Weekly News Recap: April 27, 2018

The mural also features a couple of thunderbolts, because, Willert explained, 'my Grandfather carried the thunder pipe, so I did it for him.' (Julie Debeljak/CBC News)

If there’s something you really want to believe, that’s what you should question the most. — Penn Jillette


  • How you're tracked online — and what you can do about it (CBC) CANADIAN CONTENT "Though Facebook gets the attention because of a recent privacy gaffe, the social network is far from alone in collecting massive amounts of data on you to help marketers sell you stuff. Google, for one, also does extensive tracking to power its advertising engines. And many other websites and apps run ads sold by Facebook and Google and exchange data with them. Beyond that, plenty of services, including Uber and Amazon, keep detailed histories on you. Here are some of the ways to block or minimize such tracking — but they come with trade-offs." 4/1/18

  • Want to know everything Google knows about you? (Spoiler alert: It's even more than you think) (CBC Radio) CANADIAN CONTENT Even with my jaded insensitivity to my own personal privacy, what Google has on me is incredible. I do try to purge it every so often but that is a chore. "A web developer's deep dive into his own data yields a near-complete picture of his life." 3/30/18

Lists of lists


  • Grande Prairie SPCA confirms sale 2 years after closing over mounting debt (CBC) GRANDE PRAIRIE STORY "The sale of the Grande Prairie SPCA could spell the end of a two-year struggle by animal rescue groups in housing strays and unwanted pets in the region. The SPCA shut its doors in May 2016 over mounting debt, as it owed on its mortgage, the Canada Revenue Agency and 25 other agencies." 4/24/18

  • Roxy Theatre rebuild gets $2.5M from Alberta government (CBC) EDMONTON STORY Nice! Love this. "The rebirth of Edmonton's beloved Roxy Theatre got closer to reality on Monday after the Alberta government announced a funding injection of $2.5 million." 4/23/18

  • Calgary councillors want to revive arena talks (CBC) CALGARY STORY "A group of Calgary city councillors wants to take matters into their own hands when it comes to reviving talks with the Flames over a new arena." 4/23/18

  • Colin Kaepernick Wins Amnesty International's Highest Honor (Time) Well-deserved. Congrats Mr. Kaepernick. "Colin Kaepernick may not have a job on the football field, but much of the world is still cheering for him. Amnesty International, the global human rights organization, gave Kaepernick its highest honor — the 2018 Ambassador of Conscience Award — in Amsterdam on Saturday." 4/21/18

  • Humboldt Broncos GoFundMe closes, raises more than $15M (CBC) SASKATCHEWAN STORY "The GoFundMe page dedicated to the Humboldt Broncos, believed to be the largest of its kind in Canadian history, stopped taking donations [...] as planned. The page displays a final total of $15,185,700 raised from more than 142,000 contributors in 12 days from across Canada and numerous countries around the world." 4/19/18

  • 'Not putting lipstick on a pig': University of Alberta's largest residence requires $117-million overhaul (Edmonton Journal) EDMONTON STORY "The University of Alberta’s largest residence will require a $117-million overhaul if it is to avoid a 'significant failure of major building systems,' the institution’s finance committee was told Wednesday." 4/19/18

  • Former first lady Barbara Bush remembered in Maine for her quiet philanthropy, love of community (Press Herald) "Mrs. Bush, who died on April 17, made deep impressions on Mainers as a Kennebunkport summer resident and benefactor of the children's hospital that bears her name at Maine Medical Center." 4/19/18

  • Local couple wins STARS lottery dream home (LacombeGlobe.com) ALBERTA STORY "Twenty-eight years after their eight-month-old suffered a brain hemorrhage and had to be airlifted by STARS Air Ambulance, Lacombe’s Brent and Sue Sage were named winners of the STARS lottery dream home. 'Our daughter was saved by STARS and she’s 28 years old today. Ever since they did that, I’ve purchased tickets every year,' said Brent. 'Quite honestly, it’s never been to win something. I know it sounds funny, but I just wanted to pay it back since they saved her. It’s been automatic that we’ve bought tickets.'" 4/18/18

  • LAKELAND COLLEGE OPENS NEW TRADES CENTRE (My Lloydminster Now) LLOYDMINSTER STORY "Lakeland College officially cut the ribbon on the Energy Park Site for their Street Rod and Trucking programs [recently]. The two new buildings will be a permanent base of operations for the trucking program, which has been bouncing from home to home since it’s beginning, and often left the trucks in the outdoor elements. Dean of Trades and Technology Dave King says that the new centre will not only give trucking students what they need to further their education, but will also help meet demands in the trucking industry." 4/18/18

Canada's First Peoples

  • Indigenous author says Indian Act is overdue for change (CBC) CANADIAN CONTENT "The Indian Act has been around nearly as long as Canada and has shaped the lives of Indigenous people by giving the federal government the power to determine their identity, governance and livelihoods, says an Indigenous author." 4/22/18

  • Tsuut'ina to host get-to-know-you dinners with Nenshi, Calgary councillors (CBC) CALGARY STORY ViTreo is proud to be helping Michelle Stanners and the Tsuut'ina Nation on this important initiative. "Calgary city council is going to look at ways to improve its working relationship with all Treaty 7 nations, but particularly with the Tsuut'ina First Nation, which borders the city's southwestern edge." 4/20/18

  • Young students help paint 400 buffalo on Indigenous artist's mural unveiled at Calgary school (CBC) CALGARY STORY Loving this! "Every elementary student at a northeast Calgary school painted a buffalo on a mural unveiled [recently] — as well as learning more about the creature's powerful symbolism in Indigenous culture from the Blackfoot artist behind the project. The mural painted by Blackfoot artist Ryan Willert at Catherine Nichols Gunn School in northeast Calgary was unveiled Wednesday." 4/18/18

  • First Nation, Métis leaders pitching Indigenous-owned pipeline project (Fort McMurray Today) ALBERTA STORY "A group of First Nation and Métis leaders are betting a pipeline owned by Indigenous communities would avoid the polarization surrounding projects like Kinder Morgan’s Trans Mountain expansion." 4/18/18


  • The Gender Wage Gap: Division of Labour in the Charitable and Nonprofit Sector (Imagine Canada) CANADIAN CONTENT Excellent post on an important topic. "Budget 2018: Equality + Growth: A Strong Middle Class, released in February, has a heavy focus on women’s empowerment and gender equality. Included in the budget are a new Gender Results Framework, Women Entrepreneurship Strategy, pay equity legislation, and a Strategy to Prevent and Address Gender-Based Violence in the workplace." 4/23/18

Stats and facts

  • Government Expenditures in Alberta (Statistics Canada) CANADIAN CONTENT Great resource for those who work in, live in, or care about Alberta. ”Alberta is an economic force in Canada - Even as declining oil prices led to an economic downturn it had the highest provincial GDP per capita in 2016." 4/11/18

Life and career hacks

Uncommon knowledge

Philanthropic personalities

  • Out of Nowhere: The Entrepreneur Behind a Huge Scholarship Gift (Inside Philanthropy) "As the founder and majority owner of the beverage development company Flavorman, David Dafoe has one of the more unique CVs in a higher education philanthropy space increasingly flush with alumni cash. And while his name may not ring a bell, that should change rather quickly: With his $30.1 million estate gift to Oxford, Ohio's Miami University College of Arts and Science, Dafoe has officially joined the growing group of higher ed mega-donors." 4/24/18


  • Community Standards (Facebook) Facebook has finally lifted the curtain on what it's policies are in terms of community standards. Read on. "We recognize how important it is for Facebook to be a place where people feel empowered to communicate, and we take our role in keeping abuse off our service seriously. That’s why we have developed a set of Community Standards that outline what is and is not allowed on Facebook." 4/25/18

  • Budget 2018 (Government of Canada) CANADIAN CONTENT An overview of Canada's federal budget for 2018. April 2018

  • VIDEO: Golf Tournament fundraisers (Canada Revenue Agency) CANADIAN CONTENT An engaging and informative video from the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA). Very cool and helpful. There is also a great infographic. 3/29/18

Philanthropic controversy

  • Major donation rescinded upon discovery of Arab beneficiary (Arutz Sheva) "A family of Holocaust survivors from Switzerland who annually donate NIS 5 million to promote young doctors at the Sheba Medical Center at Tel Hashomer threatened to withhold their donation after learning that among the recipients would be a female Arab doctor." 4/25/18

  • Law firm pulls donation from University of Alberta as Suzuki backlash continues (The Star Edmonton) EDMONTON STORY "The University of Alberta continues to draw the ire of the internet after announcing it would award noted broadcaster and environmentalist David Suzuki with an honorary doctorate of science [...]. The Calgary office of Moodys Gartner, a tax law practice, publicly released a letter [...] slamming Suzuki —who has long been critical of oilsands extraction — for using his position to criticize the oil industry, which they refer to as 'the very foundation of our province’s success.'" 4/23/18

  • Deceased woman’s family fighting responders over controversial donation (EMS1.com) "Carol Colby, 86, donated $60,000 to four emergency response agencies, but her family wants to use the money to pay off her debts and cover funeral expenses." 4/23/18

  • Abington parents want more time to review $25M agreement with billionaire Stephen Schwarzman (The Inquirer) We first reported on this story in our February 23rd recap "Some parents whose opposition helped scuttle a plan to rename Abington Senior High School after Wall Street billionaire Stephen Schwarzman are now worried that the district is moving too quickly on a new deal for the Blackstone CEO’s $25 million gift." 4/20/18

  • #MeToo scandal hits major Silicon Valley philanthropy nonprofit (Mercury News) "Employees of the Silicon Valley Community Foundation have accused a top executive of sexual harassment, bringing the #MeToo movement that has rocked powerful abusers from the worlds of entertainment, politics and business to one of world’s biggest philanthropic organizations. The philanthropy’s top fundraiser Mari Ellen Reynolds Loijens is accused of chronic bullying and lewd behavior in a scathing article posted Wednesday evening in the Chronicle of Philanthropy, which interviewed more than a dozen current and former employees who also claimed the foundation’s high-profile CEO knew about her caustic management style but failed to act." 4/19/18

  • Stormy Daniels Plans To Donate $130,000 To Planned Parenthood In Trump's Name (Refinery29)"If Stormy Daniels wins her lawsuit against President Donald Trump and his personal attorney Michael Cohen, she plans to donate $130,000 — the amount of money she was paid to keep silent about her alleged affair with Trump — to Planned Parenthood." 4/18/18

  • The dark side of big-scale aid (Philanthropy Daily) "Of course the scandal about Oxfam, where The Times of London reported that Ronald Van Hauermeiren allegedly used prostitutes at a villa Oxfam rented in Haiti, is outrageous if proven true. But Matthew Green, a former reporter for the Financial Times and Reuters and the author of Aftershock, points out in a long piece for the Financial Times, the Oxfam scandals are the beginning and not the end of the story." 4/18/18

Trends and shifts

  • Jumpstart: What Can Philanthropy Do to Advance Clean Energy With Battery Storage? (Inside Philanthropy) "Foundations rarely have the chance to shape an energy technology market as it emerges. Today, battery storage presents just such an opportunity—and a new report by the Clean Energy Group shows funders how to seize it." 4/24/18

  • Millennial philanthropy can teach Catholic Church three things (National Catholic Reporter) Yes, this story is from an interesting source. That aside, they are bang on. "In 2015, 84 percent of working millennials gave money to a charity. Surprised? You shouldn't be. Growing up hearing stories of Mother Teresa, Dorothy Day, and Martin Luther King Jr. in the classroom, millennials are a decidedly socially conscious generation. They prefer to financially support organizations that have a compelling cause. More specifically, they like causes that seek to alleviate burdens associated with poverty." 4/19/18

  • Wealth Transfer to Reach Nearly $9 Trillion by 2027, Study Finds (Philanthropy Digest) "An estimated $8.8 trillion will be passed down to Gen X and millennial Americans by 2027, creating a potential windfall for charities, a report from the Chronicle of Philanthropy finds." 4/19/18

  • Social Entrepreneurship, Philanthropy, and Innovation in China and the United States (Stanford Social Innovation Review) "Blaring news headlines about a developing trade war between the governments of the United States and China lie in sharp contrast to the emerging partnerships developing between philanthropists and social entrepreneurs from the two countries." 4/12/18

  • Philanthropy Today: Bigger Gifts Given to Smaller Regions (Money Inc.) "The early 1980’s ushered in a second Gilded Age, which resulted in the minting of a new class of wealthy sprung from the tech and finance industry. Whereas once a great deal of wealth was concentrated into only a few major metropolitan areas such as New York, Boston, Chicago and the Bay Area, the second Gilded Age saw vast pockets of wealth being distributed more evenly across the country. This change in wealth distribution has led to a very interesting trend occurring in US philanthropy today." 4/11/18

  • The new face of Jewish philanthropy is innovative, younger and more female (Sun-Sentinel) Leaving aside the awkward and backhands slight in the quote, this is a trend I have been seeing as well, and not just in Jewish philanthropy. "If a new report is to be believed, then today's reflection looks a bit wealthier and more committed to promoting Jewish engagement than before. And it's also beginning to appear a bit younger, as well as somewhat more female." 4/10/18

Large gifts

  • Clemens family makes $1 million donation to Texas baseball (Daily Texan)I love seeing sports heroes giving back to their roots. Nice work Mr. Clemens. "[Texas] athletic director Chris Del Conte announced that Roger Clemens, former Longhorn pitcher and seven-time MLB Cy Young Award-winner, and his wife, Debbie, pledged a $1 million donation to the Longhorns’ baseball program. Clemens, who was a member of the 1983 national championship team, played two seasons for Texas and compiled a 25–7 record on the mound." 4/24/18

  • Colby Alumnus Makes $2.5 Million Donation For Financial Aid (Maine Public) "Colby College has received a $2.5 million gift from alumnus Steve Ford and his wife, Mary, to provide financial aid for students from Maine." 4/23/18

  • Owosso Public Schools accepts $1.1 million donation for new theater facility (ABC) "The Cook Family Foundation is donating $1.1 million to the district. This money is going towards an upgrade to the multi-purpose performance pace, turning it into a true auditorium." Owosso Public Schools are located in and around Owosso, Michigan. 4/23/18

  • Penn alumni donate $4.5 million for curatorial positions at Institute of Contemporary Art (Daily Pennsylvanian) I have seen gifts made to endow staff positions before but it is rare. "Board members of the Institute of Contemporary Art on Penn's campus have made large donations totaling $4.5 million to the museum, The Philadelphia Inquirer reported. These donations will mostly be used to endow curatorial positions." 4/22/18

  • Notre Dame football booster makes unusual $5 million donation (Notre Dame Die Hards) And, again, another endowed staff position. Nice but still rare. "At high-profile football programs such as Notre Dame, it’s far from out of the ordinary to see multi-million donations come in to foot the bill of new projects. Normally, those big checks go toward something tangible — built with brick or steel or concrete or even turf [...]. However, an unusual donation was announced at Notre Dame on Friday. The university said alumnus John J. Arlotta and his wife, Barbara (Bobbie), had made a $5 million donation to endow the offensive coordinator position for the Fighting Irish." 4/21/18

  • Indiana University gets $2 million donation (South Bend Tribune) "A former Indiana football player has made a $2 million donation to help the athletic department renovate the Hoosiers’ team area underneath Memorial Stadium. Terry Tallen’s gift will provide funding for a 25,000-square foot renovation of the Hoosiers’ locker room, team lounge, equipment and training rooms, coaches locker room and recruiting area." 4/21/18

  • Greater Vancouver Food Bank receives largest donation in history, launches Goodly Foods (Vancouver Sun) VANCOUVER STORY "The Greater Vancouver Food Bank has launched a new program aimed at addressing wasted food in British Columbia thanks, in large part, to a historic donation from the Walmart Foundation [...]. The program has previously been in 'pilot' phase, but a Walmart Foundation grant of more than US$830,000 — over $1 million Canadian, the largest donation in the food bank’s history — has allowed the food bank to expand the program exponentially." 4/20/18

  • Food Banks Canada announces $2.8 million grant from the Walmart Foundation to build the Canadian food bank network (NewsWire) CANADIAN STORY Thanks Walmart! "Food Banks Canada announced a generous, $2.8 million dollar grant from the Walmart Foundation, investing in vital support of the Canadian food banking network. This grant is part of the Walmart Foundation's $15 million USD ($19 million CAD) commitment to prevent food waste and support food banks." 4/19/18

  • McKeil family makes $1-million donation to McNally House hospice (NiagaraThisWeek.com) GRIMSBY STORY "McNally House marked its 10th anniversary with the announcement of $1-million donation that will help it begin a new chapter of providing palliative care services. During a celebration at Edgewater Manor in Stoney Creek [...] Blair and Kathy McKeil announced a $1-million donation to the Grimsby-based hospice to help support the creation of a new wellness centre for palliative care." 4/19/18

  • Partner with Lowe’s to help build new gym - Ellen announces $1,000,000 donation (Rockport Pilot) "Ellen DeGeneres announced on her show a $1 million donation from Lowe’s to the Aransas County Independent School District (ACISD) to build a new gym. The $1 million dollar gift will not actually be used to replace the gold gym, but rather to build a new 'competition' gym, according to ACISD Superintendent Joseph Patek." 4/19/18

  • RIVERVIEW RECEIVES $5 MILLION DONATION FOR ROBOTIC SURGERY (Two River Times) "The Riverview Medical Center has received a $5 million donation to support the advancement of its robotic surgery program. Timothy J. Hogan, the president of Riverview Medical Center and Hackensack Meridian Health Bayshore Medical Center, said this recent donation from Two River Theater Company founders Joan and Robert Rechnitz is a significant contribution." The Riverview Medical Center is located in Red Bank, New Jersey. 4/19/18

  • Women's Foundation secures $1 million matching donation 2 years ahead of schedule (Tucson.com) "More than two years ahead of schedule, the Women’s Foundation of Southern Arizona cruised to its goal of raising $1 million to receive a matching donation from a local nonprofit. The Connie Hillman Family Foundation pledged in 2015 to match new and increased donations to the women’s foundation over the next five years, up to $1 million." 4/19/18

  • UMD receives $21.25 million donation supporting career aid for student-athletes (Diamondback News) "The University of Maryland will receive a $21.25 million donation from longtime donors Barry and Mary Gossett aimed at career help for student-athletes." 4/19/18

  • $1 million donation to Tidelands Health sets record (South Strand News) "A couple from Washington state has donated $1 million to Tidelands Health, the largest gift from private individuals ever received by the health system. Donors Joe and Denise Harris, of Bellingham, Washington, have strong ties to the Georgetown community and plan to move to the region in the future, Tidelands said in a press release." 4/19/18

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