Excellence in Philanthropy

Interview with Carrie and John Morgridge

These enthusiastic donors believe every gift matters. 

The 99 Percent

The news in December that Mark Zuckerberg and Priscilla Chan have decided to give away 99 percent of their Facebook stock by the end of their lives impressed many Americans. The couple are in excellent company.

Toy Store Glee

Carol Suchman was walking in New York City when she came upon a local toy store that had gone out of business. “The toys in there looked so sad, and they were gathering dust,” she said. “It occurred to me we should bring those toys to where they should be going.” To needy kids.

How Philanthropy Fuels American Success

This exclusive excerpt from The Almanac of American Philanthropy details how America's deep culture of private giving keeps our nation thriving. 

A Modern Barnraising in Boiling Springs

A South Carolina high-school community was determined to "give a home" to faithful, "always been there" custodian of 20 years after her home burned to the ground. 

The Art of Public-Policy Philanthropy: The Battle of Ideas

Featuring Kim Dennis, Gara LaMarche, Roger Hertog, and Chris DeMuth. 

The Texas Miracle wasn’t just economic; it was philanthropic

Texas stereotypes may conjure up plains and cattle but, as in the rest of the country, most of Texas’s population and wealth resides in the cities. And those cities have recently become some of the most philanthropic places on earth.

Nonprofit Spotlight: Food For Life

Students learn good habits plus culinary skills at Food For Life. 

25 Ways to Strengthen America

From investing in think tanks to enabling veterans to apply their leadership, here are 25 ways that funders can strengthen our free society through their charitable giving.

Laying Foundations for Change

Who says bricks-and-mortar philanthropy isn’t effective?

Interview with Bruce Kovner

Trading titan Bruce Kovner has focused his philanthropy on free-market think tanks, arts (especially music organizations), and school-reform advocacy. 

Charity Science Research 2, Death 0

Johns Hopkins ­University scientist Jonathan Ling wanted to set the record straight. He wanted to know whether the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge, which raised $115 million for disease research in six weeks back in 2014 (and then tens of millions more in repeat donations since), actually accomplished anything.

Almanac of American Philanthropy video preview

We know that philanthropy in America is a bursting, bubbling impulse that has vital effects on almost every sector of our society. In this lively talk, widely published author Karl Zinsmeister goes even further, arguing that without philanthropy there would be no America as we know it—and explaining why.

Higher Ed, Lower Costs

An e-learning entrepreneur brings cut-rate practical degrees to far-flung corners of the world. 

Asking Tough Questions

The William E. Simon Prize for Philanthropic Leadership honors David Weekley: homebuilder, charity-grower, and hard-nosed inquisitor

Something Out of Nothing

It is said that necessity is the mother of invention. And invention is the father of philanthropy, because it creates the wealth that enables great generosity. Now a dazzling new book uncovers philanthropy’s grandparentage.

Racing Against Cancer

Jockey Victor Espinoza netted about $80,000 when his mount American Pharoah swept the ­Triple Crown of horseracing this year. But Espinoza handed his historic winnings, in their entirety, away to charity. 

From Big Success to Local Succor

How one donor found satisfaction in helping a unique community. 

Nonprofit Spotlight: Birch Community Services

Birch Community Services gives away food and asks for life-change in return. 

Books in Brief

The Paradox of Generosity presents data showing that givers are kinder to their neighbors, find themselves in better health, report having a strong life purpose, and generally describe themselves as “very happy.”

Donors Who Come to the Aid of Their Country

National defense may seem like the last place philanthropy could have a role. Here’s some little-known history to make you think again.

Juma Ventures

Combining work, school, and play with sports-stadium jobs that earn college tuition. 

Stronger Together

Donors are increasingly using expert intermediaries to bundle and target their giving.

Alms Alchemy

The National Christian Foundation’s ability to turn unusual contributions to gold is creating a new trove of generosity.

Micro Lending, Major Impact

How the maker of SweetTARTS is combining friendship and capital in one tangy dose.

More Than Just Academics

Some might view the decline of Catholic schools as a Catholic problem. In reality it is an urban education problem that should concern everyone. Catholic schools have power and potential beyond book learning.

A New Way to Serve

Venture for America is bringing entrepreneurial vim and vigor to unexpected corners of our country.

Stepping into a Breach

Hundreds of migrants attempting to enter Europe have drowned in the Mediterranean Sea when the inflatable dinghies they were packed into by unscrupulous smugglers sunk in storms. Sadly, this happens all the time.

Madison Avenue Mercies

The virtues of advertising, overhead, and other wicked ways of doing good.

Business Marries Charity

The hopes and hazards of bringing market mechanisms to philanthropy.

The Slow Boat to Utopia

Ten years in, the ballyhooed Millennium Villages Project is mostly a bust. In Nina Munk’s book The Idealist, Columbia University economist and celebrity academic Jeffrey Sachs, who made a splash with his plan to engineer the end of poverty as we know it, is an ambivalent figure.

Horizon Communities in Prisons

Inmates change their lives with great works of literature. 

Heartland Art

A new exhibit at Alice Walton's Crystal Bridges Museum showcases the full range of American artistry. 

Save the Pawns

Morally neutral approaches to poverty do not exist,” William Easterly writes in his latest book, The Tyranny of Experts. “Any approach to development will either respect the rights of the poor or it will violate them.” Too many aid agencies treat people in developing countries like chess pieces. 

Interview with Steve Green

The Hobby Lobby president describes his forthcoming Museum of the Bible. 

The Dinosaur Discoverer

How a misfit revolutionized paleontology—with a big boost from philanthropy. 

A Tribute to Life

With major support from Tad Taube, the Polin Museum honors a millennium of Jewish history. 

Almanac

The Almanac
of American
Philanthropy

A compendium of the Great Donors, Great Achievements, Great Ideas, and Latest Facts on private giving in the U.S.