Posts by Kevin Laskowski

The 20 habits of highly effective philanthropists

Posted by Kevin Laskowski on February 15, 2008

“Foundations do not need a lot of money to be effective,” declared philanthropy icon Paul Ylvisaker in his 1989 essay Small Can Be Effective. “If, indeed, they were to exploit only a fraction of the strategies available to them, their individual and collective impact on American life would be vastly...

Encouraging young philanthropists, part two

Posted by Kevin Laskowski on January 15, 2008

Last month’s Family Giving News tackled the question of how today’s giving families encourage children to be generous. This month’s issue asks: how can charitable children become effective family philanthropists? How does a family prepare the next generation for possible roles as board members, fund...

The Efroymson family fund: Commitment to community

Posted by Kevin Laskowski on December 18, 2007

Jacob and Minnie Efroymson moved from Evansville, Indiana to the relatively young state capital of Indianapolis in 1872. The couple opened a small dry goods store on South Meridian Street, unaware they were beginning a family commitment to the city that would last for generations.

Encouraging young philanthropists, part one

Posted by Kevin Laskowski on December 15, 2007

The holidays are a time of celebration, sharing, and enjoying the company of family and friends. They’re also a time of advertising, doorbuster sales, and conspicuous consumption. For families concerned about raising charitable children, the holidays can represent a challenge as well as a great...

Creating an effective grant agreement

Posted by Kevin Laskowski on November 15, 2007

For most of its fifty-year history, the Dyson Foundation didn’t use grant agreements. The Millbrook, New York-based family foundation was concerned the contract-like letters of agreement between grantmaker and grantee would make the foundation too formal and bureaucratic. “We started using them some...

Donor-advised funds: Tools for giving families

Posted by Kevin Laskowski on October 15, 2007

Wanted: Tax-Advantageous, Convenient, Flexible Way to Give Back. Giving Family Seeks Way to Make Difference Privately. Must Love Children. Families looking for less time-consuming but still informed and effective ways to give back are increasingly turning to donor-advised funds, either exclusively or...

Telling your family's story

Posted by Kevin Laskowski on September 15, 2007

Family philanthropies are intimately connected with the past that shapes them. As stewards of both a public trust and a family legacy, philanthropic families are constantly drawing on their history for wisdom, energy, and focus. That’s why growing numbers of families are recording their stories to...

Privacy and publicity: First steps in creating a communications strategy

Posted by Kevin Laskowski on July 15, 2007

Family philanthropy is at once an intensely private and a very public enterprise where personal principles meet public obligations. It is often difficult to find a compromise between these competing values. Many giving families opt to keep a low public profile, preferring to remain largely out of the...

The Andrea and Charles Bronfman philanthropies

Posted by Kevin Laskowski on May 15, 2007

Charles Bronfman returned from a trustees’ meeting of the Mount Sinai Medical Center with an idea. Bronfman, Chairman and co-founder with his late wife Andrea of the Andrea and Charles Bronfman Philanthropies, had heard of the Medical Center’s efforts in the emerging field of personalized medicine. Dr....

Program and General Support: Choices for Giving Ffamilies

Posted by Kevin Laskowski on April 15, 2007

In an ongoing salvo in the decades-long debate surrounding program and general operating support, a 2007 report from the National Committee for Responsive Philanthropy charges: The grantmaking practices of a significant part of the foundation sector may be crippling small community-based and other...

Back to top