Weekly News Recap: July 28, 2017

Deirdre and Ian Harris make $1 million gift to Calgary Public Library. Image credit: @LibraryFdnYYC

If a monk regards contempt as praise, poverty as riches, and hunger as a feast, he will never die. — Desert Fathers

Uncommon knowledge


  • Edmonton homeless shelter to be rebuilt after 63 years (CBC) EDMONTON STORY "One of Edmonton's biggest homeless shelters will be torn down as soon as next year — and then rebuilt on the same site. The men's shelter, run by the Hope Mission [...], has been open since 1954." 7/26/17
  • 2017 Top 40 Under 40 (PR In Canada) CALGARY STORY Congratulations to Kathryn Kolaczek on being named one of 2017's Top 40 Under 40 in PR. Kathryn is the proprietor of Alchemy Communications who ViTrēo is proud to count Alchemy as it's PR partner and advisor. 7/24/17

Life and career hacks

  • The Lost Art of Quitting (ART + marketing) If you think saying no is hard, this is the next step. It too is hard. But necessary. 7/11/17


  • Alberta should cap pay for university executives (The Gauntlet) ALBERTA STORY I find it interesting how often this conversation devolves to questioning the sizes of the salaries of our nonprofit leaders. I am all for oversight and boundaries but last time I checked, these organizations were every bit as complex — more so actually — than many for profit organizations where CEO salaries are significant multiples of these salaries. We should be asking why salary caps are even part of the conversation -- they are not in other industries. If we want our most important institutions to continue to be led by the best and the brightest, we will need to get over this unjustified moral outrage on how much we are paying for this talent. 7/25/17


Philanthropic controversy

  • $20M Annie Leibovitz collection rejected for 4th time by Canadian tribunal (CBC) NOVA SCOTIA STORY "A federal tribunal has — for the fourth time — rejected the bulk of the Art Gallery of Nova Scotia's enormous Annie Leibovitz collection, raising questions about whether the prints by the famous American photographer will ever be displayed in Halifax." Gift-in-kind valuations, especially with when they involve very significant valuations of art, can often see these types of challenges. 7/26/17

Studies and stats

  • Wealthy People Give to Charity for Different Reasons Than the Rest of Us (Scientific American) "A recent paper by psychologists Ashley Whillans, Eugene Caruso, and Elizabeth Dunn suggests a potential new explanation as to what motivates people to give to charity [...]. Across three studies, they found that people who earn less money are more likely to donate to charity when presented with a request that emphasizes social connection and community. In contrast, wealthier individuals are more likely to give money when presented with a request that appeals to their sense of independence and self-reliance." Thanks to Andrea McManus for sharing this post. 7/25/17
  • Corporate philanthropy research paper wins European award (Rotterdam School of Management) Interesting research on employee role in corporate social responsibility. "Dr Pamala Wiepking from Rotterdam School of Management, Erasmus University (RSM) won the European Research Network on Philanthropy (ERNOP) best conference paper award for a paper she co-wrote about the employee's engagement in corporate philanthropy." 7/20/17

Large gifts

  • Calgary Public Library names Shared History Centre after $1M donation (CBC) CALGARY STORY Lovely gift. "Calgarians Deirdre and Ian Harris have worked their way into the history books with a donation to the Calgary Public Library. Thanks to the Harris' $1-million gift, their family name will have a place in Calgary's future at the Williams & Harris Shared History Centre." 7/26/17
  • Outward Bound USA will use $5 million donation to launch research lab (Denver Business Journal) "Outward Bound USA is launching a new lab that will train instructors and analyze student behaviors to create new curriculum. The lab comes after the S.D. Bechtel Jr Foundation on Monday announced that it has made a $5 million donation to Outward Bound, a nonprofit mountaineering school based in Golden." 7/24/17
  • Taber receives $2.4-million donation from resident who died last year (Calgary Herald) TABER STORY "Taber will build a new fire hall bearing the name of a wealthy benefactor who left $2.4 million to the southern Alberta town. The town [...] has been named as the beneficiary of the estate of former resident William Ferguson, who died last October. The 'generous' sum of money will be used to build a new fire hall, increase affordable housing and add new recreational walking trails." 7/22/17
  • Beebe Healthcare receives $10 million donation (Delaware Online) "Beebe Healthcare has received a $10 million donation — the largest in hospital and Sussex County's history — which will go toward the hospital's aggressive expansion plans[.] The Ma-Ran Foundation donated the money to become the Margaret H. Rollins Pavilion on the Lewes Campus. Margaret and Randall Rollins, who created the foundation, previously donated money to the hospital's nursing school of the same name." 7/21/17
  • $50 million donation to St. Joe's marks largest in university history (Philly Voice) "St. Joseph's University announced [...] the receipt of a $50 million gift from a distinguished alumnus and his wife, marking the single largest donation in the university's 166-year history. The gift comes from James J. Maguire ('58) and his wife Francis, who together credited the university's Jesuit education as a transformational influence both academically and personally." 7/20/17
  • Buffett makes $3 million donation to Children's Museum (Herald & Review) "The Children's Museum of Illinois will expand next summer with a two-story exhibit focused on law enforcement, funded by a $3 million grant from the Howard G. Buffett Foundation, museum officials announced Thursday." Howard is Warren Buffet's middle child. 7/20/17
  • Iowa receives $5 million donation to endow athletic director (ESPN) "The University of Iowa athletic department has received a $5 million donation to endow its athletic director position. The school announced [...] that boosters Henry and Patricia Tippie made the commitment to create Iowa's first endowed position in athletics." 7/21/17

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