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Givingcity Austin Issue 3
 

Givingcity Austin Issue 3

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    Givingcity Austin Issue 3 Givingcity Austin Issue 3 Presentation Transcript

    • GivingCity N ew THE GUIDE TO DOING GOOD IN AUSTIN ISSUE 3 The PHILANTHROPISTS 01 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 46 47 GC BLOG
    • open for editor’s letter business 5 Ways GivingCity Can Help 1. New to philanthropy? If you’ve ever 4. Are you an advertiser whom our wanted to volunteer or make a readers might find interesting? donation, but don’t know how, we Because our readers are looking for invite you to browse the magazine and ways to support the community, blog for ideas and inspiration. advertising in GivingCity is a great 2. Already active? We can help you do it opportunity to put your message better - be a better volunteer, a more in front of a tuned-in audience. informed donor, an more effective Nonprofits and for-profits should board member, and a more inspired consider the value of placing your leader. We attend events, seminars, message among our content. lunches, and panel discussions across 5. Looking for ways to enlist more all nonprofit subsectors to bring you donors and volunteers? If you’re trying the most useful content and important to build and maintain relationships stories. with clients, donors, volunteers, and 3. Are you a nonprofit professional? supporters, passing on the link to We’re out there crossing subsectors and content from GivingCity can and listening to the innovative means save resources and still allow you to nonprofits are using to accomplish offer stories that inspire action. Let their mission. Intercommunication me know how our content might be among nonprofits is critical these days useful to you. if you’re going to serve your growing Our goal is to be of use to the community. client lists, and we hope GivingCity Please let me know how we can help. helps inspire new initiatives and collaborations. 01 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 46 47 GC BLOG
    • ABOUT US Editor Art dirEctor Monica M. Williams Torquil Dewar coNtriBUtorS PhotogrAPhErS Christine Cox Gregg Cestaro Katie Ford Owen Laracuente Tiffany Hamburger Joel Salcido Armando Rayo Tom Spencer AdvErtiSE iN thE ABoUt thE MAgAZiNE MAgAZiNE GivingCity Austin offers content you Tired of fighting for attention among won’t find anywhere else, in a modern ads for breast enhancement and luxury format that’s easy to use. Inside you’ll condos? Put your business in the best find information that will help you ... light by placing an ad in our next issue. Find your cause Our readers are engaged young Step up your community service professionls and community leaders Become a community leader who care about Austin’s success. Check Collaborate effort our media kit for rates and specs. Maximize impact No part of this may be reproduced without the permission of GivingCity and October Custom Publishing. For information about reprints, photos, and other permissions, contact info@octobercustompublishing.com. october custom publishing 01 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 46 47 GC BLOG
    • SOCIAL ENTERPRISE: The New Laurie, the Realtor Philanthropists Clients can’t believe she’s giving away WHAT GIVING THE MAGAZINE Meet 20+ of Austin’s new WHY GIVE NOW part of her commis- LOOKS LIKE philanthropists who weave community service and sion - in their name. VIDEO professional ambition into a new kind of social Leaders in Training responsibility. Tom Spencer on Do cool people make Austin Under 40 how philanthropy is Leadership Austin Photos from the Too Many a wholly American idea. or does Leadership Austin make cool shiny event. Nonprofits? people? First Person Redundant efforts dilute Katie Ford meets - impact and reduce non- Teach a Child to Give but does not judge - profits to crumb-grubbing A new program incarcerated moms. competitors ... right? Here’s weaves philanthropy GIVE BETTER into the curriculum the data and a few ideas about what to do next. to heartbreaking effect. Unscripted The Secret to GRASSROOTS Collaboration Blondes vs. Brunettes Happiness Is Andrew Shapter’s Behind the scenes with the An all-girls flag new film offers an We Are One crowd. Here’s football game aims answer. PLUS Turk how nonprofiteers stretch to raise $25k for Pipkin’s new film AND DJ Stout your donation dollar. Alzheimer’s. the world’s first non- Bucking HQ VIDEO profit film fest, now to turn a design The Story Behind taking entries. excercise into the Stuff VIDEO something more Why your donations meaningful. make Central Texas Be the Change 2.0 Goodwill one of the Mando Rayo Clic biggest in country. suggests you use for ak here Non list of PLUS What’s with all social media’s super- in th profits is iss ue the new bins? powers for good. 01 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 46 47 GC BLOG
    • WHY GIVE NOW OuR ROOTS ARe IN GIvING Tom Spencer on our long In the early days of the American Republic a young French- man wandered across our nation reporting on the habits of England, in the United States you will be sure to find an association.” history of charity and why it these new people – the “Americans.” His name was Alexis de Tocqueville, and the book that he was writing, Democracy in Today, more often than not, we call these associations “nonprofits,” and persists and grows in Austin. America, is considered to be the first great work of sociology. Austin may very well be at the epi- One of the things that caught his attention was the curious center of nonprofit entrepreneur- habit of Americans to form civic and charitable associations ism. Indeed, some are dismayed by PHOTOS bY GReGG CeSTARO whenever some need arose in the community-at-large. To his the dizzying array of nonprofits that European eyes, this seemed like a new phenomenon, and he exist in our city and the competition noted that, “Whenever, at the head of some new undertak- for resources that results from having ing, you see the government in France, or a man of rank in so many worthy causes. However, I 01 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 46 47 GC BLOG
    • WHY GIVE NOW take a different view. I see our diverse nonprofit my career path as being guided by that we remain true to that unique community as an expression of a good will and “service” or “sacrifice,” I have always spirit first identified by that young creativity that we should be intensely proud of. thought of myself as being one of Frenchman, Tocqueville. Now, more However, without deepening and widening our the luckiest guys in town. Whether than ever, is the time for us to lift one culture of philanthropy, much of that good will through my long association with another up through our actions and may go unrealized. KLRU-TV, Austin’s PBS affiliate, or our contributions. In the Europe that “Philanthropy” literally means “the love of today as the CEO of the Austin Area Tocqueville had left behind, change mankind.” Coming from a gardening back- Interreligious Ministries (AAIM) every came from above – from great men ground, I think of philanthropy as a love that cul- day has seemed like a gift. and kings. Here in the United States, tivates and grows. And, this is a self-interested My favorite memory of the past perhaps more than in any culture the love – not some purely do-good activity. While year has been the time I spent with world has ever seen, we depend on I may nurture and care for my garden, I am also the individuals AAIM has helped one another and our “enlightened rewarded by the gifts I receive in return. The glo- through our Hands on Housing self-love” to grow the change that rious burst of color and energy in the spring and program. Hands on Housing uses the world so desperately needs. GC the harvest of autumn keep me going through volunteers to repair the homes of the dreaded heat of August. senior citizens and disabled folks MAKING HOMES SAFE living in poverty in East Austin. Celebrate Refugee Day wHeN SOmeONe SO PROfOuNdLY Hands on Housing is the largest volunteer home Many of our elderly clients had been Last year almost 800 refugees made THANkfuL HAS embRACed YOu, repair effort in Austin, mobilizing more than 1,000 volunteers to repair and upgrade 25 to 35 homes ready to give up their homes – they Austin their home, settling from YOuR LIfe wILL CHANGe fOReveR. and bring them up to suitable living standards. hardly had money to purchase food, countries like Afghanistan, Congo, Many of the program’s clients - typically over 70 much less repair their leaking roofs Iraq, Rwanda, Uzbekistan. AAIM Tocqueville recognized this self interest saying, years old living on less than $10,000 per year - or rotten floors. They greet all of our and other Austin nonprofits help have been asked to leave their homes due to realty “American moralists do not claim that one must pressure or unsafe conditions. Hands on Housing volunteers with genuine tears of joy them acclimate to their new home. sacrifice oneself for one’s fellows because it is helps them remain in their homes safely and with and gratitude; they tell us that our Bring the family and welcome them, dignity. a fine thing to do but they are bold enough to efforts are, quite literally, the answers Austin style, at this event featuring say that such sacrifices are as necessary to the To volunteer or donate to the effort, email Kathy to their prayers. world music, a world fashion show, Weiner of AAIM. man who makes them as to those gaining from When someone so profoundly and more. them. . . Enlightened self-love continually leads TOM SPENCER is the CEO of Austin Area thankful has embraced you, your life Interreligious Ministries. He has had a long-time SATuRdAY, JuNe 20, 1-5 Pm them to help one another and inclines them to professional association with KLRU-TV and is will change forever; you know that bOb buLLOCk devote freely a part of their time and wealth to the host of the station’s Central Texas Gardener you are the one receiving the gift. STATe HISTORY muSeum program. feATuRING SARA HICkmAN the welfare of the state.” In these tough economic times, LeARN mORe AbOuT AAIm I have worked in the nonprofit world for my with our nation feeling vulnerable CLICk HeRe fOR mORe INfO entire career and while some may describe and fearful, it is especially important 01 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 46 47 GC BLOG
    • GIVE BETTER bLONdeS vS. bRuNeTTeS One game, 100 girls, $25,000 for charity. c hicks playing football is pretty tough. event chairs who also leads the outreach effort. “But not all the girls Chicks playing football for charity have played football before. I think they’re signing up for a lot of is epic. Now picture two teams of reasons – some for the cause and some for the socialization aspect 50 young women – one team of blondes, – but I know that almost everyone involved has known someone another of brunettes – running plays, who has been touched by Alzheimer’s.” blocking tackles, and throwing passes for Recruits join after hearing being invited to happy hours at The a full four-quarter, flag-football game, Ranch or via social media. “When they hear about the game, trying to raise $50,000 for charity in they want to get involved,” says Allen. To be a part the process, then getting dolled of either the blonde or brunette team, each up for the after-party. That will “WHEN THEY player and coach commits to contributing be the scene on May 16 at HEAR ABOUT $250, which they can raise by selling tickets Austin High School for Austin’s or sponsorships. Other sponsors can THE GAME, THEY MORE INFO first Blondes vs. Brunettes flag contribute cash or in-kind donations. The football game, benefitting the WANT TO GET typical fundraising goal for a Blondes vs Blonde vs. Brunettes Alzheimer’s Association Capital INVOLVED” Brunettes event is $25,000, but Allen has put Women’s Flag Football Fundraiser for Alzheimer’s Association PHOTO bY COOkIe PHILLIPS fOR THe ALzHeImeR’S ASSOCIATION Saturday, May 16, 2 pm of Texas Chapter. the Austin goal at $50,000. Why not? So far, each Austin High School The game originated three years side has almost 50 girls signed up; yes, they realize Tickets to the game are $20 ago in Washington, D.C. with two sisters there are only 11 people from each team on the field at a time. TO PLAy: Players must commit to raising who had lost their father to the Alzheimer’s. “There’s a segment of the girls who have signed up but have no $250 and sign a release form. Since then, Houston and Dallas have held interest in actually playing,” says Allen, who actually played flag TO dONATE: Sponsors are welcome to games, and this year Austin will hold its first football in college. “Most of the girls have no idea how to run a donate to an individual player, coach, or to the event in general. powderpuff-for-charity event. route, how to execute different kinds of coverage. But a lot of them “This is a real, full-length flag football are athletic or at least interested in the cause, and if they’re willing CLICk HeRe FOR MORE INFO game,” says Lyssa Myska Allen, one of the to raise $250, we’re happy to call them a player.” GC 01 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 46 47 GC BLOG
    • THe STORY Noticed those mystery bins around town...? beHINd GIVE BETTER Goodwill Industries of Central Texas is one of the largest Goodwill’s in the world, and there’s a reason for that, says Davis. “Austin donors are some of the most generous in the THe STuff country.” But recent donations to Goodwill are down 11 percent. Unfortunately, this drop hits at a time when demand for Goodwill’s services is up 57 percent. Are Austinites donating less stuff this year? Maybe. But Get to know Goodwill. there might be another factor – those donation bins in parking lots around the city. Unfortunately, the stuff you put in some bins around the city is not necessarily going to the charities listed on the bins. F or the past 14 years, Central Texas Goodwill has put people to A number of bins are placed by for-profit resellers who have work ... but it’s not just the people who work in the stores. entered into agreements with charities to share a small per- “It’s important for people to understand what we centage of sales in exchange for allowing them to use their contribute to the community,” says Gerald Davis, “WE’RE ABOUT name on the bin. Some of the resellers aren’t even located in Texas. president of the Central Texas Goodwill, “and what we do is make people self-suficient.” TRYING TO AFFEcT It’s a practice for which there is a current bill in the Texas Take Latisha Fisher, a young mother who didn’t have a driver’s license, worked nights, and had a second child SOcIAL cHANGE, Senate. If the bill passes, it would require disclosure of such agreements to be written on the bin and it would on the way. And Willie Johnson who, after 20 years of AND WE DO THAT impose a fine of up to $2,000 for each violation. working in the tech industry, found himself homeless, struggling with mental health and substance abuse issues. BY HELpING pEOpLE “This is part of the problem,” says Davis. “Austin’s great because rather than throw out their stuff, they look to And James Fowler who lost his job and then had trouble WITH BARRIERS TO donate it. But it has to be convenient. So in trying to fulfill our mission, we’re also trying to fight these bins.” finding another employer who could accept his disabilities. Thanks to Goodwill, Fisher is now a heath specialist at a short- EMpLOYMENT.” The lesson is the same as with all donations to nonprofits: term psychiatric facility, Johnson a custodian, and Fowler a busser Make sure you know how your donation is being used. at Luby’s. 15 GOODWILL 10,000+ 885 pEOpLE 35TH LARGEST 21 AUSTIN 18 AUSTIN GOODWILL IN 2007 SERVIcE AREAS pEOpLE SERVED pLAcED IN jOBS EMpLOYER IN RETAIL STORES DONATION IN TExAS cENTRAL TExAS cENTERS 01 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 46 47 GC BLOG
    • AUStiN GIVE BETTER givES StUFF! cONSISTENTLY AMONG MOST GENEROUS cITIES TOp 10 IT’S qUALITY STUFF, TO – “AND O!” DAVIS. ON AVERAGE, ALMSAYS Depending on each person’s EVERY pERSON IN AUSTIOST situation, Goodwill’s case DONATES TO GOODWI N LL LEAST ONcE A YEAR AT workers collaborate with area nonprofits, agencies, and employers to put their clients on the right paths. First, case doNAtioNS: 2009 dowN BY 11% workers help them resolve some of their survival challenges like dEMANd: 2009 UP BY 57% food, shelter, transportation, or child care. Next a case worker starts the client on training doNAtioNS: 2008 for job placement; things like dEMANd: 2008 interviewing, resume writing, and soft skills like how to deal with coworkers. A client may need Goodwill’s services for a couple of months or a couple of years to gain that foothold. AUStiN, wE NEEd MorE StUFF! “At any given time, we’re working with about 200 MOVING INVENTORY, MAKING cHANGE employers,” says Davis. “Where your donations of stuff in 2007 to Goodwill helped we place them depends on put more than 10,000 people to work, some of whom what the client wants.” Only were first-time taxpayers. But how does Goodwill turn your clothes, vases, and furniture into jobs? a small percentage of clients When you drop off your bags of stuff, workers wind up working at the stores. inside the stores hustle to get the merchandise out on the floor to be sold, usually, within 24 hours of Right now there is no waiting being donated. Goodwill takes the money from those list for clients, a statement sales to pay case managers, trainers, and other services that get people jobs. Davis is proud to make. But with “It’s a system that’s worked for more than 100 donations to Goodwill stores years,” says Gerald davis, president of the Central Texas Goodwill. “The best we can do in our stories is down 11 percent, the prospect offer good customer service.” of a waiting list lingers. Not that There at 18 donations centers across Austin. Davis is worried: “I love that we CLICK HERE to find a drop-off center near you. have something to offer.” GC 01 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 46 47 GC BLOG
    • GIVE BETTER Don’t walk away. here’s why Laurie Loew is different. “HI, I’M by christine cox Let’s face it: Realtors can be kind business plan that includes giving 25 percent of LAURIE. I’M of creepy. There’s just something her income away? angrifying about seeing a realtor Loew’s different. As the ninth of 10 children, walk away with thousands of Loew lived 11 other people in an 1,800 square- dollars in commission when it foot home, which made her acutely aware how feels like you could have done all possible it is to live modestly, and happily. “I’m A REALTOR” that work yourself. from a big Catholic family, and my parents were So what if the realtor told you not wealthy, although most of my friends were.” that she would give 25 percent of She jokes that perhaps it’s the Catholic guilt her commission to the charity of she was spoon-fed that has brought her to a your choice, in your name? You get place of extraordinary, some might say unusual to write the check. You get to take circumstances. the tax deduction. Loew grew up working in her family’s bakery “This is a win-win situation for after school. “I learned early what it meant to everyone involved,” says Laurie Loew, work long hours to get ahead. It’s paid off in the founder of Give Realty. “The client real estate business to understand that concept,” gets to see his hard-earned money she says. From there she joined her brother’s go to his favorite nonprofit, the medical supply business, which is what brought beneficiary gets funding, and my her to Austin, where she met her husband. But, company is fulfilling a calling to do when the Austin office for her brother’s business something greater with our profits.” closed down, she found herself looking for a job Sounds suspicious, doesn’t it? for the first time outside of my family. What kind of entrepreneur writes a Eventually she landed an entry-level job at a 01 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 46 47 GC BLOG
    • GIVE BETTER “I FELT FORTUNATE TO BE semi-conductor company. While she quickly moved up, the division began closing its local offices. “I didn’t ‘have’ to keep working. My DIVVYING THINGS UP, RATHER THAN SHARING DEBT” Trying to Give it Away husband was in the oil industry, so we lived a very comfortable life. Still, I had the urge to work. It’s what I knew.” On a tip she chose to pursue a real estate Loew motivated. “I kept my idea to license, and at one point she had the highest myself for a long time, really only referral rate in the company. But it was her idea The buzzword in business these days is “social entrepreneur,” sharing it with only a few close friends,” but try to define it. Is it an entrepreneur who gives part of all for a realty company that gives back that kept she says. Still the time wasn’t right to of their profit away? Or an entrepreneur whose only profit is see it through. +$12,000 DONATIONS TO DATE impacting society for good? Should you or could you profit Then she and her husband divorced, from making social change? Loew, a social entrepreneur and Loew was struck with an epiphany. Give reaLty since 2008, Give realty clients have donated more “I felt so fortunate to be divvying poster child, tries to figure it out. than $12,000 to local charities, including - mobile Loaves and Fishes things up, rather than sharing debt.” “I think social entrepreneurs feel they be some of your biggest promoters in a - texas assn of chicanos in Higher education She began volunteering more, need to do more for the community and lot of ways. Their audience is the kind of - Down syndrome assn of central texas - church of Glad tidings Hispanic ministries realizing even more poignantly that be more involved and helpful, and we’re people you’d want to be your clients. - Hill country conservancy she was among the fortunate few. trying to figure out ways to do that. But “I understand why nonprofits can’t Go to Give reaLty For more inFo Finally deciding the timing would it’s much harder for a small business promote any particular small business. never be right, Loew turned her idea - the price of admission to get on the That’s why I’m a part of several groups for a charitable realty company into nonprofit radar is way too high. - from Bootstrap Austin to I Live Here, a reality. “Big companies can write the big I Give Here, the Austin Chamber, and That’s when she opened Give Realty, checks that get attention. But the others. We’re looking for ways for small Inc. “I had a need to build loyalty local coffee shop is just struggling to businesses who want to have a social among my clients in a different, stay afloat. And it’s very hard for small impact to work together to make the more creative way that actually businesses to feel like they can have an whole thing easier. Maybe that’s what PLAY contributes positively to something impact when the dollar amounts they it will take - someone forming a larger besides a shoe closet.” And a 25 can give are very small. group that can make the case for social percent reduction in her income is “I guess you would hope the nonprofit enterprise. But it’s got to be genuine and just enough to matter. “I might not community would encourage small it’s got to be easy. I’m a small business have missed only 10 percent or even businesses - the ones that give back - owner. I’m very busy!” 15. But 25 percent - that can hurt,” and support what we’re doing. They can Learn more about sociaL enterprise. she laughs. GC 01 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 46 47 GC BLOG
    • give better MANDO RAYO BE THE CHANGE 2.O D o you use social media for good? Have you As a volunteer, board member, invited your Facebook friends to a worthy or advocate, you have the power cause? Have you re-Tweeted a donation to persuade your friends and request or a call for volunteers? followers to support a cause. If you haven’t and you think this social media And it’s very simple to do. For craze is just that – a craze – think again. Do- every Facebook wall post about gooders, change agents, and anyone out there your volunteer work over the with ganas are using social media, not only to weekend, for every Tweet that engage their expanding networks in their causes mentions a fundraiser, you’re but to create real change in their communities. making community service Think of social media as an engagement channel; part of the conversation. consider it a platform to reach out to a new audi- But you don’t have to take my ence, cultivate relationships, stimulate conversa- word for it; search any nonprofit tions, create advocates, and connect with people these days and you’ll notice a in new and innovative ways. These new and often link to their FB page or an invita- free engagement tools (blogs, Facebook, Twitter, tion to follow them on Twitter. YouTube, Linkedin, Ning, and yes, even MySpace) You’ll see all kinds of people allow people to make meaningful, personal con- doing good with social media nection with each other, with causes they care from stay-at-home moms to about, with their favorite nonprofits, and with young professionals and sea- even with their elected officials. (Local, state, and soned board members. federal politicians make good use of Twitter to get Social media works ... when their messages out to voters – even several Austin you learn how to make it work mayoral candidates.) for you. GC 01 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 46 47 GC BLOG
    • GIVE BETTER THe SeCReT TO HAPPINeSS IS... A new film asks one of mankind’s most profound questions – and gets the answer. by monica m. williams A fter Andrew Shapter finished Others didn’t know what to say.” the film, “Before the Music Shapter didn’t have the answers either, but Dies,” a critical look at the an introduction to Alan Graham, he says, “trig- popular music industry, he wondered gered a dramatic twist that would lead to a de- aloud about the focus of his next finitive ending” for the film. project. “Before the Music Dies” had Graham is a founding member and president taught him everything there was to of Mobile Loaves & Fishes, an Austin-based non- know about the music industry, he profit that takes meals out to the homeless and says, “So I told people my next film had working poor. On that particular trip, Graham to be about happiness. It was kind of took him on a lunchtime truck run to the down- a joke at first.” town library. “It was a real cold, wet, miserable But the idea took on its own life, day, I remember,” says Graham. “Usually the and soon Shapter found himself once homeless move in there to stay warm and dry. again traveling to the far corners of They shot all the footage of us in that single PHOTOS COuRTeSY ANdRew SHAPTeR the country to talk - to anyone who truck run. I think (Shapter) got a lot out of it.” was willing - about happiness. In the video clip, Shapter shows Graham and “I’d just walk up to them and ask volunteers making plans in the food pantry them what their ‘pursuit of happiness’ area, loading the truck, driving to the Austin is. Some people knew right away. downtown library, and handing out food to 01 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 46 47 GC BLOG
    • GIVE BETTER Shapter on homeless men. Graham talks about his journey – how he was a successful real estate broker who Happy, Texas started asking the tough questions in life and “I was shocked to see the the small found himself investing everything he had to towns deteriorating. We have these create MLF. The nonprofit is now in four states and mass migrations to the big cities – like enlists 12 catering trucks and almost 10,000 vol- Houston, Miami, and Phoenix – because unteers a year. people are leaving these tight-knit com- It can be said that Graham is not exactly an ordi- munities where everybody knows your nary person. “If there were a Fortune 500 for the name. And it’s sad. world’s happiest people,” he says, “I’d be “There was this woman in Happy, at the top of that list.” His decision Texas, whose husband died, and that to relinquish his wealth in favor of caused the whole town to come to- service to the homeless is what gether and take care of her, support led to that happiness, he her through that time. But then that says. “I run into people all the time that say, ‘I “THE pEOpLE widow moved to Dallas and joined a support group for widows; there she wish I could do what you did,’” says Graham. WHO ARE HAppY met another widow who lived in Dallas when her husband died but said none “When people witness someone like me who IN THIS FILM ALL of her neighbors even knew her. That broke her heart. has made such a radical HAVE THEIR OWN “You know, our country is a nation of cAUSES” change in their life – and immigrants; we are people that believe now happiness is such an success and wealth lie somewhere else. intrinsic part of my life – that So it’s in our DNA. It’s why young people impresses people.” move away from home. What Shapter found, after inter- “What’s remarkable is that new im- viewing dozens of people from children to ac- sake of the extreme poor of that city. Kids, a nonprofit that helps homeless migrants are the ones re-making these complished and wealthy businessmen, was proof “People need to find their own Calcutta. kids in Central Texas obtain the resources small communities and keeping them that achievement, wealth, and fame don’t lead to The people who are happy in this film they need to succeed in school. (In Austin, alive. I think young people will continue happiness. Giving to and supporting a cause you all have their own causes,” says Shapter. more than 4,000 students pre-K through to move away and take that journey, believe in, he says, does. “The message is that you need to find high school are homeless.) “When I saw but what’s going to happen is that they He refers to a statement made by Mother Teresa, your own cause, and give.” the reaction from people after the initial will always get called back.” sainted for sacrificing her own well being for the For Shapter that cause is Capital City screenings, I thought maybe people were 01 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 46 47 GC BLOG
    • GIVE BETTER being touched by the film. So I made a request at PIPkIN fILmS fOR CHANGe Nonprofit the end of one screening here in Austin for do- nations to Cap City Kids, thinking I’d raise about $1,000. Turns out we raised more than $10,000 that night.” No one has all the answers, Videos That same night, a person affiliated with the Obama campaign was in the audience, and is but Turk Pipkin’s new film proposes a few. Wanted Pipkin is the entrepreneur- Could this be the now working with Shapter and C3 (producers of world’s first film festi- the Austin City Limits Music Festival) to build a ial actor, author, and director of the now famous “Nobel- val for nonprofit films? model for the film’s distribution. This summer, the That’s what founders team will enlist sponsors to take the film on a 40- ity”, his 2006 documentary in which he interviewed nine Aaron Bramley, city tour that will engage local charities and turn David J. Neff and screenings into fundraisers, with Shapter selling Nobel Prize winners (and Willie Nelson), asking them for Rich Vázquez are DVDs of the film at those events. saying. The 2009 “What I found then is that when people get answers to the world’s prob- lems. “One Peace at a Time” is Lights.Camera.Help over their egos, they generally stop doing what- film festival launched ever it is that is keeping them from being happy,” his follow-up to this film, and instead of asking questions, it May 1 and is accepting says Shapter. “They stop comparing themselves to submissions of film and people ‘above’ them and start looking around at offers some solutions. Pipkin travels to India to learn about video throughout the others. Then they start to help.” GC summer, with the fes- computer-access programs and Austin-based pia and providing laptops for children in Nairobi. The Miracle Foundation to visit orphanages. He It also produces “Short Flims/Big Changes,” a tival itself July 31. “The MORE INFO visits “The Condom King” in Thailand to learn film series that plans to produce four films a idea is to give non-prof- WATCH a clip of “Happiness Is” featuring about birthrates and HIV/AIDS; and watches year about the work of nonprofits. Last year the it videos validity and Alan Graham of Mobile Loaves and Fishes water wells being constructed by Austin-based screening of a short film about The Miracle Foun- merit by judging them,” WATCH a film by Andrew Shapter about A Glimmer of Hope in Ethiopia. dation raised $300,000 in donations. GC says Vázquez. “We want Capital City Kids If all this sounds like the adventure of a lifetime, people to see these WATCH the trailer for “Happiness Is” it is. But it’s one with a purpose. Pipkin’s Nobelity videos, know they’re Foundation supports on-the-ground efforts all WATCH the trailer for “One Peace at a Time,” learn important and support WATCH the trailer for “Before the Music dies” how to support the Nobelity Project, and find out over the world, raising money for wells in Ethio- about screenings in Austin. the cause.’” Shapter is looking for people to help spread the word about the film and introduce it to nonprofits and faith-based groups. LEARN MORE about GO TO Lights.Camera.Help. “Happiness Is,” the tour, and how to get involved. “There’s nothing magic about change,” says jody Williams, the founder of the International for more info. campaign to Ban Landmines. “You have to get off your ass and take action.” 01 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 46 47 GC BLOG
    • GIVE BETTER meRe mORTALS Need NOT APPLY ...and other myths about Leadership Austin, the city’s go-to training program for the next generation of leaders. by Tiffany Hamburger S omewhere along the way, “networking” became a vaguely dirty word, conjuring images of exclusive schmooze-fests and powerbroker backslapping. Somewhere along the way, Leadership Austin became associated with this kind of exclusivity, a who’s who of Austin to which mere mortals need not apply. 01 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 46 47 GC BLOG
    • GIVE BETTER F But Leadership Austin’s new CEO, Heather there’s new leadership here, with ounded in 1979, Leadership Each year, out of hundreds of applications, only McKissick, insists that anyone who has that a new view. Two, you’ve got this Austin began as a program of 55 people are selected for the Essential Class, and impression has got it all wrong. “It’s important for changing demographic, and we have the chamber of commerce, but 45 for the under-40 Emerge program. But there me,” says McKissick, “that people understand that to be able to responsive to that in now operates as an independent are four other programs, all of which are open to the programs of Leadership Austin are open and our programming. There’s also such nonprofit, though it’s hardly one public participation. available to anyone who wants to participate.” a significant demand for community- of a kind. “Pretty much everywhere This is a point that Steve Benesh, Leadership Yes, there is networking. But it’s the good based and nonprofit leadership. you go, there’s a program,” says CEO Austin’s board chair and a partner at law firm kind, says Marion Martin, a 2009 Essential Class Combine that with…a new president McKissick. “Most of them originated Bracewell and Giuliani, wants to emphasize. participant, who currently serves as the YMCA’s of the United States who is calling to help advance community-based “Regardless of where they are with regard to their director of financial development. The kind that the nation to service in a way that leadership and civic leadership skills, she says “opens lots of doors and provides lots of resources.” has not happened in decades. It’s a real opportunity for an organization as opposed to business-management type skills.” Leadership But Martin’s enthusiasm for the organization goes beyond the benefits of networking. “It’s like ours to reach out and develop leaders from all generations and all This still describes Leadership Austin’s basic mission, though Austin’s fantastic. It’s the best thing I’ve ever done. It’s walks of life.” the programs have evolved and “who’s who” incredible,” she says. While McKissick acknowledges that the proliferated over the years. One of the reasons for the organization’s reputation is a exclusive reputation is out there, she says several factors are responsible for a recent drive exclusive aura may be due to the fact that two of the six programs require chicken-and- to become more open and accessible. “One, an application and selection process. egg problem. NoW ACCepTiNG eXCel eSSeNTiAl eMeRGe eNGAGe eXpeRieNCe AUSTiN AppliCATioNS For Austin’s “most The original. Apply if you’re a Sign up to attend one of Sign up if you want to get The original Leadership experienced leaders.” Apply if you’ve already high-potential young eight events that cover to know the city on an Austin course, This program is still being exhibited some form of professional who topics important to the activist’s level. “Essential,” is still developed. Sign up for civic leadership. wants to take your civic community. Open attendance. around, but over the email updates to find out 10 full days in 9 months, engagement to the next 8 breakfasts in 8 months, 5 sessions in 5 weeks, past few years L.A. has more. 55 students, level. 6 sessions in 12 about 70 attendees per 24 students, expanded its offerings $3,000 tuition. weeks 45 students. topic. $25 per topic. $785 registration. Tuition TBD. 01 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 46 47 GC BLOG
    • GIVE BETTER “The number one criteria is she says, “is that graduates have Even with a focus on accurate that scholarships range up to 50 percent of the demonstrated gone to take on leadership positions throughout the community…[but] community representation, there’s no getting around that there is a cost total tuition. So if you don’t need to be a somebody, and you commitment to the downside is that people can for each program, ranging from $25 don’t need loads of cash, what does Leadership the community begin to think it’s exclusive because of the high caliber of alumni that for each installment of the Engage speaker series to as much as $3000 Austin want in an applicant? “The number one selection criteria,” says McKissick, “is demonstrated through service.” have been produced over the years.” “But the truth is,” says McKissick, for the nine-month Essential Class program. commitment to the community through service. It’s not about your business resume, not about how leadership in the workplace or in the community,” “that our processes are very inclusive Marion Martin, one of the 2009 many professional awards you have received.” he says, “there is a Leadership Austin program for processes and our classes are selected Essential Class scholarship recipients, Martin marvels at how much she’s gotten out them.” to be as highly representative of the has this to say: “Money shouldn’t be of her participation with Leadership Austin, even Still, one glance at Leadership Austin’s alumni region as they can possibly be.” anyone’s criteria,” she says. “It should going so far as to call it necessary. “You acquaint roster, and prominent names and positions jump Board chair Benesh knows about be what they’re going to get out of yourself with your own passion, and once you do out: Kirk Watson. Brewster McCracken. Dawnna the selection process for the Essential the program, and how they’re going that, you’ve been set on fire and off you go,” she Dukes. Law firm partners. Bank presidents. CEOs. Class firsthand, having served on its to pay for it, we should worry about says. University presidents. Nonprofit directors. selection committee.“One of the things later.” “Can it be done without Leadership Austin?” Intimidated? Don’t be, says McKissick. This that the committee is very careful to And there is help. Financial need will she asks. “I suppose so, but I can’t imagine it. “who’s who” reputation is a chicken-and-egg do is to make sure that no profession not impact selection, says McKissick. I’m going to be a much more engaged citizen of problem as she describes it. “The good news,” is overrepresented,” he says. “It’s a blind process,” she says, adding Austin than I was before.” GC ... BUT THiS iS NoT Non-Profit Leaders Susan McDowell, Jeannette Peten, president, BiGAUSTIN Foundation of Texas Michael Willard, Hearon & Moody Ashton Cumberbatch, Court Justice, Place 2 Kirk Watson, State Council Member Mike Martinez, City Desiree Cornelius- Fisher, Board of Business Development, Seton Family of A “WHo’S WHo” executive director, Melissa Morrow, executive director, VP Advocacy and Senate, Dist. 14 Council Member Trustees, Manor ISD Hospitals LifeWorks president, The Junior Austin Habitat for Community Relations, Dawnna M. Dukes, Randi Shade, City Dripping Springs ISD Jeff Hahn, Principal, liST oR ANyTHiNG. Richard Halpin, founder League of Austin Humanity Seton Healthcare State House of Council Member TateAustinHahn and CEO, American Gena VanOsselaer, Network Representative, Dist. 46 Steve Benesh, Board Bill Stotesbery, CEO, You might YouthWorks executive director, Regional Leaders Larry Earvin, President, Lora J. Livingston, Public School Leaders of Trustees, Dripping KLRU-TV Regina Rogoff, CEO, Austin Children’s Shelter Mark Curry, Wells Fargo Huston Tillotson 261st District Court, Mark Williams, former Springs ISD; Managing Eva Munoz, Director of recognize some People’s Community MariBen Ramsey, Bank, Community Bank University Judge Austin ISD, President, Partner, Bracewell and External Affairs, AT&T of the people who Clinic Inc. Cookie Ruiz, executive vice president and general counsel, Austin President Susan Dawson, Elected Officials City of Austin AISD, Board of Trustees Giuliani CLICK HERE to have been through director, Ballet Austin Inc. Community Foundation John Fitzpatrick, Executive Director, E3 Alliance United States Lee Yeakel, West District Brewster McCracken, Mayor Pro Tem Joe Munoz, Board of Trustees; Mexican Regional Leaders Joe Parker, Senior learn more about an L.A. program Beth Atherton, executive director, Clarke Heidrick, Court of Texas, Judge Sheryl Cole, City American School Board Pastor, David Chapel Leadership Austin. executive director, Texas High Schools Managing Partner, State of Texas Council Member Association of Texas, Missionary Church Caritas Project, Communities Graves, Dougherty, Don Willett, Supreme Lee Leffingwell, City President Tom Gallagher, Sr. VP, 01 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 46 47 GC BLOG
    • HOW LEGAcY WAS BORN GIVE BETTER TeACH A CHILd TO GIve Linda Brucker and the creation of A Legacy of Giving. “In 2006, we started doing our homework.” Six Austinites discussed what was missing from the curriculum in the school by monica m. williams system: philanthropy. Y ou could almost stop worrying about the future of AUSTIN STUDENTS WIN NYc TRIp Austin philanthropy thanks to Linda Brucker and the team that created A Legacy of Giving. Since Students from W. Charles Akins 2007, the program has exposed almost 6,000 students in High School, Ann Richards School for young Women “How can the Austin, Eanes, and Round Rock school districts, plus a Leaders, and Trinity Episcopal we approach couple of private schools, to the concept of philanthropy. School won a free trip to New york by placing among the top 20 teaching a child about The program is more than a video or a field trip to the food classes nationally for food and philanthropy in K-12?” bank; the lessons in giving are actually weaved into the clothing collections per student What if philanthropy curriculum. during “The drive,” a philanthropy education were part of the event sponsored by A Legacy of curriculum, not just in AISD, “What we do is engage the students - from financially Giving. but throughout all of secure to low-income - to make sure they realize that being The drive is the nation’s largest Central Texas? a philanthropist isn’t just about money,” says Brucker, “We student-run food and clothing drive. In partnership with 14 tell them that every single one of them has time and talent Austin-area schools and local to share.” direct service organizations, A Legacy of Giving is affiliated For example, one of the program’s early projects with The LEAGUE, a national introduced students to the problems of hunger and poverty, organization with a parallel “We did our due first describing it at the global level, then describing the mission. Austin students diligence.” donated over 32,000 pounds They identified an problems closer to home. “When we told them that 41,000 of food and non-food items to organization called address hunger, homelessness children in Travis County have food insecurity, there was this and poverty this school year. The League and vetted the curriculum at the PHOTOS COuRTeSY SALLY RIveRO pause,” says Brucker. For the next lesson, a representative from Capital Area Foodbank came in and introduced them While in New york, the students University of Texas, which helped out with a service project wholeheartedly approved to idea of the foodbank … and what a nonprofit is. And for Soaring Words, a nonprofit of the program. that empowers communities to then for the next lesson, a storage unit arrived on campus. embrace ill children and families. Students got inside, walked around, used math to figure 01 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 46 47 GC BLOG
    • GIVE BETTER HOw LEGACY wAs BORN the dimensions, and decided it would be a Keep Austin Beautiful. Another project great place to store food. Fourteen schools and 3,600 students participated in the revolved around financial literacy. “It’s remarkable how these projects are having Linda Brucker: My “We were fortunate that one Favorite Moment project they called ‘pack the pod,” raising such an immediate impact on their lives,” of our founders was MariBen Ramsey...” 32,000 pounds of food in two weeks. says Brucker. One of the schools that took of Austin Community Program administrators train more than on the Earth Day project started recycling Foundation. ACF provided 125 teachers on how to use a Web-based plastic and aluminum - at the students’ “I was at Paredes Middle School, in the middle the seed money to platform hosting downloadable lessons request. And students who participated of the courtyard, and we were using meat scales determine whether the program was viable in and how to bring in resources from the in the financial literacy project reported to weigh some of the food that the students Austin. community to make the lessons come talking to their parents about the family’s had collected. One of the students came up to to life. Aside from the poverty project, debt. “We think we’re changing the me and said, ‘Are you Mrs. Brucker? Would that teachers could also choose a project based conversation so that students feel like be okay if I talked to you?’ on Earth Day, which was coordinated with they’re part of the solution.” GC So I said, ‘Absolutely!’ Then she got very quiet “We created a and very close and said, ‘This is the coolest memorandum program we’ve ever had at my school.’ of understanding.” They vetted idea with AISD She took two steps back and said, ‘Mrs. and St. Gabriel’s, ran it Brucker, I’ve always been the one who had to by a few Austinites who get the food, and this is the first time I got to be had started other nonprofits, and the giver.’” followed their advice. YOU CAN HELP “We took CLICK HERE to donate to A Legacy of Giving to help expand what was good the program. Schools systems are charged a small fee and fundraising covers the rest of the cost. and brought it to the local level.” Talk about philanthropy at home and at work. By starting the It focuses on three needs in conversations, we can introduce others to the idea of giving. Central Texas: homelessness, hunger, and poverty; the Volunteer via the PTA at your school. Your support can be as simple as having a conversation with your child and coming arts and social capital; up with your family’s philanthropic mission. and environmental stewardship. 01 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 46 47 GC BLOG
    • N ew PHILANTHROPISTS The SPeCIAL THANkS TO J. bLACk’S feeL GOOd LOuNGe fOR HOSTING THe PHOTOGRAPHY eveNT. Introducing the Austinites – young, active, and engaged – who make giving a priority. Photography by Owen Laracuente 01 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 46 47 GC BLOG
    • New PHILANTHROPISTS The “Philanthropy is an opportunity to support and inspire greatness in other people.” Maggie Miller Cooke, Mohiuddan, and Miller Sarah Cooke Ahmed Mohiuddan Maggie Miller Global Business Environment Strategist at Dell Sales Manager & Director of On Your Feet Founder/Executive Director, DiscoverHope Fund My primary philanthropic effort is leading Net Impact I am the director of an international music and dance DiscoverHope Fund is on a mission for women in poverty Austin, a network of professionals and entrepreneurs festival, On Your Feet, which showcases world-class all over the world to create self-sufficient lives motivated creating a better and more sustainable world. We Austin musicians and dancers. I direct this event in by their own personal power. DiscoverHope gives educate and mobilize individuals by providing pro- collaboration with my partners at Casa Marianella, microcredit loans to women to initiate small businesses; bono consulting opportunities, speakers, Web-based which helps international refugees and homeless we also champion the development of every woman resources, and networking activities. immigrants in our community. we work with by providing training support for their entrepreneurial, financial, and personal goals. 01 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 46 47 GC BLOG
    • Dorian Fogo Amy Holloway Director of Special Events, LifeWorks President & Chief Strategy Sherpa, I support and volunteer with a diverse Avalanche Consulting, Inc. group of organizations in Austin After years of assisting other including The Miracle Foundation, communities, I started a consulting Leadership Austin, and LEAP (LifeWorks practice to give me more time for Executives and Professionals). serving Austin. My passion lies in I recently joined the LifeWorks staff, nurturing Austin’s arts. I am chair-elect which has enabled me to continue of Catalyst 8 and founding chair of the dream of “doing what you love the Boost program, which provides and getting paid for it.” I work with rental subsidies that give Austin’s amazing people every day who are underserved arts groups opportunities incredibly passionate and dedicated. to perform at the Long Center. Also, I feel blessed to be able to include my I have served on the board of the employer in my list of philanthropic Austin State Hospital. I graduated from interests and involvements. Leadership Austin’s Emerge class in 2007, and am a member of the 2009 Trey Halbert Essential class. Senior VP, Employee Benefits, McQueary Henry Bowles Troy Olga Pechnenko-Kopp, I currently serve on the board of Marketing professional directors, executive committee and I am one of three founders of the as development committee chairman nonprofit, Happy Youth. We work with for Austin Habitat for Humanity; on high school girls at Lanier High School, the board of governors for LifeWorks; and our goal is to empower them by “I love the fact that I can use my professional strengths and and a member of the Signature Chefs teaching the life skills they don’t learn Committee for the March of Dimes. at school. I am on the planning and passion to help the community.” I also work with Leadership Austin alumni committees for the Leadership Olga Pechnenko-Kopp to create a bi-directional mentoring Austin Emerge program. I recently program that will help to create a started to co-lead a Bootstrap Cause community perpetuation plan for Subgroup, where we will be learning Austin and assist maturing leaders in from social entrepreneurs. leaving a legacy on the city of Austin. Fogo, Hlbert, Holloway, and Pechnenko-Kopp 01 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 46 47 GC BLOG
    • Christine Perrault Moline Student Affairs Liaison, Texas Evening MBA Program, fulfilling experience of my life.” University of Texas at Austin I have held a genuine interest in the arts and human ser- vices for as long as I can remember. Since 1998, I have made “Enriching the lives of others who truly appreciate it is the most it a priority to volunteer and work in human services and the arts. I support the visual arts by collecting original paintings. Aria Kilpatrick Aria Kilpatrick Realtor, GRI, e-Pro, BridgeOne Properties I’m a recipient of the bronze, silver, gold and lifetime Presi- New dential Service Awards and Miss Texas American Coed 2003. The I have worked extensively with the Special Olympics, Pet Therapy, MDA, Livestrong Challenge/Ride for the Roses, which PHILANTHROPISTS I have volunteered with for several years and I have also participated in the ride. I have also recently donated to and helped to raise money for the American Heart Association, Austin Pets Alive!, and Susan G. Komen. Moline, Kilpatrick, and Taylor Kenny Taylor Chief Executive Officer, Taylored Strategies I typically give to organizations where I volunteer, to those that personal friends asks for a contribution on behalf of, and to those who are nonprofit clients of my company. In 2008 three percent of my income went back out to the community to organizations that include Leadership Austin, United Way, Any Baby Can, Big Brothers Big Sisters, Meals on Wheels and More, and ParentRise. 01 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 46 47 GC BLOG
    • Isaac Chapa Director Technology & Operations at CSIdentity Isaac Chapa, Dennis W. Donley, Jr., For the last two years I have been on the board of directors John Ard of the Austin Academy, a community based nonprofit adult education service agency that provides economically disadvantaged adults the skills they need to obtain and sustain employment and self-sufficiency. As a board member, I actively review the operations and activity of the Austin Academy and provide strategic vision for itsfuture. Dennis W. Donley, Jr. Partner, Naman, Howell, Smith & Lee I’ve been on the board of the Young Men’s Business League of Austin/Austin Sunshine Camps since 1993; I was the president in 2007. I’m also part of the Seton Forum; I was on the Austin Under 40 Awards Gala board “The small investment I make is worth the huge reward for three years, and the Austin Area Texas Exes for six years. I’ve also volunteered with Teen Court, Shoes for I get back – I get to see people take the steps toward Austin, and Meals on Wheels. fulfilling their own goals and dreams.” Isaac Chapa John Aard Vice President, Financial Advisor, Merrill Lynch I give back to the Austin community through YMBL/ Austin Sunshine Camps because I feel that every child should be free to pursue their dreams, regardless of their socioeconomic background. We build our kids self-esteem, courage, and life skill so that they can be confident that the only limit is their imagination. 01 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 46 47 GC BLOG
    • Lemuel C. Williams Director Business Development, Uptime Devices, Inc. I have been involved with The City of Austin Technology and Telecommu- nications Commission for two years. In this role, I chaired the Grant for Technology Opportunity as well as Brandi Clark spear-headed a revision for the city’s Eco-Social Entrepreneur Ascertainment Study. I am currently I’m the founder or co-founder of The on a program committee for Leader- AustinEcoNetwork, a socially and envi- ship Austin’s Emerge program. I help ronmentally responsible bank; Austin oversee policy, selection, and curricu- Car Share; and The Austin Sustainable lum of the program. Business Council. I also helped orga- Williams, nize It’s My Park Day, Austin Moving Clark, Forward, The Green Festival, Co-op and Ellis America’s National Green Pages, and Earth Day 2004. My latest passions includes reviving the label of “citizen” instead of “consumer” as the way indi- Luke Ellis viduals are referred to and valued, and inspiring people to live their lives in Trial lawyer, Jackson Walker alignment with their values. I created and am director of The Common Law Project, which addresses common, everyday legal issues via a weekly segment on News8Austin and New “I enjoy feeling that to a small degree I can add to all the weekly column in the Austin Chronicle. The positive things that make Austin a unique I’m also on the board for the Austin Lawyer Referral Service and Austin and special community.” Habitat for Humanity. PHILANTHROPISTS Luke Ellis 01 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 46 47 GC BLOG
    • Linda Medina Founder, Young Hispanic Professional Austin Association I support scholarships for high school students, serve the com- munity through the YHPAA’s Bridges to Education Lunch Men- torship program for middle school students, and engage young professionals. As a current mentor at the Ann Richards School for Women, I truly believe that mentoring and educating our youth is the key investment for our future. I share with others the impor- tance of giving and how it meets our community’s needs through the I Live Here, I Give Here campaign. Richard Bagdonas Co-founder and COO Remote Operations, Executive Director, Operation Turkey Operation Turkey provides warm meals, toiletries and support to the homeless on Thanksgiving. I started this phenomenon in 2000 with one meal. Since then, the organization has become a non- profit and provides meals to thousands of Austin residents. In the past four years it has expanded its reach to thousands of people in 20 other cities. The organization now runs two concerts in Austin each summer to raise money for groceries used to execute the program. “As a philanthropist, I return to society the benefits it has given me.” Linda Medina Medina, Motchalova, Bagdonas, Pechnenko-Kopp, and Miller 01 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 46 47 GC BLOG
    • JR Kraft Ty Barho Dan Graham Owners, Founders, BuildASign.com We give back to the Austin community as generously as we can through BuildASign. com. Donating our products, services, and employees’ time to great causes as well as exciting organizations is one of the best ways we can strengthen Austin’s business community as well as our relationship with that community. We both accept donation requests and seek out opportunities for donations that will benefit both BuildASign.com and the receiving organization. We make donations a part of BuildASign.com’s mission because we believe it strengthens the people and business community of our town and it’s one of the best ways we can perpetuate the spirit and values of both BuildASign.com and the city of Austin. “Our company donates because it’s one of the best ways we can perpetuate the spirit of the city of Austin.” Ty Barho JR Kraft, Ty Barho, Blake Borgeson New PHILANTHROPISTS The 01 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 46 47 GC BLOG
    • Armando Rayo Director, Hands On Central Texas at United Way Capital Area As director of Hands On Central Texas, I help engage 10,000 volunteers a year for specific projects throughout Central Texas. As a Hispanic, that community’s success is very important to me. That’s why I’m often called upon for advice and expertise in how to build connections between Hispanics and the rest of the Austin community. Philip Chang Financial Analyst/Case Designer, WaxmanCavnerLawson I work with clients to develop tax-favored transfer strategies of family assets to public and/or private charities. These charities often include family foundations that are managed by family members. I also support local and national nonprofit organiza- tions through volunteering, making personal gifts, organizing fundraisers, and encouraging others to get involved. David J. Neff Director of Web, Film & Interactive Strategy American Cancer Society I’m on the Digital Strategy Task Force over at Planet Cancer. I serve on the Web Strategy Board of the Austin Film Society, I “I believe it is imperative for everyone to act program all the speakers for the 501 Tech Club and Austin Social Media Club, I also volunteer at the Capital Area Food Bank. Right as stewards in their community.” now I’m working with two partners to organize the first-ever nonprofit film festival in Austin, Lights.Camera.Help. Philip Chang Rayo, Fogo, Chang, and Neff 01 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 46 47 GC BLOG
    • New PHILANTHROPISTS The “I’ve come to realize that each little amount counts” Kelsey Hughen Kelsey Hughen Cashier at Michael’s In third grade, I was the youngest child to ever sponsor another child through Any Baby Can. At my 15th and 17th Hughen and Allen Mohiuddan, Cooke, Dave Shaw birthday parties, instead of gifts, people Dave Shaw donated to an organization called Africa Renewal Ministries, which helps the Lyssa Myska Allen President, Russell/Shaw poverty-stricken children in different Marketing, STRATFOR I am a board member and chair-elect of Greenlights for Nonprofit Success. parts of Africa. I currently sponsor a I am co-chair of the Blondes vs. Brunettes In 2008 the Austin Area Research Organization (AARO) selected me to girl in Africa named Victoria. I am the Tackling Alzheimer’s Powder Puff Football participate in its McBee Fellowship program and the Texas Lyceum named president of a nonprofit organization Game benefiting the Austin Alzheimer’s me a director. I have served as a board member of Leadership Austin, called Girls Giving Grants. We each give Association. Alzheimer’s affects nearly ev- YouthLaunch and the Austin Public Library Foundation, where I served $100 of our own money and review grant eryone in my generation, so the chance for as board president. I was appointed to the City of Austin Public Library applications from other non-profits in us to get involved with finding a cure or Commission by then-Council Member Will Wynn, and appointed to the the Austin area. After a long review, site prevention is incredibly valuable. I’m also Libraries for the Future Task Force by then-Mayor Kirk Watson. In 2002, the visit, and voting process, we award our definitely excited about playing in the foot- Young Men’s Business League and Young Women’s Alliance gave me an grant to an organization at City Hall. ball game! Austin Under 40 award for community service. GC 01 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 46 47 GC BLOG
    • ARe THeRe TOO mANY NONPROfITS IN AuSTIN? THE DATA IS IN - AUSTIN HAS MORE NONPROFITS PER CAPITA THAN ANY OTHER CITY IN TExAS. NOW WHAT SHOULD WE DO ABOUT IT? BY MONICA M. WILLIAMS 01 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 46 47 GC BLOG
    • ARE thERE Religion 12% Arts 11% tOO mAny nOnpROfitS in AUStin? Public Benefit 10% Education International 2% & Research 21% We demand efficiency from nonprofits, requiring them AUSTIN NONPROFITS BY CATEGORY Human SOURCE: GREEnliGhtS fOR nOnpROfitS. CliCK hERE tO SEE COmplEtE REpORt fROm GREEnliGhtS to do more with less – and these days to do even more with even less. So when we see two or more nonprofits with the exact same mission, going after the same Services donations from the same people, we might wonder why they don’t join forces. 29% Environment & Animals 6% We might also wonder how they survive in this economy. Inevitably, the market will take care of it, right? Just as it does in the for-profit world? Health 9% Well, sometimes the market doesn’t Austin has more nonprofits per capita Arts 9% take care of it. That’s because nonprofits Religion 12% than any other city in the Texas. Which aren’t fueled by just donations, they’re also means we’re caring and entrepreneurial on fueled by passion – which is sometimes all the one hand, but probably frustrated and you need to keep your organization going. USA NONPROFITS BY CATEGORY Education disillusioned on the other. When someone And thank goodness for that; we’d be in Public & Research starts a nonprofit it means they feel serious trouble if it weren’t for volunteers Benefit 17% there’s a need in the community that’s not and underpaid nonprofit professionals. On 17% being met And while one can appreciate the other hand, you have to ask yourself, as Environment & Animals 4% their energy, it takes more than a 501c3 a donor or a volunteer, “Am I supporting a International 2% classification from the IRS to be an effective Human nonprofit that shouldn’t exist?” nonprofit in the long-term. Health 9% Services 30% 01 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 46 47 GC BLOG
    • ARe THeRe TOO mANY NONPROfITS “YeS, ANd we CAN fIX IT.” IN AuSTIN? “YeS, buT IT’S THe MATT KOURI, executive director of Greenlights, which helps Central wRONG queSTION…” Texas nonprofits by providing consulting, resources, and nonprofit training in areas from fundraising to how to start a nonprofit. W DEBORAH EDWARD, professor at the RGK Center, a nationally hat’s most remarkable about needed to do it for a long time, yet they recognized philanthropy think-tank. this data we’ve put together is continue to bang their head against the that it validates what I’ve been same wall every year. T he idea that there are too many I think we need to map the different non- hearing from funders anecdotally - that As to who’s responsible for identifying nonprofits in Austin is a refrain. But profits visually in terms of access, value, we do have a disproportionate share of and leading these mergers and collabora- while we complain about it, a city and fees you can see distinct dimensions nonprofit organizations, especially com- tion, I think funders need to be careful. They like Boston boasts about it. From our per- … but who’s going to make that happen? pared to other cities of similar make-up. aren’t at the street level. They can demand spective that means we’re not thinking col- The funder’s in the position because he The data for Austin is not totally incon- and expect results and impact but it’s the laborations or efficiencies. We’re not taking gets 20 groups that knock on his door, and sistent with what we see in other com- nonprofit’s job to make sure those dollars advantage of opportunities. he can do a better comparison than the munities. And we might have a dispro- are spent accordingly. At the same time, In business, these new ideas for a groups on the ground. It’s not that he has portionately large share of nonprofits funders can exhibit influence over their company come up, and you get investment the responsibility to do it, but he does have that don’t serve Central Texas solely or grantees, especially when they see logical bankers invested so they can see the idea, the opportunity. that serve all of Texas. But we share the opportunities for collaborations. and in the end, everybody makes money Greenlights has done a great job of belief with donors that having too many Greenlights is investing a lot of time and everybody’s happy. But in the nonprof- helps nonprofits discover opportunities nonprofits is a problem. That being said, into this issue this year. We worked with it world, we don’t have those investment for synergy. But otherwise there’s nobody there are some positive sides to having so RGK to develop a continuum of steps bankers…except for these funders. They driving the train. The Austin Commu- many. It can mean that more is being done nonprofits can take in terms of strate- are in the wonderful position to respond nity Foundation would be a great place, in our community and that there’s lots of gic consolidation. A lot of nonprofits are to these new nonprofits and say, “Hey, why though traditionally it has been donor cen- innovative problem solving at work. But it already engaged in some form of collabo- don’t you get together?” tered. The Community Action Network or can also mean there are some redundan- ration, which donors may not realize. But I bet you can find a number of funders the United Way have that macro view that cies and inefficiencies in the sector. there needs to be a lot more, and it needs that have experience asking two organi- could be enlisted to help with this. The silver lining in this down economy to move further down the continuum zations to merge, but the lessons learned The zeitgeist is to say that there are too is that it might force more nonprofits to toward merger. are kept within the family. They don’t have many nonprofits. The challenge is to flip realize that they can’t cut it on their own People who follow the nonprofit sector a forum to share those stories and encour- that and say, “We are the best connected and maybe it’s time for them to make know that in 2010 it’s going to see some age people to think differently about going system of nonprofits in the United States.” some hard decisions. That’s our hope. I can radical changes. We want to help make from the initial idea of merging to creating think of at least 10 different organizations that change intentional as opposed to a program that’s sustainable. now that really need to do it, and they’ve just happening to us. 01 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 46 47 GC BLOG
    • ARe THeRe TOO mANY NONPROfITS IN AuSTIN? $5 - $10M 1% +$10M 1% $2.5 - $5M 2% $1 - $2.5M 3% $500K - $1M 4% “NO, IT’S NOT AbOuT NumbeRS…” BARRY SILVERBERG, president nonprofit. From there, we emphasize what and CEO of Texas Association it means to run an effective nonprofit. $100K - $500K of Nonprofit Organizations, a I think the nonprofit sector has a signifi- 16% statewide organization that cant advantage in that people engaged offers training and support to in that sector are able to “do good,” and AUSTIN NONPROFITS BY BUDGET Texas nonprofits and individuals -$100K I don’t think we do enough to leverage who want to start a nonprofit. that. There are probably too many non- profits that are ineffective… because they P ersonally, I don’t believe in the ignore the stuff that could help them be numbers games because they’re more effective. 73% always a function of who’s asking I also think that funders need to strike the question. I’m also not concerned with a balance between the information they donors who believe they are getting too can gather quantitatively on the various many requests. I encourage them to make forms they use, with the information they their requirements more clear. I don’t gather qualitatively. The fact is, some folks believe it’s our responsibility to elimi- aren’t as good as completing a grant ap- nate those choices. Obviously funders plication - but they have a passion that’s $5 - $10M 1% +$10M 1% can openly decide the fate of the indus- unbelievable. That passion, if it’s com- $2.5 - $5M 2% $1 - $2.5M 3% try by not giving funds, but I don’t believe bined with skill sets and competencies, SOuRCe: GReeNLIGHTS fOR NONPROfITS $500K - $1M 4% they’re in the position to say what a non- will result in something effective if it’s profit should do to be more effective. guided and focused. I think the question should be, “How do we get nonprofits to be more effective?” $100K - $500K TANO believe individuals have the right 15% USA NONPROFITS BY BUDGET -$100K 69% and the means to create better possi- bilities to serve the community. We help people understand the issue and deter- mine if the best response is to create a 01 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 46 47 GC BLOG
    • ARe THeRe there are 30 members. One of the proj- TOO mANY ects we’re working on is to put together COLLAbORATIONS ALReAdY AT wORk NONPROfITS a matrix of our fundraising efforts to IN AuSTIN? identify the gaps. A successful collaboration or merger can seem professionals; manages an initiative to ESTERLINE: The model for Central like a miracle. As the former associate director of increase the quality of after school “we dON’T Texas Education Funders is based on the Ready by 21 Coalition, Community Action Network and a nonprofit consultant, Sam Woollard, a GivingCity contributor, has participated programs. BASIC NEEDS COALITION: See THAT…” which put together this matrix identifying common indicators, and we’re trying to create a similar and lead the formation of a number of collaborations around Central Texas. “Collaborations and mergers are all about the timing,” she says. “Even if there’s a consensus to work together Coordinates the annual Poverty Awareness month each January; coordinate the Best Single Source JANET HARMAN, founder, and one for the funding community. and a strong action plan, a single change in a funding model program; coordinating a benefits JENNIFER ESTERLINE, program It would help us, but it would or at the legislature could seriously impact the effort. Plus, enrollment assistance training on officer, KDK-Harman Foundation, also help the nonprofits; they participants must come to the table with the needs of May 28th. a family foundation that focuses create about 15 different reports the entire community in mind, not CHILDREN AND YOUTH MENTAL on education for economically to different foundations, so we’re Here are some just the needs of their board HEALTH PLANNING PARTNERSHIP: disadvantaged Central Texans. doing this to learn what they’re doing Central Texas or their constituency.” Conducts an annual awareness event each and how they can do it better. Then the collaborations in May; addresses the systemic issues impacting HARMAN: It’s a complex issue because other part of that is communicating this which Woollard has children and mental health. at first glance one would say there are information. participated. RE-ENTRY ROUNTABLE: Addresses issues so many that we should consolidate and As far as whether there are too many related to people leaving the criminal justice reduce. However, there’s a lot of room for nonprofits in Austin, I would say that we system. creativity, so squashing that innovation are not overwhelmed with requests, but AGING SERVICES COUNCIL: Addresses ENDING COMMUNITY HOMELESSNESS would be a mistake. we are pretty focused on what we fund. depression in older adults; coordinates home COALITION (ECHO): Coordinates the We have actually brought several na- In conversations among the education repair programs; started a caregiver university. Continuum of Care grant every year; conducts tional nonprofits to Austin, so I couldn’t funders, we see that everyone’s funding SUCCESS BY 6: Supports the annual child an annual homeless awareness forum in the fall; very well argue that there are too many the same nonprofits. They’ve been iden- well-being report card; supports quality child sponsors the Let’s Get to Work Forum on May nonprofits here. I really think it’s the job tified as effective and able to show their care initiatives; supports education about early 21st to identify pathways to work for people of a lot of area foundations and organiza- impact, so they rise to the top every time. childhood. experiencing homelessness. tions like the Austin Community Founda- Everyone has the responsibility to col- CENTRAL TExAS AFTERSCHOOL NETWORK: VICTIM SERVICES TASK FORCE: Conduct tion and Greenlights, to point out where laborate and communicate. The new Hosts the annual Lights on After School; awareness activities during the annual Crime there is some opportunity to optimize by face of philanthropy is more transparent, convened a forum about middle school students Victims Rights Week, support legislative efforts to merger. We reach out to other funders on more cooperative. A lot of our colleagues and afterschool needs; conduct training for increase the crime victims compensation fund. a regular basis. In fact, we co-founded an are embracing this because of people like after-school teachers and administrators. HOUSINGWORKS: Hosts annual housing education funders group, Central Texas Janet Harman who are young, entrepre- READY BY 21 COALITION: Created a local summit each fall; provides a speaker’s bureau for Education Funders, a little over a year neurial, and have a new way of thinking youth council; just released a Go to College housing issues; identifies and advocates for ago. We meet every other month and about philanthropy. Guide for Educators and Youth service policies that will support affordable housing. GC 01 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 46 47 GC BLOG
    • “Each of the people on this project represents some pretty well known nonprofit brands. It’s great to be able to tell the world how these organizations have been working together all along.” Rebecca Geier, Trew Marketing 01 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 46 47 GC BLOG
    • “I think a lot of people see us as a typical charity, but we’re also building collaborations and partnerships, and I think that’s what this video demonstrates: That we must move beyond the traditional charities and build relationships.” Kerri Qunell, Capital Area Food Bank L-R: Kerri Qunell, vice president of communications, Capital Area Foodbank; John Turner, marketing director, United Way Capital Area; Dave Neff, director of web and interactive strategy, Austin affiliate of American Cancer Soceity; Kim Wilson, development and marketing director, Greenlights for Nonprofit Success 01 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 46 47 GC BLOG
    • L-R: Stephanie Bazan, marketing director, LifeWorks; MarrGwen Dickson, foundation relations, Seton Family of Hospitals; Jennifer Long, marketing manager, Lance Armstrong Foundation; Hannah Nokes, vice president of deveopment and marketing, Leadership Austin. Photo right: Art Wolf, regional vice president, American Cancer Society “People may think we’re fighting each other for dollars. But in the end I want that homeless teenager to get his GED, and I don’t care if it’s through us or through a program at Southwest Key.” Stephanie Bazan, LifeWorks 01 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 46 47 GC BLOG
    • “The group’s meetings and emails have been such a great resource, and I think the video helps people see that we’re working together to make the best use of your donations.” Melanie Chasteen, Big Brothers Big Sisters L-R: Narissa Adams, communications director, SafePlace; Mia Washington, associate director of special events, Austin Children’s Shelter; Layla Fry, director of special projects and communications, Southwest Key Programs; Melanie Chasteen, vice president marketing and communications. Big Brothers Big Sisters 01 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 46 47 GC BLOG
    • L-R, top row: Fry perfects the card flip; Chasteen marks her place L-R bottom row: Turner does a light check; Qunell waits for the cue; Bazan strikes a pose W e’re at the Austin office of the American The old server room is huge – high ceilings and is taking their turn looking up at camera perched Cancer Society, a building which seems rows and rows of empty server racks. This also seems about 10 feet above them. Coolly and carefully, to consist of nothing but hallways. Before to serve as the main storage room for the building as they say their line, take a step forward, hold up their I get too lost, Dave Neff, the director of web and the room is lined with overstuffed boxes, mismatched card, flip it, then take a step back. The shoot is going interactive strategy for ACS, comes to meet me and chairs, ladders, and for some reason, lumber. Lots phenomenally well. It’s apparent that these are shows me to a conference room upstairs where the and lots of lumber. People are streaming in and out marketing, PR, and development pros – they’re used cast of the “We Are One” video is practicing their lines. as I poke my way to the set. to making the sell. We grab some coffee and wind our way downstairs “Watch your step,” says Rebecca Geier, the director, The video, since launched on March 26, is now to the old server room, where a small crew has set up producer, and marketing lead for the We Are One enjoying a full-on media attack. There’s its own Web to shoot the video. “Will you remember how to get project. “We’re about to start shooting, so...” Quiet on site, of course, but there’s also the Facebook page, back?” he asks me. “If not, just wait for someone else the set. the Twitter hashtag (#weR1), a behind-the-scenes to come up and follow them.” One at a time, each of the dozen nonprofiteers video, a Flickr set, some news coverage, and the links 01 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 46 47 GC BLOG
    • Above: Dickson lightens up before her turn. Opposite, clockwise: Prepping for the final scene; Long nails her lines; Qunell checks the wording; Fry glances at the script. from each of the participating nonprofits. lot of sense. So far it’s been happening behind The message is simple: If everyone gave a closed doors, but hopefully this video will little, we could meet the needs of the entire demonstrate they’ve been doing it all along.” region. The Web site suggests 12 ways to In the meantime, it’s clear the group’s enjoying give, from donating just $5 to United Way to the camaraderie. For the final scene, all of them volunteering three hours a week at the Dell will stand together and speak in unison. After pLAY pLAY Children’s Hospital. What makes the call to some final adjustments, the cameras start to action so compelling is that it isn’t one nonprofit roll. Geier stands by with the lines. Despite the making the ask, it’s 12 of them coming together fact that there are 12 people in the scene, they to speak in one voice. nail it on the second take. WATCH We Are One WATCH 12 Ways you Can Back upstairs in the conference room, Geier “From idea to execution in just two months,” Central Texas Support We Are One tells me, “Collaboration doesn’t come naturally says Geier. “You never see that in the nonprofit CONNECT WITH We Are One on Facebook and share your to nonprofits. They’re much more focused on world!” GC story of collaboration the client. But in this group, sharing makes a 01 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 46 47 GC BLOG
    • WHAT GIVING LOOKS LIKE 2009 Austin Under 40 The Young Men’s Business Leaue and the Young Women’s Alliance hosted another sold-out event, with scores of young professionals squeezing into Austin Music Hall to pat each other on the back. Service is a big deal here, so it’s only fitting the night benefits Austin Sunshine Camps and YWA Founda- tion. Thanks for having us! 1 2 3 PHOTOS BY JONATHAN GARZA 4 5 6 7 8 1. Elizabeth Elias and Michele Skelding 2. Renni Rogers and Scott Ingram 3. Cameron Nokes, Hanna Nokes, Bijoy Goswami, and Heather McKissick 4. Alex and Candice Valdez 5. Kerri Qunell, Julie Shannon, and Melanie Ridings 6. Michael Bakonyi and Mayor Will Wynn 7. Britton Upham, Kellie Mery, Ryan Vanderwall 8. Britt Leissner, Judge Elisabeth Earle, Melissa Moore, Julie Ognana, and Clare Yeakel 9. Jim Keighin, Katie Keighin, and Wes Lange 10. Amber Quist and Linda Cortes with unidentified paper head 9 10 11 11. James Jolly Clark and Brandi Clark 01 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 46 47 GC BLOG
    • WHAT GIVING fIRST LOOKS LIKE PeRSON: “mAYbe IT’S beTTeR i t was the last thing I expected to hear coming from her lips. The poised, well-dressed woman at TO fOCuS the front of the room was telling us that she had spent 15 years in ON wHAT prison – 15 years that she will never get back. She completely missed her now-grown children’s formative COuLd be” years, a soul-crushing reality that caused her to choke back tears as she spoke. Rutanya Pearson was one of the by katie ford panelists at a Seedling Foundation mentor training session that I attended in the fall. She represented Truth Be Told, an Austin-based nonprofit group that provides creative tools for personal and spiritual growth for incarcerated women. According to Truth Be Told, the goal is to “encourage in these women a deeper sense of personal responsibility and to help them face the truth of their pasts and embrace the hope of their futures.” 01 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 46 47 GC BLOG
    • WHAT GIVING LOOKS LIKE After the training, I asked Rutanya how I could slowly shift to something that felt risking judgment and unloading their greatest learn more about Truth Be Told. She suggested more like compassion. sorrows, admitting their deepest fears, owning up that I volunteer to be an audience member at an Prior to arriving at the prison, we to their biggest mistakes and – perhaps most im- upcoming “graduation ceremony” for 29 female were informed that the Truth Be Told portantly – giving voice to their newfound hopes inmates who were about to complete the latest participants were asked to put together and dreams. Truth Be Told series. presentations that reflected their Afterwards, we were given an opportunity to And that’s how I found myself spending an AS I SHOOK THEIR personal journeys of self-discovery. stand up and give feedback on the presentations. afternoon at the Lockhart Prison Unit. HANDS, I NOTIcED The women could use any of the skills I thought this was brilliant, because I’m sure these It turns out I wasn’t the only Seedling THAT SOME OF THEM they had learned in Truth Be Told, from women rarely hear things like “You fill me with representative who signed up to be a “respectful WERE TREMBLING public speaking to creative writing hope” or simply “Thank you for being so honest.” listener” at the graduation. Six Seedling directors WITH NERVES AS THEY to dance and movement. They could At the program’s conclusion, the atmosphere were also there. At first, I was surprised to see SMILED THEIR BEST work on something individually or in was not unlike your typical post-graduation scene. their familiar faces; but, in hindsight, our shared SMILES. small groups. Whatever they chose to Volunteers and graduates mingled about the curiosity in Truth Be Told makes perfect sense. The do, the women had to present their room, laughing, hugging and sharing high fives. way I see it: If I’m going to be the best mentor I can creative works at graduation. I wanted to tell each woman directly that I was be to a child whose mother is incarcerated, I need The Truth Be Told founder opened proud of her, but the warden suddenly entered the to seek to understand the parent’s experience as the program with a prayer and then gym and sharply announced that our time was up. well as the child’s. the presentations began. Over the As I watched these women file out of the room, I The graduation ceremony didn’t entail caps next 90 minutes, I watched a myriad no longer saw abusers, addicts and thieves. I saw and gowns or long-winded speeches. There were cONSIDER BEING A MENTOR of performances. Some women mothers, sisters, and daughters – each with a truth no cheering relatives saddled with camcorders in sang songs or read poems they had to tell and a dream in her heart. And I genuinely the stands. After turning in our drivers’ licenses at This essay first appeared on katieford. written. Others performed group hoped the best for them. blogspot.com. Ford is a freelance the prison’s entrance and being frisked by security writer and former editor for Austin skits; a few presented monologues. We were at the Lockhart prison for only an guards, we volunteers were escorted through a Business Journal, and a mentor for The range of stories, memories, per- afternoon, but the experience has left an indelible the Seedling Foundation’s Seedling’s maze of drab, concrete corridors. There was not Promise program, a school-based spectives, epiphanies, and emotions mark on my conscience. Until that day, it was a single window in sight and the air smelled like mentoring program for children overwhelmed me. Their truths were easy for me as a Seedling mentor to demonize whose parents are in prison. a hospital. raw, funny, painful, disconcerting, the incarcerated parent. Now I find it harder to Eventually we arrived at a gymnasium. The There are at least 2,000 children inspiring, candid, brave, optimistic. I cast such a final judgment, to see someone in enrolled in 20 AISd schools with at female inmates, in their standard-issue blue scrubs, least one parent in prison. Consider could go on forever with adjectives. such black-and-white terms. waited just inside the door, a makeshift receiving being a mentor through the Seedling Our role as volunteers that day was I don’t know. You could spend a lifetime Foundation. line for the guests. As I shook their hands, I noticed to be a “respectful listener,” but still debating who’s to blame and where the evil that some of them were trembling with nerves as CLICK HERE to learn more we were perfect strangers to these begins. Maybe it’s better to focus on where it they smiled their best smiles. I felt my apprehension women. They stood before us, anyway, could end – with the ones we mentor. GC 01 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 46 47 GC BLOG
    • GRASSROOTS INTeRVIeW: “I wanted it to have a purpose.” by monica m. williams photo by owen laracuente dJ Stout is one of Austin’s best designers. Don’t know the name? Magazine lovers - and Texans - do. He put Texas Monthly on the design map in the ‘90s. He also put Pentagram Design, one of the most re- spected international design firms in the world, in Austin when he joined the firm in 2000 and in- sisted on staying here. As a partner at Pentagram, Stout was tasked with designing one of Pentagram’s famous “Papers,” little black books heavy on style but, ac- cording to Stout, often light on substance. Stout took on the challenge in a new way, borrowing a collection of homeless signs from Joe Ely and enlisting a couple of friends to turn out what he titled “SIGNS.” Then he decided to use it for good, turning it into an awareness and fundraising tool - to the tune of $5,000 in one night. 01 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 46 47 GC BLOG
    • GRASSROOTS gc: how did this collaboration come about? a personal project photographing a way to give the Pentagram Paper a gc: how do you think readers will react to the I was asked by the other Pentagram Partners to homeless people in Austin. His main reason for being. book? do a Pentagram Paper. The Pentagram Papers access to the homeless people was I’m not really sure. I know it made some of my are little black books that we have published for through Mobile Loaves & Fishes. gc: how did you approach the partners uncomfortable when I first presented it over 35 years, and although they are on a variety I knew of Mobile Loaves & Fishes design of this book? to them. of topics, they tend to be mostly about visual and their charismatic leader Alan The pacing of homeless portraits subject matter like Kimonos and folk art mail Graham through my two boys who and signs is very intertwined. I like gc: what’s the most important message you boxes or collectible items like architectural toys had ridden on the food trucks with the way that the verbal messages on hope the book conveys? or buttons from the U.S.S.R. But I come from an the group a dozen times to feed the the hand-scrawled signs work when I hope that it will make people think about the editorial background, so I envisioned something homeless. I had actually gone with combined with the faces of the world that we live in. GC on the state of our society; I wanted it to be rel- them two or three times and I found people. evant to what is going on now. it to be a very meaningful and fulfill- I had heard through a friend that Joe Ely had ing way to help people that are less a collection of homeless signs. I met Joe at his fortunate. I thought that Michael’s house to look at his signs, and that’s when he portraits were powerful and that told me the story of how he had been homeless they would add human faces to for about eight years or so when he jumped on a Joe’s collection of hand-scrawled freight train heading out of Lubbock. Because of signs. It is a great collaboration for his fascination and compassion for the homeless me because these are all friends and men and women he encountered along the way, extremely talented people who I he began to pay them for their hand-written greatly admire who have come to- signs. gether for a greater good. I thought Joe’s sign collection and his story was an interesting way to raise awareness on the gc: why did you decide to make current state of homelessness in our society. To this a fundraiser? me the homeless sign-holders are doing what I wanted this Pentagram Paper to graphic designers do but at its most basic level. have a purpose. Throwing a book I asked Randal Ford to photograph the signs release party to give out the Pen- and then I discovered that another friend of tagram Papers and then asking for mine, Michael O’Brien, had been working on donations in exchange seemed like I MORE INFO SEE PHOTOS from WATCH A VIdEO of Joe Ely - sign “SIGNS” is available for a suggested donation of $20 to Mobile Loaves the launch party collector - playing at the launch party. & Fishes. FINd OUT MORE by emailing howdy@texas.pentagram.com 01 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 46 47 GC BLOG
    • Austin Area Research Organization Lance Armstrong Foundations Austin Children’s Shelter Leadership Austin Austin Habitat for Humanity LifeWorks click here Austin Pets Alive! LIVESTRONG RESOURcES AustinEcoNetwork March of Dimes NPoS iN Ballet Austin Meals on Wheels and More thiS iSSUE Big Brothers Big Sisters Mobile Loaves and Fishes Capital Area Food Bank Muscular Dystrophy Association Capital City Kids NetImpact Austin Casa Marianella Operation Turkey Central Texas Goodwill ParentRise Austin Area Interreligious Church of Glad Tidings Pet Therapy Ministries Hispanic Ministries River City Youth Foundation A Glimmer of Hope DiscoverHope Fund SafePlace A Legacy of Giving Down Syndrome Association of Seedling Foundation Africa Renewal Ministries Central Texas Seton Forum Alzheimer’s Association Girls Giving Grants Shoes for Austin Capital of Texas Chapter Hands on Central Texas American Cancer Society Happy Youth American Heart Heart of Texas Lab Rescue Association Hill Country Conservancy Any Baby Can Idealist Austin Academy Be a part of GivingCity about the reader about the magazine advertising with us contact us GivingCity targets the GivingCity is a locally produced Finally you can reach the Send us an email to send GivingCity philanthropy community magazine about philanthropy Austinites who care most or download our including major donors, and volunteering. Our mission about giving back to our media kit. board members, young is to inspire, inform, connect, community - without fighting professionals and recognize donors and other businesses and events organizations, arts philanthropists - novice and for attention. patrons and other experienced - and raise Let us help you connect with community leaders awareness about the needs of to a friend the clientele that invests the and decision makers. Central Texans. most in Austin nonprofits, By enlisting the best reporters businesses, and causes. and photographers, GivingCity aims to tell the stories about the people who do good in our community. 01 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 46 47 GC BLOG