Knowledge Center | Article

Twelve Characteristics of a Good Proposal

October 23, 2000 | Joel J. Orosz
Proposals come in all shapes, lengths, and sizes; as a program officer, you can review them according to any number of criteria. Nonetheless, it is possible to identify some generic characteristics that are hallmarks of a good proposal that contains a good idea. Although it is unlikely that any proposal will include all twelve of these characteristics, better ones should contain more than half of them. Read More
Knowledge Center | Book Chapter

Why Families Like Donor-Advised Funds

October 20, 2000 | Joseph Foote
There are many reasons that families choose donor-advised funds as a primary tool for managing their giving. This introduction to ‘Family Philanthropy and Donor-Advised Funds’ describes what these funds are and how they typically function, and introduces the growing number of host organizations available across the U.S. that offer these funds. Read More
Knowledge Center | Report

What’s a Donor to Do?

August 21, 2000 | Ellen Remmer
The report is structured around the stages of a donor's evolution and growth -- beginning the journey as a passive, largely uninformed giver, and progressing up the philanthropic curve to become an energetic, high-impact donor. We conceive this developmental growth in three stages. Read More
Knowledge Center | Article

Making the most of minutes

July 30, 2000 | BoardSource
Minutes from board meetings are one of the most important records of a board’s activities. Minutes are a necessary legal document, but they can also be used for other purpose, such as for reference, to provide board history, for legal review, and as an orientation tool. Minutes are a link to your organization’s past, so make sure they include all Read More
Knowledge Center | Article

Don’t Be Afraid To Ask For Help

July 28, 2000 | Marla J. Bobowick
Consider inviting a consultant to assist your board in strengthening its performance. As objective outsiders committed to the organization's welfare, governance consultants can play a catalytic role in helping boards understand and carry out their responsibilities. Read More
Knowledge Center | Sample

Sample family foundation meeting agenda (Russell Family Foundation)

April 18, 2000 | Sarah Cavanaugh
5 minutes     Opening Reading A story that reflects one of the values of your foundation (serious or humorous). Focuses Trustees and sets the tone for the meeting. 15–30 minutes    Executive Session What keeps the executive director up at night? Trustees are active listeners, building a trusting relationship with the executive director 1–3 hours    Plenary Session Educational session on a Read More
Knowledge Center | Sample

Ground Rules for Family Retreat Working Sessions

April 18, 2000 | Mark Gerzon
Objective: To create a safe environment for open conversation No personal attacks Arrive on time Equal time for speakers Speak briefly, time is limited When others speak, listen—don’t prepare your remarks Listen with intent to understand Be open to others points of view; to outcome; to each person regardless of seniority Treat sessions as confidential Outside the retreat do not Read More
Knowledge Center | Book Chapter

The Fundamentals of a Mission and Guidelines

February 19, 2000 | Virginia Peckham
An individual donor who decides to form a family foundation or set up a family fund is taking the plunge into a new world. This is one of the most exciting adventures in philanthropy – the birth of a unique charitable organization, unlike any other. To quote one family foundation trustee: “It is a time of enormous hope and possibility.” Read More