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Milestone Anniversaries Celebrating Banner Years The Arties! Best Fundraising Galas Good Times for Good Causes Fall & Winter Fêtes
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SU P P ORT T H E F R A N k l I N D. RO O SEv E lT F OU R F R E E D OM S PA R k ON RO O SEv E lT I Sl A N D
he was our president, new York’s own son and citizen, yet no memorial stands on home soil to honor the greatest president of the 20th century. Until now. Finally, construction of the Franklin d. roosevelt Four Freedoms park is under way. As originally described by the new York times, the park “will face the sea he loved, the Atlantic he bridged, the europe he helped to save, the United nations he inspired.” etched in granite will be his Four Freedoms: Freedom of speech and expression, Freedom of Worship, Freedom from Want, Freedom from Fear.
Artist’s rendering of park to be built on southern tip of Roosevelt Island in New York City’s East River.
As a donor, your name can be a permanent part of this important last work of the brilliant architect louis i. Kahn. it will be a world-class monument, an elegant homage to our country’s great purposes and new York’s own great president.
FR ANK LIN D. RO O SE V E LT
FOUR FREEDOMS PA R K
Every donation counts! Visit www.fdrfourfreedomspark.org or call Ambassador William vanden Heuvel, 212.339.2579
Let’s build it now – and re-build something in us all.
Bill Gates and Warren Buffett ask fellow billionaires to give their fortunes away.
ill Gates and Warren Buffett recently returned from a trip to China to promote philanthropy to the country’s new class of superrich. Gates and Buffett invited 50 Chinese billionaires to a dinner party in Beijing, not unlike the super secret yet widely-reported billionaire’s dinners the pair has sporadically thrown in Manhattan over the past year.
Attended by Oprah Winfrey, George Soros and Ted Turner, the New York gatherings (in addition to alarming conspiracy theorists) offered an opportunity for America’s wealthiest people to discuss philanthropy in an informal, private setting. Their discussions developed into the creation of The Giving Pledge. Billionaires who make the Giving Pledge commit to give away 50% of their wealth before or at
By Kat StoeFFel
their death. Many have promised to give much more. New York’s elite has always been committed to philanthropy. Their generosity is written in the museums and performance halls that are the cultural and historic face of the city. That legacy is still visible on The Giving Pledge’s roster. High-profile New Yorkers include Mayor Michael Bloomberg, former head of Citigroup Sandy Weill,
and media-fashion power couple Barry Diller and Diane von Furstenburg. Joined by the West Coast’s tech billionaires, they have the ability to dramatically broaden the scope of philanthropy in this country. If each of Forbes 400 wealthiest Americans makes the minimum pledge, their donations will amount to $600 billion. After recruiting efforts in China, Gates and Buffet have alluded to plans to host a dinner in India; it’s clear the pair have even larger financial goals in mind. It’s safe to say none of the dinners concluded with guests pulling out their checkbooks-The Giving Pledge has no financial or administrative structure to handle donations. The real purpose is to make a statement, and to provide a name for the culture of giving that the Gates’ and Buffett have sought to foster since accumulating their wealth. The only evidence of The Giving Pledge’s existence is a website with a list of individuals who have taken the pledge (and a collection of personal statements about their commitment to philanthropy). There is not, as yet, a paper trail for the billions of dollars trickling into medical research, education programs, environmental initiatives, and the arts thanks to the initiative. Many of the pledgers already have foundations established for their favorite causes, but if billionaires are looking for somewhere to donate, they can always follow Warren Buffett’s lead and donate to the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. He seems to know how to handle money.
Billionaires who make the Giving Pledge commit to donate 50 percent of their wealth before or at their death.
New Yorkers who made the Giving Pledge
Quotations taken from givingpledge.org.
Mayor Michael Bloomberg, worth $18B, Bloomberg LP “In my third career, as mayor of New York, I’ve seen just how needed—and how powerful—private donations are. Public-private partnerships are at the heart of our efforts to improve public health and safety, fight poverty, fix a once-broken school system, expand economic opportunity, promote the arts, protect our environment, and so much more.” Kenneth Langone, $1.1B, Home Depot “Our family is thankful for the many blessings we have enjoyed. It is because we live in a special country, where freedom of opportunity is a cherished virtue that we can reach so high in the first place. But nothing makes our society better than when we live up to its most caring ideals of service and selflessness.” Ron Perelman, $11B, leveraged buyouts “One of the most memorable moments in my life was at a charity dinner I was attending for a breast cancer cause. A woman approached me and said, ‘I just wanted to say thank you—because of you my sister is alive.’” Jim and Marilyn Simons, $8.7B, hedge funds “We and our children have determined that the great majority of our wealth will be devoted to philanthropic purposes. We are very fortunate to be in this position, and we find the execution of our philanthropic work to be both challenging and deeply satisfying.” David Rockefeller, $2.4B, Standard Oil “Effective philanthropy also requires patience—patience to deal with unexpected obstacles; patience to wait for the first, slight stirrings of change; and patience to listen to the insights and ideas of others.” Julian H. Robertson, Jr., $2.2B, hedge funds “I have found so many great new projects to work with just in the last several years: the national parks, the families of our military, stem cells and now obesity. The Milken Institute calculates that if we could get Americans back to their weight level of 1991, we could save a trillion dollars a year. A trillion dollars, think of that! Besides making Americans healthier, we could now solve the fiscal crisis in the US.” Peter G. Peterson, $2B, Blackstone Group “I am a very lucky American dreamer, but I want to see that dream alive for my five children’s and nine grandchildren’s generations. On our current path, I fear we are imperiling their future by passing on massive, hidden debts and unthinkable taxes. At bottom, I consider this fiscal child abuse or mortgaging their future, or whatever one chooses to call it; it is not only an economic issue but a national security issue and, above all, a moral issue.”
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The Center for Hearing and Communication Turns 100
A look at outstanding organizations celebrating banner years
The Center for Hearing and Communication Turns 100 he CHC, an organization grounded in a history of service and compassion, celebrated its 100th anniversary in 2010. To commemorate this milestone, Mayor Bloomberg declared May 25 as the Center for Hearing and Communication Day. The organization’s historic 100th Annual Meeting was held on May 26 and was open to the public and special invitees alike. The night’s roster included a presentation of awards, such as the Edward Nitchie Award in Human Communications to Caitlin Parton, among the first infants to receive a cochlear implant. The organization’s centennial gala will be held on October 18, 2010, in honor of Dr. Noel Cohen, a CHC board member and expert in cochlear implant and acoustic neuroma surgery. Guests can enjoy wine, hors d’oeuvres and auction items at 583 Park Avenue. Brooklyn-born Edward B. Nitchie, who experienced hearing loss as a teenager, founded this private, nonprofit corporation in 1910. After struggling to find work despite excelling in college, Nitchie decided to improve the lot of people with hearing loss so that they could get educated and find work easily. His organization was first called the Nitchie Service League, Inc.—then the League for the Hard of Hearing—before becoming the Center for Hearing and Communication in 2009. Having expanded from its primary focus on vocational rehabilitation, CHC is now on a mission “to improve the quality of life for infants, children and adults with all degrees of hearing loss” without being stalled by their patients’ age or capacity to pay. It has agencies in Manhattan and Fort Lauderdale, Florida, both of which provide services in the testing,
By Rhea MahBuBani
fitting and sale of hearing aids as well as mental health counseling to people with hearing loss and their families. The center in Manhattan also offers speech and language therapy to children with hearing loss, along with auditory training and lip reading to adults. “The most important thing is that we continue to grow with the times,” said Dr. Laurie Hanin, Executive Director. “As technology improves and people’s needs change, it’s very important that we stay in tune.” Per Dr. Hanin, nearly 38 million people in the United States are currently dealing with hearing loss. To counter the increasing need as noise levels rocket, CHC members work to not only raise awareness but also stave off the social stigma that accompanies hearing disabilities. Along with rehabilitation and clinical support, CHC functions as a trailblazer in hearing health care by screening preschoolers in low-income areas,
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helping the city develop the current noise code and raising funds for a mobile van that goes into communities and provides information regarding healthy hearing practices to people who live there. Visit chchearing.org. Hofstra’s Diamond Anniversary
ofstra University is another institution that despite being in Long Island actively contributes and creates value across New York in the form of internships, jobs and scholarships. The university, located on a piece of land in Hempstead (formerly owned by Kate Hofstra and developed by Truesdel Calkins, a supporter of higher education and the superintendent of public schools in Hempstead), welcomed its first students on September 23, 1935. What started out as a two-year branch campus of New York University became Hofstra University. Due to continuous concerted efforts made by former and present presidents, trustees, alumni and faculty, today Hofstra occupies 240 acres and provides 8,000 enrolled students with a private, nonprofit education from across its schools of Business, Law, Communication, Education, Liberal Arts and Sciences, and the recently established Hofstra North Shore-LIJ School of Medicine, which is recruiting its first class. “One of the constants about us as an institution is that we’re always evolving and looking for what needs to be done next,” said Melisa Connolly, vice president of university relations and chair of the 75th Anniversary Committee. The members of this community organized a big party to usher in their 75th anniversary on September 23.
The four-day celebration— called the “Diamond Weekend”—included the cutting of a cake shaped like the university’s Joan and Donald E. Axinn Library and Unispan, constructed by Charm City Cakes. “There are a lot of pieces to our 75th anniversary,” said Connolly, a Hofstra University alumna from the class of 1989. “We are looking at our academics, alumni and career success throughout the year.” Other commemorative events include an oral history project, a timeline, a student mosaic, art exhibits, a series of academic conferences looking at the history and future of every school and academic department, a student-led community service project called “75 Acts of Kindness”and the “Homecoming Series,” which brings back prominent alums to speak to the students. “There’s always something going on at Hofstra, and we try to make a difference in people’s lives every single day in a lot of different ways,” said Connolly. Visit hofstra.edu. n 2008, when Linda Selvin assumed the role of executive director of Agenda for Children Tomorrow (ACT), the organization was struggling to thrive during the onset of the global recession. Since then, ACT’s programs are functioning at a slightly reduced capacity due to reserved funding from individuals and foundations. Despite these challenges, however, Selvin is motivated to return to work
Hofstra’s Diamond Anniversary
Agenda for Children Tomorrow Celebrates Twenty Years of Service
every day because she believes in the importance of the work being done by her organization. “People only want the very best for themselves,” she said. “Sometimes they just need to be heard in order to do so.” ACT grew from a task force created by the Manhattan Borough President’s Office consisting of public and private service providers and philanthropists who convened to discuss the improvement of health and social services being provided to children throughout Manhattan’s five boroughs. In response to a report issued by the task force, which affirmed that services to disadvantaged communities were fragmented, ACT members, under the leadership of Eric Brettschneider, profiled the city’s 10 highest-risk neighborhoods—Mott Haven, East Tremont, Bedford-Stuyvesant, Bushwick, East New York, Central and West Harlem, Washington Heights/Inwood, Jamaica/Hollis and North Shore—and realized that help was urgently needed. This public-private nonprofit corporation is focused on strengthening communities by listening to the needs of at-risk people and working with community organizations to help provide necessary services, Selvin explained. These collaborations have now been institutionalized by New York City’s Administration of Children’s Services and aim to empower individuals to advocate for themselves. Trained to think outside the box and focus on the strengths of the individuals they interact with, ACT members provides citywide technical support for these initiatives and work to streamline the delivery of services such as housing, food stamps and child care. On October 26, ACT members will celebrate their 20th anniversary and honor Eric Brettschneider and Anthea McLaughlin, key figures in the organization’s founding. This fundraising event, held at 320 Park Avenue, will provide necessary donations for ACT to continue supporting entire neighborhoods throughout the city. Visit actnyc.org.
Agenda for Children Tomorrow Celebrates Twenty Years of Service
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10/5/10 3:33 PM 9
The Arties! A
By Julia halpeRin
rt worlders never miss an opportunity to throw a good party for a good cause. And artists, curators, and art lovers didn’t let the recession stop them from fund-raising—or celebrating—this year. First-time events, like the Art Production Fund’s gala, joined longtime fixtures like the Met’s Costume Institute Gala on the social calendar, and arts lovers combined forces to offer aid on both the global and local scale, from relief efforts in Haiti to support for the struggling Jersey City Museum. After a whirlwind season, The Observer looks back on some of the best and brightest arts fund-raisers of the year.
Best Music: MoMA’s Party in the Garden
MoMA’s $1,000-a-ticket annual benefit is always an art-starstudded event, but this year’s gala expertly combined uptown glitz with downtown cool. The party benefits MoMA’s annual fund and educational programs, and—fittingly for the outdoor event—ensures the maintenance of its sculpture garden. This year’s honorees, billionaire couple Ronald and Jo Carole Lauder, have been Upper East Side fixtures for years; Mr. Lauder opened the Neue Galerie across from the Met to display his collection of German artwork in 2001. The musical guests—Karen O and Nick Zinner of the Yeah Yeah Yeahs—offered downtown street cred. In fact, rumor has it the rocker pair jammed so loudly at the May 25 fete that publishing scion Si Newhouse and his wife skipped the party after hearing the music blaring from outside the museum walls.
Best Dressed: The Met’s 2010 Costume Institute Gala
The Metropolitan Museum of Art’s annual Costume Institute Gala is the original Fashion’s Night Out. The event is the museum’s main annual source of funding for acquisitions, special exhibitions and capital improvements, and New York and Hollywood’s heaviest hitters take big fashion risks on the museum’s front steps. This year’s event was co-hosted by Vogue editor in chief Anna Wintour, media mogul Oprah Winfrey and Gap creative director Patrick Robinson. The May 3 gala marked the opening
Forget the Oscars or the Grammys. This year’s art-world fund-raisers were so stylish that we had to give them their own recognition
Lincoln Center Corporate Fund
GOLDEN CIRCLE $250,000 AND MORE
Lincoln Center Business Council Lincoln Center Real Estate and Construction Council MetLife Foundation The New York Times Company Foundation The Starr Foundation The Wall Street Journal Ogden CAP Properties, LLC ScheinMedia Transammonia Inc. Verizon Communications Xerox Corporation DISTINGUISHED PATRON $25,000 and more Accenture LLP AXA Foundation Blank Rome LLP Brookfield Properties Corp. CA Technologies Curtis, Mallet-Prevost, Colt & Mosle LLP Greenberg Traurig Susan and John Hess HSBC Bank USA, N.A. International Flavors & Fragrances Inc. Interpublic Group J.H. Cohn LLP L. Jay Grossman Foundation Inc. The Marc Haas Foundation Mitsui USA Foundation News Corporation Restaurant Associates Rose Associates, Inc. Title Associates Toyota The Travelers Companies, Inc.
The Lincoln Center Corporate Fund, a unique example of an effective business/arts partnership, raises vital unrestricted funds from corporations and professional firms for 11 world-class performing arts organizations resident at Lincoln Center. The unrestricted nature of these funds is crucial to these organizations’ mission of bringing the best in the performing arts to the broadest audience possible. For information about the Corporate Fund and the benefits available to participating companies and their employees, please call 212.875.5430.
FRIEND $10,000 AND MORE
A & E Television Networks AVX Corporation Best Buy Company, Inc. The Blackstone Charitable Foundation Bloomberg The Bloomingdale’s Fund of the Macy’s Foundation Brown-Forman Corporation Charles F. and Anne Meckes Niemeth Foundation The Coca-Cola Company David and Susan Coulter Eastdil Secured LLC Ernst & Young LLP Feinberg Properties, LLC First Manhattan Co. Fitch, Inc. Fulbright & Jaworski L.L.P. The Herman Goldman Foundation Linda and Richard Goldstein IAC/InterActiveCorp Island Capital Group ITOCHU International, Inc. J.C.C. Fund of the Japanese Chamber of Commerce and Industry of New York, Inc. Jack Resnick & Sons, Inc. Latham & Watkins Lazard The Leir Charitable Foundations Mann Publications McMullan Family Fund Merck Bill and Jan Mitchell Mitsubishi International Corporation Ogilvy & Mather Worldwide OSI Pharmaceuticals, Inc. Oxxford Clothes Paul Stuart Roche Rolex Watch U.S.A., Inc. Samuel I. Newhouse Foundation Service Directions Inc. Sidley Austin LLP Simpson Thatcher & Bartlett LLP Standard Motor Products, Inc. Sumitomo Corporation of America Steve and Tina Swartz SYMS Corp and The Sy Syms Foundation TD Bank N.A. Thomson Reuters Viacom Anonymous
GRAND CIRCLE $200,000 AND MORE
CB Richard Ellis The William Randolph Hearst Foundations
OUTSTANDING LEADERSHIP $150,000 AND MORE
JPMorgan Chase Pfizer Inc
LEADERSHIP $100,000 AND MORE
Bank of America Citigroup Inc. Credit Suisse Sony Corporation of America The Starr Foundation
OUTSTANDING BENEFACTORS $75,000 AND MORE
DISTINGUISHED BENEFACTORS $50,000 AND MORE
American Express BNY Mellon Benenson Capital Partners Fried, Frank, Harris, Shriver & Jacob LLP Goldman, Sachs & Co. Gotham Construction Company LLC IBM International Foundation The Jeffries Companies King & Spalding LLP Mr. and Mrs. Peter L. Malkin Morgan Stanley Omnicom Group Paul, Hastings, Janofsky & Walker LLP Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison UBS
PATRONS $15,000 AND MORE
Arnhold and S. Bleichroeder Holdings, Inc. Bristol-Myers Squibb Company Capital One Bank Chevron Corporation Colgate-Palmolive Company Credit Agricole Corporate and Investment Bank Davis & Gilbert LLP The Durst Organization Goldfarb & Fleece Gregory P. Joseph Law Offices, LLC The Guardian Life Insurance Company of America Humana Inc. Johnson & Johnson Florence & Robert Kaufman Kramer Levin Naftalis & Frankel LLP The New York Observer Phillips-Van Heusen Corporation Richard H. Holzer Memorial Foundation The Segal Company Mr. & Mrs. Larry A. Silverstein Sullivan & Cromwell LLP TIAA-CREF Tishman Speyer Wachovia Bank, A Wells Fargo Company
Boston Properties ClearVision Optical Communications Partners & Associates, LLC Corning Incorporated Foundation Martha Crowninshield Daiwa Capital Markets America Inc. Deborah van der Heyden, Jones Lang LaSalle, Inc. The Dow Foundation Elias B. Cohen & Associates Fujisankei Communications International Inc. G-III Apparel Group, Ltd. Gaylord Entertainment Foundation Hertz, Herson & Company, LLP Interaudi Bank Jones Day Kekst and Company Incorporated Loews Corporation McCANN WORLDGROUP MilbergFactors Mitsui Fudosan America, Inc. N.S. Bienstock, Inc. Net Worth Solutions Peerless Clothing Randa Corporation SESAC Spielman Koenigsberg & Parker, LLP Sugar Foods Corporation Swoop, Inc. Toshiba America, Inc. The Trump Organization UnitedHealthcare Vandenberg & Feliu, LLP Wilmer Cutler Pickering Hale and Dorr LLP
William B. Harrison, Jr. JPMorgan Chase & Co.
Robert F. Arning KPMG LLP Keith Banks Bank of America Private Wealth Management Richard A. Cirillo, Esq. King & Spalding LLP David A. Coulter Warburg Pincus LLC Andrew L. Farkas Island Capital Group Beth E. Ford International Flavors & Fragrances Thomas H. Glocer Thomson Reuters Richard A. Goldstein Maurice R. Greenberg C.V. Starr and Co. David W. Heleniak Morgan Stanley Robert A. Iger Walt Disney Company Charles G. Ludmer J.H. Cohn LLP Peter L. Malkin, Esq. Malkin Holdings, LLC William E. Mitchell Sequel Capital Management, LLC Bruce E. Mosler Cushman & Wakefield, Inc. Narendra P. Mulani Accenture Charles F. Niemeth, Esq. Baker & McKenzie LLP Michael O’Brien, Esq. Wilmer Cutler Pickering Hale and Dorr LLP Douglas L. Paul Credit Suisse Securities (USA) LLC Ernesta G. Procope E.G. Bowman Co., Inc. Thomas A. Renyi BNY Mellon William R. Rhodes Citigroup, Inc. Caroline Roan Pfizer Inc Janet L. Robinson The New York Times Company Michael I. Roth Interpublic Group Sir Howard Stringer Sony Corporation of America Steven R. Swartz Hearst Corporation Alair A. Townsend Crain’s New York Business Kenneth L. Wyse Phillips-Van Heusen Corporation James D. Zirin, Esq. Sidley Austin LLP
DONORS $3,000 AND MORE
BATTLEY Performance Consulting, Inc. Covington & Burling LLP Darkstar Asset Management, LLC Dennis Miller Associates Exquisite Apparel Corporation French & Company, LLC Great Performances Grunfeld, Desiderio, Lebowitz, Silverman & Klestadt LLP KDDI America, Inc. Littelfuse, Inc. Metavante Corporation Mitchell & Titus, LLP Rockefeller Group International, Inc. Search Advisory Group Shydlo Communications, LLC WestPoint Home ZeroXposur Anonymous
BENEFACTORS $35,000 AND MORE
Crain’s New York Business Fidelity National Title Insurance Company Fisher Brothers Foundation Glenwood Management Corp. Kohlberg Kravis Roberts & Co. KPMG LLP LAW Foundation Newmark Knight Frank
DISTINGUISHED DONORS $5,000 AND MORE
Abbey Spanier Rodd & Abrams LLP Anchin, Block & Anchin LLP Aon Corporation Bernstein Global Wealth Management
Katherine Farley Chair, Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts Reynold Levy President, Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts As of September 30, 2010
AND 20 SUPPORTERS AND CONTRIBUTORS UNDER $3,000
The Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center • The Film Society of Lincoln Center • Jazz at Lincoln Center • The Juilliard School Lincoln Center Theater • The Metropolitan Opera • New York City Ballet • New York City Opera • New York Philharmonic The School of American Ballet • Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts
This year’s Whitney Art Party—the annual fund-raiser benefiting the museum’s well-regarded Independent Study Program—fell on a rainy June evening. But that didn’t keep guests away from the fête, held for the first time at an expanded Mercer street location. The crowd was a mix of fashion insiders like Rachel Zoe and Alek Wek and New York artists and art scions, like 2010 Whitney Biennale veteran Dawn Clemens and host committee member Vito Schnabel. The benefit included a silent auction with donations from more than 80 artists, including Nate Lowman and Roni Horn, and a performance by Whitney Independent Study Program alum Ryan Harvey.
Best Crowd: The 2010 Whitney Art Party
of the exhibition “American Woman: Fashioning a National Identity,” which traced the development of American women’s fashion from 1890 to 1940. But the bash wasn’t all about the past—Katy Perry’s light-up dress and Lady Gaga’s dinnertime performance kept guests squarely rooted in the 21st century. The nonprofit organization that brought you Olafur Eliasson’s waterfalls and Whitney Biennale special-edition towels and T-shirts had its first fund-raiser gala on April 13. The party, held at the Standard Hotel’s notorious Boom Boom Room, boasted scores of first-rate artists: guests included Marilyn Minter, Terence Koh, Cindy Sherman and John Currin. And of course, no art party is complete without an over-the-top performance: Kembra Pfahler performed as her alter ego, the Voluptuous Horror of Karen Black, spraypainted red and sporting a larger-than-life black Afro wig.
Best Debut: Art Production Fund First-Annual Gala
Best Excuse to Celebrate: Henry Darger’s Birthday at the American Folk Museum
The American Folk Museum might be struggling financially, but you wouldn’t have known it from attending their inspiring fund-raiser in April. The museum celebrated the birthday of Henry
The publicity-shy Olsen twins took center stage on May 14 to host the 12th annual art auction for Free Arts NYC. The organization provides underserved children and families arts and mentorship programs. The star-studded auction featured work by current MoMA atrium artist Yoko Ono and America’s Next Top Model judge and photographer Nigel Barker. The Olsens got some backup on the auction block from Work of Art judge and auction vet Simon de Pury, as well as co-hosts Angie Harmon, Molly Sims and Brooke Shields.
museum and bring in some extra cash, museum staff took a less-than-typical step: Instead of the traditional evening gala, they organized an art installation–cum–golf course. The Golden Door Mini-Golf Course, featuring 10 holes designed by local artists, is inspired by the immigrants who passed through Ellis Island and settled in Jersey City. (The project’s name refers to Jersey City’s moniker “The Golden Door.”) One round cost $5 per person. All told, the event raised $90,000.
Most Surprising: The 12th Annual Art Auction for Free Arts NYC
Most Inspiring: Tools for Thought—Rebuild Haiti
Most Creative: The Golden Door Mini Golf Course for the Jersey City Museum
The Jersey City Museum has recently struggled to stay afloat, reducing its operating hours to only one day a week in March. In an effort to raise the profile of the
Darger, the reclusive artist and custodian known for his paintings of the Vivian Girls, with a fund-raiser and concert by rock legend Patti Smith.
Art-world denizens joined forces on March 15 to raise money for Partners in Health, a relief organization working in Haiti after January’s devastating earthquake. Curators from P.S.1, the Studio Museum in Harlem, the Warhol Museum and the Neue Galerie teamed up with gallerists from Gagosian, Marlborough, Robert Miller and James Cohan for the event, which took place at Sotheby’s. Organizers were overwhelmed by the response from art worlders across the country who jumped at the chance to lend a hand. The auction’s theme was “readymade,” and featured work by Marcel Duchamp, Jeff Koons, Michael Stipe and Terence Koh.
Building Israel. One Child At A Time.
My name is Ilan.
I was born in Baku in the former Soviet Union and came to Israel when I was three years old. For a long time it’s been my dream to be a doctor. I am very lucky now because I live in Beersheva and go to the AMIT High School. It has a great program in science and mathematics, and helps me to pursue my dream. I plan to enter the army after I graduate and then, because I received such a strong education at AMIT, I’ll be going on to medical school. Thank you, AMIT!
Support AMIT online at www.amitchildren.org 817 Broadway • New York, NY • 10003 • Tel: 212.477.4720 • 1.800.989.AMIT
good Times For good Causes
Save the dates for these philanthropic fall and winter fêtes!
new York City Breast Cancer Fundraiser 7:00 P.M. at La Pomme, 37 West 26th Street Honor breast cancer survivors and fighters while enjoying cocktails, appetizers, and live music at this fun philanthropic event. Net proceeds will benefit the Greater New York City Affiliate of Susan G. Komen for the Cure. Visit NYCBreastCancerFundraiser.com for ticket information.
Avon Walk For Breast Cancer Pier 84, next to the USS Intrepid The two-day Avon Walk New York provides a true walking tour of the Big Apple, covering all the sites and landmarks of the city in order to ensure that breast cancer sufferers can get the care they need regardless of their ability to pay. The route (26.2 miles Saturday and 13/1 miles Sunday) winds through Manhattan and Brooklyn, with an overnight stay in Avon’s Wellness Village and campsite at Randall’s Island. Call 1-888-540-WALK or visit avonwalk.org to register.
Steinem at this empowering evening that pays tribute to the women trailblazers and change agents who have inspired us over the past 50 years. In addition to cocktails and dinner, there will be a special appearance by the Daily Show’s Samantha Bee. Proceeds will go to the National Institute for Reproductive Health, Planned Parenthood Federation of America, and Proframil Haiti. Purchase tickets online at justgive. org/50andFab, or for more information call 973635-6669(x117) or email email@example.com. Alliance for the Arts Annual Benefit 6:30 P.M. at the David H. Koch Theater, Lincoln Center This elegant event features an evening of cocktails, dinner and the presentation of the 2010 Alliance for the Arts Prize. Honorees this year are Randall Bourscheidt, Christo and JeanneClaude, Frank J. Sciame, Jr. and the F.J. Sciame Construction Company, all recognized for their extraordinary leadership of New York City’s cultural and civic life. Contact Elena Matsui at 212-594-5756 or firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
perform as part of the evening’s festivities. The gala, chaired by Angela Chao, will also feature cocktails, dinner, and dancing. Visit nycopera. com for more information. Young Patrons of Lincoln Center Fall Masquerade gala 8:00 P.M. at Alice Tully Hall Grab your mask, and put on your dancing shoes for is glamorous annual gala, which brings together celebrities and arts enthusiasts from around the city. Contact Caroline Hamilton at 212-875-5446 for additional details.
Lincoln Center Fall gala 8:00 P.M. at Avery Fisher Hall Enjoy cocktails, dinner, and an all-Beethoven program by the Dresden Staatskappelle conducted by Daniel Harding-including Piano Concerto No.4, Ah! Perfido, and Symphony No.7. At this year’s event, Lincoln Center Board Member Philip Milstein will receive the Distinguished Service Award. For tickets and further information please contact Lincoln Center Special Events at 212-875-5460.
national Kidney Foundation’s Kidney Walk Check-in begins at 9:30 A.M. and walk starts at 10:30 A.M. at South Street Seaport Piers 16 & 17 “Grizz” Chapman of the hit TV show 30 Rock, and a recent kidney transplant recipient, is the honorary chair of this year’s walk. Sign up at kidney.org.
new York City Step out: Walk to Fight diabetes Check-in begins at 8:30 A.M. and walk starts at 10:00 A.M. at South Street Seaport Want to change the future of diabetes? Join the American Diabetes Association in a 4.8 mile walk across the Brooklyn Bridge to raise money for community-based education programs, to protect the rights of people with diabetes, and to fund research to find a cure. The walk will conclude with a free concert back at South Street Seaport from 12-3 P.M. To register, visit diabetes. org/stepout or call 1-888-DIABETES.
Centennial gala: Hear for the Future 6:00 P.M. at 583 Park Avenue The Center for Hearing and Communication’s (formerly the League for the Hard of Hearing) Hear for the Future gala celebrates 100 years of leadership and innovation in hearing health care. The evening includes a cocktail reception, seated dinner, entertainment, and live and online auctions. Visit CHChearing.org or call 917-3057804 for details. 50 & Fabulous: Celebrating 50 Years of Women’s Advances 6:00 P.M. at the Pierre Hotel Join emcee Cybill Shepherd and guest Gloria
uJA Federation of new York Women’s Philanthropy Lion of Judah Fall Luncheon 12:00 PM at The Pierre Hotel Donors of $6,000 or more to UJA-Federation of New York’s 2011 Annual Campaign can enjoy this chic luncheon. For more information or to register, please contact Molly Goodwin at 212836-1118.
new York Eye and Ear Infirmary gala & Jazz Concert 6:00 P.M. at 583 Park Avenue This event, held by the New York Eye and Ear Infirmary, one of the busiest hospitals in New York, will raise funds for the hospital’s $13 million Surgical Suite Initiative to expand surgical capabilities in its three specialties: Ophthalmology, Otolaryngology and Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery. Guests will enjoy cocktails, dinner, and a concert by acclaimed jazz trumpeter and composer, Chris Botti. Contact Jennifer Pugliese at 212-979-4019 or jpugliese@ nyee.edu for more information. nYu Langone Medical Center “Adults in Toyland” Casino night 8:00 P.M. at The Edison Ballroom (47th between Broadway and 8th Avenue) Presented by the Hassenfeld Committee and the KiDS of NYU Foundation Associates Committee, this fun-filled evening includes cocktails, casino games and a premiere silent auction. The event raises important funds for the Stephen D. Hassenfeld Children’s Center for Cancer and Blood Disorders and the NYU Langone Medical Center Department of Pediatrics. Contact Meryl Schwartz at email@example.com or 212404-3674 for more information.
new York City opera’s Fall gala 6:00 P.M. at the David H. Koch Theater The New York City Opera’s annual gala, celebrating the start of the 2010-2011 season, is themed “An Evening With Christine Brewer,” and sure enough the Grammy-winning soprano will
Charity for Kids 2nd Annual Bowl for Kids 7:30 P.M. at Bowlmor Lanes The New York education charity will host its second annual Bowl for Kids vent to fund educational programming in two of the city’s most under-resourced elementary schools. 100% of proceeds will go to creative writing workshops, music lessons, visual art, field trips, pre-K reading and literacy tutoring. The event
American Museum of natural History Annual gala 7:00 P.M. at the American Museum of Natural History Sir Elton John will be performing in the Milstein Hall of Ocean Life at the black-tie event sponsored by Graff USA. The gala is chaired by Jodie and John Eastman, Kathy and Tom Freston, and Alice and Lorne Michaels. Visit amnh.org for details. Metropolitan Museum of Art Apollo Circle Benefit 9:00 P.M. at 1000 Fifth Avenue The Apollo Circle—a membership group for individuals in their twenties and thirties—joins the Apollo Circle Benefit Committee in presenting this seventh-annual benefit. This black-tie event will include dancing, cocktails, and sweet and savory treats. Funds raised will support The Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Conservation Departments. Purchase tickets online at metmuseum.org/ways_to_give/tickets. Queen Sofia Spanish Institute gold Medal gala 7:00 P.M. at 583 Park Avenue Enjoy cocktails, dinner, and a program chaired by legendary designer Oscar de la Renta—all in the presence of Her Majesty Queen Sofia of Spain. Honorees include Isak Andic and Diane von Furstenberg. Contact Christine Madden at 212-725-7139 to find out more or to purchase tickets. new York Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children Annual gala 6:30 P.M. at the Plaza Hotel This annual event features cocktails, dinner, and a program honoring Steven J. Golub. Co-chaired this year by Amanda Friedman, Neil Friedman, Deborah Norville, and Karl G. Wellner, the gala promises to be an unforgettable evening. For more information contact the Gala Benefit Office at 212-843-1714 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
and given back to their communities. Co-Chairs include Bobby Flay, Mariska Hargatay, and Jessica and Jerry Seinfeld. Visit cdfny.org for details.
features performances by CFK students, a buffet catered by David Burke, an open bar and a silent auction. Tickets can be purchased online at http://my.changeforkids.org.
Mount Sinai ob/gyn Fashion Show and Luncheon 11:30 A.M. at the Waldorf Astoria Women of all ages will gather to celebrate this fashion show and luncheon to benefit the Department of Obstetrics, Gynecology, and Reproductive Science of Mount Sinai School of Medicine. Akris will present their 2011 collection in association with Saks Fifth Avenue, and all proceeds will be used to support renovations to the facilities within the Department of Ob/Gyn. Contact Daryl Woolsey at 212-824-8250 or daryl. email@example.com for more information.
Founders gala, nYu Langone Medical Center’s Hospital for Joint diseases 6:30 P.M. at the American Museum of Natural History Each year, the Founders Gala raises important funds that greatly enhance HJD’s ability to improve the lives of people with musculoskeletal and neurological disorders. Contributions to
uJA-Federation of new York’s Lawyers division Annual Event 6:00 P.M. at the Waldorf Astoria This annual event features cocktails and hors d’oeuvres, a program featuring the Judge Joseph M. Proskauer Award and the James H. Fogelson Emerging Leadership Award, and dessert. For more information or to register, please contact Bari Lovi at 212-836-1435 .
the 2010 Founders Gala will enable HJD to continue its vital role as an international leader in 21st century patient care. Cocktails at 6:30 p.m., dinner and program at 7:30 p.m. Black tie. Contact Angeline Cheah at specialevents@ nyumc.org or 212-404-4433 to purchase tickets. Beth Israel Second Century Ball 6:30 P.M. at the Waldorf-Astoria Chaired by the Chairman of the Continuum Health Partners Board of Trustees, Lawrence Huntington and his wife, Caroline, the glamorous event includes cocktails, a seated dinner, and a full program. For tickets and information contact Linda Lupica at 914-579-1000.
new York City Ballet nutcracker Family Benefit 2:00 P.M. at the David H. Koch Theater, Lincoln Center The fun afternoon includes a matinee performance of George Balanchine’s The Nutcracker, a backstage visit and an after-party with characters from the production. Visit nycballet.com for more details.
2010 AMIT Annual dinner 5:00 P.M. at the Hilton Hotel, 53rd Street and 6th Avenue The 2010 Annual Dinner for AMIT (Americans for Israel and Torah), is being chaired by Baila and Stanley Weiss of New Rochelle, New York. For further information and reservations, please call AMIT at 212-477-4725 or e-mail robinr@ amitchildren.org.
Indego Africa’s 2010 Ibirori gala 8:00 P.M. at La Pomme, 37 West 26th Street Indego Africa supports women entrepreneurs in Africa to lift themselves out of poverty by helping them sell their high end fashion and home decor products to stores like Ralph Lauren and Anthropologie. All profits and donations go towards a training program in business skills and literacy. Email Sierra Visher at sierra.visher@ indegoafrica.org for more information.
AFIPo Family Music day 2010 9:30AM at Weill Recital Hall, Carnegie Hall This fun and educational annual event is open to children, parents, grandparents and friends. Kids of all ages are given an opportunity to see and hear a live classical music performance. Following the program, guests enjoy a brunch and activities in the Rohatyn Room. Funds raised go directly to support Israel Philharmonic Orchestra’s education and outreach program, KeyNote. Visit afipo.org for more information. 15: uJA Federation of new York Wall Street dinner 5:00 P.M. at the Hilton Hotel, 53rd Street and 6th Avenue Honoring Peter W. May of Trian Fund Management with the Gustave L. Levy Award and Michael B. Nierenberg of Bank of America Merrill Lynch with the Wall Street Young Leadership Award, this memorable evening will include cocktails and hors d’oeuvres, a full program, and an after-party. For more information or to register, please contact The Wall Street Dinner Hotline at firstname.lastname@example.org or 212-836-1542.
Children’s defense Fund Beat the odds 20th Anniversary 6:00 P.M. at Guastavino’s, 409 E. 59th Street To celebrate the 20th anniversary of its Beat the Odds project, CDF’s New York Office will award five high school seniors who have overcome adversity, demonstrated academic excellence
Observer Philanthropy: Tell us a little about yourself. Naomi Levine: I was the senior president at NYU for about 26 years and I was involved in fund-raising during that time. In the 1970’s, NYU was close to bankruptcy and was raising maybe $20 to 30 million a year. It’s now raising $400 million a year. So during that period I learned a lot. And obviously I didn’t do that by myself. Larry Tisch was the chairman of our board. He introduced me to everyone in the city of New York. I’m a lawyer by profession but spent the last 26 years at the university. Why is philanthropy important to society? I don’t think that people realize the importance of the nonprofit world in this society. There are 1.4 to 1.6 million non-profits, and last year, they raised $303 billion. The other day, I closed my eyes for a minute—if you take out of the skyline of New York Lincoln Center, the opera, all the hospitals, Sloan-Kettering, Tisch Hospital, Columbia Presbyterian, all the universities … and the thousands of nonprofits, you see that this city and this country would be very different without the nonprofit organizations. How did you end up as the modern voice of philanthropy? I was at the American Jewish Congress for 25 years.
Philanthropy is a
they still have money and they want to give and they do give. Even though there has been a decline in the last two years, it’s not been earth-shattering. What’s the difference between American and global philanthropy? When I teach my classes, the question that always comes to my mind is, what’s happening overseas in global philanthropy? The thing that gets me is that all the European countries, Asian, Africa, the Middle East, are all sending people to hear to learn the “American model” of philanthropy. What do you think it is about the American model that makes it better? To understand why it’s different here—I’m not sure if it’s better—but it’s certainly different. The United States [is] probably one of the few countries in the world that has private universities. [European universities] are all supported by the government. In Europe, all these things, including the great museums, the Louvre, opera houses, are all supported by the government. The concept of people doing it and not the government doing it is indigenous to the American style. Is that better? Do I want to be dependant on Bill Gates for my museums, my schools? Or would I rather my tax dollar do it? Right now, I think that our system is probably better. It’s a combination where
director had taken so much money and was living the high life. But within a few years, their fund-raising got back on track. The Red Cross has had a lot of trouble and yes, it did suffer a little bit. But in the long haul, it seemed to iron itself out. I think that people will say, ‘I’m not going to give to an Organization A because it did those bad things, but I will give to Organization B.’ As I said before, there’s still a great deal of money in the American community. There are more than 425 billionaires in this country … and those people are generous. And they give for many reasons. They’re altruistic, they want to give back to a hospital, they want to give to take care of other people, and they want to give back to their university. There are religious reasons—Judaism as well as Christianity and Islam, there are strong mandates to give. Charity didn’t start with Warren Buffet and Bill Gates.
Chair and Executive Director of the George H. Heyman, Jr. Center for Philanthropy and Fundraising at NYU Naomi Levine sounds off on modernizing philanthropy, her path to the top and how giving keeps this country standing
I had been there a long time and I was 55 years old, and I said to myself, ‘If you don’t do anything different at this time in your life, you’ll never have a chance again.’ Just by fortune, someone gave my name to the president of NYU, John Sawhill. And he called me, we had an interview, and for whatever reason, he gave me the job. When I left being a senior VP [for external affairs at NYU], I thought it was time to create a center for philanthropy and fund-raising to teach people what I had learned, because fund-raising today is not just selling cookies for the Girl Scouts. It’s a very serious profession and there are many things you have to learn. We have now had 10 years with the Heyman Center. Has the recession dramatically altered the ability to raise funds for charity? The truth is, there has been a decline, obviously. The total charitable giving in 2009—we don’t have 2010 in yet—was a drop of about 3.6 percent. But still, the bottom line was more than $300 billion. The bulk of money that comes in comes from individuals. The individuals with their bequests and regular gifts amount to 83 percent of the money that comes in. Individuals are critical to a campaign. Corporations give anywhere from 4 to 6 percent and foundations give between 13 and 15 percent. The truth is that the people with a lot of money [in the United States] still have a lot of money. They have less than they had a year ago and a year before, but government gives, business gives and the private sector through the nonprofits give. Describe the American model of fund-raising? The American model consists of asking individuals for money, going and making proposals with ideas and projects to foundations and corporations, understanding what they can give, what they can afford, using technology. And you have to look at this not as the charity in the negative sense, but when I ask you to make a gift, I’m asking you to support a very worthwhile cause. In America, we think there’s nothing bad about asking to give for a good cause. Have recent controversies surrounding several non-profits, like the Red Cross, affected the business? Today, more than ever before, every day there is some story in the paper about nonprofits, good and bad. We live in a post-Enron era. A lot of the mismanagement, the excess salaries and the bad behavior that you read about in the corporate sector have spilled over in the nonprofits. And there are cases that appear in the paper every day about somebody in a nonprofit who’s getting an exorbitant salary. While the nonprofits do wonderful things, they’re also having their problems. Do you think that affects giving on a larger scale? No. Well, I do when you’re an organization that [has had problems.] For example, United Way suffered very badly for a year of two after the scandal broke that its
What is the key to successful fund-raising? To be a really good fund-raiser where major gifts are concerned, you have to be a smart, intelligent person interested in what’s happening in the world around you. I am more interested in my staff reading novels or reading The Wall Street Journal and reading and being intelligent than I am about them just being able to talk about fund-raising. Because you go out with somebody, and you have a conversation. You don’t sit down and say, ‘Do you want to give me $100 million?’ Major-gift fund-raising depends on developing relationships. Walk us through a day in your life. First, I should tell you that I’m a little bit of a workaholic. I have no children at home, my daughter is out of the house, married, grandchildren; my husband died. So I love to work. I was the executive director, the first woman, of the American Jewish Congress. At NYU, I have several functions—I have to watch out and meet regularly at the Bronfman Center [for Jewish Student Life.] The other day, I had a meeting with the dean [of NYU], then I went up to have lunch—I’m not complaining—at the Four Seasons with Edgar Bronfman. Then I came back and worked with Doug White and my secretary to work with some ideas [for our upcoming conference]. Then at 4 p.m., I might sit down with some of the staff and [look at] the numbers today, and say, ‘Can we do more? Can we get out some e-blasts?’ Then in the evening, Howard Rubenstein is going to be one of the speakers at our conference, so I had a long talk on the phone with him. So I could be busy all day. There are things I guess I could do less [of], but I enjoy working. What do you think could be done to improve the business of philanthropy in America? I realize that [philanthropy] was a critical part of the American culture scene and that a lot more had to be done to make it effective. I believe it has to be viewed as a procession, not something you fall into by accident. And it isn’t given the kind of status and the kind of professional seal it deserves. I believed that bringing it into a university through a center would give it prestige and help make it a profession. There’s a line in a [John] Lennon song that says ‘Life is what happens to you when you’re making other plans.’ Sometimes things come your way, you don’t always plan them, they occur, and that’s what happens. Find out more about the George H. Heyman, Jr. Center at http://www.scps.nyu.edu/areas-of-study/ philanthropy-fundraising.
By Rachel MoRgan 16
52nd Street Project www.52project.org 92nd Street Y www.92y.org Abyssinian Development Corporation www.adcorp.org ACCIÓN USA www.accionusa.org ACE www.acenewyork.org Adelante of Suffolk County www.adelantesc.org Adults and Children with Learning and Developmental Disabilities www.acld.org AIDS Community Research Initiative of America www.acria.org Albert G. Oliver Program www.theoliverprogram.org Alexandre Foundation www.alexandrefoundation.org All Stars Project www.allstars.org Alzheimer's Association Long Island Chapter www.alz.org/longisland Alzheimer's Association New York City Chapter www.alznyc.org American Red Cross - Suffolk County Chapter suffolkcounty.redcross.org American Red Cross in Greater New York www.nyredcross.org American Red Cross in Nassau County www.nassauredcross.org Arab-American Family Support Center www.aafscny.org Armory Foundation www.armorytrack.com Baby Buggy www.babybuggy.org Bailey House www.baileyhouse.org Bedford Stuyvesant Restoration www.restorationplaza.org Bethany House of Nassau County www.bethanyhouselongisland.org Bideawee www.bideawee.org Big Brothers Big Sisters of Rockland County www.bbbsofrc.com Bowery Residents' Committee www.brc.org Bronx Council on the Arts www.bronxarts.org BronxWorks www.bronxworks.org Brooklyn Community Services www.bbcs.org Cardinal Hayes Home for Children www.cardinalhayeshome.org Care for the Homeless www.careforthehomeless.org CAREERS for People with Disabilities www.careersforpeoplewithdisabilities.org Casita Maria www.casita.us Catholic Charities, Diocese of Rockville Centre www.catholiccharities.cc Catholic Charities of the Archdiocese of New York www.catholiccharitiesny.org CDS International www.cdsintl.org Center for Children's Initiatives www.centerforchildrensinitiatives.org Center for Family Representation www.cfrny.org Center for Hearing and Communication www.chchearing.org Center for Independence of the Disabled, New York www.cidny.org Central Park Conservancy www.centralparknyc.org Centurion Foundation Child Abuse Prevention Services www.capsli.org
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Children's Aid Society www.childrensaidsociety.org Children's Village www.childrensvillage.org Citizens' Committee for Children of New York www.cccnewyork.org City Harvest www.cityharvest.org Citymeals-on-Wheels www.citymeals.org Coalition for the Homeless www.coalitionforthehomeless.org Committee for Hispanic Children and Families www.chcfinc.org Community Access www.communityaccess.org Community Resource Exchange www.crenyc.org Creative Response to Conflict www.crc-ny.org Demos www.demos.org Doe Fund www.doe.org DOME Project www.domeproject.org DOROT www.dorotusa.org Dutchess Land Conservancy www.dutchessland.org East Harlem Tutorial Program www.ehtp.org Educational Alliance www.edalliance.org Educational Video Center www.evc.org Episcopal Charities of the Diocese of New York www.episcopalcharities-newyork.org Erase Racism www.eraseracismny.org/html/index.php Eviction Intervention Services www.eisny.org Family Service League www.fsl-li.org Family Services of Westchester www.fsw.org Federation of Protestant Welfare Agencies www.fpwa.org Fight for Sight www.fightforsight.com Five Towns Senior Center Food Bank For New York City www.foodbanknyc.org Food Bank for Westchester www.foodbankforwestchester.org Food Bank of the Southern Tier www.foodbankst.org Fountain House www.fountainhouse.org Freedom From Fear www.freedomfromfear.org Friends of Karen www.friendsofkaren.org Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network www.glsen.org Gilda's Club New York City www.gildasclubnyc.org Gilda's Club Worldwide www.gildasclub.org Girl Scout Council of Greater New York www.girlscoutsnyc.org Global Kids www.globalkids.org Goddard Riverside Community Center www.goddard.org God's Love We Deliver www.glwd.org Good Shepherd Services www.goodshepherds.org Goodwill Industries of Greater New York & Northern New Jersey www.goodwillny.org Greenwich House www.greenwichhouse.org Greyston Foundation www.greyston.org Habitat For Humanity New York City www.habitatnyc.org Harlem Center for Education www.harlemctred.com Harlem RBI www.harlemrbi.org Harlem United Community AIDS Center www.harlemunited.org HeartShare Human Services of New York www.heartshare.org Helen Keller Services for the Blind www.helenkeller.org Henry Street Settlement www.henrystreet.org Hispanic Counseling Center www.hispaniccounseling.org HIV Law Project www.hivlawproject.org Holy Apostles Soup Kitchen www.holyapostlesnyc.org HOPE Program www.thehopeprogram.org Housing Works www.housingworks.org Human Rights First www.humanrightsfirst.org Ifetayo Cultural Arts Academy www.ifetayo.org Jay Heritage Center www.jaycenter.org Jed Foundation www.jedfoundation.org Jericho Project www.jerichoproject.org Jewish Board of Family and Children's Services www.jbfcs.org Jewish Guild for the Blind and Affiliates www.jgb.org Junior Achievement of New York www.jany.org Kips Bay Boys and Girls Club www.kipsbay.org Lawyers for Children www.lawyersforchildren.org Literacy Partners www.literacypartners.org Literacy Suffolk www.literacysuffolk.org Little Flower Children and Family Services of New York www.littleflowerny.org Local Development Corporation of East New York www.ldceny.org Loisaida www.loisaidainc.org Long Island Alzheimer's Foundation www.liaf.org Long Island Cares www.licares.org Long Island Housing Partnership www.lihp.org Long Island Housing Services www.lifairhousing.org Long Island Teen Challenge www.longislandtc.com Lupus Alliance of America Long Island/Queens Affiliate www.lupusliqueens.org Madison Square Boys and Girls Club www.madisonsquare.org Make-A-Wish Foundation of Metro New York www.metrony.wish.org Make-A-Wish Foundation of Suffolk County www.makeawish-suffolkny.org Make-A-Wish Foundation of the Hudson Valley www.hudson.wish.org Marty Lyons Foundation www.martylyonsfoundation.org Maryknoll Lay Missioners www.mklm.org Mental Health Association in Suffolk County www.mhasuffolk.org Mental Health Association of Nassau County www.mhanc.org Mentoring USA www.mentoringusa.org Mercy Haven www.mercyhaven.org Mercy Home for Children www.mercyhomeny.org Montauk Historical Society - Montauk Lighthouse Museum www.montauklighthouse.com My Sisters' Place www.mysistersplaceny.org myGoodDeed www.mygooddeed.org Nassau-Suffolk Coalition for the Homeless www.nsch.org National Foundation for Facial Reconstruction www.nffr.org Nazareth Housing www.nazarethhousingnyc.org Neighborhood Coalition for Shelter www.ncsinc.org Neighbors Together www.neighborstogether.org New York City Audubon Society www.nycaudubon.org New York City Coalition Against Hunger www.nyccah.org New York City Mission Society www.nycmissionsociety.org New York City Police Foundation www.nycpolicefoundation.org New York Disaster Interfaith Services www.nydis.org New York Historical Society www.nyhistory.org New York Law Enforcement Foundation www.nylef.org New York Police & Fire Widows' & Children's Benefit Fund www.answerthecall.org New York Restoration Project www.nyrp.org Palladia www.palladiainc.org Partnership for the Homeless www.partnershipforthehomeless.org Planned Parenthood of New York City www.ppnyc.org New York City Police Reserve Association www.nycpra.org Port Washington Youth Activities www.eteamz.com/portyouthactivities Puppies Behind Bars www.puppiesbehindbars.com Queens Library Foundation www.queenslibraryfoundation.org Rainforest Foundation US www.rainforestfoundation.org Reach into Cultural Heights www.richinc.org Reach Out and Read of Greater New York www.reachoutandreadnyc.org Research to Prevent Blindness www.rpbusa.org Resources for Children with Special Needs www.resourcesnyc.org Retreat www.theretreatinc.org Riverdale Neighborhood House www.riverdaleonline.org Ronald McDonald House of New York www.rmdh.org Room to Grow National www.roomtogrow.org Roundabout Theater Company www.roundabouttheatre.org Rye Arts Center www.ryeartscenter.org Safe Horizon www.safehorizon.org Safe Space NYC www.safespacenyc.org Save-A-Pet Animal Rescue www.saveapetli.org Scenic Hudson www.scenichudson.org Sesame Workshop www.sesameworkshop.org Sexuality Information & Education Council of the United States www.siecus.org Sick Kids Need Involved People www.skipofny.org The Sikh Coalition www.sikhcoalition.org Society of St. Vincent de Paul in the Diocese of Rockville Centre www.svdprvc.org South Bronx Overall Economic Development Corporation www.sobro.org Sports and Arts in Schools Foundation www.sasfny.org St. Christopher's www.sc1881.com St. Vincent's Services www.svs.org Stanley M. Isaacs Neighborhood Center www.isaacscenter.org Starlight Children's Foundation www.starlight-newyork.org Staten Island Center for Independent Living Staten Island Mental Health Society www.simhs.org Staten Island Museum www.statenislandmuseum.org Suffolk County United Veteran's Halfway House Project www.scuv.org Suffolk Y Jewish Community Center www.suffolkyjcc.org Teatown Lake Reservation www.teatown.org The Catalog for Giving of New York City www.catalogforgiving.org The Door www.door.org Theater for the New City Foundation www.theaterforthenewcity.net Thursday's Child www.thursdayschildofli.org Twenty-First Century Foundation www.21cf.org Union Settlement Association www.unionsettlement.org Unique People Services www.uniquepeopleservices.org United Cerebral Palsy Association of Nassau County www.ucpn.org United Hospital Fund www.uhfnyc.org United Neighborhood Houses of New York www.unhny.org United Way of New York City www.unitedwaynyc.org University Settlement Society of New York www.universitysettlement.org Urban Pathways www.urbanpathways.org VISIONS www.visionsvcb.org Volunteer Referral Center www.volunteer-referral.org Westchester Institute for Human Development www.wihd.org Westchester Land Trust www.westchesterlandtrust.org Wildlife Conservation Society www.wcs.org Women in Need www.women-in-need.org Women's City Club of New York www.wccny.org Women's Housing and Economic Development Corporation www.whedco.org World Lung Foundation www.worldlungfoundation.org World Rehabilitation Fund www.worldrehabfund.org Wyandanch Homes and Property Development Corporation www.whpdc.com YES Community Counseling Center www.yesccc.org YMCA of Central and Northern Westchester www.ymca-cnw.org Yorkville Common Pantry www.ycp.org Young Audiences New York www.yany.org
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For Charity Reports on more than 860 local New York charities, go to newyork.bbb.org
or contact the New York Philanthropic Advisory Service (NYPAS) at email@example.com or 212-358-2873.
Stars Lend Support for Centennial Celebration October 18th
2010 marks the 100th birthday for New York’s leader in hearing health care, the Center for Hearing and Communication (previously known as League for the Hard of Hearing). Be part of the festivities as New York celebrates this historic milestone with a spectacular Centennial Gala October 18th at the sumptuous 583 PARK AVENUE. Celebrities and special guests will be on hand for an evening of exquisite cuisine, world-class entertainment and one-of-a-kind auction prizes. All proceeds support the programs and services of the Center for Hearing and Communication (CHC), which for 100 years has helped infants, children and adults overcome the challenges of hearing loss. The Gala’s theme, Hear for the Future, is a declaration of this venerable not-for-profit organization’s commitment to the hearing health of future generations. The need for CHC’s unsurpassed clinical expertise and technical know-how is greater now than ever. 38 million Americans live with the challenges of hearing loss, and this figure will increase sharply as Baby Boomers age and the incidence of noise-induced hearing loss grows. On hand for the celebration is preeminent artist Tom Otterness who has created a special commemorative bronze sculpture, The Secret, to be featured in the Gala’s live auction.
Bids can also be placed online starting October 13th at CharityBuzz.com. Visit tomotterness.net to see examples of the artist’s iconic work. Other highlights of the Gala include the presentation of the Centennial Award to Dr. Noel Cohen for his pioneering work in cochlear implant surgery and entertainment provided by comic Christian Finnegan, singer Joey McIntyre and American Idol sensation Crystal Bowersox. For ticket information or to learn how you can lend your support, phone (917) 305-7702 or visit CHChearing.org.
Expand Your Philanthropic Expertise to the Global Arena at NYU-SCPS
In today’s interconnected world, the public sector must respond to issues globally, requiring that fundraisers be familiar with—and be able to identify—the major issues confronting various countries and their immediate needs. Designed for those interested in working in the public sector and governmental and nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) as well as professionals already working at foundations and philanthropic institutions, the NEW Certificate in Global Philanthropy at the NYU School of Continuing and Professional Studies (NYUSCPS) prepares students to assess and address the challenges facing both programming officers and fundraisers. Offered jointly by the NYU-SCPS George H. Heyman Jr. Center for Philanthropy and Fundraising and the Center for Global Affairs, the seven-course program can be completed within one year of part-time study. Examine current debates about
humanitarian assistance, ethics, governance, and related issues—from both the programming and fundraising perspectives. “This new Certificate in Global Philanthropy aims to bolster NGOs by ensuring that their personnel understand both the programming needs and the fundraising requirements of their organizations,” says Naomi Levine, executive director of the Heyman Center. “Because funding is the lifeblood of any nonprofit organization, all nonprofit professionals— whatever their function in the organization—must understand and actually participate in the fundraising process to ensure success.” Register Now Student questions regarding the certificate program can be directed to the Heyman Center at (212) 998-6770 or scps. firstname.lastname@example.org. For more information about this professional certificate as well as many other learning opportunities please visit www.scps.nyu.edu.
Save a Dog Like Eldora.
Adopt Your New Best Friend!
Rescued from a puppy mill, Eldora is feeling soft grass under her paws and the touch of kind hands for the first time in her life. Like so many homeless animals with special needs, she’s come to Best Friends to heal from her hard life’s journey and get a fresh start.
Together with our members, Best Friends is working towards a time when every pet has a loving home and there are No More Homeless Pets®. Help make the dream a reality by adopting your next dog from your local shelter instead of buying a puppy at a pet store or over the Internet. Thousands of healthy dogs are in shelters waiting to be adopted. Give one a home and what every dog deserves—the love, care and happiness that come from being part of a family.
Learn more at: www.bestfriends.org
AMIT nurtures and educates Israeli children to become productive, contributing members of society. Its more than 75 schools, youth villages, surrogate family residences, and other programs are located in 23 cities and communities throughout Israel, and provide a continuity of valuesbased, academic excellence from kindergarten through junior college. AMIT schools help each child reach his or her fullest potential, while obtaining the skills and knowledge to build a successful future. A majority of AMIT’s more than 20,000 children come
from economically disadvantaged and/ or troubled families. Yet, AMIT students also reflect all Israel: religious and secular, Ashkenazi and Sephardi, Sabra and new immigrant. All students are welcome in AMIT’s educational environment, and tolerance, respect and the unity of the Jewish people are basic tenets of AMIT’s philosophy. We are proud that more than 95 per cent of our graduates serve in the Israel Defense Forces or perform National Service. With American headquarters in New York City and offices in Israel in Jerusalem and Petach Tikvah, AMIT is supported by more than 40,000 families in the United States and hundreds of volunteers in Israel, working together on behalf of Israel’s most precious resource, its children, to have a positive impact on the future of Israel. AMIT 817 Broadway, New York, NY 10003 Tel: (212) 477-4720 E-mail: email@example.com Web site: www.amitchildren.org
When you send holiday cards this year, send along a message of caring for New York’s homebound elderly. For your donation of $32 – plus a $4 shipping handling fee – you will receive a package of five holiday cards. The cost of each card provides a holiday meal for a frail aged neighbor, a wonderful way to honor family, friends and business associates. Holiday cards ordered before Sunday, December 20th are guaranteed to be delivered by Christmas. Order your Citymeals holiday cards today! Visit www.citymeals. org/holidaycards. Founded in 1981, Citymeals-onWheels is a not-forprofit organization raising private funds to prepare and deliver weekend, holiday and emergency meals to homebound elderly New Yorkers. Last year, Citymeals underwrote the preparation and delivery of 2.1 million meals to 16,000 New Yorkers in need. One hundred percent of donations to Citymeals from the public goes toward the preparation and delivery of meals. For more information, to see holiday card designs or to place an order, visit www.citymeals.org.
Save a Life: Adopt Your New Best Friend
Help Make No More Homeless Pets a Reality in Our Lifetime!
Every pet deserves to be part of a family. Best Friends and our members in New York and communities across the country are working to bring about a time when every animal has a loving home and there are No More Homeless Pets®. Best Friends runs the nation’s largest sanctuary for homeless animals. But there’s so much more: From delivering pets from overcrowded shelters and puppy mills to brand new lives to rescuing animals from disasters and helping community cats, Best Friends and our members are saving animals every day. Right now, millions of homeless pets are at risk. Through innovative grassroots efforts, Best Friends is reaching out to provide lifesaving rescue, adoption, spay/neuter and advocacy programs from coast to coast. When Best Friends began, 15 million dogs and cats perished in shelters every year. Today
that number is 5 million. And we won’t stop working until that number is zero. Thousands of healthy dogs and cats are waiting to be adopted. Help bring about a time of No More Homeless Pets: Adopt your next animal companion from your local shelter, sanctuary or rescue group. And give your new best friend what every pet deserves—the love, care and happiness that come from being part of a family! Learn more at www.bestfriends.org.
Photo: MORINI & MONTANARI
HuNger Never lets up. NeitHer do we. Help citymeals deliver.
For many of New York’s frail homebound elderly, hunger is often their only company. Since 1981, Citymeals-on-Wheels has delivered nutritious meals to thousands of elderly New Yorkers who would otherwise be hungry and alone. Give to Citymeals and 100% of your contribution will go to the preparation and delivery of meals.
donate or volunteer today. visit citymeals.org/nyo or call 212-687-1234.
Nourish your soul. Feed elderly New yorkers.
Time and materials needed to create this ad were donated by Draftfcb New York. Citymeals-on-Wheels meets the Better Business Bureau’s Wise Giving Alliance Standards. For a copy of our most recent annual report, write to us or the New York State Attorney General’s Charities Bureau, ATTN: FOIL Office, 120 Broadway, New York, NY 10271. ©2010 Citymeals-on-Wheels. 21
The Hebrew University of Jerusalem & AFHU
The Hebrew University of Jerusalem was born from an idea proposed in 1913 by Chaim Weizmann, who later became Israel’s first president. Weizmann’s vision was shared by other brilliant thinkers, among them Albert Einstein, Martin Buber and Sigmund Freud. Three years after the cornerstones were laid on Mount Scopus in 1918, Weizmann and Einstein traveled throughout the U.S. to promote and raise funds for The Hebrew University. On April 1, 1925, The Hebrew University of Jerusalem opened its doors. In the United States, American Friends of The Hebrew University (AFHU), a national nonprofit organization, has devoted close to nine decades raising awareness of, and support for, The Hebrew University of Jerusalem. Currently ranked among the top-100 universities worldwide, Hebrew University generates more than one-third of Israel’s research and educates 23,000 students annually on four campuses. An award-winning faculty of 1,100 includes Nobel and Israel Prize winners as well as leading jurists, scientists and scholars. In 2010, the Fields Medal in Mathematics was awarded to HU Professor Elon Lindenstrauss, marking the first time Israel has ever received this exceptional honor. Hebrew University excels at cutting-edge pursuits such as biotechnology, interdisciplinary brain sciences and sustainable agriculture. This expertise is shared with countries throughout the world. Alumni include present and former Israeli Prime Ministers, the nation’s first female Supreme Court President and the majority of Supreme Court justices. The Hebrew University is likewise known for its unwavering commitment to multiculturalism, pluralism and the cause of peace. Students from throughout Israel and more than 50 countries engage in a community of dialogue and intellectual inquiry.
Franklin D. Roosevelt Four Freedoms Park
On March 29, 2010, construction of the Franklin D. Roosevelt Four Freedoms Park began, 37 years after Governor Rockefeller and Mayor Lindsay renamed Welfare Island for the 32nd president. They dedicated four acres on Roosevelt Island to a park in his memory. Louis I. Kahn designed it, his last project and the only Kahn design which can still be built. The Park will be to the East River what the Stature of Liberty is to the New York Harbor, a world class destination from opening day. With waterfront promenades, lawns and allees of trees, the park will be an extraordinary new civic space with spectacular city views. A colossal portrait bust of FDR marks the entrance to a plaza where Roosevelt’s Four Freedoms speech will be engraved. FDR offered the American people a vision of a world worth fighting for in the war already begun, a world where everyone would have Freedom of speech and expression, Freedom to worship in one’s own way, Freedom from want and Freedom from Fear. Chapters of History will turn a walk in the park into a history lesson, bringing the story of the Roosevelt era to new generations. Each chapter and the donor who chooses to sponsor it will be carved into the granite parapets. Through smart phones visitors will access mini-documentaries turning the park into a virtual classroom. We invite you to help us deliver the Four Freedoms Park to New Yorkers and citizens of the world. Let’s build it now and rebuild something in us all. For information contact: Ambassador William vanden Heuvel Chair firstname.lastname@example.org Sally Minard President/ CEO email@example.com Gina Pollara Executive Director firstname.lastname@example.org 147 West 35th Street New York NY 10001 WWW.FDRFOURFREEDOMSPARK.ORG
Redefining Wall Street
Located on the world’s most famous financial boulevard, 120 Wall Street represents an exceptional opportunity for non-profit organizations and corporate tenants to reside together for more than a decade. As New York’s first and only Association Center, 120 Wall Street is home to some of the country’s finest non-profit organizations such as the National Urban League, the United Way of America and the United Negro College Fund. The building also boasts a roster of prestigious corporate tenants, including Leahey & Johnson, which has been a tenant for over fifty years. Built in 1929, 120 Wall Street is owned and managed by Silverstein Properties. On October 16, 1991, Mayor David Dinkins announced the selection of 120 Wall Street as the site of the Association Center. “The idea of an Association Center is a simple and elegant notion that has become reality,” he said. “The building we have selected at 120 Wall Street is perfectly suited to become the nation’s first not-for-profit center of this scope.” 120 Wall Street was selected through a competitive RFP process by the New York City Economic Development Corporation. The Association Center assists not-for-profit organizations to cut operating costs by providing low-cost office space, shared conference and mail rooms, printing services, and day care. With modern interior spaces and spectacular views, 120 Wall Street currently has partial and full floors available ranging from 5,000 to 26,000 square feet. For more information, contact Roger Silverstein, Jeremy Moss, Stuart Christie, Jared Siegel at 212.732.9700 or visit silversteinproperties.com.
Pick One. Just One.
Save Their Life For $250. You’ll End Up Smiling Too.
Ming, 6 months, China
Shiva, 1 year, India
Mot, 13 years, Cambodia
Durgap, 5 years, India
Funmi, 8 years, Nigeria
Salazar, 5 years, Philippines
Free cleft surgery which takes as little as 45 minutes and costs as little as $250, can give desperate children not just a new smile – but a new life.
“...one of the most productive charities—dollar for deed—in the world.”
New York Times
Donate online: www.smiletrain.org or call: 1-800-932-9541
A Healthy Diet During Pregnancy Can Help Prevent Birth Defects And Clefts. According to the U.S. Government, women should take sufficient levels of folic acid (400 micrograms/day) during pregnancy to help prevent neural tube defects and reduce the risk for cleft lip and palate. When folic acid is taken one month before conception and throughout the first trimester, it has been proven to reduce the risk for neural tube defects by 50 to 70 per cent. Be sure to receive proper prenatal care, quit smoking and drinking alcohol and follow your health care provider’s guidelines for foods to avoid during pregnancy. For more information, visit www.SmileTrain.org. The Smile Train is a 501 (c)(3) nonprofit recognized by the IRS, and all donations to The Smile Train are tax-deductible in accordance with IRS regulations. © 2010 The Smile Train.
A new Way To give
CATALog For gIVIng
Life for a young nonprofit is tough. Coupled with the perennial issues of staffing and publicity, the fledging organization also faces what is likely the most trying challenge of all: securing funding. A start-up nonprofit not only has to inform the world that it exists, but also convince donors to commit to its cause. And none of that is easy. As executive director of New York City–based nonprofit the Catalog for Giving, Mike Capobianco knows these kinds of things firsthand. Appointed to the helm of the Catalog in March, Capobianco oversees an organization with a particularly unique fusion of the precepts of philanthropy and the challenges of the start-up company. Founded in 1995 by Sally Berg and Barbara Konman, the Catalog for Giving seeks to fill the void of what Capobiano calls a gap in funding and support for young, youthservice–oriented organizations. In a philanthropy world dominated by large organizations (“the big boys,” Capobiano calls them) new organizations often have a hard time getting started. “A lot of funders won’t touch young organizations because they don’t trust that they will stick around,” Capobianco said. “They don’t know enough about them. We help give them a seal of approval.” Every three years, after an exhaustive application process, the Catalog for Giving selects 10 New York City organizations that offer
services to youth. These select few are supported for three years, during which they are offered unrestricted funding and consultation. So far the project has been successful: Of the 42 organizations the Catalog has supported, 100 percent of them are still operating. “The easiest way to remember us is ‘Support, Grow, and Transform,’” Capobiano said. “We support organizations, enable them to grow and help them transform more lives.”
This approach, Capobiano said, is a bit unconventional. Offering funding within a range, the Catalog for Giving eschews the more traditional endowment system, where foundations are guaranteed a certain amount each year. This makes the foundation more flexible, but also more vulnerable. “Our foundation is influenced by economies more than an endowed foundation is,” Capobiano said. “We are more susceptible to sways in giving. We really, really feel it.” Capobiano cited the last few years—particularly 2009—as a troublesome time for the foundation and its member organizations. Many
By RicaRdo Bilton
You’ve shopped for shoes, jackets, and furniture via catalog—why not a charity?
of the Catalog’s larger donors work in commercial real estate, an industry greatly affected by the financial downturn. Once the economy began to slide, so did donations from that sector. Even the Catalog’s board of directors, who pay the entirety of the foundation’s operating expenses, hit hard times. Its member organizations faced similar problems. Kids Creative, added to the Catalog in 2008, hit a rough patch in late 2009 after a series of expansions during which it doubled in size. The program, founded in 2007, partners with New York City schools to provide art-focused afterschool programs. Their expansion, seemingly fortuitous at the time, came right before what executive director Mark Jacobs calls a “perfect storm” of funding concerns. Coupled with the already dire drop in private funding, funding from New York state also dipped, and what funding wasn’t cut was delayed. “That was a big challenge for us,” Jacobs said. “Definitely what I would call a trying time.” But not all of the Catalog’s member organizations hit hard times during the recession. Row New York, a Queensbased program established in 2002 and added to the catalog in 2008, is a rare example of an organization that flourished over the past few years. “We actually did O.K. throughout all of this,” said executive director Amanda Kraus. “We actually doubled the size of our staff in the last year and a half. We increased programs, launched new programs—if anything, we actually thrived.” Row New York’s programming offers New York City girls both the opportunity to learn competitive rowing as well as academic support. Each and every girl who has been involved in the program has gone to college—a number that no doubt adds to Row New York’s allure for donors. But Kraus attributes Row New York’s financial success to something much more simple—diversification. “We definitely have very diverse funding sources,” Kraus said. “We never relied on just one or two big grants, or one or two individuals.” This approach gives Row New York greater flexibility, a major benefit
in harsh economic times. Capobiano agreed. “Our successful organizations found new dollars and new ways to bring money in. That’s what you have to do as an organization in tough times. You have to adapt.” That lesson isn’t lost on Jacobs, who agrees that diversifying funding sources is the key to any nonprofit organization’s success. But fund-raising is a distinct art, more complicated than just filling out grant applications. “I think a tendency for a lot of especially new nonprofits, but also established ones as well, is to chase after funds that don’t make sense,” he said. “And that can be very dangerous.” Luckily for the members of the Catalog for Giving, they never have to approach questions of funding alone. One of the Catalog’s greatest benefits for member organizations are the Catalog’s other member organizations. “Its kind of nice to know nine other executive directors in the same boat that you can go to that are in the same positions,” Jacobs said. “All of us deal with any number of given things on a daily basis that there is enough expertise there. It’s a great resource.” But that sort of cohesion isn’t just beneficial to the member organizations. It’s a boon for donors
as well. “The beauty of it is that if I’m a busy professional and I’m interested in young organizations but I have no idea where to donate, this is amazing,” Capobianco said. A part of the Catalog for Giving’s allure is that ease of access to information. The search for a charity to donate to can be like shopping via catalog—except in this case, instead of buying, readers are giving. “You shop our catalog,” Capobianco said. “You can literally go to our site and it opens up
to a catalog and you can just choose an organization. You can look through them all and say what the money goes towards.” And if there was any question what exactly that money goes toward, Capobianco answers it: “After 3 o’clock, when a child leaves a school, they can go to the left or they can go to the right. To the left is trouble, to the right is something good. We offer that right turn.” Find out more at catalogforgiving.org.
Reserve Space Now
Reserve Space Now
For the March 23rd, 2011 and October 12th, 2011 issues of
For the November 10th, 2010, January 12th, 2011 and April 13th, 2011 issues of
THE EDUCATED OBSERvER
For advertising information contact: Barbara Ginsburg Shapiro Managing Director 212-407-9383 email@example.com Daniel D’Andrea, Account Executive 212-407-9329 firstname.lastname@example.org
For advertising information contact: Barbara Ginsburg Shapiro Managing Director 212-407-9383 email@example.com Daniel D’Andrea, Account Executive 212-407-9329 firstname.lastname@example.org
The next generation of givers
Author and activist Courtney Martin introduces a new breed of philanthropists in her book, Do It Anyway.
Courtney E. Martin is the author of Do It Anyway, released last month from Beacon Press. Do It Anyway paints the portraits of eight young people from a new generation of social change agents. Tyrone Boucher is a trustafarian turned radical philanthropist. Nia Martin-Robinson reinterprets her parents’ struggle for racial equality in environmental activism. Raul Diaz dodged gang recruitment for all of his Los Angeles childhood only to later help his neighborhood’s terrorizers re-enter society after incarceration. Martin examines the motivations, doubts and frustrations of these new do-gooders, as well as the unreported and profound ways they improve their worlds. Martin is the author of Perfect Girls, Starving Daughters, and an editor of Feministing.com and a senior correspondent for the American Prospect. She also founded the Secret Society for Creative Philanthropy, a giving project in New York, San Francisco, and Athens, GA. Observer Philanthropy: Your book is called Do It Anyway, but it could have just as easily been called Do It Yourself. You profile an independent filmmaker, the founder of the Service Women’s Action Network, and a trans punk turned food co-op organizer, among others. Why did you choose to profile activists who are entrepreneurial? It’s often said, but I think it’s true: As writers, we write the books we need to read. In 2004, I was feeling disillusioned on a personal level. I was asking myself, what can I do tomorrow when I wake up to be a good person? It was a constant feeling. As soon as you pick what breakfast food you’re going to eat, you’re linked to system of consumerism that exploits people. I was overwhelmed by making individual choices. I tend to see the world through a psychological lens. I’m less interested or less equipped to do systemic analysis as I am at really getting in depth with individual people, and the psychology that informs their choices, and I think that contributed to the decision to write about individuals as opposed to organizations or movements. To what extent do you think your generation was born into this disillusionment, because we saw previous generations’ activism fail? My dad facetiously says, “We wanted to save the world but then we got rich,”--we actually just got middle class in Colorado Springs-but he does feels that way. In many of our parents’ generation their progressive values are very active and very dear to their hearts. Yet in many ways they sold out. The forces in society make it such that it’s really hard not to sell out. But I think our generation is watching that happen, and knows that if we approach social change with less naive idealism, we could sustain some of the forces of our activism, instead of buying our Prius and only living values through consumer choice. One thing that’s interesting about the activists you profile is their self-regard. Their work is motivated either by a desire to protect others from the hardships they endured, or by a need to understand their own privilege. How do individualist activists reconcile their self-interest and their altruism? I used to think self-interest and altruism were contradictory, but one of the big lessons of writing the book was that self-interest is a really good way to sustain good works. We grew up with this idea that doing good works means self-sacrifice in the name of others who are less privileged. And that creates a dangerous, martyred mentality. Even for Tyrone Boucher, the radical philanthropist profiled. When he gave away his trust fund it was self-interested, because it allowed him to bring his daily life and deepest beliefs into alignment. When our values and behaviors don’t line up it’s bad for us on a personal level. To say that all good work isn’t selfinterested is disingenuous and unsustainable. After following seven non-traditional paths, did you come to the conclusion that conventional charities and big nonprofit foundations aren’t the best way to do good? Certainly the landscape of philanthropy needs a major overhaul. Even folks who are pretty OK with the way things are in traditional philanthropy feel like it’s hard to have genuine relationships with people who benefit from their money. Traditional philanthropic arrangements take our already screwed-up social interactions around class to freakish levels. I’m not expert enough to suggest how to update philanthropy, but I know for Tyrone, social justice philanthropy is a solution. Donors are much more humble in their giving and invested in finding community-based solutions, because they too are rooted in the community. I think it’s connected to another theme of the book, the oldest wisdom in the world: All of life is about relationships. And young people in activism and philanthropy, we’re all just really struggling to figure out how to create genuine relationships between people of vastly different classes. If philanthropy and activism have become more individualized, how do we foster it? How do we encourage young people to find their own way of doing good? By closing the gap between what you believe and how you act. It sounds simple, but we’ve essentially made it socially acceptable to be a hypocrite. We have this assumed socially correct idea that you can believe--that everyone on earth deserves basic human rights--but then you can behave in a way that does nothing to help the people who don’t have them, or you contribute in this symbolic way. For me the important question is, how do we socialize kids to believe that their values--how they live and how they spend their money--matters? We need a nation of kids less capable of acting in ways that contradict their values. How did the Secret Society for Creative Philanthropy get started? For my first book I got a contract and I got this 6-figure advance. I had basically decided I was going to be like all my artistic friends and I was OK with not having any money as long as I got to write. And then suddenly I had all this money, and I tried to initiate conversations about it: “How do you give away money? How do you decide who to give it to?” I consistently heard, “Don’t get too deep into giving it away. You’re young. You need security.” And I wondered, what is security? How important is my security relative to the security of those around me? I could say I need to put this away to buy my own house, but there are people right now
who don’t even have a roof over their head. What’s my relationship to them? I ended up giving $1,000 to ten friends, $100 each, and asked them to give it away however they thought would be best. Then I made them all meet me at a bar to discuss how they made their decisions and how they felt about it. It ended up being a kind of reverse pyramid scheme; some of my friends then gave $100 to ten more friends to give away. We’ve repeated the project for five years and counting, and there are chapters starting up all over the country, and interest all over the world. In your book you cite September 11th as a collective, formative moment for our generation’s activism. Do you think it had to do with shattering the concept of security for us? Personally, I was a senior in college when September 11th happened, and I had a real sense of invincibility, a real untested optimism about the US and our values and the opportunities we give people. For anyone who was at that coming of age at that moment it made things more complex. It was a really violent and profound reality-check. It said to me, the world is a very complex place, a very dangerous place, and every social and political issue and a thousand different issues have to be taken into consideration. I think for those of us who are pretty thoughtful among our generation, we’ve inherited a world that is a hard place to act and a hard place to do good, and a new sober complexity. You said you wrote the book you needed to read. Did you need models of how to do good in the newly complex, sober world? I needed new models of how to evaluate if one is doing good. It almost is a mental health issue in many ways. I had some outsized expectations about what the kind of labor involved in doing good was going to be like. It was by going to these peers and watching them and listening to them that I was able to see the ways in which we define good. And in many ways, it was humbling. They don’t wake up and say, “I’m going to dismantle the prison-industrial complex.” They wake up and say, “I’m going to sit down with that kid and look and him in the eye and figure out how to help him make transition out of juvenile hall.” They make the life of each person they do have the opportunity to encounter a little more tolerable a little more just. I think you really have to operate on two levels. On one you really are cognizant of globalization and the disparities of economics and how that breeds violence. On the other, you’re really rooting your own self-esteem and decision-making in these small, humble, but no less important ways of doing good. You can keep that really big picture in mind but sustain your own commitment by being in your community and having fun and trying to live your values. Find out more about Courtney Martin and her work at courtneyemartin.com.
By Kat StoeFFel 26
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Celebrating 100 Years . . . Hear for the Future!
The Center for Hearing and Communication is proud to be New York’s leader in hearing health care for 100 years.
Celebrate with Us!
Don’t miss our Centennial Gala, October 18, 2010 at 583 PARK AVENUE. Be part of an unforgettable evening of exquisite dining, world-class entertainment, live auction and more. For information: Phone (917) 305-7804 or visit CHChearing.org.
50 Broadway New York, NY 10004 For an appointment Phone: (917) 305-7766 or Email: appointment@CHChearing.org
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