I just talked to my friend who is also my personal banker and is in charge of giving for his bank in my home town. He is a great guy who cares about philanthropy. He has been supportive of me in the community. In our conversation, I told him that the Giving USA Report had come out and 2009 went down 3%. He said, “Bob, I came to your house for that reception, and a fundraiser for a local museum and another for a social service organization came up to me and asked to visit sometime. I said ‘sure.’ That was seven months ago and neither has called me.”Did you get that? Neither one called in over a seven month period!Giving went down $10,000 as a result of negligence on the part of two fundraisers.I know both of them. They had both had talked a lot about how difficult fundraising was for them in this economy. And yet, they walked away from a gift.That baffles me. Why would they do that? Are they too busy to raise money? Are they worn out by “beating the streets?” Did they say “no” for him? What do you have to do?It reminded me of a fundraiser for a domestic violence facility who said last year, “This is why we have reserves. We shouldn’t be asking people for gifts now. Nobody is giving any money away.”So three different fundraisers, for very different causes, bought into the common view that no one was giving away.Did you see the latest Chronicle on Philanthropy article on 50 large institutions that have had increased fundraising in the first quarter at more than 30% over the past year?You may be hearing two stories. One story is that “people are saying” no one is giving money away. The other is based on fact and last quarter data on actual dollars raised. It says money is available for those who are willing to go the extra mile, get creative, and demonstrate a compelling, urgent need.Which story do you choose to believe?
The Most Influential ‘Living Person’ in Philanthropy
Robert F. Hartsook Receives Honorary Doctorate of Business
Plymouth University, United Kingdom
Bob Hartsook was awarded an Honorary Doctorate of Business Administration by Plymouth University in Plymouth, England. The University described Bob as: “arguably the most influential living person improving the philanthropic donor experience.” Such global affirmation appropriately recognizes Bob and uniquely distinguishes Hartsook as the world’s fundraising counsel.”
Plymouth University honors individuals who have achieved great distinction in their professional lives and who have made contributions to society at large. In recognizing Bob Hartsook’s impressive achievements, the University has highlighted his service to the field of philanthropy, his promotion of academic study and research and his personal commitment to growing philanthropy around the world. Go here to learn more and view videos from this event.
Pictured: Karin Cox, Hartsook Senior Executive Vice President and Chief Creative Officer; Julian Chaudhuri, Deputy Vice-Chancellor, Education and Student Experience; Bob Hartsook; Adrian Sargeant, Professor of Fundraising at Plymouth University and the Director of the Hartsook Centre for Sustainable Philanthropy; Jen Shang, Philanthropic Psychologist and Director of Research at the University of Plymouth Hartsook Centre for Sustainable Philanthropy; Matthew J. Beem, Hartsook President and CEO.