steveWhat can philanthropy do?

By: Steve Gunderson In: 2010 Annual Conference

27 Apr 2010

Inspiring. That’s the word that I heard over and over again about Monday’s annual conference plenary sessions with former Vice President Al Gore and Admiral Michael Mullen, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, and Patrick Corvington, CEO of the Corporation for National and Community Service. They urged us to use philanthropy’s innovation to address climate change, re-integrating our military into their home communities, and building a new era of community service, respectively. They pointed to the ability of foundations to do their work over the long haul and yet be swift to respond to societal changes.

We’d love for you to share your ideas on how we might move forward individually or collectively to meet the challenges posed by our Monday plenary speakers. What can philanthropy do about these issues, together? What can a single foundation do? Within your own foundation, are there functions you are moved to do better, to do more, or to do over a longer term?

Please post your reactions, recommendations, and responses to our three impressive guests here. Don’t wait until you get home. Use a few minutes at upcoming conference breaks. Use your waiting time in the airport. Head to the Cyber Café before you leave the conference. Use your iPhones or laptops. Get the dialogue going. We want to hear from you!

2 Responses to What can philanthropy do?


April 27th, 2010 at 1:42 pm

I love this idea to use ex-military members to help reintegrate into society by working on climate change and building community service.

However, this seems to be precisely the idea that Van Jones had surrounding Green For All, except his version was for people of color to get into new green fields. Not to accuse Al gore et all of idea-snatching, but practically.

This is a concrete way to help veterans re-integrate, but we also must remember Green for All’s Mission, and work to help people who stayed at home too. If a foundation wants to work on this issue right now, they would do well to give an unsolicited grant for green for all.


Rick Ebel

November 6th, 2010 at 11:20 am

I recently met with a representative of the American Legion and discussed Admiral Mullen’s inspiring call to action to our community. I was wondering if anyone had developed any outreaches to returning vets in their areas of operation?

My firm is looking at working with the American Legion to develop green renewable energy training and projects linked to service disabled small businesses with the SBA for Federal building renovations.

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