Weekly News Recap: November 9, 2018

Murray McCann, Calgary business leader and philanthropist, gestures during his speech to graduates as he received an honorary Bachelor of Nursing degree from Mount Royal University in Calgary on Friday, November 2, 2018. Jim Wells/Postmedia

If you can’t kill friction, it’ll eat through your momentum like rust through a chain. — Aytekin Tank, Founder at JotForm

Professional Development Opportunities

  • NFP Program CANADIAN CONTENT This is a huge opportunity. RBC is offering $2,500 scholarships. Snap this up! ”The Not-for-Profit Program, jointly developed by ICD and the University of Toronto's Rotman School of Management, is an intensive program focused on key accountabilities and responsibilities for NFP leaders through extensive use of team-based learning [...]. The NFP Program is supported by the RBC Foundation. A limited number of RBC Foundation scholarships valued at $2,500 are available for each offering. For more details, please refer to the application form.” 2018

Professional Awards

  • PROFESSIONAL AWARDS (AFP Calgary and Area) So, this happened. Congrats to my fellow award winners and to all those (including my business partners, Andrea McManus and Scott Decksheimer) who came before us. November 2018


  • Presenting the New AFP Website: afpglobal.org (AFP eWire) Come check out the new afpglobal.org, read the FAQ on all the new features and AFP President and CEO Mike Geiger’s blog on what the new site means, and then explore the new online home for the fundraising community! 11/7/18
  • 'Fingerprints of love': Volunteers transform 8-year-old's home to be more accessible (CBC) REGINA STORY Ya, this gets me in the feels. I quintillion heart this. ”Vienna Kennedy has a congenital syndrome which gives her mobility challenges [...]. When the Kennedys reached out to some builders to get quotes, Brandon Fuchs with Superior Contracting and Derek Wu with Collaborative Construction found themselves moved by the family's story. They began figuring out the logistics of completing the work through donations and volunteer hours. Fuchs said they received an 'insane amount of support,' with people volunteering their efforts, seven days a week, to create a more accessible home for Vienna.” 11/7/18

  • Fundraiser launched to honour Brentwood murder victims (Troy Media) CALGARY STORY ”Fundraising efforts are underway for the Quinterra Legacy Garden in Calgary. It’s intended to provide a peaceful, contemplative and vibrant outdoor space where visitors can reflect, heal and remember a tragedy that gripped the city close to five year ago […]. Quinterra Legacy Garden partners include Calgary’s Parks Foundation, Variety Alberta and the Calgary Foundation.” 11/6/18

  • Scaffolding stays up for now with no money for repairs to Arts Commons (CBC) CALGARY STORY ”It's not a construction site. But scaffolding and netting will remain in place indefinitely around part of Calgary's premier performing arts venue. In 2016, a small piece of stonework fell off of the Calgary Public Building that is home to the Jack Singer Concert Hall. No one was hurt. But scaffolding and netting were put in place around that part of Arts Commons to protect pedestrians in the event anything else comes loose.” 11/6/18

  • Red Deer’s Tree House Youth Theatre gets new artistic director (Red Deer Advocate) RED DEER STORY Congrats! Welcome! ”A new artistic director is set to take Red Deer’s Tree House Youth Theatre past the three-decade mark and into the future. Albertus Koett was hired last month to helm the youth theatre company that started in Red Deer in 1988 and has since given many young actors a start on stage.” 11/5/18

  • Royal Canadian Legion launches digital poppy (CBC) CANADIAN STORY Welcome to the digital age! Love it! ”The Royal Canadian Legion is embracing the digital age with a new virtual version of the symbolic poppy. ‘We really need to go with the times, and we're trying to reach a younger audience,’ Pamela Sweeny, the Ontario Legion's provincial executive director, told CBC's London Morning [...].” 11/4/18

  • Calgary philanthropist behind Field of Crosses receives MRU honorary degree (Calgary Herald) CALGARY STORY Mr. McCann, you are a hero. Congrats to you and to Mount Royal University. ”The Calgarian behind the annual Field of Crosses tribute received an honorary degree at Mount Royal University [...]. Murray McCann, a Calgary business owner and philanthropist, founded the display on Memorial Drive that honours soldiers from southern Alberta who lost their lives in battle. He also established the Homes for Heroes Foundation, which provides transitional housing and support for veterans, and Rosedale Hospice, an end-of-life care facility for adults.” Thanks to Scott Decksheimer for sharing this story. 11/2/18

  • Kelowna man’s donation to Kelowna hospital project shows every penny counts (Kelowna Capital News) KELOWNA STORY ”For nearly 50 years Kelowna’s Joe Iafrancesco collected his spare pennies. And last month—despite the fact the Canadian penny is not no longer produced—he decided it was time to donate his wheelbarrow full of pennies to a worthy cause.” And he donated $200,000 on top of that. 11/2/18

  • $20-million by 2020 the goal for GPRC's Vital Campaign (Everything GP) GRANDE PRAIRIE STORY Congrats! ViTreo is proud to be working with with Grande Prairie Regional College. ”Grande Prairie Regional College has publicly launched an ambitious fundraising endeavour. The Vital Campaign's goal is collecting $20-million dollars by 2020. Of that, $18-million is already in place.” 11/1/18

Flames Foundation quarrels with watchdog's critique, says it has nothing to hide (CBC) CALGARY STORY ”The Calgary Flames Foundation is defending itself against a scathing report by Charity Intelligence Canada that revealed the hockey team's charitable foundation gave only 30 cents of every dollar raised to various causes […]. One of the foundation's board members, John Bean, who is also the president and COO of Calgary Sport and Entertainment Corporation, disputed some of these claims […] but said the organization realizes it could be more transparent with the donor community.” 11/1/18*

  • Gary Mar named new CEO of Petroleum Services Association of Canada (CBC) CALGARY STORY Congratulations Dr. Mar. ”Former Alberta politician Gary Mar has a new job as president and CEO of the Petroleum Services Association of Canada (PSAC). Mar was an Alberta Progressive Conservative MLA from 1993-2007 who held several several positions in former premier Ralph Klein's cabinet.” 11/2/18
  • New Central Library now 'free and open to everyone' (CBC) CALGARY STORY The long anticipated and much hyped day finally arrived. And what an entrance. It’s a stunningly beautiful building and Calgarians are flocking to take it all in. Befittingly, it was officially opened by Col. Chris Hadfield — astronaut, engineer, pilot and musician. His comments, “What a treat to be here, it's got that new library smell.” Indeed it does. 10/31/18

  • Burman University looking to create business incubator in Lacombe (Lacombe Express) LACOMBE STORY Congrats. Nice work. And needed. ”In an effort to fulfill one of their goals of becoming Lacombe’s university, Burman University is looking to start a business incubator which they believe will be a win for the institution, the business community and the small businesses it will serve.” 10/31/18

  • Chevron makes key donation to engineering safety and risk management program (University of Alberta) EDMONTON STORY “How can industries create accident-free workplaces? How can we build and maintain infrastructure like bridges, pipelines, and railways so they never fail? A $400,000 investment by Chevron Canada announced Oct. 30 to support the University of Alberta’s Engineering Safety and Risk Management (ESRM) program will help answer these questions.” 10/30/18

  • How the Seal Beach community is helping this doughnut shop owner spend time with ailing wife (Orange County Register) ”For the past 28 years, seven days a week, proprietors John and Stella Chhan have stood behind the counter cheerfully boxing and bagging doughnuts, muffins and cinnamon rolls each day until they sell out. A few weeks ago, however, regulars started noticing that half of the duo was missing. John Chhan explained to inquisitive customers that his wife had suffered a debilitating aneurysm [...]. ‘So I thought, if enough people would buy a dozen doughnuts every morning, he could close early and go be with his wife.’ [Dawn] Caviola, ‘thinking out loud,’ floated her idea on the neighborhood networking site Nextdoor early last week. The response was immediate and enthusiastic. Ever since, Chhan has sold out by noon – some three hours earlier than usual – freeing him to visit his wife at the rehabilitation facility.” 10/30/18

  • More than 7,000 knit poppies cascade down Calgary church for Remembrance Day (CBC) CALGARY STORY Beautiful tribute to the fallen. We will remember them. ”Thousands of knit poppies spill down the outer walls of downtown Calgary's Cathedral Church of the Redeemer, pooling on the grass, and strung along nearby light posts. The installation is an initiative by a group of the church's parishioners to mark the 100th anniversary of the armistice that ended the First World War this Remembrance Day.” 10/27/18

First Peoples of Canada

  • U of S archaeology, anthropology departments apologize in spirit of reconciliation (CBC) SASKATOON STORY ”The University of Saskatchewan's Archaeology and Anthropology department marked its 50th anniversary by apologizing for the actions of their peers when it comes to conducting research on Indigenous people. Through a statement issued at the Gordon Oakes Red Bear Student Centre last month, staff apologized for the wrong doings of their predecessors.” 11/5/18

  • OPINION: Giving my children Cree names is a powerful act of reclamation (CBC) CANADIAN STORY In ancient times, names held power. Today, they do as well. ”Missionaries, teachers, and civil servants erased the given names of hundreds of thousands of Indigenous people at various times in the history of this country. This process became most normalized in the residential school system but was a widespread practice that went on for generations […]. Giving my children these names is a powerful act of reclamation. These lands formed nêhiyawêwin (Cree), and when we speak our language, even if it's just our names, the land hears us. The political doesn't get much more personal than speaking the names of my children every day.” 11/4/18

  • VIDEO: Indigenous communities grapple with new relationship with oilsands industry (CBC) ALBERTA STORY ”Historically Indigenous communities in Northern Alberta have opposed the oilsands. That’s changing. Fourteen Indigenous groups have made deals with Teck Resources whose proposed oilsands project is undergoing an environmental review.” 11/2/18

Life and career hacks

  • How to Develop a Healthier Relationship to Technology (Personal Growth) *Are you
  • “…sitting in front of the computer, being nudged from one notification to another…”? I hope not but if you are, read this. 11/6/18*

  • My Recent Media Diet for Fall 2018 (Kottke.Org) My lovely wife and life partner, Christine, shared this with me. It’s a great list I cannot lie. I heart her and I heart this. Christine’s comment “I like this idea of tracking culture / media consumption :-) I might start doing this.” 11/5/18

  • Mental models in product design (UX Design) Oh…oh, these are so very good. Delicious in fact. 10/29/18

  • How small charities can win at fundraising (Charity Village) Short but impactful read. ”Small charities […] tend to be more agile and nimble. The small team of staff and volunteers usually have their hands directly involved in the work. There’s a lot of passion. There are so many strengths, but often smaller charities aren’t as good at using those strengths to their advantage in fundraising.” 10/17/18

  • Life’s Little Luxury (The Weekly Standard) I have never seriously aspired to being cool. I consistently aspire to be charming. I do feel it has become a bit of a lost art. So does this author. 10/9/18

  • If You Want to Design Your Life, Start by Designing Your Environment (The Mission) Environmental stress is one of my biggest barriers to productivity and happiness. 10/8/18

  • The science behind making a change that lasts (The Startup) There are lots of productivity gurus out there. Many of good. Some are great. This comes from Jerry Seinfeld. And, from personal experience, I am a BELIEVER. See the quote at the beginning of this recap…it’s from this article. 6/21/18

Uncommon knowledge

Philanthropic controversy

  • Alberta researcher lauded for investigating fast-food style private schools in developing nations (Edmonton Journal) ”Education International, a federation of more than 400 teachers’ unions and associations from around the world, will recognize educational policy studies PhD student Curtis Riep with the Albert Shanker Education Award next July in Thailand. Riep, who is 32 and lives in Calgary, has studied the rapid expansion of companies that seek to fill gaps in public education by setting up private schools that can be run cheaply with standardized lessons, sometimes recited word-for-word from tablet computers.” 11/5/18

  • Biting through hateful words, trans artist protests Calgary arts venue 'censorship' (CBC) CALGARY STORY ”A two-spirit, transgender artist performed a protest art piece Saturday to let Calgary's biggest arts venue know his community won't be silenced. Dan Cardinal McCartney sat surrounded by rows of cut lemons at Untitled Art Society, a cozy artist-run space in the city's Beltline. The skin of each fruit was scrawled with hateful unsolicited comments he's been told since he began his gender transition five years ago.” 11/4/18

  • RED DEAD REDEMPTION 2 LEAK LEADS TO APOLOGY, £1 MILLION DONATION FROM REVIEW SITE (SyFyWire) ”After publishing confidential information that outlined major features of Red Dead Redemption 2 months before its release, a review hub has issued a public apology and agreed to donate more than $1 million to charity as part of an arrangement with the game’s parent company.” 11/1/18

  • Artists fear paintings lost after long-running Vancouver gallery closed (CBC) VANCOUVER STORY ”Artists across Canada are left hunting for their work after Vancouver's Harrison Galleries quietly shut its doors in April. The gallery represented more than 40 artists including Bill Schwarz of Cambridge, Ontario and Drew Kiel-back of Langley, B.C.” 10/31/18

Trends and shifts

  • How Bill Gates Aims to Save $233 Billion by Reinventing the Toilet (Bloomberg) The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation are funders of the Centre for Affordable Water and Sanitation Technology (CAWST). ViTreo is proud to be working with CAWST. ”Bill Gates thinks toilets are a serious business, and he’s betting big that a reinvention of this most essential of conveniences can save a half million lives and deliver $200 billion-plus in savings. The billionaire philanthropist, whose Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation spent $200 million over seven years funding sanitation research, showcased some 20 novel toilet and sludge-processing designs that eliminate harmful pathogens and convert bodily waste into clean water and fertilizer.” 11/5/18

  • Is the Era of Voice Texting Upon Us? (The Ringer) ”The most controversial mode of 2018 communication is … a short voice message meant to replace a text. If you are currently having a strong, visceral reaction to the concept, you are not alone.” 11/5/18

  • People care less about social issues as they age, make more money: U of A study (CTV) This is important as evidentiary research. It is also pretty much in line with what we know. ”A University of Alberta sociology study found that people are less concerned about social issues as they age and make more money. The research paper, 'Enlightenment or Status Defence? Education and Social Problem Concerns From Adolescence to Midlife,' is part of the Edmonton Transitions Study (ETS).” 11/7/18

  • Millennial Men Leave Perplexing Hole in Hot U.S. Job Market (Bloomberg) The article cites the intersection of disability and incarceration rates with opioid use as possible contributing factors. This is a very worrying trend. ”Ten years after the Great Recession, 25- to 34-year-old men are lagging in the workforce more than any other age and gender demographic. About 500,000 more would be punching the clock today had their employment rate returned to pre-downturn levels.” 11/1/18

  • Canada: Federal Government Changing Rules on Lobbying, Advocacy (AFP) CANADIAN STORY ”The Department of Finance is modifying the definition of ‘charitable activities’ and other terms under the Income Tax Act to allow charities greater freedom and flexibility in lobbying government at all levels regarding policy and regulations affecting their missions.” 10/31/18

Stats and facts

  • INFRASTRUCTURESTATISTICS HUB (Statistics Canada) CANADIAN CONTENT If you need to know the inventory of hospitals or the economic impact of colleges in Canada, this highly helpful and user-friendly site is for you. Give it a whirl. It’s pretty cool. I can already imagine lots of uses for this information. October 2018

  • FUNDRAISING’S BIG CONUNDRUM: FIRST-TIME DONORS DON’T REPEAT (Associations Now) Ouch! This is standing some of our thinking right on its head. ”Recent research from the Fundraising Effectiveness Project finds that less than half of all donors to a given organization give more than once—and those that do repeat tend to focus on large organizations.” 9/7/18

Reports and studies

  • Welcome to The 2018 Giving Report — our second annual edition. (Canada Helps) CANADIAN CONTENT I said it last year. I will say it again. Clear. Canadian. Important. Thanks for this Canada Helps. “CanadaHelps has developed this report to help Canadians understand how the health of our charitable sector is firmly tied to the health of our country. After last year’s report discovered a sharp decline in charitable giving over the past decade, we dug deeper into the data, to examine where these ‘giving gaps’ are growing, and how demographic shifts are creating an impending funding crisis for Canadian charities.” October 2018

Large gifts

  • Feeding America receives $1 Million donation From Disney (AG Daily) ”Have you ever wondered what Mickey Mouse does on his down time? He gives back to families who need a little help putting fresh food on the table. The Walt Disney Company announced a contribution of $1 million to Feeding America to support efforts to rescue and distribute more produce to children and families who need it most.” 11/3/18

  • Stephen A. Schwarzman Foundation’s $350 Million Donation to M.I.T. to Fund Computing and Artificial Intelligence College (Global Legal Chronicle) Kaboom! ”The gift is a portion of a $1 billion investment to establish a college for computing and artificial intelligence. The college, called the M.I.T. Stephen A. Schwarzman College of Computing, will address the global opportunities and challenges presented by the prevalence of computing and the rise of artificial intelligence.” 11/3/18

  • #TSRPositiveImages: Michael Jordan Makes Multi-Million Dollar Donation To Nonprofit For Children (The Shade Room) ”According to #TheJournal, Michael has gifted the Portland based nonprofit called Friends of the Children with a multi-million dollar donation to help them reach their fundraising goal. While we don’t know the exact number of his donation the CEO of the nonprofit said: ‘It’s over the finish line for an aggressive fundraising campaign: raising $25 million in less than three years.’” 11/3/18

  • San Manuel Donation of $1.75M Helps Highland Fire Department Protect the Community (InlandEmpire.US) ”Highland, Calif. – Leadership from the San Manuel Band of Mission Indians, Highland Fire / CAL FIRE, and City of Highland along with students from the Public Safety Academy of San Bernardino kept a long-time firefighter tradition alive by pushing in the City’s newest fire engine. More than two dozen people participated in pushing the new fire engine into Highland Fire Station #2, preserving a tradition that dates back to when fire equipment was drawn by horses. The new engine was made possible with a 2017 grant from the Tribe that also included self-contained breathing apparatus (SCBA’s), new EKG heart defibrillators and other rescue equipment.” 11/2/18

  • LSU vet school gets record $10.1M donation (Greater Baton Rouge Business Report) ”The LSU School of Veterinary Medicine has received a record $10.1 million estate commitment from Herman C. and Connie Soong. The gift ‘was inspired by our desire to help innocent animals who are abused, injured and/or homeless to reciprocate their faithful and unconditional love,’ the couple says in a statement.” The Louisiana State University is a public coeducational university located in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. 11/2/18

  • Nissequogue River State Park receives its largest private donation (NewsDay) ”IGA supermarket magnate Charles Reichert […] announced his family foundation would donate $1 million for the renovation of the historic Nissequogue River State Park administration building.” 11/2/18

  • Charleston museum receives largest donation of $5 million (Fox News) ”Jerry Richardson, a Wofford graduate and a former Carolina Panthers owner, contributed a donation along with his wife to the International African American Museum of $5 million, in Charleston, S.C.” 11/1/18

  • Keiser University receives $10M corporate donation to support new building (South Florida Business Journal) ”Keiser University has received a $10 million donation – its largest private gift ever – from campus food service and facilities management firm Sodexo. The donation will support the construction of a student housing complex on the nonprofit university’s Flagship Campus in West Palm Beach.” 11/1/18

  • Anonymous donation will wipe out $250 million in medical debt (Modern Healthcare) Wow. What a beautiful gift. ”One couple's donation will be used to forgive a whopping $250 million in U.S. medical debt by the year's end, the not-for-profit organization RIP Medical Debt announced Thursday. RIP Medical Debt said its campaign is the largest medical debt abolishment in the history of the county. The organization buys large portfolios of debt from medical providers and debt sellers on the debt market and forgives it, helping families and individuals. The debt is then removed from credit reports and can no longer be collected on, the organization said.” 11/1/18

  • Latest Kipnes donation of $10 million focused on urology patients, research (Edmonton Journal) EDMONTON STORY Another transformational gift by an amazing family. Thank you! ”A $10-million donation by Dianne and Irving Kipnes is set to advance research and patient care at the Northern Alberta Urology Centre, renamed in honour of the Edmonton philanthropists.” 10/31/18

  • University of Waterloo receives $25 million donation (Kitchener Today) KITCHENER-WATERLOO STORY Wowzers! ”The University of Waterloo has received a $25 million donation to put into its newest engineering building [...]. The donor is best known right now for being a successful venture capitalist, a former Facebook executive and a part-owner of the NBA's Golden State Warriors. But back in 1999, Chamath Palihapitiya was a fresh grad from the University of Waterloo's electrical engineering program.” 10/30/18

  • Largest ever philanthropic donation for U of Windsor research will help find alternatives to animal testing (Windsor Star) I heart this. More please. ”[The] university announced a donation of $1 million from the Eric S. Margolis Family Foundation to the Canadian Centre for Alternatives to Animal Methods, founded last year by researcher Charu Chandrasekera. Experienced in biomedical research related to cardiovascular disease and diabetes, Chandrasekera started the CCAAM specifically to develop, validate, and promote laboratory methods and techniques that don’t use animal test subjects.” 10/30/18

  • Generations of charity behind $6.5-million St. Paul's Hospital donation (Vancouver Courier) VANCOUVER STORY Nice! ”The London Drugs and Tong and Geraldine Louie Foundations have injected $6.5 million into St. Paul’s Foundation for the provincial heart centre at the new St. Paul’s hospital, which will be built in False Creek Flats. The inpatient cardiac centre at the new facility will be called the Tong Louie Cardiac Wing in recognition of the donation.” 10/30/18

  • #InclusionNow: McCarthy Tétrault and United Way Centraide Strengthen Partnership (McCarthy Tetraut) CANADIAN STORY What a terrific gift! ”McCarthy Tétrault announced today that it is donating $5 million to United Way Centraide, over 5 years, to support 5 groups: Women; members of the LGBTQ2S community; Indigenous peoples; newcomers; and people living with disabilities.” Thanks to Cynthia Quigley and Lisa Davey for sharing this story. 10/23/18

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