RE: Philanthropy Blog

Special Women’s History Month Post Featuring Ford and W.K. Kellogg Foundations Grantee Women’s Enews

Today, the Council on Foundations is releasing its 2014 Grantmakers Salary and Benefits Report. The most comprehensive source on national foundation staff composition and compensation, the report provides us with an opportunity for self-reflection about our individual management practices. It also serves as a stark reminder of the demographic changes the country and field are experiencing.

Labor turnover is a hidden, but very real, cost of doing business. It could mean overtime costs to the firm until a new employee is hired and working up to speed. There are also direct costs of hiring someone new—the personnel department costs, advertising, interviewing, training, and the costs of an employment agency or a search firm. In west central Minnesota, West Central Initiative (WCI) has possibly discovered a new way to reduce these costs. Through its Workforce 2020 program WCI is providing funds to support skills training for employees in manufacturing firms.

Last week a member of U.S. Senator Susan Collins’ staff called to ask for my help. Senator Collins, who is the ranking member of the Senate Special Committee on Aging, was launching a newsletter focused on the issue of aging. She wanted to be sure to cover the most important and interesting topics in Maine, which has one of the oldest populations of any U.S. state.

Last week, the Lumina Foundation released a new report, “A Stronger Nation Through Higher Education,” the fourth of its kind to track progress against its ambitious mission for 60 percent of Americans to hold high-quality degrees, certificates, or other postsecondary credentials by 2025.

Stephanie Powers

Inspirational and aspirational is how I would describe Building a More Inclusive Workforce: A National Summit to Boost Education and Employment Outcomes for People with Disabilities, held last Friday in Wilmington, Del.

Science, technology, engineering, and math—the “STEM” subjects—are an important focus of philanthropic institutions trying to address educational and economic disparities between girls and boys.

Telluride, Colo., a picturesque historical mining town perched just below 9,000 feet in the San Juan Mountains, has a rich history of innovation, invention, and reinvention. The well-known collaboration between LL Nunn, Nikola Telsa, and George Westinghouse in 1891 forever changed the delivery of energy. The mining era transformed the region into an economic engine that produced hundreds of millions of dollars in economic activity and employed thousands. And the 1970s and 1980s brought about the region’s transformation into a world-class skiing and tourism destination.

Our world has become increasingly dependent upon content to attract people’s attention. This content ranges from blogs on the Internet to television shows. Due to global shifts in our economy, economic developers have to work harder to attract companies and individual entrepreneurs. What used to be local efforts to attract job creators from neighboring cities and regions has shifted to competition with states located across the United States and foreign countries.

On Monday, DRF announced a $10 million grant to fund an entrepreneurship initiative to benefit the residents of the City of Danville and Pittsylvania County in Virginia and Caswell County in North Carolina, the foundation’s Dan River Region footprint. In a global economy, investment in those who create businesses is essential. The Dan River Region is emerging from a depressed economy brought about by the exodus of the tobacco and textile economy on which it thrived for over a century.