Women Who Give:
The Chronicle of Philanthropy Stages a Webinar on Female Giving Trends
When Lady Anne Radcliffe funded a scholarship fund at little college called “Harvard” in 1643, she probably didn’t see herself as a trend-setting philanthropist.
Or maybe she did, to hear to hear experts, Kathleen Loehr and Beth M. Mann speak about the giving habits of this oddly “under the radar group,” at The Chronicle of Philanthropy’s Webinar – “Fundraising and the Female Donor."
Hosted by The Chronicle ‘s Maria Di Mento, development officers and communications directors heard surprising, useful news. Women give more expansively – “along the lines of global empowerment,” according to Loehr (manager of Orr and Associates), when the money is their own. The Ms.Foundation’s high concentration of women donors whose “lives were changed by the Women’s Movement,” is a prime example. As Associate Vice President of the Jewish Federations of America, Mann offers further evidence of the importance of focusing on women as a demographic. The Federation’s success with women’s philanthropy programs raises nearly $180 Million each year.
Both offered metrics: women constitute the fastest growing sector of small business owners. They are six times more likely to give from earned, rather than inherited funds. Also, Loehr referenced Cornell and Princeton Universities’ abilities to engage women as leaders on boards and councils. By the end of the hour, the sea-change in giving was obvious.
From pharmaceutical heiress Ruth Lilly’s $100 Million to Poetry magazine; to feminist Joan Palesky’s $200 Million bequest to the California Community Foundation; and Joan Kroc’s (widow of McDonald’s founder, Ray Kroc) Salvation Army gift - the largest bequest on record ($1.5 billion), Lady Anne would be proud.