Over the river and through the woods: Geographic dispersion in family philanthropy
Families that are dispersed geographically around the country and the world and are looking for strategies for working across wide distances to achieve their mission.
With family members living far apart, what steps can families take to build family identity and bonds that once evolved naturally from living in close proximity? How can family members whose lives have taken different paths forge a genuinely collaborative team driven by a mission derived from and embraced by the family? How are families balancing the commitment to the foundation's "home town" and their growing concern for their own region? Using stories of families, this webinar will offer examples of how families have dealt with these issues including: honoring the legacy of the donor; defining a mission that accommodates individual interests and needs of different communities; maintaining high standards of grantmaking practices and evaluation strategies; and allocating funds equitably.
Dr. Una Osili, an internationally recognized expert on philanthropy, frequently speaks across the country on issues related to national and international trends in philanthropy and has been quoted by national news media outlets such as The New York Times, The Chronicle of Philanthropy, and Nonprofit Times. Dr. Osili previously served as the Interim Director of Research and has been the Director of Research at the Center on Philanthropy since 2009. Dr. Osili is the current Chair of the Research Committee of the Women’s Philanthropy Institute, and is a member of the Research Committee of the Lake Institute for Faith and Giving.
Irene Siragusa Phelps was elected President of the Siragusa Foundation in 2002, after serving as the first Executive Director since 1997. She graduated from Tulane University in 1975 with a B.A. in Philosophy and spent eighteen years in Los Angeles working in the entertainment and restaurant industries. For the past sixteen years, she has been a family representative of the Foundation working to preserve her grandfather’s legacy, and an involved member of Chicago’s philanthropic community. She oversaw the Foundation’s largest series of gifts ever made, and she moved the Foundation towards becoming more engaged with contemporary strategic philanthropy environment. Under Irene’s direction the Foundation has become a point of contact for her family and is continuing the legacy of her grandfather, Ross D. Siragusa through the service and involvement of its 3rd and 4th generation family members. Irene has joined several other organizations in a leadership capacity. She serves on the Executive Committee and co-chairs the Nominating Committee of the Adler Planetarium. She is also chair of 3ARTS, vice chair of the Trust for Public Land’s Chicago Advisory Board, a member of the Board of Overseers at Rush University Medical Center. In addition, Irene is on committees at the Donors Forum, Children’s Memorial Siragusa Transplantation Center and the Lincoln Park Zoo’s Farm in the Zoo. In March 2010 she received Elmhurst College’s first Community Leader Award.
Jack Siragusa graduated from the University of Miami in 2006 with a Bachelor of Science in Communication. He has been a board member of the Siragusa Foundation since 2006. The mission of The Siragusa Foundation is to improve the quality of life for the underserved people of Chicago by funding organizations in five program areas including: Arts & Culture, Education, the Environment, Health and Human Services. As the eldest member of the fourth generation, Jack serves as a liaison to the fourth generation members who have yet to join the board. Outside of the Foundation, Jack is a Senior Associate in the Retail Services division at Cushman & Wakefield of Illinois, Inc. and an Ambassadors Board member of the Chicago Children’s Choir.
Evan Wood is a fourth-generation family member and board chair of The Lawson Foundation, based in London, Ontario. He chairs the nine-member Board of Directors, which provides strategic guidance and policy around core functions such as grantmaking, governance, asset management, and financial accountability. The Lawson Foundation focuses on enriching the quality of life in Canada through grants to registered charitable organizations. Evan is also President of Pivotal Contact Inc., a Toronto-based marketing agency focused on creating value for clients through data-driven, customer engagement programs. He is a senior marketing executive and strategist with experience on both the client and service sides of the business. He has worked in a variety of professional environments, domestically and internationally, ranging from Fortune 500 companies to start-up ventures to non-profit organizations. He is particularly passionate about helping organizations create incremental shareholder value through exceptional customer experiences. Evan is fully bilingual in English/French, and has a BA from Queens University in Kingston, ON and an International MBA from the Thunderbird School of International Management in Phoenix, AZ.
What participants said:
No one in the field of family philanthropy gives us such wise, personal and practical advice and insights as NCFP. For every complex, knotty problem their vast expertise offers solutions and positive paths forward, gleaned from decades of work with families and their philanthropies.
I found this webinar to be extremely useful. The speakers were really interesting and offered a variety of different viewpoints pending upon the vantage point they were most closely associated with themselves. And, I never felt time was wasted.
Comprehensive yet specific, covered the bases and the basics.
I had just attended a seminar for half a day and left feeling that it was a tremendous waste of my time; in comparison, the flow and movement of this seminar was pretty terrific.