Contributions

Foundation Transparency: Opacity — It’s Complicated

Posted on May 1, 2018 by Bob Reid

Calls for greater transparency from social institutions are gaining momentum in American culture, especially given concerns about the potential risks to society from misconduct hidden from public view. Such concerns have escalated since the 2008 global financial crisis, where consequences of misconduct had broad impact. While social institutions had little role in bringing about that crisis, broadly applied transparency is increasingly represented as society’s best defense against unethical behavior. Accordingly, advocates for increased transparency are acquiring a growing voice in the field of private philanthropy… Read More

Balancing Family Privacy and Public Trust: Transparency in Family Philanthropy

Posted on May 11, 2017 by Chris Rurik, Richard Russell, Richard Woo

While transparency is an important value in principle, what do you do when your foundation’s privacy is also your family’s privacy? How do we balance the need for public accountability with a family’s right to privacy? What do the tough but important questions regarding transparency and accountability mean for family philanthropy and how can foundations think strategically about these questions?… Read More

Balancing Family Privacy and Public Trust: Transparency in Family Philanthropy

Posted on May 11, 2017 by Chris Rurik, Richard Russell, Richard Woo

While transparency is an important value in principle, what do you do when your foundation’s privacy is also your family’s privacy? How do we balance the need for public accountability with a family’s right to privacy? What do the tough but important questions regarding transparency and accountability mean for family philanthropy and how can foundations think strategically about these questions?… Read More

Cultivating Nonprofit Leadership

Posted on May 9, 2017 by Niki Jagpal, Ryan Schlegel

Leadership development is an integral component of any work that seeks to address long-standing structural barriers to sustainable change. We cannot succeed without substantial investments in leadership at the grassroots level, specifically among groups working to address rigid structural barriers to equity and creating sustainable change. … Read More

Sharing What Matters: Foundation Transparency – Center for Effective Philanthropy

Posted on July 21, 2016 by Center for Effective Philanthropy

We drew these conclusions from analyses of surveys of 145 independent and community foundation CEOs, a review of more than 70 foundation websites, and surveys of more than 15,000 grantees. Three profiles included in the report—Baptist Healing Trust, Central New York Community Foundation, and an anonymous foundation—provide a more in-depth look into what guides how transparent a foundation chooses to be, and what it means in day-to-day practice… Read More

How long should a foundation keep grantee reports?

Posted on February 19, 2016 by Andras Kosaras, James P. Joseph

Are there legal requirements, IRS or other, for foundations regarding receiving and retaining paperwork from grantees that documents how grant dollars were spent? A good rule of thumb is to keep grant materials for seven years. We suggest four years at a minimum. The IRS audit statute of limitations is three years. So, it is important to keep grant materials… Read More

Are there any lobbying red flags to look out for in final grantee reports to our foundation?

Posted on February 18, 2016 by Andras Kosaras, James P. Joseph

Are there any lobbying red flags to look out for in final grantee reports to our foundation? The foundation should look at grantee reports for lobbying flags or electioneering flags. If grantees are not following the rules it is better to know sooner rather than later. This way it can be corrected going forward. For more information, see The Rules… Read More

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