Audacious Ideas: Jim Canales
Jul 20, 2010
Jim is Irvine’s CEO. A native Californian, he is passionate about the Foundation
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From the Tactical Philanthropy blog, July 19, 2010
Bill and Melinda Gates along with Warren Buffett recently announced their commitment to devote the majority of their wealth to philanthropy. Perhaps more notably, they are encouraging other billionaires to pledge a similar commitment, and a new website, www.givingpledge.org, has been launched to encourage their peers to follow suit and to document these pledges.
This is certainly audacious. And it got me thinking about what similar “pledges” those of us privileged enough to work within organized philanthropy should be thinking about. Obviously, each of our foundations effectively makes a pledge by deciding where to focus our grants, whether on issues of education, health, economic development, the environment or the arts.
But, I’d suggest there are other commitments we should consider related to how we as foundations engage in our work in addition to what we do with our resources. The big-dollar pledges that foundations can make are certainly compelling, but the ways in which we engage with our grantees deserve as much attention as what we fund. Our ability to create positive social impact through our grantmaking is directly related to our capacity to be effective and thoughtful partners with the organizations we are privileged to support.
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