Ginny's Blog Posts

How We Give: Ten Tips for Donors and Families

Posted by Virginia Esposito on November 21, 2018

There is a lot of justifiable attention paid these days to some of the BIG questions about philanthropy and the philanthropic process: Why give? How much to give? What to give to? What difference does it make?

Building the Board Your Foundation Deserves

Posted by Virginia Esposito on June 1, 2018

The title of this post has been carefully chosen to start or renew a conversation around great governance. How do you build the board your foundation deserves? Are there practices that make the most of volunteer leadership? Are there practices that keep you from having a highly functioning board? The answer to both is a resounding YES.

When the Conversation Moves From the Family Room to the Boardroom

Posted by Virginia Esposito on April 1, 2018

One of the great opportunities of family philanthropy is spending meaningful time with those you love and know well. The challenge of family philanthropy is to avoid the stereotypes and patterns you are used to when you move out of the family room and into the boardroom.

When the Conversation Moves From the Family Room to the Boardroom

Posted by Virginia Esposito on April 1, 2018

One of the great opportunities of family philanthropy is spending meaningful time with those you love and know well. The challenge of family philanthropy is to avoid the stereotypes and patterns you are used to when you move out of the family room and into the boardroom.

But What Do We Stand For?

Posted by Virginia Esposito on January 2, 2018

At our first retreat, twenty years ago this spring, the remarkable founding board gathered at Pocantico Conference Center and tackled this frustration. After some minutes, founding board member, Ira Hirschfield, of the Evelyn and Walter Haas, Jr. Fund, shifted the conversation. “We know what we are not,” he acknowledged, “but what do we stand for?”

Renewal and the Healthy Family Foundation

Posted by Virginia Esposito on August 31, 2017

How does the “B+” or even the “A+” organization stay that way, vigorously committed to the revitalizing promise of renewal? And what can members of newer family foundations learn from those who have successfully been meeting these challenges?

The 6 Motivations for Family Philanthropy

Posted by Virginia Esposito on April 18, 2017

Why does your family give? This question is central to the work you do — because it helps understand the motivations behind your foundation’s mission.

Honoring the Legacy of David Rockefeller

Posted by Virginia Esposito on March 31, 2017

"But I will never forget that December day many years ago when a check arrived from David Rockefeller. Back then, I got to open the envelopes myself and what I pulled out looked like a personal check. I stared at it for a very long time, absorbing what it meant to me."

How to Create — and Recreate — Your Family Foundation

Posted by Virginia Esposito on March 20, 2017

Today marks the official launch of Splendid Legacy 2: Creating and Re-Creating Your Family Foundation. This new book, published by the National Center for Family Philanthropy, is an update to the popular, out-of-print 2002 first edition and includes advice from some of the field’s leading experts.

Why Your Board Chair Needs a Job Description

Posted by Virginia Esposito on February 2, 2017

Successful family foundation board chairs are able to both drive action and manage egos — and are often the difference between a foundation deftly navigating challenging situations and being tripped up by them.

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