New Philanthropists make their own way in Austin

New Philanthropists AustinThe diversity of backgrounds, perspectives and ideas blows me away. But what all our New Philanthropists have in common is a commitment to Austin. They tend to work outside the traditional nonprofit structure, creating their own points of engagement or standing out among their peers for their dedication to their cause.

Some of them left lucrative careers for less lucrative pursuits. Some of them saw connection possibilities where others haven’t, and they worked hard to make them. Some of them applied their experience and skills to the more frustrating field of philanthropy because they saw how great the rewards could be.

We found these 25 people thanks to you. You submitted more than 80 nominations, and had we a bigger budget we’d include them all; their amazing stories are enough to fill the next 8 issues of the magazine. It took a solid week of research and head-scratching to whittle it down to these 25 incredible folks. And we can’t wait for you to meet them.

But I won’t tell you who they are now! How would I sell magazines if I spilled the beans?

Please watch for the next issue of GivingCity Austin, available here on April 5. And mark your calendars for Givers Ball III, our quarterly celebration of Austin’s growing philanthropy community, taking place at the Gibson on April 5. See you then!

People—and awards—are so nice

We are very proud to have been selected for one of the 25 Austin American-Statesman Texas Social Media Awards for 2011.

GivingCity has been nominated since the TSMAs began three years ago, but this was worth the wait. Our fellow winners are some of the coolest, most influential and most engaging people and organizations in social media. We’re looking forward to the event on March 10 when they choose the overall winner.

Bonus news! We are also very proud to have been selected for one of the 10 SXSW Interactive Dewey Winburne Community Service Awards, which honor Central Texans who use technology and the Interwebs for the greater good. They’ll choose the overall winner at their event on March 11.

(Yes, that’s two awards in 24 hours. It’s not #tigersblood, but it’s pretty cool.)

Thanks to all of our followers, subscribers and likers (oy, these “new media” words). But especially thanks to the Austin Community Foundation—GivingCity’s fans are ACF’s fans now!

Here’s what I told the Statesman:

“Social media helps us share stories that offer more people an entry point to local philanthropy,” she says. “And once they connect with a cause, social media lets them connect with other people who support that cause, and, one by one, these connections expand Austin’s culture of philanthropy.”

 

On why we do this

Before GivingCity came to the Austin Community Foundation, we produced a lot of content for a lot of other people. One of our favorite things to work on was and is 12 Baskets Magazine for Mobile Loaves & Fishes. We still do 12 Baskets now.

Here’s how we got that gig: I was standing in the lobby of Alamo Drafthouse, waiting to watch the first showing of Andrew Shapter’s film, “Happiness Is.” Alan Graham was also there to see the film, and we were chatting a bit about what it is I do, exactly. I gave him the overview (“You know, I just like working on magazines.”), and then he asked me if I could make him a digital magazine that was provocative and awesome.

Who’s going to turn that down?

So we made a 12 Baskets magazine. And then another. And they’ve had more than 11,000 views so far, which is not bad for what is basically a spiffed up-nonprofit newsletter. These two issues have included amazing stories, but they’ve spurred some amazing stories, too. Here’s one:

Two weeks ago we received an email from a woman asking us if we could tell her anything about Joseph Coleman.

We’d photographed him for a recurring story, “Everything I Own,” (above) in which we ask a homeless person to display the contents of his or her bag. Other magazines use this concept to offer insight into a person’s interests and personality. We use it to offer insight in to a homeless person’s hope and/or desperation.

Turns out the woman who emailed us is Coleman’s niece. And she’s been looking for him.

There wasn’t much I could tell her except that we found him around Woolridge Park. Coleman’s story was particularly sad: He owned two blankets wrapped in a scarf and a prayer card. That’s all.

She told us she’d go look for him, see if she could help him. Her family had taken care of him in the past, but hadn’t seem him in about 10 years. Coleman has addiction problems that keep him from staying in one place for too long. She sent me this photos of Coleman as a boy. I hope she finds him.


GivingCity Austin Issue #6 January 2011

GivingCity Austin #6 Jan, 2011

Inside the new issue:

Philanthropy at The Gate – Texas is short $27 billion and looking for philanthropy to pick up the slack. Now more than ever, Austin nonprofits must speak up.
A Fair for The Future — A Spanish-only education fair could be the key to Austin’s economic success.
Austin’s Angel – For parents of children who have passed away, Amy Allen is a a bright spot.
PLUS – Theatre Action Project, RISE, Philanthropy Day, Michelle Valles, Stephanie Fisher, Jason Sabo, nonprofit jargon, CASA of Travis County and more.

CLICK HERE to open the new issue now.

Thanks to Givers Ball sponsors, Give Realty and El Sol y La Luna.


Nominate a New Philanthropist

GivingCity Austin #6 Jan, 2011

New issue available now. Click cover.

We’re looking for budding philanthropists, the Austinites who will help build a culture of generosity over the next decade.

These are not just people who give back, these are people who will be role models for the rest of us. They’re people Austin needs to take the lead; people who have the energy and vision, charisma and connections, and commitment to making this one of the most generous cities in the country.

NOMINATE A NEW PHILANTHROPIST NOW

We need your help to recognize and encourage the New Philanthropists. There is no age limit, but nominees must demonstrate the following:

1. Energy to be a leader in the local philanthropic community for the next 10 years or more.
2. Willingness to be interviewed and photographed for the magazine.
3. Availability to appear at photo shoot in early March 2011.

Nomination deadline: February 28, 2011.

Questions? Email Monica at monica@givingcity.com.

PROCEED TO NOMINATION FORM

*See the 2009 New Philanthropists

A word about our photographs

Please do not grab photos from the magazine to use on other websites or personal pages. They are the property of GivingCity Austin and the Austin Community Foundation.

We contract with local photographers for those images. The contracts specify that photographers not share those images with anyone. In fact, even the photographers are not allowed to put the photographs on their own sites until 90 days after we publish the magazine.

Your use of the photographs undermines and diminishes the integrity of our content. Unfortunately, we cannot afford to provide free personal photographs for the subjects of our stories. It would be like my asking you to hire a photographer to take photos of you and then give them to me for the magazine for free. (We’re just not that kind of magazine.)

Please feel free to contact me about high-res reprints of the article. Thanks for your help!

January 11: Next issue, next Givers Ball

Jan 11 Givers BallThe more I talk to people about Texas’ looming budget shortfall (projected to be between $14 and $24 billion) and its inevitable crushing of Austin – not just of local nonprofits because of the surge in demand and drop in support, but also of the local economy as state employees start to lose their jobs – the more I learn about it, the angrier I get.

But anger, fear and the related emotions are not productive reactions to the mess we’re in. So in that regard, the next issue of GivingCity Austin will offer productive, actionable things we can do to prepare and (maybe) avoid some of the devastation.

This issue is for Austinites who complain about the mess AND work to do something about it. So, you.

The launch of a new issue also gives us an opportunity to celebrate you, and specifically, the young and professional organizations that introduce philanthropy and civic engagement to hundreds of Austinites, usually over drinks and networking. Thank you.

Keep an eye out for the new issue announcement on January 11 (also first day of session), and join us that night for the Givers Ball. We’ve invited more than 30 YPOs, and we’re going to stir them up.

GivingCity Austin Givers Ball
January 11, 2011
6 – 8 pm
El Sol y La Luna
6th & Red River
Food, drinks and a special announcement
about our New Philanthropists issue

RSVP on Facebook

Not on Facebook? RSVP here.

Thanks to Austin Community Foundation