s how it looks over DC.


As Brenda points out in her post, it will be interesting to see how philanthropy will respond. After all, this is a man-made disaster, not an earthquake or tsunami. Even so, the suffering caused to both the environment and the economies of the Gulf Coast region inspires action. SECF is maintaining a page of resources that will be updated as this crisis develops.

Arizona Grantmakers Forum Launches Member Social Network

The Arizona Grantmakers Forum has just launched a new social networking site exclusively for their members, the AGF Community.

In this community, members will be able to:

  • Network with colleagues throughout the state of Arizona
  • Build relationships with Arizona philanthropists
  • Join groups and participate in discussions with like-minded grantmakers, whether as a CEO, corporate funder, or emerging philanthropist
  • Join discussions about best practices or funder collaboration
  • View philanthropy-related videos and photographs posted by colleagues or share their own
  • Invite colleagues to events
  • Voice opinions and spread foundation news to AGF members by writing a blog or posting foundation news releases

Are other regionals considering their own social network? How can a tool like this help us further our missions?