Joseph Foote

Contributing Editor, National Center for Family Philanthropy

Joseph Foote served for many years as a Contributing Editor of the National Center for Family Philanthropy, writes about public policy and philanthropy from his home on Cape Cod. His clients have included Presidential and Congressional studies, large grantmakers, and philanthropic organizations. He has written for the Council on Foundations, The Ford Foundation, Carnegie Corporation of New York, the Joseph P. Kennedy, Jr. Foundation, and Independent Sector, among others. He is a graduate of Williams College and the Harvard Law School.


A Place at the Table: Non-Family Membership on the Family Foundation Board

Posted on March 17, 2012 by Dorna L. Allen, Joseph Foote

Family giving comes from a common cause, a shared vision, a particular need for giving back a portion of life’s gifts. Family members can focus on shared personal interests and can shape the architecture of their giving by expressing and validating shared family experience. Foundation board service can be the means by which family members find a new and worthwhile… Read More
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A Place at the Table for Non-Family Trustees?

Posted on May 11, 2011 by Joseph Foote

When a family foundation board works as a team, with harmony in vision and purpose, it may see no immediate need to bring in individuals who are not related to the donor family. The family itself is the board’s first and greatest resource. Over time however, circumstances may arise where family members are not sufficient to meet the board’s expectations… Read More

Families Step Up to Meet Economic Crisis

Posted on September 4, 2009 by Joseph Foote

The recession that began in 2008 caused philanthropic assets for most families to decline sharply. Program plans for 2009 and 2010 were disrupted, forcing many philanthropic families to cancel new initiatives, respond to pleas from longstanding grantees about cash shortfalls, and swing rapidly toward support of basic human needs. Families who operate foundations, donor-advised funds, and other formal giving vehicles… Read More

The Hilton Legacy: Serving Humanity Worldwide

Posted on June 15, 2009 by Joseph Foote

This family remembrance celebrates the lives and achievements of Conrad and Barron Hilton and their gift to the world—the Conrad N. Hilton Foundation. Our story explores the beliefs, goals, and passions that formed the inner lives of these remarkable men, and how these qualities live on in their charitable legacy… Read More
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Families Step Up to Meet the Economic Crisis

Posted on January 15, 2009 by Joseph Foote

On a sunny Sunday in November, 2008, the board of the Durfee Foundation gathered in the 48-year-old foundation’s office in Santa Monica, California. The trustees already knew that the foundation’s assets of approximately $30 million had fallen 30 percent. The talk before the meeting focused on the growing economic crisis and its impact on the foundation, local nonprofits, and the… Read More

How the Kennedys Linked Family to Mission

Posted on October 29, 2002 by Joseph Foote

After lengthy research and consideration of family feelings toward her sister, Rose Mary who had mental retardation, Eunice Kennedy recommended basing the foundation's mission and activities on concern for persons with mental retardation… Read More