Weekly News Recap: November 16, 2018

Canada opened up 1,500 spaces for refugees this year under the Blended Visa Office Referred program. (Shutterstock/Fishman64)

When looking for people to hire, you look for three qualities: integrity, intelligence, and energy. And if you don’t have the first, the other two will kill you. You think about it; it’s true. -- Warren Buffet

National Philanthropy Day

Stan Lee

  • An illustrated tribute to Stan Lee and his career (Los Angeles Times) Stan Lee's legacy affected millions. I am one of many. In our family, Stan Lee is responsible for actually saving one of us. #WeHeartMjolnir. RIP Mr. Lee. We will not see your like again. "Stan Lee, a giant in the comic book industry, died November 12, 2018. The complex and once-reluctant writer worked closely and frequently fought with his artistic collaborators. Together, they developed characters that battled inner demons as frequently as they battled villains, and each other. They transformed comics with some of the world’s most recognizable superheroes. " 11/12/18

  • 10 Amazing Facts About Stan Lee (Mental Floss) "The co-creator of some of the greatest superheroes and most beloved stories of all time, Lee—who passed away on November 12 at the age of 95—became just as mythical and larger-than-life as the characters in the panels. In 2015, around the time of Marvel’s 75th anniversary, Lee had the idea to reflect on his own life, as he said, 'in the one form it has never been depicted, as a comic book … or if you prefer, a graphic memoir.' The result, published by the Touchstone imprint of Simon & Schuster in 2015, was Amazing Fantastic Incredible: A Marvelous Memoir—which was written by Lee with Peter David and features artwork by cartoonist and illustrator Colleen Doran. Here are 10 things we learned about Lee." 11/12/18


  • Raise Awareness and Funds on Facebook (Facebook) CANADIAN CONTENT Got this in my email: "We are pleased to launch Facebook's charitable giving tools in Canada with no fees — 100% of donations will go to charity." This is huge! 11/15/18

Community consultation sessions

  • Red Deer College seeks community input during next steps of university journey (Red Deer College) RED DEER STORY "As Red Deer College continues its transition to become a university, community members are invited to share their thoughts to help shape the institution’s future name and new brand identity." RDC is hosting its Have a Voice in our University Journey sessions throughout November and December. To register, click this link. 11/8/18


  • University of Calgary selects new president (Troy Media) CALGARY STORY Congratulations Dr. McCauley. "Dr. Ed McCauley has been named the University of Calgary’s ninth president and vice-chancellor. McCauley, who succeeds Dr. Elizabeth Cannon, is currently the university’s vice-president (research). He will move into his new role on Jan. 1, 2019." 11/9/18

  • How the National Music Centre acquired the historic TONTO synthesizer (Calgary Herald) CALGARY STORY "This is a very cool story. Stevie Wonder is involved." 11/9/18

  • How new life was brought to an aging engineering school (Journal of Commerce) CALGARY STORY "Across the country many university and college campuses are starting to show their age. There is approximately $8.4 billion in deferred maintenance on Canadian campuses, as infrastructure built in the 1960s and 1970s shuffles slowly to the end of its working days. But where there are clever and talented designers, there is life. In the Buildex Calgary presentation Putting the 'New' in the Renewal of Aging Infrastructure – University of Calgary Schulich School of Engineering, two architects who worked on the project will discuss how the transformation will breathe new life and opportunity into the next generation of learning." 11/7/18

  • This Boy's Impressive Thank-You Mission Goes Together Like Cops and Doughnuts (Radio.com) "This 11-year-old is delivering police officers across the country a lot of gratitude … with frosting and sprinkles on top.Tyler Carach has brought more than 75,000 doughnuts to cops in more than 40 states. He says it's his mission to thank every police officer in America via the cliche snack. Tyler goes by 'Donut Boy,' and he always wears a deliciously colorful cape. The slogan: 'I donut need a reason to thank a cop.'" 11/6/18

First Peoples of Canada

  • McGill University to hold referendum on changing team nickname (Squamish Chief) CANADIAN STORY "Ross Montour says the time is right for McGill University to change its team nickname. Montour, a chief on the Mohawk Council of Kahnawa:ke, says that his First Nations community south of Montreal would welcome a move from McGill to stop calling its men's sports teams the Redmen." 11/8/18

  • First Nations in oilsands region support bill to overhaul energy project approvals (CBC) ALBERTA STORY "A coalition of First Nations in the Fort McMurray region say they're in support of the federal government's overhaul of energy project reviews, despite loud opposition in Alberta to Bill C-69." 11/7/18

  • How Indigenous scholarship winners are busting myths and stereotypes (Macleans) CANADIAN STORY First: congratulations to all. Second: more please! "As a child raised in the protective embrace of the Driftpile Cree Nation in northwest Alberta, Billy-Ray Belcourt recalls that 'right from elementary school, I was incredibly bookish. I cared a lot about my studies. I was one of those students who would ask for more homework.' Now a 23-year-old doctoral student at the University of Alberta, Belcourt has already garnered national recognition as a prize-winning poet and the first First Nations student to win a Rhodes scholarship. He attributes much of this early success to his grandmother, whose unconditional love and wisdom 'helped us to survive the world outside the reserve and our Indigenous community, but at the same time to be proud of who we were'." 11/7/18

Life and career hacks

  • 12 Mindfulness Hacks You Can Use in 24 Hours (The Mission) #8 is a great reminder. #10 is actually two hacks in one! Thanks for these Mr. Kim. 11/12/18*

  • Are You Stuck in the Shallow of Life? (John P. Weiss) Do you feel like your life lack's purpose, especially as you get older? It doesn't have to be that way. Read and act on this. 11/8/18

  • The Drama of Rules: What Storytelling Teaches Us About Human Nature (The Polymath Project) "New fiction writers are often given the following advice: “Make your character want something. Then, prevent them from getting it." Fundraising is all about storytelling. Good read. 10/13/18

  • Big B, Little B (Brand New) Cool branding case study. "Established in 1904, Big Brothers Big Sisters is a non-profit organization that helps children realize their potential and build their futures through mentoring relationships. The largest donor- and volunteer-supported mentoring network in the U.S., Big Brothers Big Sisters makes monitored matches between adult volunteers ('Bigs') and children ('Littles'), ages 6 through 18, to develop positive relationships. With 270 affiliates in all 50 states, the organization has served nearly 2 million children. This month, Big Brothers Big Sisters introduced a new identity designed by Kansas City, MO-based Barkley." 10/8/18

  • Let’s Talk About Dress Codes and Clothes (Hackernoon) This is clearly regionalized (sectored?) advice but it's also a good think and discussion piece. 10/21/18

  • 7 catchy quotes to shape your vision of leadership & management (The Startup) #4 and #5 are terrific but #1 is one that I have always loved. 5/23/18

  • Six Best Practices to Develop Your Leadership Skills in the Nonprofit Sector (Imagine Canada) As the author says, "Becoming a great leader takes time, mentoring, and professional development opportunities. But are we making the time? Or the investment." So...are you? 2/26/18

Uncommon knowledge

  • 20 Slang Terms From World War I (Mental Floss) Take a dekko at this article. Lots of fun here. And, it will transport you, for a moment, to the end of WWI. 11/11/18

Philanthropic controversy

  • Angry widow won't take Assiniboine Park memorial bench removal sitting down (Winnipeg Free Press) WINNIPEG STORY "After a decade of providing a resting place for anyone strolling near the Assiniboine Park steam train, Lyle Koncan's memorial bench is on its last legs. Koncan said officials from the Assiniboine Park Conservancy have told her the bench will be removed in the near future because it is more than 10 years old." Thanks to Ron Bailey for sharing this story. 11/14/18

  • Barriers to accessibility at Calgary's new Central Library (CBC) CALGARY STORY "Some Calgarians are raising concerns over accessibility at Calgary's new Central Library. The library has welcomed about 115,000 visitors since its opening nearly two weeks ago. But some say they've found it 'discouraging' how difficult it can be to navigate the space." 11/13/18

  • Is Big Philanthropy Destroying Democracy? (Nonprofit Quarterly) "Stanford professor Rob Reich says we need look no further than Silicon Valley to see the influence rich people are wielding over American democracy. Reich points to Proposition C, a controversial “homelessness tax” that San Francisco voters passed by a wide margin in November. But Reich says public debate over the initiative was relegated, in large part, to a pair of billionaires: Salesforce CEO Marc Benioff, who supported the legislation, and Twitter’s Jack Dorsey, who spoke out against it." 11/9/18

  • The super rich continue to control how change gets made (Fast Company) "The rich are making the richest cause groups richer–or at least extremely well funded. That’s the takeaway from a new report by the Chronicle of Philanthropy, which found that the 100 highest-funded nonprofits in America drew 11% of all cash and stock donated to charity last year. That accounts for about $47 billion in contributions. But the real problem is not just that the biggest charities are vacuuming up the cash, it’s where that cash comes from: a few wealthy individuals." Thanks to Denise Summers for sharing this story. 11/5/18

  • Golisano withdraws $25M donation for performing arts center (NBC) "Philanthropist and entrepreneur Tom Golisano announced Wednesday that he has pulled his $25 million gift for the new performing arts center in Rochester. Last month, a new proposal emerged involving tearing down the Radisson hotel on Main Street and moving the project from Parcel 5. The renderings of the project consisted of a new 3,000-seat performing arts center, a smaller 500-seat theater, retail and dining space, apartments and a 250-room hotel. The Paychex founder says that two years after supporting the project, it's 'no closer to becoming a reality [and] has dramatically changed in scope, becoming part of a larger entertainment complex, which is not in line with my philanthropic priorities. It has also not garnered the financial support it needs from the community,' Golisano said." 11/7/18

Trends and shifts

  • Younger Canadians are giving to charities less — but that doesn’t mean they’re not giving (The Star Edmonton) CANADIAN STORY "Donating to charity is down across all age groups, and it’s unlikely to bounce back any time soon due to a trend of younger Canadians giving less to charity. A report released Thursday by CanadaHelps, a portal to donate to charitable organizations, found that 20.4 per cent of Canadians donated to charities in 2015. That’s down from 24.6 per cent in 2006." 11/2/18

  • 25 Dying Professions You Should Avoid (Work+Money) Whew! Fundraising is not listed here. But lots of others are... Thanks to Gina Wheatcroft for sharing this article. 8/9/18

Reports and studies

  • Study reveals vital role of the donor Thank You (UK Fundraising) "More thought needs to be given to the purpose of a thank you communication and what is said to different groups of donors, according to a study by The Philanthropy Centre and a team of philanthropic psychologists at Plymouth University. The study, released today (5 November) shows that whether donors should be thanked for their gift, the difference their gift has made, or the kind of person they are depends on how established the giving relationship is." Thanks to Scott Decksheimer for sharing this article. 11/5/18

  • How a more specific subject line affects opens, clicks, and conversions (Next After) Evidence-based information. Love it! "As we’ve seen in the past, even when the subject line doesn’t affect the open rate, it can still have a dramatic effect on downstream metrics. In this case, the open rate remained nearly identical – 36.14% vs 36.16%. But the treatment version increased clicks to the webinar registration page by 42.7% at a 99% level of confidence." Thanks to Kelly Morris for sharing this article. November 2018

Large gifts

  • Philanthropists donate $3.5M to help bring almost 700 refugees to Canada (CBC) CANADIAN STORY We live in a beautiful world. Happy National Philanthropy Day. "[Jennifer] Basu said she'd been thinking about sponsoring someone for a while, but it didn't seem like it would be possible for years. But then she learned that nearly $3.5 million had been donated by philanthropists in the U.S. and Canada to help community groups like hers cover the cost of sponsorship [...]. With [...] $3.5 million raised by eight philanthropists, including Vancouver's Aquilini Group and local residents Brian Paes-Braga and Harald and Sharlene Ludwig, groups in 49 communities across the country were able to sponsor refugees." 11/14/18

  • SAIT receives $2-million donation to energize students in electrical trades (Calgary Herald) CALGARY STORY Nice gift! "A $2-million donation to the Southern Alberta Institute of Technology will help students reach success in the electrical trades. The legacy gift, the largest in SAIT’s history, is from the estate of Calgary business leader Randy O’Dell, founder of O’Dell Electric Ltd., who died Nov. 14, 2017, at the age of 65 following a three-year battle with cancer." Thanks to Scott Decksheimer for sharing this story. 11/13/18

  • U of Oklahoma Medicine gets $34M donation for diabetes center (Becker's Hospital Review) "Oklahoma City-based University of Oklahoma Medicine received a $34 million donation to support its diabetes center from the Harold Hamm Foundation. The donation was the largest gift since the diabetes center was founded in 2007." Harold Glenn Hamm is an American entrepreneur primarily involved in the oil and gas business [and] has type 2 diabetes. 11/12/18

  • Susquehanna University receives $10M donation (Daily Item) "The widow of a World War II veteran [Lucille Arthur] and Susquehanna University alumnus donated $10 million to the college in Selinsgrove on Saturday [...]. Doug Arthur, of the Class of 1949 and member of the football team during his four years, died in 2006 at the age of 84. Prior to his graduation, he served as an officer in the U.S. Air Force during World War II. He flew more than 20 missions, but it was during a final humanitarian mission that his plane was shot down. He was captured and held for 30 days as a prisoner of war at Camp Konan in what is now North Korea. For his distinguished service to his country, he earned a Purple Heart and the Air Medal with clusters." Susquehanna University is a four-year, co-educational, private liberal arts university in Selinsgrove, in central Pennsylvania. 11/10/18

  • New Bremen district snags $1M donation (The Daily Standard) "The school district has received a $1 million donation for the new school project, superintendent Jason Schrader announced at Wednesday's special board meeting. According to the resolution, Dianne Komminsk has committed to donate the funds to New Bremen Local Schools for the construction of the Komminsk Center for Innovative Thinking. This will serve as a connector between the existing high school and the new building." 11/8/18

  • Texas Pastor Meets $2.3M Fundraising Goal to Help Liberia Get Clean Water After Huge Donation (Christian Post) "A Texas pastor who began living on a barge on Lake Ray Hubbard in Dallas nearly a month ago and pledged to keep living there until he raised $2.29 million to help provide clean drinking water for all of Liberia by 2020 is now home after meeting his goal in a surprising moment [...]." 11/7/18

  • RECORD CHARITABLE DONATION ANNOUNCED (PGA Tour) " The PGA TOUR and TOUR Championship announced today that just over $3 million was donated from the 2018 TOUR Championship – a tournament record – with more than $30 million invested in local nonprofits since the event was first staged at East Lake Golf Club in 1998. Proceeds from the tournament primarily benefit the East Lake Foundation and other local nonprofits including, the Grove Park Foundation, Purpose Built Schools Atlanta, and The First Tee® of Atlanta." 11/5/18

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