Philanthropic Finesse

Home » 2017 » August

Monthly Archives: August 2017

A Philanthropist Speaks: Conversation with Liz Thompson

“Get in the car and drive two miles and let’s help the kids on the other side of the city of Chicago.  In addition to being a global city, let’s be a local city…Don and I have decided to focus our philanthropy right here at home.  If other people want to give globally, that’s wonderful. We applaud that because we need it. We are Chicagoans first.”

Liz Thompson, president of Cleveland Avenue Foundation for Education

Generally speaking, Americans believe philanthropy is giving money to help the needy.  Period. I argue that there is so much more to philanthropy than donating money and Liz Thompson helps me make this case.

I met Liz earlier this month with the goal of her sharing her experience as a philanthropist.  Hearing the master speak taught me that I have not met many philanthropists. Donors, yes. True philanthropists, not so much.  Liz and her husband Don epitomize what it means to be philanthropists.  Their humble beginnings and their ability to take advantage of opportunities paved the way for them to pay it forward.  My hope is that you are wiser, empowered and more optimistic about our future after listening to my conversation with Liz.

Here are additional links to the podcast:

Liz Thompson on SoundCloud

Liz Thompson on iTunes

As Black Philanthropy Month 2017 concludes on August 31st, continue to support the organizations whose missions speak to you 365 days a year.  Make financial contributions, volunteer your time, and share your expertise.

August 30, 2017




A Look at Corporate Giving During Black Philanthropy Month

“What’s really impactful to me is meeting with the individuals served by the organization…I can look at an application and it’s very different to read on paper what an organization is doing versus seeing it live and in action. And that’s what’s important. It very much personalizes the work the organization is doing and our potential partnership with an organization.”

-JeNyce Boolton, Vice President, Community Relations Manager, U.S. Bank

Black Philanthropy Month is in full swing and this week I am giving voice to fuel change! JeNyce Boolton, community relations manager at U.S. Bank in Chicago and I recently had a conversation about corporate philanthropy.  We talked about U.S. Bank’s giving priorities, especially as they relate to the African-American community.  U.S. Bank emphasizes funding for economic development through its Community Possible program and its three pillars: work, home and play.  JeNyce also gives us valuable insight into the overall corporate philanthropy landscape and U.S. Bank’s commitment to communities of color.  If you are affiliated with a community based nonprofit organization you will find this Corporate Philanthropy with Je’Nyce Boolton podcast to be a valuable resource. The iTunes podcast can be found here.

For more information on U.S. Bank’s Community Possible grant program, click on the link here: U.S. Bank Community Possible

You may contact JeNyce Boolton at

The business of business should not be about money. It should be about responsibility. It should be about public good, not private greed.

– Anita Roddick, Founder, Body Shop

Follow Philanthropic Finesse on Twitter: @PhilanthropicFi and FB: Philanthropic Finesse

August 23, 2017

Conversation with Dr. Jackie Copeland-Carson, Founder of Black Philanthropy Month

August is Black Philanthropy Month (BPM).  The BPM movement strives to encourage and mobilize people of African-American and African heritage to get informed, involved, inspired and invested in giving back to our communities. The movement is recognized in 20 U.S. cities. The BPM theme for 2017 is Giving Voice to Fuel Change.
For Black Philanthropy Month 2017, I am giving voice to African-Americans leading the charge in giving back and facilitating philanthropy in Black communities and in the greater society.
Click on one of the interview links below to hear Dr. Jackie Copeland-Carson, the founder of Black Philanthropy Month, offer an impassioned and well-studied perspective of philanthropy during our conversation. This interview and others like it will be aired on Wednesdays at 4:00PM CST on SSW Radio 88.5FM  through the end of August.
For the more information on the BPM movement and ways to get involved during Black Philanthropy Month and beyond, check out these sites.
Huffington Post Black Philanthropy Series
African Immigrant Innovations in 21st Century Giving by Mojubaolu Olufunke Okome and Jackie CopelandCarson with Foreword by Una Osili
Pan-African Women’s Philanthropy Network
The Freedman’s Bureau Transcription Project
August 11, 2017
%d bloggers like this: