Rescheduled: George McCully at the Ethos Roundtable

Those of you who missed the opportunity to learn about the Massachusetts Philanthropic Directory because of the inclement weather in January will have another chance! We are delighted to announce that we have been able to reschedule George McCully for the March session of the Ethos Roundtable.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011
4:30 - 6:00 pm
Charles Hotel
1 Bennett Street
Harvard Square, Cambridge

Featured guest: George McCully, founder of the Catalogue of Philanthropy and the Massachusetts Philanthropic Directory

Here's a little bit from George about the Philanthropic Directory:
We all know that Massachusetts philanthropy is becoming systematic, enabled by internet technology. The Catalogue for Philanthropy, in collaboration with a statewide consortium of foundations, corporations and individual donors, is launching momentarily an on-line, complete, analytical, directory to all Massachusetts charities of interest to donors generally, for free use by everyone in and around philanthropy?donors, grant-makers, philanthropic advisors, strategic planners, journalists, scholars, students, et al.

The new system will embody many "firsts": It will be the first complete dataset to distinguish definitively between philanthropic charities and the vast majority of other "nonprofit" organizations, proving that the word "nonprofit" should no longer be used as a synonym for philanthropy. It will be the first presentation of philanthropy as a coherent whole, organized by the first systematic, comprehensive, taxonomy (i.e., not just an unsystematic "list") of about 200 fields, branching out logically from three fundamental fields: Nature, Culture, and People. It will be the first to identify user-designated complete groups of charities?by field, location, budget size, year of IRS authorization, and demographics served, or any combination thereof. It will be the first to offer direct links to the websites of all group members. It will enable new kinds of questions to be asked and answered?about the histories, fiscal, geographic, and demographic, distribution, of philanthropy or parts thereof in designated groups and regions; the distribution of services within and among fields in communities and regions, as well as what fields or regions are not adequately developed (because the taxonomy and data are complete, gaps will important to public policy and strategic development of the sector); comparative analyses of philanthropic activity between and among fields and regions; and in time, since "Give Now" buttons are distributed throughout the site, statistical data on giving. After testing the system in Massachusetts, the Catalogue will extend it to all other states.
Here's a little bit about George himself:
Philanthropy is George McCully's second career. Trained in Renaissance history at Columbia University (M.A., 1961, Ph.D. 1967), he taught and published articles on history, the philosophy of history, and higher education, for nearly twenty years—as a graduate student, at Queens and Bronx Community Colleges, Barnard and Columbia; then at Swarthmore, Princeton, Yale, and Wellesley, with two years in academic administration at Brown, as Assistant Dean of the Faculty.

In 1980 he entered philanthropy as Executive Director of the Center for Field Research, awarding $1.5 million annually in grants for field research in the sciences and humanities world-wide. This put him on a number of boards, and by 1983 he was a full-time independent consultant in philanthropy, serving since then as fundraiser, strategic planner, trustee, and advisor to charities, foundations, families, and individual donors.

In 1984 he was founding Board President of the national Center for Plant Conservation—a consortium of 12 (now 31) leading botanic gardens from Boston to Hawaii, created to manage plant endangerment in the United States. He conceived its Priority Regions Programs in Hawaii, California, Texas, Florida and Puerto Rico, and as a spin-off for the New England Wild Flower Society, the New England Plant Conservation Program. For 20 years he has helped to build the Boston Early Music Festival as today the world’s leading institution of Early Music. He is a 20-year trustee of the Ellis L. Phillips Foundation (Boston), and has helped to create four community foundations, serving for ten years as founding trustee of the Community Foundation of MetroWest (Boston).

He is also a founding Board director (2008) of the Davlin Fund, a philanthropic mutual fund, and of its corporate Foundation. In 1997 he led a coalition of 20 foundations, corporations, and individual donors, to create in Massachusetts the first Catalogue for Philanthropy (incorp. 2002), to promote charitable giving and strengthen the culture of philanthropy through donor education. He wrote vols. I-XI (884 pp.) of the Catalogues —articles about philanthropy supported by descriptions of (in twelve years) over 900 charities, which is cumulatively the most thorough and detailed description, defense, and advocacy of philanthropy ever published. Also in 1997 he created for public awareness purposes the "Generosity Index," which became the nation's leading stimulus for media discussions of charitable giving. Together the Catalogue and the Generosity Index played a leading role in doubling Massachusetts charitable giving in only four years (1997-2000), from $2 billion to $4 billion.

In 2008 the Catalogue published his book, Philanthropy Reconsidered—a concise but comprehensive introduction to, and strategic overview of, philanthropy, from ancient Greece, through the American Revolution, to the current national paradigm-shift, which he first identified as such in two articles of Foundation News, in 2000, and of which the Massachusetts Philanthropic Directory is at the cutting edge. He is a member of the Editorial Board of Conversations on Philanthropy, and is a main author of the Wikipedia article on “Philanthropy,” which in the last year attracted over 1.2 million hits.

At the conclusion of our Ethos Roundtable session, we will stroll down the hall to enjoy the good company, charming venue, and free food at the 501 Tech Club, which is generously underwritten by TechFoundation. The 501 Tech Club is the monthly gathering of technology professionals who work with nonprofit organizations.

All Ethos Roundtable attendees are welcome at the Boston 501 Tech Club, and vice versa.

Please remember that there's never any need to make a reservation to attend Ethos Roundtable events. Just come if you can, and feel free to invite others! However, if you're planning to attend the Boston 501 Tech Club event at 6:00 pm, we ask that you send an email to Kathleen Sherwin of TechFoundation (ksherwin AT techfoundation DOT org). Since TechFoundation is providing the free food, it's both courteous and prudent to let her know how much to order.

See you in March!

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