AGM Welcomes New Members to its Western Mass Funders Group:
- Berkshire Life Charitable Foundation
- Berkshire Taconic Community Foundation
- Beveridge Family Foundation
- Peace Development Fund
- Peoples Bank
- United Way of Hampshire County
The Western Mass Funders Group is an informal group of funders who come together on an every-other month basis to share information, exchange best practices and educate each other on funding priorities. The group also uses the time to educate ourselves on salient issues that emerge in our communities that warrant study or attention. In addition to these new members, the Western Mass Funders Group already includes Berkshire Bank Foundation, Capital Campaign Scheduling Co., Community Foundation of Western Massachusetts, Irene E. and George A. Davis Foundation, Harold Grinspoon Charitable Trust, Mass Foundation for the Humanities, MassMutual Life Insurance Co., United Bank/United Bank Foundation, United Way of Pioneer Valley, Westfield Bank, Women's Fund of Western MA.
New Compensation Report Provides Data for Small to Medium Sized Nonprofits
Third Sector New England has released preliminary findings from Valuing Our Nonprofit Workforce 2010: A Compensation Survey of and for Nonprofits in Massachusetts and Adjoining Communities, providing, in many cases, a first glimpse at data on pay for staff at small to medium sized nonprofit organization in the survey area. TSNE worked with nonprofit and foundation partners from the region, including Associated Grant Makers, to survey nonprofits from Massachusetts and communities bordering the state. More than 30,000 people are employed by the 202 nonprofit nonprofits that completed the survey. Data collected was compiled on over 24,000 individual salaries and categorized into 131 job titles. England. View Report (PDF)
Resources for Disaster Grant Making
Just a reminder that AGM has a Disaster Relief Resources page to assist members and colleagues with guidance on providing funding and support for global and local disasters.
IRS extends filing deadline for small charities
The Internal Revenue Service extended the filing deadline for charities at risk of losing their tax-exempt status to October 15, 2010.
IRS Commissioner’s statement on extending filing deadline to October 15 for small charities
More information on nonprofit filing requirements
The National Center for Charitable Statistics at the Urban Institute has provided a portal to the IRS Business Master File where you can download the Massachusetts list. You may also download an Excel spreadsheet of the Massachusetts list below.
AGM Names New Executive Director
The board of directors and the executive search committee of Associated Grant Makers are pleased to announce Jeffrey Poulos will take the helm as the new Executive Director of Associated Grant Makers. Read press release
When sudden events such as the earthquakes in Haiti, Chile and China strike, even philanthropy - often characterized by its deliberative processes and careful speed - can now "turn on a dime," and with these recent tragedies, the philanthropic field demonstrated a range of creative, quick, and thoughtful approaches to raising money, and creating both short- and long-term funds to deal with the massive ramifications of these events.
In AGM's latest member enewsletter, Issues & Insights, we take a look at the ways in which philanthropy reacts to moments of crisis and opportunity. With the earthquake in Haiti as a prime example, we see how local philanthropists took new approaches, and created new vehicles to respond to a disaster of unimaginable magnitude. Throughout all the original articles, you will hear a call to respectfully include the voices of those who are at the heart of any crisis' impact.
Below is an excerpt from this issue with a link to the full article.
AGM Members have access to the entire enewsletter online. How to join AGM.
Building Community in a Crisis The Haiti Relief and Reconstruction Fund at The Boston Foundation
In January, Jim and Karen Keating Ansara made a commitment to Haiti and a challenge to the people of Boston. With The Boston Foundation’s assistance, they created the Haiti Relief and Reconstruction Fund, pledging $1 million dollars of their personal money and calling upon the local community to match it. Read the full article.
Jennifer Lammers joins AGM as Director of Member Programs and Service
As a trainer, consultant and principal at The Philanthropy Hub, Jenn brings an in-depth knowledge of the sector and a passion for achieving results to her work with foundations and nonprofit organizations. Read press release
AGM elects new Board Members
On June 16th AGM held its 41st Annual Meeting of Members at the Exchange Conference Center in Boston. AGM welcomed new Board Members to the Executive Committee and Board: Jean Whitney from the Carl and Ruth Shapiro Foundation as Vice Chair, Mark Paley from The Hyams Foundation as Treasurer, and Jeffery Hayward, United Way of Massachusetts Bay & Merrimack Valley as an At-Large Member; along with new Board Members: Heidi Brooks, Citizens Bank, Andrew Cox-Stavros, Third Sector New England, Nancy Gardiner, Jane's Trust, Ann McQueen, The Boston Foundation, and Orlando Watkins, BELL. View full Board list
The meeting began with a keynote by Andrew Bagley, Director of Research and Public Affairs, Massachusetts Taxpayers Foundation, who was followed by a lively panel discussion with Massachusetts State Representative Charles Murphy, House Ways & Means Committee, Marilyn Chase, Assistant Secretary, Office of Children, Youth, and Families, Massachusetts Department of Health and Human Services, and Elaine Ng, Executive Director, Boston Chinatown Neighborhood Center. Members participated in workshops in the afternoon focusing on funders’ role in public policy and public debate, how to safely fund advocacy and public policy projects and information resources. AGM’s new Executive Director, Jeffrey Poulos, was also on hand to meet and greet Members throughout the event.
Disaster Relief Resources Available
Although weeks have passed since the Haiti and Chile eartquakes, assitance is still needed to deal with immediate needs as well as develop plans for future recovery and restructuring. AGM has posted additional resources on its Disaster Relief Resource page
. If your organization is providing any programs to assist in this effort please let us know.
RCP Changes Effective
Just a reminder, as part of our strategic planning process to streamline and refine our services for our Members and Partners, AGM closed the Resource Center for Philanthropy (RCP) to public access as of January 1, 2010. (Click here to see RCP alternatives). Grant making Members and our Nonprofit Partners continue to be able to come in and use the databases and resources in the library but we are no longer be open to the general public. This change enables AGM to better serve our Members and Partners and to increase the range and depth of information available through our website.
We look forward to continue bringing quality services to our grant making Members and nonprofit Partners.
If you are not an AGM Member or Partner, consider joining AGM to receive the benefits of membership.
Nonprofits need to focus on mission and improve efficiencies
As election season iprogresses, foundations and nonprofit organizations need to be aware of the rules regarding electioneering. Encouraging voter registration and advocating for issues that are important to the nonprofit sector are generally permissible. However, focusing on a candidate rather than an issue falls into electioneering, and even if you focus on issues, there may be some boundaries you need to watch AGM has compiled a list of resources on to help your organization determine what is legal, safe and good-to-do during election season.
Selected Electioneering Resources
Alliance for Justice has a range of publications for nonprofits and foundations about what is permissible.
IRS fact sheet on electioneering for nonprofits (including foundations).
IRS publication that gives 21 examples of what does and doesn’t constitute electioneering.
Will the MA Recovery Plan affect you?
Governor Patrick has unveiled a plan to secure Massachusetts’ economic future that will integrate federal, state and private resources to produce immediate relief and long-term solutions for our state. Massachusetts expects to receive between $6 and $9 billion in federal stimulus funds, plus additional funds through tax benefits and competitive grant programs. It is estimated that these resources will save or create more than 79,000 jobs in Massachusetts over the next two years, provide tax cuts to working families, and help to protect essential state services. AGM has compiled a Resource Page with links to articles, analysis of what communities will receive funds, what projects will be funded and related AGM program offerings for your reference.
Strategies to survive the economic crisis
AGM is listening to you! As part of our mission to support responsible and effective philanthropy, AGM is hosting a series of convenings and discussion opportunities for our grant making Members and nonprofit Partners to talk about the impact of the economic downturn on the nonprofit sector, and what innovative approaches and resources are available to support the work of the charitable sector.
AGM Celebrates its 40th Anniversary!
On June 3, 2009, over 200 people gathered to celebrate Associated Grant Makers’ 40th Anniversary at the Back Bay Center in Boston. The occasion was marked with reminiscences, reflections on the current economic and philanthropic landscapes, and thoughts of the future for the voluntary and nonprofit sectors.
In the first part of the program, the invited speakers, Janet C. Taylor (Managing Trustee, C. F. Adams Charitable Trust), Kathy McHugh (Executive Director, Cabot Family Charitable Trust), Gale Druga (Associate Director of Foundation & Corporate Relations, HEARTH), walked guests through the history of AGM and the impact AGM services have had on the philanthropic community.
The second part of the program was a moderated discussion by Pam Cross (reporter and weekend anchor, WCVB Channel 5) with Susan and Alan Solomont, local and national activists and philanthropists. The Solomonts discussed their personal approaches to philanthropy and volunteerism, emphasizing the importance of being engaged in your community and with the organizations you support. They pointed to the exciting trends of young people’s increasing civic engagement such as the tripling of AmeriCorps applications this year. Also, the ways in which the philanthropic landscape is changing as the millennial generation comes into the workforce and positions of responsibility.
Read more coverage of the event
Note: A podcast of the event will be posted in the next few days.
Foundations and Nonprofits come together to strategize how to survive the economic crisis
With only standing-room available, over 400 grant makers and nonprofit organizations listened to a panel discussion in January at the Back Bay Events Center. The panel discussion provided the attendees with much to consider as they brainstormed strategies in smaller breakout groups on how to maneuver through these difficult economic times.
View small group discussion feedback report
View meeting highlights
Listen to the audio podcast of the event
Boston Business Journal Non-profit leaders see "Darwinian" times
massnonprofit.org Coverage Mass. Nonprofit Leaders Say Nonprofits Need to Act Boldly
The Economic Crisis –Centralized Information Resources for Funders and Nonprofits
Massachusetts to cut $700 million from State Budget. Turbulent Waters. Uncertainty Looms for the Nonprofit Sector. A Rollercoaster. Pick your headline, pick your metaphor, no matter where you look these days, it is clear that the philanthropic and nonprofit sectors are facing both greater uncertainty and greater demand for services than we have for a very long time. AGM remains committed to providing you with key policy and news developments, and also provide links to resources and innovative ideas for both funders and nonprofits.
View News and Resources Page
Massachusetts may be hardest-hit by Madoff scandal
Many local area nonprofit organizations and foundations have suffered great financial losses due to investments in the Bernard Madoff companies.
Among those affected, the Robert I. Lappin Charitable Foundation in Salem, MA and The Carl and Ruth Shapiro Family Foundation, which lost almost half its money, or about $145 million, to Madoff. According to an article in the Bloomberg News, Boston charities may be most impacted. “As a percentage of the population and significance of the charities involved, Boston was hardest-hit,” said Mark T. Williams, a professor at Boston University School of Management and a former Federal Reserve bank examiner.
Read full Bloomberg News article
Other related stories:
Madoff scandal hits Boston-area research labs, life science foundations
Ripples of Madoff scandal spread everywhere
Major foundation falls to Madoff fraud
Tufts loses $20 million in Madoff scandal
Could You Lose Money in the Madoff Scandal?
The Ripple Effect of the Mortgage Foreclosure Crisis
Headlines in the daily papers, nightly news and online news services continue to demonstrate the unprecedented turmoil caused by the home mortgage foreclosure crisis. In January, home foreclosures in Massachusetts alone climbed 128% from the numbers reported last year. As the crisis deepens, The Center for Responsible Lending forecasts that nationally 2.2 million families will experience foreclosure over the next few years. This follows in the wake of more than 1.2 million foreclosure filings in 2006.
The ripple effect of the financial market decline is being seen in such areas as the educational loan assistance programs and fundraising for charitable organizations. Recently, the Massachusetts Educational Financing Authority (MEFA), announced it will suspend all Federal education loans as of July 1 due to the financial market turmoil.
Read full article
Today’s mortgage crisis is not a simple story, nor is there a simple solution. In April, AGM offered a Funders Briefing on the Mortgage Foreclosure Crisis. AGM Members came together to discuss the multiple levels of this issue as well as the multiple solutions needed to improve these conditions.
In addition, AGM dedicated its quarterly e-newsletter, Issues & Insights, to the Mortgage Crisis. In this issue, we hear from government agencies, area nonprofits and partners about how they are dealing with the crisis and working together to help reach out to borrowers in distress and stabilize communities in danger. Through innovative new programs, advocacy for new legislation, and one-on-one counseling support, our nonprofits are creating new relationships and working together in tandem with state and local governments to address this rapidly expanding issue.
Find out how we are dealing with this crisis locally. Here are quick links to the articles.
AGM will continue to keep you posted on this important issue affecting our communities. If you have any questions or would like more information about the AGM Funders Briefing please contact Miki Akimoto.
Celebrate Corporate Philanthropy Day
February 25 was National Corporate Philanthropy Day. Corporate foundations, giving programs and volunteer initiatives are vital contributors to the well-being and enhancements of our communities. Massachusetts-based corporate foundations and giving programs contributed more than $150,000,000 in 2005.
AGM supports our corporate members through conferences, roundtables, and other resources that target the needs of corporate philanthropy professionals.
To celebrate the achievements of our corporate members, AGM hosted a Corporate Philanthropy Roundtable on February 25 to highlight successful partnerships between corporations and community programs. We partnered with the Massachusetts Business Roundtable for this event.
Learn more about the innovative and supportive relationships that AGM’s corporate members have developed with local nonprofits:
Bill Requiring Diversity Data Collection and Reporting in California
On January 29, 2008 the California Assembly passed AB 624, a bill that would require foundations (private, public operating, and corporate) with assets of greater than $250 million to disclose the race/ethnicity, gender and sexual orientation of their boards and staff, as well as collect and report data for how many and what percentage of total grant dollars were awarded to organizations where at least 50% of the board and staff are members of ethnic minorities, lesbians, gays, bisexual, and/or transgendered individuals. Further, these foundations would be required to report a breakdown of the number of grants and percentage of dollars that go to organizations that serve different ethnic groups or sexual orientations, as well as the percentage of contracts awarded to businesses owned by members of those groups. The bill now goes to the California Senate.
There has been, not surprisingly, a strong opposition to this bill from the California grantmaking community.
* The three California Regional Associations of Grantmakers, and the Council on Foundations all oppose this measure. The COF press release about their positions.
* The Nonprofit & Unincorporated Organizations Committee of the Business Law Section of the State Bar Association of California also opposed the bill, on grounds that included privacy concerns, and this was prior to a later amendment that added collecting data on the sexual orientation of staff, trustees and grantees of foundations.
While many foundations, leaders and associations in philanthropy recognize that, historically, there have been a disproportionately small percentage of grants and dollars awarded to communities of color, the GLBT community and other under-served populations, there is significant concern that this bill is not the most useful approach to addressing this disparity. Further, there are significant concerns about the invasion of personal privacy of foundation and nonprofit staff and trustees, and finally, about the administrative burdens this bill will impose.
It is worth noting that the impetus for this bill came from the Greenlining Institute studies, Fairness in Philanthropy.
* The Chronicle of Philanthropy has written about the bill and its potential impact.
* The Assembly’s analysis of the bill.
* Op-ed published in Los Angeles time, the President and Vice President of Community Advocates opposed the bill.
As of yet, AGM has not seen anything to suggest that other states are considering this type of action. However, we will continue to monitor the situation in California, as well as to see if other areas of the country begin to consider similar legislation.
Funders are looking... will you be there?
New search tool helps grant makers find nonprofits.
AGM announces the release of the first searchable database of nonprofit organizations in the region. The NonProfit Directory (NPD) characterizes AGM’s Nonprofits by mission, service area , population, and geographic focus. The NPD provides a searchable database so that grant makers can search for and locate nonprofit organizations. Nonprofit Partners will also be able to search for and check out their competition and/or other organizations to partner with.
If you are a Partner or Member, you can search the NPD. Partners can learn how to add their organization here.
Disaster Grantmaking Resources
As Nicaragua and Honduras face the landfall of Hurricane Felix, and other parts of the Caribbean and Central America continue to clean up after the damage of Hurricane Dean, we know that many of you will be looking for ways to be helpful and respond to the needs of affected areas. As you think about the response you may want to make to these humanitarian crises, we wanted to provide some links to information that may be useful in helping to guide your thinking and donations.
The Council on Foundations/European Foundation Centre publication Disaster Relief: A Practical Guide for Foundations and Corporations
Foundation News and Commentary article, “Legal FAQs on Disaster Grantmaking”
Guidelines for Appropriate International Disaster Donations (Center for International Disaster Information)
Publication Disaster Relief: Providing Assistance through Charitable Organizations
Click here for a look at how foundations have responded to other natural disasters.
AGM's 38th Annual Meeting Connected Old Friends and New Features
The 38th Annual AGM Annual Meeting on June 19 kicked off to a great start with a lively and engaging keynote address by Kathleen Enright, Executive Director of Grantmakers for Effective Organizations (GEO). Kathleen presented the results of a GEO study about what changes grantmakers could make to most effectively support their grantees.
Download AGM's 2007 Annual Report
If you would like a hard copy of AGM's Annual Report, please email Gail Pinkham.
IRS Releases Major Revision of Form 990
Friday, June 15, the IRS released a draft of a major revision of the Form 990, which many tax-exempt organizations must file annually with the IRS and make available to the public. The new draft proposes significant changes to the ways in which public charities and other exempt organizations will report information on finances, fundraising activities, governance, executive and board compensation, and program services. The IRS has not proposed changes to the Form 990-PF.
The IRS is now asking for comments on the form. In order to have a new form available for use in Fiscal Year 2008, the IRS must complete its revisions before the end of this year. Because of this tight schedule, the public comment period is scheduled to close on September 14. It is critical that organizations provide thoughtful feedback on the draft to ensure that any new form is useful and relevant for our own organizations, for government officials responsible for oversight and enforcement, and for the donating public. Independent Sector is therefore asking all of our members to share their reactions to the draft to inform the comments we will submit to the IRS. IS will post an analysis of the new Form 990 on our website next week. More information.
AGM Corporate Philanthropy Conference: Smart. Simple. Strategic. March 30, 2007 at
Babson Executive Conference Center
Over 100 attendees participated in first annual Corporate Philanthropy Conference: Smart. Simple. Strategic hosted by Associated Grant Makers at the Babson Executive Conference Center on March 30, 2007. The day long conference offered 13 workshops and keynote presentations from Stephen Alder, CEO of Charity Brands Marketing and Bert Jacobs, co-founder and Chief Executive Optimist of Life is good, Inc.
Hurricane Katrina Reports and Responses
There are a growing number of analyses
and reports about the impact of Katrina and recommendations from
advocacy and research groups. View sampling
of these analyses and reports.
Hurrican Katrina Responses
Immediate Responses/National Responders
Long-term Responses/Local Gulf
Massachusetts Responds to Hurricane Katrina
Several AGM members have made contributions toward Katrina
relief and recovery. Please click on the names below for details
on these grants and contributions:
Boston Globe Foundation (New York
Massachusetts Bar Foundation
Middlesex Savings Bank
Brown, Under Secretary of Homeland Security for Emergency Preparedness
and Response, head of the Federal Emergency Management Agency
(FEMA) August 29, 2005
New Study Released Confirms Higher Participation Rates
in Overall Giving by New Englanders
New national research reveals that New Englanders not
only participate more frequently in charitable giving than their
counterparts across the country, but they also give to secular
(non-religious) causes at significantly higher levels. Specifically,
the study, A Closer Look at New England Giving (November
- Eighty-two percent (82%) of New England households gave to
a charitable cause (either secular or religious) in 2002, compared
to 67% of households nationally.
- New Englanders who give at all to secular causes give a much
higher amount (average of $1,190) compared with giving to secular
causes nationwide (average of $863).
- New Englanders who give at all to religious causes give much
less (average of $918) compared with national religious donors
(average of $1,743).
The study was commissioned from the Center on Philanthropy and
co-funded by organizations in the six New England States: Associated
Grant Makers (Massachusetts), Connecticut Council for Philanthropy,
Maine Center for Philanthropy, New Hampshire Charitable Foundation,
Rhode Island Foundation and Vermont Community Foundation.
Read Press Release
A Closer Look at New England Giving Report
Extreme Makeover for AGM Grant Makers Directory Database
New Resource for Engaging Young
People in Family Foundations
Local responses to Tsunami Relief
Relief Donation Bill Approved