Posts tagged to 'Board decision-making'

Four ways family philanthropies can support social movements

Posted by Derrick Feldmann on March 29, 2016

Social movements are at the core of who we are as a society. People participate in these social movements because those who can’t stand up for themselves need the voice of strangers to be there for them. It’s the real reason most of us get behind a cause – an inspirational story, a symbol or a vision inspired us.

10 mistakes new foundation boards make, and how to avoid them

Posted by Kris Putnam-Walkerly on March 24, 2016

While some new foundation boards may be made up of veteran philanthropists, it's a safe wager that many of those entrusted are taking on the job for the first time. It's a big responsibility, and many of the early choices made by a new board can determine whether the new foundation will move forward smoothly and effectively or become mired in a culture or in policies that stifle effectiveness.

Generations Together: Tools for teaching the next generation to give

Posted by Virginia Esposito on March 1, 2016

According to the National Center for Family Philanthropy’s recent 2015 Trends Study, nearly 3 in 5 U.S. family foundations engage younger family members in the foundation — and more than 40% say they expect to add to or increase the number of younger-generation family members on their boards in just the next four years. This is an encouraging trend — especially for those of us who believe that these important institutions can have a much greater impact if they can keep the family productively engaged in their work.

Five essential practices to improve diversity, equity, and inclusion at your family foundation

Posted by Audrey Haberman and Sindhu Knotz on February 16, 2016

Last October, we had the pleasure of hosting a conversation with a group of ten family foundations attending the National Forum on Family Philanthropy in Seattle. The session was focused on how foundation leaders can begin to address the topic of diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) with your staff and trustees. Through storytelling about successes, and a discussion about mistakes and anxieties related to DEI, the group identified five essential practices any family foundation should consider to improve diversity, equity, and inclusion.

Should we have ex officio members on our board committees?

Posted by Karen Green on February 7, 2016

Our current bylaws state, "The President shall be an ex-officio voting member of all committees." Is this typical or unusual? Is it best practice for a Board Chair and/or President to be an ex officio member of all of a foundation's committees? If so, is this person typically a voting or non-voting...

Sticking the landing: A growing trend toward spending out

Posted by National Center for Family Philanthropy on December 2, 2015

For much of the 20th century, the vast majority of U.S. foundations operated under the assumption that they would be in business forever. However, as a new generation of family philanthropists take over — and families contemplate just how long forever actually lasts — a growing number are deciding that they would rather spend down their assets during a set period of time than manage their endowments in perpetuity.

Avoiding avoidance: Addressing and managing conflict in family philanthropy

Posted by Elaine Gast Fawcett on December 15, 2014

Conflict is normal in any family or organization. Yet, many of us avoid conflicts, even if that avoidance affects relationships or how the foundation operates. This month in FGN we feature Part 2 of a two-part series excerpted from our forthcoming Passages Issue Brief on “Avoiding avoidance.” In Part 1 we introduced the nature of conflict and some of the most common conflicts in family philanthropy. In this month's issue we share a variety of healthy tools for calling out and addressing conflict in a healthy, productive way, along with suggestions for when outside help may be needed.

Avoiding avoidance: Addressing and managing conflict in family philanthropy

Posted by Elaine Gast Fawcett on November 18, 2014

Conflict is normal in any family or organization. Yet, many of us avoid conflicts, even if that avoidance affects relationships or how the foundation operates. This month in FGN we feature Part 1 of a two-part series excerpted from our forthcoming Passages Issue Brief on “Avoiding avoidance.” In Part 1 we’ll introduce the nature of conflict and some of the most common conflicts in family philanthropy. Next month, in Part 2, we will share creative “tactics” boards use to perpetuate the avoidance, and how you can use simple tools to call out and address conflict in a healthy, productive way.

Q & A with Surdna Foundation Board Member John Hawkins on Impact Investing

Posted by John Hawkins on October 19, 2014

John Hawkins, a board member and great-grandson of Surdna’s founder John E. Andrus, discusses the evolution of the Surdna board’s thinking on impact investing. Hawkins describes the contours leading to the board’s eventual embrace of a PRI fund and the how the family’s values informed that decision.

Increasing impact, while honoring donor intent: A Profile of the Hattie M. Strong Foundation

Posted by Darlene Siska on July 29, 2014

How does a foundation that prides itself on close personal contact with its beneficiaries over an 86-year history totally revamp, modernize, and streamline itself, all without losing its long-time connection with grantees and without losing sight of the founder’s original vision?...

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