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Friday
Dec192014

The Most Interesting Foundations, 2014

Here's our list of the funders we found most interesting to watch and write about over the past year. It includes some of the biggest players in the foundation world, along with little outfits you've never heard of.

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Thursday
Dec182014

The Philanthropy of Stargazing: We're In a New Golden Age of Mega Telescope Projects

The biggest telescopes ever are now under construction. And while they are too big for any one private donor or foundation to fund, philanthropy is playing a key role in enabling humans to look deeper into space.

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Thursday
Dec182014

After Two Decades of Fighting Youth Incarceration, Has Casey's Moment Arrived?

Starting in the early 1990s, Annie E. Casey zeroed in on the tragedy of kids getting sucked into a cycle of incarceration and invested in strategies to prevent this. Now, finally, the tide has been turning.

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Thursday
Dec182014

Rupert Murdoch and Philanthropy: Will a Legendary "Scrooge" Change his Ways?  

Murdoch's mother was a noted philanthropist, and his son James is now giving seriously. But the charity gene seemingly skipped a generation, and we're not yet seeing signs of major giving by Rupert, 83, on the horizon.

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Thursday
Dec182014

Okay, We Hear You: Google Steps Up Focus on Bay Area Poverty

It turns out that staging sitdowns in front of Google shuttle buses doesn't go unnoticed. The company has been scrambling to show concern about inequity in the Bay Area. Who's getting the new grant money?

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Wednesday
Dec172014

Behind the Doris Duke Foundation's Recent "Fund for National Projects" Give

If your arts organization has an idea that could benefit your fellow nonprofit compatriots, don't keep it to yourself. And if you need help getting the word out—in the form of, say, money—Doris Duke may be happy to oblige.

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Wednesday
Dec172014

Can Innovation Help the Poor Escape from Payday Lenders? Ford Thinks So

Innovative actors have turned so many corners of American life upside down lately. Ford is betting a million bucks that this dynamic energy can also provide the poor with products to help them build wealth.

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Wednesday
Dec172014

About That Big Genome Give to Washington University: Longstanding Ties, Personal Pain

This story of a $25 million gift involves a family's deep ties to St. Louis and its premier university, as well as the death of a child from cancer over forty years ago. We dissect the lessons.

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Tuesday
Dec162014

The Reverse Ask Nightmare: "On Second Thought, Can I Have My Money Back?"

More unhappy donors are asking for a return of their donated funds as they discover that their money is not being used as they intended. Here are a few thoughts on how to avoid that kind of train wreck.

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Tuesday
Dec162014

Meet Some of the Most Generous Entertainment Moguls

While actors often take center stage, it's the studio and television owners and executives that have the truly deep pockets. Which explains why we're starting to see a new generation of entertainment philanthropists.

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Tuesday
Dec162014

This Ed Giant is Still Going Strong, Pulling Big Grants His Way

James Comer's holistic approach to improving education is not exactly in vogue among many ed reformers these days. But he has powerful allies in the funding world, including the Kellogg Foundation.

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Monday
Dec152014

How Rockefeller Aims to Harness Globalization to Lift Young Workers in Africa

Outsourcing may be a dirty word in rich countries, but the foundation sees "impact sourcing" as a a key way to bring jobs to young people in Africa. And it just gave $2 million give to a key NGO working in this niche.

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Monday
Dec152014

Why Are Certain Neighborhoods Ideal Candidates for Creative Placemaking Funding?

Creative placemaking is red hot, and seeks to improve the economic fortunes of depressed areas. But where and why do foundations like Kresge open their checkbooks? Here are some patterns we're seeing.

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Monday
Dec152014

Meet the Funders Behind the First Five Years Fund

President Obama's announcement of a new campaign to expand early childhood education puts the spotlight on the major funders in this area and how some big new money is coming onto the scene.

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Monday
Dec152014

This Donor Is Furious at a University. But Can He Pull the Plug on His Big Pledge?

After the University of Illinois hired a former radical with a criminal past, a major donor decided he wouldn't make good on $6.5 million in pledged support. Things aren't so simple, though.

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Monday
Dec152014

After Years in the Trenches, Is This Ed Group Going to Break Out?

For every success like Teach for America that catches fire and raises the big bucks, there are myriad smaller outfits that struggle to get to scale. What does the future hold for Say Yes to Education?

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Friday
Dec122014

Northrop Grumman Does K-12 STEM Ed Both Nationally and Locally

Northrop Grumman is another big aerospace and defense company that's keen on developing STEM talent, and it focuses its efforts at the K-12 level. But there are a few key things to know about how its grants flow.

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Friday
Dec122014

Funders Love This Nonprofit Helping to Remake Cleveland’s Public Spaces

If you want a great case study of the creative energy and money behind urban parks, Cleveland is a good place to look. There, an outfit called LAND Studios is raking in cash and making big things happen.

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Friday
Dec122014

Can Philadelphia Dance Companies Survive Without the Penn Foundation?

Dance groups in Philadelphia have their work cut out for them, thanks to a devastating funding cut from the William Penn Foundation. Is this the end of dance in Philadelphia? No, but it's a rougher road ahead.

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Friday
Dec122014

Which Pritzker Just Kicked In $25M For Early Childhood Education? 

More funders are now jumping into early childhood education. But Hyatt heir J.B. Pritzker has been on this case for a while, establishing himself as one of the leading philanthropists in the country on these issues.

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